Childhood cancer survivor. That's the good news. Bad news? Chemo and radiation zapped my eggs leaving me infertile. Egg donors were found, several attempts were made and finally we were blessed with beautiful twin girls - born too early (21 wks, 5 days on Dec. 5, 2008). Hang out with me while we savor life with Big Baby Boy, who arrived via gestational surrogate on March 25, 2013.
Monday, April 2, 2007
Bricks without Straw!
Here are more questions from our new patient form that I didn’t know how to answer:
How long have you and your partner been trying to achieve pregnancy?
Who have you told about your struggle with infertility? Have they been supportive?
And then there are categories of family, friends, co-workers, etc. and you’re supposed to check off who knows and who has helped us with our “struggle.”
Is it really a struggle if you know out of the gate it’s not gonna happen? Can you really handicap a racehorse that doesn’t have any legs?
Everyone that knows me knows that I am a cancer survivor. Many in that circle know (or have assumed) that I can’t have or don’t want kids or both. I have probably spent most of my adult life convincing others and myself that I have no interest in kids. Not my own; not anyone’s. Not now. Not ever.
No eggs = no baby. It’s not rocket science.
So, why yearn for something you can’t have? Why set others off on a wild goose chase as well? It’s easier to believe you were never really looking for anything in the first place.
Well, now, in a matter of a few short months, all of this has changed. After being dissuaded from the egg donor option years ago by a fertility specialist who felt there were already far too many babies in the world (remind me to tell you about that one), we found a place that has encouraged us, listened to us, and actually given us hope. We found a woman who is willing to share a few of her eggs with me and she doesn’t even know my name.
This is something completely and altogether different.
What do you mean I could have a baby? This changes everything.
So now that there really will be a race, so to speak, things are much less certain. All the definitelies, nos, abosulutely nots, have transformed into possiblies, maybes and could bes.
Now who becomes my circle of support? Whom do I tell about the journey we are about to embark upon? A few close friends and my mother-in-law are no brainers – women who have known me inside and out for years. Even if I didn’t tell them, I feel somehow they would know.
Likewise, a few parties will NOT be brought into the loop until much, much later. Like, my parents (emotional basket cases with problems of their own, prone to excessive worrying and calling daily) and my father-in-law (who cannot keep a secret to save his life).
Some of my co-workers know; some don’t. Most of our friends don’t. My brother, nope. Hubby’s sister, not her either.
Not really worried about any of that. I am sure as the process moves forward and changes in our schedules and lifestyles become apparent, people will start to catch on. Here’s my quandary: what about my childhood cancer survivor friends? I know they would be my loudest cheering section, my strongest supporters. I also know they know the stakes, and might be a little more emotionally invested than others. Which would be joyous if this all works…
I sent a few emails out this morning and my fingers were itching to share the news. We found a donor! We are trying to have a baby! But is it all too premature? What’s the protocol for this kind of thing? When is the right time to call in a circle of support? Who and how and when do I talk about the struggle?