I always knew I would have fertility issues, but I had no idea of the struggle my husband and I would have to go through to start our family.
I was just about to turn 40 when I got married, and had a history of endometriosis, fibroids, and tubal problems. Not a good start! But we jumped in enthusiastically, sure that "a little help" would bring us the baby we so longed for. I had wanted to be a mom since I was a little girl, always babysitting and holding others' babies, dreaming of the day when I would be pregnant and hold my own angel. We started IVF treatment with my own eggs at 41, and though the RE warned us that my "advanced maternal age" (that was lovely to hear!) would probably yield a low number of eggs, we were not deterred. We got 4 eggs from my first retrieval, and 2 fertilized and were transferred. I was sure this was it!
Unfortunately it wasn't, but I wasn't too upset; I just knew our next try would work. Well, it didn't, and neither did the next 2 IVF cycles, and 2 further IUI cycles. My body even stopped responding to the stim meds, so I decided to switch practices to see if I'd have better luck.
Upon learning my history, the new doctors tried a new protocol, but no luck there either. We had now used all the tries our insurance covered, and the reproductive endocrinologist suggested degg donation as an option.
Let me say that I was, at first, COMPLETELY opposed to it. There was absolutely no way I could have a donor egg baby! I thought it wouldn't be "mine", I would always be sad that my husband had the genetic connection and I didn't, and what would people say? So we continued fruitlessly trying with my eggs, and I think I knew, deep down, that I had to do some serious soul searching. What was it that made me so tied to having my own genetic child?
I believe the turning point for me was adopting our precious puppy, Remington. He was an adorable chocolate lab full of love and energy, and I mothered the stuffing out of that little one. Having never had a dog before, I was shocked at the fierceness with which I loved him. So, I thought to myself, if you can love your fur baby like he was your own child, what's stopping you from trying donor egg??
It took me another 6 months of deep thought, prayer, tears, and tons of research and website lurking, and I finally came to the conclusion that I could try. My husband was always on board. Bless him. He was so supportive, and wanted our family to grow, no matter the method we used. I couldn't have done this without his support.
We had the option to pick a fresh donor, from our doctor's database, or frozen, from DEB USA. I didn't see any donors I connected with on the fresh site, but I saw one on DEB USA's website that I immediately knew was "The One". I prayed it would work out that we "got" her, and we did!
Everything was smooth sailing from then on out - no synching cycles, no waiting endlessly to see if she qualified. Done deal. We got 3 wonderful embryos from her 6 strong, healthy frozen eggs. We transferred one and cryopreserved the other two. I can't tell you how amazed, incredulous, and over the moon ecstatic I was when I saw those 2 dark lines on my home pregnancy test on the first cycle!!
After 8 unsuccessful tries, we finally got our BFP, and I went on to have a pretty normal pregnancy (minus the God-awful morning sickness, but hey - I signed up for it, and would do it again in a heartbeat).
But the most wonderful, awe-inspiring, heart-melting part of all of this is my son. MY son. My own flesh, who couldn't be more "mine" if he was from my own egg. I wish I hadn't been so resistant to the concept at first, because this little boy was meant to be ours. The minute he was born, all doubt and question fell away. He makes my world, and I am so incredibly thankful for the journey that brought him to us. I cry with happiness as I look at his perfect face. Thank you, DEB USA, for making our dreams come true. We are eternally grateful.