Archive | December, 2010

On Dating and Disclosure

20 Dec

One of the big reasons why I procrastinated so long in actually trying for single motherhood with donor sperm was that I didn’t want to give up on doing it with someone special. I love ‘love’! I am a romantic and I know I want to share my life with a partner.

I was absolutely spoilt in my previous relationship, in terms of love. When things were good between us, we were so in love. The eye gazing, the devotion, the love making. I loved it, I miss it and I want it again. I understand that taking this path doesn’t mean that I have to give up on this vision but lets face it – skid marks are inevitable. Or are they?

So, I actually met someone that I think I could like like. I haven’t met anyone I could even bare to kiss since my ex.

Sooooo, we met for coffee and 2 hours later I realised that this guy is really nice and attractive and funny. And I could bare to kiss him, maybe. Of all the questions to ask me he says, “What exciting project do you have planned for 2011”. As the blood drained from my head, my internal dialogue went something like this, ‘Oh my God, oh my God, he knows. Of course he doesn’t know you idiot, he is just being interested in you. Okay, we are getting along so well, just tell him. NO! Don’t tell him, this may not go anywhere anyway. Okay say something now…’ To which I responded, “A few work projects I’ve been working on are coming to fruition”. WOW, that’s exciting! Doh!

He called me later that afternoon to say he really enjoyed catching up and he wants to do it again. I must have made up for that ridiculous response at other points of the conversation. So, when do I tell him?

I don’t want to string him along and then throw that bucket of iced water at him. I also don’t want to feel pressured to talk about this very personal journey to someone I don’t really know yet. Maybe if we get to the point of wanting to have sex, or even having sex (protected of course, I could never trick someone like that) and if we still like each other after that – then I’ll tell him. I don’t know!

I realise that I am probably over thinking this. I will tell him when it feels right. Shit – I may never hear from him again. *sigh*

I remind myself that a huge deciding factor in going ahead with this Plan B was that I knew that I couldn’t have a real relationship with someone whilst I was gagging to have a child. It would have put too much pressure on a new relationship. Hell, it put too much pressure on my previous committed relationship when we both wanted it. I also want to make sure that I am entering a new relationship for all the right reasons.  I want to love someone for them alone, not what they can give me.

So life goes on. I may find love through this process and I may not. I may find love after it. But I will BE love as much as I can always 🙂 Corny, I know. I couldn’t help myself.

Comments and suggestion please…

So over Christmas already

14 Dec

I am so bloody tired. Deadlines, early morning meetings, after work functions, more deadlines! Anyone would think the sky is going to fall down on Christmas day. Everything needs to be bedded down “this side of Christmas” – if I hear that phrase one more time I will have to resist really hard not to stab the culprit with my pencil.

After the sky falls in on Christmas day, it’s a new approach to work for me. Lunch breaks will be had everyday and minimal overtime will be worked. I am back at work 10 Jan and look to be starting the cycle due the week after that. This means I will start taking the IVF drugs towards the end of the month. Thus, all sanity and calmness will be required.

I have vowed not to do Christmas this year (apart from a few small presents for the children in my family and volunteering to serve Christmas lunch with a local charity).

However, because I am ‘doing’ Christmas a little can I put a little Christmas wish out there:

Orientation

6 Dec

I had my orientation today at the fertility clinic in Sydney. The orientation serves as an information session about the IVF treatment cycle and explains how to use the medication and administer the injections.

After successfully passing the troll under the bridge (a fearsome and intimidating nurse coordinator who is definitely working in the wrong industry) the lady who took me through it all was wonderful. My advice to anyone considering embarking on an IVF journey – do the orientation ASAP. I am disappointed that I didn’t do this earlier. Well, I did try to but they didn’t have the information they should have and thus sent me home.

Anyway, I feel well informed now. I have read a lot about this but nothing beats having it explained to you in person with diagrams and the opportunity to ask questions.

I will undergo the Long Down Regulation treatment. Because I have high FSH I have been advised to have a blood test at day 1 of my period to check how high my FSH is. If it is high (14 or higher) then I should probably wait for the next cycle to see whether it is any lower. Apparently it is well known and tested that success is unlikely with high FSH at this point. FSH can vary month to month and it is worth waiting for the next cycle to see, as it could increase the success rate significantly.

The short version goes something like this:

On day 20 I will get another test to check my progesterone levels – this will tell if I have ovulated. If all goes according to plan I will start taking the Lucrin by injection. This will suppress my natural hormones so that my cycle will be controlled. When my eggs start to grow it will stop them from being released naturally. I am pretty much guaranteed to feel shit whilst taking this medication. I will take this for around 14 days. I will get my period and when I do I must get another test.

The next stage is to start the FSH injections. Apparently I will feel a lot better when I move to this YAY! This will last for approximately 12 days. FSH injections work by stimulating the ovaries to produce more than one follicle (egg). On day  8 to 10 I will have an ultrasound and another blood test. If it looks like I am ready I will have the trigger injection and egg collection will occur approximately 36 hours later.

Then my eggs meet the super sperm. They fall in love and live happily ever after once put back in my uterus 🙂 The ones that are not put back can be frozen for future use.

Cest Tu.

After I had received all this information today it really hit me how alone I feel. Going through something like this, with no-one to hold your hand on a daily basis, is scary and lonely. However, facing the reality of doing this alone NOW is healthy and helps create the space to be excited about it during the process. And so the excitement builds…

Advanced Maternal Age and Ageless Sperm

3 Dec

I know a lot of terrific women who are 35 years plus and are yet to become a mother. The driving force behind their choice to have children later is simply the inability to find a suitable partner who is willing to commit and wanting to have children at the same time.

This is an important point because there seems to be prime focus on a woman’s fertility and the choices she makes to have children later in life – but it’s not always entirely up to her. Often the matter of personal choice is swamped with many other considerations that are out of one’s control.

It is well known that sperm are far less sensitive to aging than a woman’s eggs – and there in itself lies one major consideration. Men do not have the time pressures that women do and this discrepancy has seen many a relationship end. The sound of the biological clock can indeed crack an otherwise perfect union.

If a man is not ready to have children when his partner is, then why should he be forced to bend to her limitations? I’ll leave you to answer that for yourself.

So, men have the option to take their ageless sperm and live it up for another decade or two. Then, when it better suits them they may choose to procreate with a younger woman.

Please note that I state this as a matter of fact only. Men can make this choice and I do not hold it against them. My ex partners have not taken this path however, you only have to look around to see that this does happen. If the tables were turned I am sure we would see the same choices being made. It is simply an advantage that men have in choosing when to have children.

Finding the right person is another driving force behind advanced maternal age. Gone are the days when women feel like they have to settle for second best in order to appease the biological dong. That, in my opinion, is a good thing because I truly believe it is better to grow up in a single parent home than in an unhappy environment where parents do not love each other.

While there are many women in their mid thirties who have delayed motherhood, there also seems to be a young motherhood resurgence. Recent studies show an increase of mothers in their 20s. Possibly they are looking on at their peers who have missed the boat and jumping on that ship before it leaves the harbour? Maybe their partners are the ones who weren’t ready to have children with their peers 😉

No seriously, each to their own. Just consider that the timing for some women is not always a matter of personal choice. In fact, often it is not. It’s complicated.

A note on sperm quality in older men:

In contrast to women, who are born with all the eggs they will have in their lifetime, men have no sperm when they are born. Sperm production starts when they reach puberty. The average man makes about 250 million sperm a day and this continues unabated. There is no strong evidence that this production decreases significantly even in 80 year old men. However, all this production means that a man has to keep copying his DNA over and over to make the sperm and this leads to mutations. Imagine photocopy a page over and over from the copied product – it eventually loses its quality. For fathers over 40, the risk of having a child with a disease-causing mutation is similar to the risk the mother has for a child with Down Syndrome.