Directed Donor Testing Results

I just hung up the phone with the clinic that is processing my brother-in-law’s sperm (he is our donor). Normally they have people donate 3 times in seven days (Monday, Wednesday, Friday). But it sounds like they only had him come in twice because he had so many sperm: 8 vials from his first donation and 5 from the second donation.

All of his tests for communicable diseases came back negative, except for CMV which isn’t a problem (about 50% of the population is CMV positive).

So… Why am I sobbing? I’m so jealous! How is this right for one brother to have so many sperm that his numbers are off the charts and the other has not a single freaking one? Why didn’t God answer our prayers for even just a few sperm from Mr.E? I want so much for Mr.E to have biological children. It just doesn’t seem fair 😦

I feel guilty for crying about this. I should be feeling gratitude.

But I think I’m seeing a pattern here: every time we cross a threshold or complete an obstacle I think I’m going to mourn our situation all over again. I don’t know if that’s healthy or not. I keep thinking I’ve made peace with our situation and with our solution. But I keep mourning my dreams that will never come to be when we reach these milestones.

Maybe recognizing my pattern will make it less painful at the next milestone, which I think will be egg retrieval or when they call us to tell us how many embryos we have.

Does anybody else have a list of questions they plan on asking God after they get to heaven? I do. Mine is a mental list. Since this happened though, I’ve forgotten every single one of my questions except this one about this azoospermia thing. I don’t just want to know why, I want to understand what He hoped, or is hoping, I would get out of this experience.

IVF #3 – My IVF Calendar – Antagonist Protocol

We switched clinics several weeks ago. Not because I didn’t like my last clinic, actually I loved it and tried extremely hard to stay with them, but their policy is to require the 6 month quarantine for sperm from a known donor, also called a directed donor. You can read more about that quarantine here in my post about FDA regulations for directed donors.

Anyway, so I chose our new clinic based on their policy to allow us to use sperm that has only been quarantined for 7 days. Their success rate isn’t quite as good as our first clinic, but it’s still good.

As our new doctor said, there’s a certain amount of “voodoo” that goes into fertility treatments. Sometimes even if there’s no study that shows an absolute improvement in outcomes with a certain addition to the standard protocol, for example taking a baby aspirin everyday, the clinic will still have you do it because it’s part of their protocol. They don’t want to “mess with the voodoo” if it’s not causing any harm.

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Topaz Mini Plantar Fasciotomy for Plantar Fasciitis

I’ll step away from infertility stuff for this post. Yesterday I had the Topaz Mini Plantar Fasciotomy surgery on both feet. Here is a video of my doctor performing the surgery on a different patient.

Even though the surgery is unrelated to our infertility, the timing is not. Stims for IVF #3 start 2 weeks from tomorrow on June 7. It occurred to me that I might be pregnant in several weeks and if I didn’t do something to help my feet soon then I wouldn’t be able take care of my pregnant body or my future baby(ies) properly!

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Miscarriage vs. Abortion

I came across this article on Facebook and thought I’d share it here. I’ve never had a miscarriage or an abortion so I can’t say I understand exactly the feelings of loss.

I do, however, understand the feelings of loss about never having biological children with my husband. And the loss of dreams about those babies. And the loss of dreams about unplanned or accidental pregnancies or even just trying to get pregnant the old fashioned way.

Here’s the link to the article:

IVF #3 – Can We Get Started Yet??

The worst part of this infertility crap is all the freaking W.A.I.T.I.N.G.

Waiting for appointments, waiting for results, waiting for my period to start, waiting for BCP to do their thing, the two week wait, yada yada yada.

Our new clinic puts everyone on the same schedule for stims so they only do egg retrievals once a month. That means 4 full weeks of BCP instead of just 2 weeks, which is the minimum. *sigh*

We made our decision to use donor sperm. We have our schedule, I just want to freaking get started already! I want to stop second guessing, stop worrying, stop thinking, etc. We will finally get to see if my eggs can even make embryos. We’ve spent over $65,000 already and we’ve never gotten that far! The suspense is killing me.

We haven’t purchased a single baby item yet. I’m not really superstitious, but I’m secretly worried about jinxing it. How lame! As I just wrote that, I was thinking that if we had started purchasing baby stuff 2 years ago when we got started TTC, we could have gotten everything by now and at the best prices! Maybe that will be my next project while I’m waiting waiting waiting.

I promise to fill my blog over the next several weeks with useful stuff instead of complaining!!

I Feel Sorry for Fertiles

So I’m walking through Costco minding my own business when I get stuck behind two ladies gossiping.

Lady 1: (something unintelligible)

Lady 2 (the Fertile): Really? Yeah, it seems like everyone’s heard my stories.

Lady 1: (something unintelligible)

The Fertile: When I meet someone new they’re like, “Oh, are you the one who got pregnant after her husband had a vasectomy?” And I’m like, “Yes.”

Lady 1: (something unintelligible)

The Fertile: I know! And I just had my tubes tied, so I’ll probably get pregnant AGAIN!

Me: Oh, you poor, unfortunate soul.

Just kidding. I wish. And I could have sung it in my best Ursula voice, too.

What actually happened:

Me: (gagging, walking away as fast as I can with my costco-heavy cart which included toilet paper that will last a year and a block of cheese bigger than my head)

An hour later:

Me: (still trying to think of something snarky to say. I got nothin.)

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FDA Regulations for Known Sperm Donors

Before we asked my brother-in-law to be our donor, we had a meeting with the donor coordinator at our fertility clinic. We learned a little about donor sperm and donor embryos.

When we got home I did my own research about the regulations, specifically about FDA regulations about known donor sperm. The major areas of regulation are:
– quarantine period
– communicable disease testing
– genetic testing
– psychological evaluation
– FDA registered facilities

The rules for sperm donation are very similar for anonymous donors and known donors, but there is one major difference that is critical. That rule is about the sperm quarantine period.

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Gratitude in Infertility

I find myself apologizing a lot lately. My husband asks me, “What’s wrong?” and I find myself responding quite often with an apology and, “I’m just an angry, angry person.”

Now that it’s getting closer to IVF #3 and we will almost certainly have embryos to transfer, I’m very angry. I’m so angry. I don’t want to have a baby with some other guy’s sperm. I want a baby with Mr.E’s sperm.

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Known Sperm Donor

After telling our families about our infertility, we decided we needed to talk to a counselor about our options. We had a LOT of questions and anxiety about each choice.

We paid the $1,000 sign up fee with an adoption agency. We didn’t want to waste any more time. I’m so glad we did this because it really opened my eyes. As I filled out paperwork and started answering questions for our online profile, I started to feel uncomfortable with the idea of traditional adoption. The more paperwork we did, the more I started to feel like this wasn’t the right option for us.
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