Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Hello 48, is that really you?

I typed the number, so it must be true. Today I turned 48. I'm told I don't look my age. I don't feel it. I don't act it. And lately I've taken to mumbling things like "I stopped at 39."

At the tender age of 46, I conceived the future 'sea monkey' (pictured) with the help of donor eggs. I delivered at 47. I'm elated to tell a successful story with a happy ending. We were lucky, I got pregnant on the first try. He's nearly seven months now and I couldn't imagine this beautiful baby as anyone else but 'him.' He's curious. He's hilarious. He's all mine. Catastrophic diaper explosions and all.

We decided not to share his birth story until we shared it with him first. I shared it in cyberspace. Writing about this was incredibly cathartic which is why I'm blogging again. Ok, so I dropped off the cyber planet when I finally got pregnant. Bad blogger. Bad, bad blogger. My only excuse is that I was ridiculously tired from working 60-hour weeks in the crazy film business and dealing with a huge move to Northern California for my husband's new job.
Let me state for the record - moving at nine months is no fun at all.

So, here I am in a new city and a new life with a new hat. Motherhood suits me well. We're having a blast despite my blurry, dark-circled 48-year old eyes. My husband was on the fence about another child and brought up the subject just a few months ago. I had to let go of my El Salvador adoption and was still hoping to try for another baby again. I got my wish.

We've decided to go another round. I've found a sensitive doctor who was charmed by my son and boasted a spiffy track record. I've got 15 fat, juicy, eggs waiting to be thawed and shipped to their new home. Whoa, that sounds creepy. For the record, I'm no wanna-be Ocatamom. I'm an advocate of single-cell transfers (for older moms) and my new doctor concurs. I've started some new testing and we're looking at a July transfer. I'm excited. I'm terrified. 48, really? You bet I am.

We've also decide to tell our birth story, which probably isn't as complicated as I've imagined. Got a 'donor out' story? Please feel free to share. I'm still sorting it all out. Another blog. Another night.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

What a difference a year can make

Meet Sea Monkey.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Transfer Day

I've been anticipating this day for months and it's finally here. We stumble out of bed and it feels like Christmas morning. I feel excited, yet strangely calm and resigned to whatever happens next. He's cautious by nature and I'm hopeful leaning toward delusional. I've been a good patient, dutiful and diligent. I'm nervous as hell.

We crack bad jokes as we head towards our clinic. The transfer is on a Saturday and the office is quiet. I like that. A female aid with a mustache leads us to a absurdly small room. Her bedside manner is awkward and the room seems far too clinical for how much we're spending. She dims the lights and we wait for the doctor. We hold hands and say nothing.

Our doctor arrives with technician who shows us our top pick embryo in a 'ultra-sound'-like photo. They gush at how big and healthy it is. We decide to transfer just one egg (I am 46 and concerned about carrying twins). My valium is beginning to kick in and my mind goes loopy. My musical man plays classical music on his iphone. I fall into a deep sleep.

I'm aware that time has passed, but my mind is still in a fog. Another nurse steps in a helps me into a wheelchair. Our doctor leans in for a hug and whispers, 'Good luck.".

I'm wheeled to the front of the clinic as I wait for him to pick me up. I've never been a wheelchair or in the hospital for that matter. I still feel high, like I'm in a dream. We drive away, I fall back asleep.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Welcome little eggs!

The day has finally come, our donor is scheduled for retrieval. They've scheduled my honey's 'drop off' an hour before. I go with him to the clinic to support the big day. It's a beautiful Saturday morning and we're giddy with excitement.

We have to sign a three-page legal agreement regarding our donor. There's additional charges as well. There's always a new charge and I feel frustrated that my insurance doesn't cover any of this. I live in California and i wonder if that has something to do with it. But I digress...

After the big 'drop off' (no, I didn't go in the room ... his choice, not mine) we took off to celebrate with a big breakfast. I do wish we had left flowers for our donor at the clinic. It didn't strike me until after we left. It would have been a lovely gesture as we're so grateful for her.

Within hours after the retrieval our doctor called to tell us the good news. Our doctor sounds like a radio announcer or an actor playing a doctor, so I'm always amused by his delivery. He said everything was 'just terrific' and we were the proud parents of 16 embryos! 16 is my lucky number. Always has been. Always will be.

It was a sunny day in January and hope was in the air. God, aint' science grand.

Back in the saddle again

Fast forward two months. It's Christmas Eve and we're about to start our IVF cycle again. There's something magical about starting on December 24th. Or so I tell myself. Pills ... check. Shots ... check. Hope ... god, let me feel hope.

We take a flight to visit my folks for the holiday. I put the drugs in my purse and the needles in my suitcase praying that we won't be separated from our bags. It's Christmas morning and our flight is delayed for hours. We finally board and take off. I'm stuck next to the 57-year old AA divorced man who decides to share his entire life story with me. My body language is clear. My one word answers spell 'not interested' to anyone who's aware enough to hear. Clearly he couldn't read the signs. Why do people on airplanes feel it's necessary to confess their drug, alcohol, gambling and sex addiction. My honey is spared the gory details as he sleeps away the flight. Lucky.

We finally arrive five hours late to my hungry, tipsy family. My adorable nephews rush outside to greet us. It's wonderful to be home. We're poured two large glasses of delicious Oregon pinot noir wine. I'm trying not to drink but I cheat and enjoy a glass. As I haven't shared what we're up to, I know I'll be interrogated by my bossy clan if I don't drink. Happy to report that I fake-sipped my way through the rest of our trip. Four days. No wine. Harder than it sounds. Worth every fake sip.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Back to square one.

I'm glad to report that our original egg donor is on the path to recovery. It has been reported that she is in good spirits despite the seriousness of the accident. Via our agency, we sent her a box of chocolates and a card. I wanted her to know she was in our thoughts on a daily basis.

My agency suggested that we choose another donor right away. I was unsure if we should wait or move on to another donor. Our donor's rehabilitation could last up to six months and we weren't in a position to wait. I was left with this acute feeling of loyalty to our donor. I felt guilty that we were switching so quickly. We had no choice. Like it or not, we were back to square one.

It was just as frustrating as the first time around. I said it once and I'll say it again: choose wisely and choose quickly. Our first two picks weren't available. Our agency sent us 'first looks' at a few new girls that weren't on the web yet. I really appreciated their tenacity towards finding us another donor. Our third pick was a 'maybe' until a couple from New Jersey decided to fly her across country for their cycle (c'mon, can't they find someone on their own shore?!)

Just when I was ready to give up or switch agencies, I got a phone call from our agency. Turns out my first egg crush (the nanny with the porcelain skin) just became available for cycle. Her first cycle was with our IVF doctor which made everything just a little easier. There was one glitch ... she wouldn't be available for three months. Three months felt like an eternity. Or was it?

I poured myself a big glass of Pinot and decided to go with my gut. This was the one. She'd come back around and I wasn't about to let this go again.