Sunday, June 29, 2008


We continue to march forward in this cycle. Our donor was measured with 18 antral follicles, which according to our understated DE coordinator/nurse is "perfect." In fact, she even added that "Everything is coming up roses!" with her own "!" added in there. While I am a "!" kind of writer, she is not at all. So I'm thinking that she is quite pleased with how things are going.

Since I have never done IVF or even had my antral follicles counted, I consulted Dr. Google, who said that why, yes, this is a good sign. With over 11 having a moderate rate of success, but between 15 and 26 being the optimum level of IVF success.

I take this all as good news.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

We have a Date!

So, everything is moving along. Our donor has officially agreed to the cycle and is available at exactly the time I'll be in the California conference. I spent most of last night dreaming about arriving in CA, which days it would be best to be there and how we'll see everyone and, in my head, emailing my donor to say Thank You. I also spent some of my dream yelling at my MIL, so let's hope not all of that is predictive.

I really do not feel anxious about this process right now. I am learning to trust my intuition which indicated a real fear that the first donor would say no and that something was off with the second donor and, now, that things are really going to work out with this donor.

Maybe now I can spend some time on this blog writing about why we are choosing DE over adoption and why we plan on disclosing to our child (but not necessarily to our families at this point) and what we are going to do if we should be so fortunate as to have leftover frosties from this process.

But right now, I feel happy and even keeled and I am following the other DE blogs to see how their stories turn out, too.

Thursday, June 19, 2008


What an eventful day.

I have not been feeling "right" about the donor we chose second. There were several characteristics that were bothering me, including finding out in her genetic history that a close relative has hypothyroidism. Although the clinic says that it is not worth worrying about, the research I saw (from even that lame institution Stanford U) says that there is a genetic component to hypothyroidism. Yes, it's easily (easily!) treatable, but it was a concern.

So Dave and I went back to the pool of candidates and found (oh, God, can I say this?) "her." She's shorter than I am, has had 8 out of 9 successful cycles, started college at 16, has the same odd ethnicity that I do, has wavy hair (according to her pictures and the coordinator's statements), she's really pretty (much prettier than DE Daddy or me), AND SHE SAID YES!!!

The coordinator placed a call just to see what she was thinking about cycling this summer and she said yes, yes, yes!!!

This is once again an example of trusting my guts. I just knew my Monday that our first donor wasn't going to cycle. And this second one just kept making me feel anxious. (oh, I forgot to admit, we were going for another donor---the one who looks like DE Daddy---but her last cycle wasn't successful and they ended up with only 4 frosties. That freaked me out and we moved on)

Oh, I hope this is it. They start her testing soon and I think they are going to be able to work around my conference in CA. Hooray!! I feel so much better than I did this morning!!


We are now officially matched up with a new donor and as far as I can tell, she has said YES, she will do it! (I was out of town for a meeting yesterday and only exchanged one email instead of the zillion calls and emails I've been doing before)

I have to be honest: I'm a little more cautious about this one, now that I've already tasted disappointment. This donor has had 5 pgs out of 7 cycles. The last cycle did not result in pg, but the couple ended up with 11 frosties. The FET failed for this couple too, so their may be an undiagnosed problem with the couple because "the embryos and frosties were top notch!!" (says the coordinator)

This donor is as tall as I am, although she's a bit heavier. (As an aside, I realized that I am not nearly as heavy as I thought I comparing my weight to the donors' weights and they are all so cute!!) Nonetheless, this donor's mother was a ballet dancer all her life and some of thedonor's older pictures show her as being quite thin. She doesn't have curly hair, but it's dark like mine. (our next donor choice is bloooooond, so I'm actually a bit happy to have a darker haired donor) There are some other differenecs and I realize as I read on another blog, she doesn't look exactly like me and I need to just deal with that. As my husband keeps pointing out, we were open to adoptiong a biracial/transracial child, so "like me" is really far down on the list of priorities in this process.

Our neighbors came over for dinner last night and although they don't know exactly what we are doing, they shared the story of a latino friend of theirs who has dark hair, dark eyes and dark skin who had a blond, blue eyed, pale son. Traditional parental genetics don't mean as much as one might think! Sarah Vowell is a twin born of a Swede and a Native American and she and her twin look very different!

So, in any case, we're rematched. I'm excited. There are things I really like about this donor, but I'm a bit more apprehensive than I was. I don't know if it's because I've already been disappointed by losing our first donor or because I'm tapping into some as-yet-unidentified thing that bothers me about this donor.

I need to fall back in love (affection? appreciation?) with this donor like I had with the first one.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


Crappity Crap.

Our golden donor has decided to withdraw from the program. That is fine. Really. Part of the ethics of my career involves fully informing people of their ability to withdraw from participating in events. Nonetheless, I thought our clinic had gotten a verbal affirmation of her participation last week and apparently they did not.

That makes me cranky.

Also, our #2 choice has pulled out which is ok. I was having reservations about her. Our #3-5 choices are still in. None of them have my hair. Two are tall and one is not (at all!). One looks a lot like DE Daddy and one looks a bit more like me. Well, at least she has my ethnicities. The one who looks a lot like DE Daddy is very smart and very athletic. The one who looks (more) like me is available when we'll be in California.


Friday, June 13, 2008


We're officially matched with our preferred donor!! I'm really excited. And I know it's foolish to believe this, but I believe with all my heart that we're going to have another baby! Even if it doesn't happen with fresh embryos, I believe we'll have enough frosties to successfully try again. (Did I mention the 70% success rate the clinic has with frosties?)

I'm really not stressed about this. We'll have another child. I know it. Those children who have been trying to get to us will finally make it through.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Narrowing in on a Donor

We've spent the weekend updating our Excel spreadsheet of potential donors. I have a few friends around here (ok, one) who knows what is going on and after speaking with her, we loosened up our criteria for who to choose. I am tall and I have been only considering tall donors. My friend is taller and said that although tall is nice, she reminded me that it wasn't much fun being the giantess we were in high school.

I also appreciated her comments (and yours) that proven is really the key thing. So of the 26 proven donors in our clinic's database (over 5'1"---there's short and then there's short! DE Daddy is 6'4" and I am over 5'8"), 16 are available in August. I printed out all of their information and DE Daddy took the first swipe and found 4 that he really liked. I really liked 3 of the 4, too, so we're starting with them.

We can't be officially matched until they get all our bloodwork and we're waiting for the final results. But we've let them know about our donor. I'm getting really invested in her so I hope she's willing to do just one more cycle! She's 5'4" (the same height as my Mom who had a 6'3 boy and a 5'8 girl), in a good university with a rigorous major, althletic, plays a musical instrument, pretty, with close to my hair, and, most importantly, she's had 8 cycles with 7 pregnancies. The one cycle without a pg ended up with 10 frosties, so that still sounds pretty good to me. (Yes, this clinic does let donors participate in more than 5 cycles, but at this point, that is a plus for me, not a minus.)

I actually hope that tomorrow we'll get the bloodwork in and they can make the match. And she's willing to do one more!!! NowI'm second guessing myself in that I should have called the coordinator to get a feel for this donor's likelihood to do another cycle. (8 seems like a lot to me!)

But the good news is that we have 3 more donors we'd "prefer" and about 5 or more donors who would be just fine. So, I guess I ought not get really worked up about this. It's going to happen, I think.


Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Choosing the Donor

Well, most of our medical records have been sent from our old clinic to the new clinic and the new clinic is ordering up some additional tests--mainly blood work to meet California's stricter donor laws.

Because we are officially in the clinic now, we can officially be matched with our donor.


There are certain characteristics that we would like the donor to have, mainly because they are characteristics of mine. So we are mainly evaluating donors as how they compare with a tall runner with curly hair. The first donor we were interested in ran track, was 5'8" and had very curly hair. However, she has not responded to the clinic's repeated requests for additional pictures and since I'd argue conscientiousness is one of the best predictors for donor success, I am no longer interested.

There are two other donors that are tall (6'0 and 5'9) and athletic (including one who has run a 5 minute mile----that's FAST) but neither have curly hair. Still the 5'9" one looks a bit like me with the same facial features with self-reported wavy hair. Considering how much people comment on my son's curly hair, curl is still a real issue with me. Additionally 6'0 is proven and 5'9" is unproven. We want to have another child so "proven" is an important thing.

Of course, then we go back to the fact that we have been pretty far down the adoption path and would have happily engaged in a transracial or biracial adoption. So does it really matter if the donor looks like me?

I don't know. I've had too much coffee to think right now. And certainly too much to make any big decisions.