Monday, October 5, 2009

The Vessel

There would be no link to my Irish heritage. No taste of the Italian. My European genes would not be passed on to the next generation. I had wrestled with the loss of a biological child two years ago when I had decided to adopt.

I knew I could love an adopted child. I figured I'd feel no different about the birth of a donor egg kid. Love is love. He was just beginning to process it all.

It was his idea to jump to the next level of IVF. He has excellent genes. Dreamy blue eyes with a mad talent for math and music. His father just turned 80 and still rides his bike every day. If I was picking sperm, I'd shout, "My that's some smart spunk you got there mister!"

He clearly felt the desire to grow the fruit of his loins. He wanted that biological link and he wanted me. I suppose that made me the vessel. Our vessel of love. Mother. Father. Child. Family. I felt honored. I was thrilled. I was terrified. I was in.

So off we went to the fifth floor of the high-rise clinic north of Rodeo drive. We chose one of the best clinics in the country. We are not rich, but we are fortunate to be able to afford this. It is not cheap (understatement) and there are no guarantees.

It was reminiscent of a biology lecture and he was the new exchange student (the cute one from Belgium.) Charts and illustrations of fallopian tubes, uterus, sperm and eggs. The doctor was surprisingly warm as he explained the scientific mystery of it all. I had heard some of this before. He was attempting to absorb it all.

I was not shocked nor surprised when the doctor suggested donor eggs. Despite my expiring eggs, I have the uterus of a 35-year old (listen up sisters, many of us do! ) and a thick lining when I ovulate. He gave us encouraging odds (70-80%) if we chose donor eggs. This was better news than I had expected.

I turned to him and he looked shaken, like he had lost his best friend. The doctor got up and left us alone.

I grabbed his hand and said "Honey, these are better odds then we had expected." All he said was "But I want you." Tears fell down my face.

I felt sick. I felt old. I felt like I had failed us. I was incredibly sad. Why had it taken so long to find someone who finally felt so right?

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