Letting the dust settle
Well, it's been a week since we had the news about our embryo not being suitable for transfer.
It hasn't been the best week. It started with a lot of alcohol and ended with a lot of tears.
I've gone from numbing out any pain to really starting to feel it. It's so hard, I just get so disappointed and have had a lot of self-loathing - like I wasn't good enough or strong enough to make this happen. Which is clearly not true, but I guess that's part of my process of grief. What could I have done differently to have had a different outcome?
I'm someone that needs a plan so I sprung into action to see if there was another chance for us. I found a little bit of hope through the Facebook group egg donor angels international donor options. I had literally NEVER EVER EVER considered using someone else's eggs before. I thought that when this was done, I was done. But I started exploring the group and chatting to a few people and many have had success (i.e. babies!) by going Internationally where the process of finding and using egg donors seems to be easier than it is in Australia. I do not have a lot of energy left to give this process anymore, so anything that is a little easier sounds good to me.
This is a mind f*ck of royal proportions. Here's how it goes:
#1 - I scan through egg donor profiles with pics of the donors as kids plus any of their own kids to find someone that looks a bit like me. As well as their medical history, family history and a bit about them and what they like to do
#2 - I find one who I like and see if she wants to jab herself with some needles and hopefully give me some eggs (an agency coordinates this, she'll be anonymous)
#3 - She says yes and we sign our names in blood (not really, but you get the idea) and I pay the agency
#4 - We sign a contract with a local (i.e. International) Fertility Clinic and they scan the donor medically and mentally. And I pay the clinic a deposit.
#5 - We agree on a time frame and they coordinate our cycles and prescribe medication to us both
#6 - We are given a window for when we need to be there but will get confirmation closer to the time so we can book flights and accommodation
#7 - We fly in and need to be there for about two weeks - from here the egg collection will take place, Toby will do his stuff, and then a normal IVF process takes place where the eggs are fertilised, embryo's are cultivated for five days and however many survive are either transferred or frozen.
#8 - We fly home
Sounds simple! So that's how it works. Wanna know what stage we're at?
If you know me well, then you'll know that I don't muck around.
We have done #1, #2 and #3 and we're going to fly to ... Cape Town, South Africa!!!!
This clinic has had incredible success and many people have been fortunate enough to create bubba's.
I soooooo wish I could show you a pic of the donor that we chose but that would probably be ethically wrong, haha. She has features similar to mine - except she's taller! Gotta find some good in an otherwise crappy process, right?!
So, this is not how I wanted things to pan out. I desperately wanted our last cycle to be the one, as I am sure you know. But it wasn't, so at least we still have some hope. I need to do some work for myself on reconciling that if we are successful, genetically the child would not be mine. And I am sure that it will be bloody hard for me to do that initially. But given that our other option would be adoption* where this would also be the case, I know that I can come to terms with this and I would love the child as if it were. Tobes would obviously be genetically their father so of course that's the amazing bonus.
That's it for now, I'll share more when I have some more news. We won't be heading over there until September, so there is plenty of time for reflection before then. This timing will also coincide with our Minus One Fund launch so hopefully there will be two babies on their way!!!
If anyone has a story to share about egg donation, I'd really love to hear it.
Thanks for your continued support,
*Of course we also considered adoption, but in this country it is incredibly difficult and time consuming - and given our age it would probably be a long shot. I would also love to foster, so we may do this regardless, at some point.