Monthly Archives: May 2009

Donor Egg Math

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imagesI have a new hobby… any time I see an older pregnant woman I do the math in my head.

Take the celebrity Marcia Cross, for example. She’s 46 and has 21 month old twins, which means she had them at 44. Can you say “donor egg?” Or Halle Berry who’s 42 and has an infant who she had at 41. It is hard for us mere mortals to keep up. What do you do if you’re not a celebrity?

I worry that I’m running out of time. Donor eggs help with this.

On my TTC over 40 board, most of the women had successful pregnancies earlier in life and are trying to get pregnant again. It is scary for us older folks who are trying to have #1. I worry because I never used my eggs then, they won’t work now. and they don’t. But money and charity of a stranger can buy me another chance.

I read today that Jennifer Hudson bought a $35,000.00 watch. That is $5,000.00 short of the cost to adopt from Russia. If I’m not calculating age of pregnancies, I’m calculating the costs to use a shared donor cycle or to adopt.  The cost of my shared donor cycle is $28,5000. The estimate from ABC to adopt from Kazakhstan is $40,000+.  The math continues…

Next week is the first SG mock cycle appointment. I’m happily injecting myself with delestrogen in preparation. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Only One Part of Me is Infertile!

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So much of IF takes over your life and it is very easy to let IF become you. I’ve started a “Things I Love” links list on the right to remind me of that. I have struggled with whether to include the rest of my life on this blog. I think it is important for people to know more about me than my infertility.

If you look at the links you will see that despite the fact that I am military officer, I am still a dyed in the wool hippie who recycles, composts, and dreams of a simpler life complete with less things. In fact, it is our goal to continue to downsize our home with every military move, instead of up sizing (despite how many kids we have). We will probably never go below 800 sq ft. I think this perspective  is born of years of living in very primitive places (sponsored by Uncle Sam) quite happily. I don’t like moving but the frequent moves allow me to continuously clear out my stuff.

I love to create things (besides baby dreams). I sew (simple clothing and home decorating), I knit constantly (working my way through lace socks, I garden (I have many, many veggies in), I love to cook &  eat (see WeightWatchers link) and lately my fascination is with building cardboard furniture . I dream of owning some land, some chicken and living in a straw bale house with enough room for MO2 and the progeny.

So now you know more about me. I have to limit myself to one hour of IF per day because otherwise it is all consuming.

Joining a Fellow Blogger

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Mr. Shelby is instituting a weight loss challenge. As someone who LOVES to eat and is happily food obsessed, I will happily join this challenge (as soon as I scarf down my macaroni and cheese from the dining facility). Anyway, I can sympathize as I’ve lost the same 20 lbs over and over. So (throw down the gauntlet), I’m in!

Donor Eggs Over Not So Easy

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eggIn our adoption process we kept hitting snag after snag… nothing big, but small little things that make you say, hmmmm… First it was that the ABC agency told us Kazakhstan was now requiring three trips (one to meet child, court and then pick up child). That’s a lot of traveling not to mention even more $.

Then our home study agency learned that in order to meet the requirements for the Hague convention, we had to have child abuse checks in every state we’ve ever lived. This would have been fine but they told us AFTER all paperwork for the home study had been completed, so we had to go back through all the states AGAIN (this is in addition to the police checks we’ve already completed). This was extremely annoying and I find it difficult to believe they didn’t know this from the start. However, instead of my incredible annoyance, I decided to view this as a sign that maybe international adoption wasn’t for us.

When my first IVF failed, my RE pushed me toward donor eggs. I apparently have grainy, unfertilizable eggs. Although I produce a reasonable amount for my age, they aren’t any good it they don’t fertilize. When I met with the donor egg coordinator at my old REs, (probably one of the most negative people I have ever met), she informed me that DE were >$25,000 per cycle and weren’t guaranteed. If it didn’t work, you were out all the money. When we suggested a known donor (I have a lovely, generous friend) she started babbling about lawyer visits and many shared psychotherapy sessions, I just gave up on the idea.

With the adoption slowdown, I was researching things on the web when I heard of a split donor (costs and harvested eggs shared amoung 3 couples). Then I’ve heard of the Shady Grove Fertility Clinic’s 3:1 shared risk donor program. Here’s how it works. For a price that is less than an international adoption, you have the opportunity for 6 fresh donor egg cycles (shared among 3 donors). If you do not have a live birth after these 6 cycles, you get ALL your money back for an adoption!

It seems almost too good to be true. I don’t care what my baby looks like as long as we’re the same race (I have three cousins of a different race who had an incredibly hard time growing up-I won’t put a child through that).  I seem to have a relatively healthy uterus (crazy fibroids have not returned since surgery). Why not?  It gives me the chance of a lifetime-the chance to be pregnant! It also gives me some control. I get to pick the donor(s), I get to take care of the baby in utero (with adoption, you hope and pray that they didn’t drink or use drugs throughout the pregnancy).  It seems like a really awesome idea.

 I’ve spent some time talking to current DE recipients who used the program. One woman is on DE cycle 4 (3 miscarriages, 1 BFN) another is starting her first cycle soon. Both had incredibly positive things to say about the program, so I called and spoke with them. MO2 and I went for a semen analysis/freeze and social work interview on Saturday.  That went fine even though MO2 had temper tantrum about giving yet another,”donation.” He wants to be the sperm donor but doesn’t like the analysis that goes with them. (For a wonderful view on a Male’s perspective, check out Two Peas in a Pod’s, “Wakey, Wakey, Hands on Snakey” post). http://www.waitingforourpod.com/2009/05/07/a-day-in-the-life-of-male-infertility/

MO2 leaves for an 11 week school this week which gives me plenty of time to go through a mock cycle to ensure my lining builds up enough and to refresh myself with the sheer joy of stabbing myself in the belly. However, my nurse at SG seems friendly and helpful. I promise to keep you up to date.