Options

When I broke up with the father of my two children I knew I was taking a risk, a risk with my son growing up not living with his dad, but also that I wanted more children, and not too far in the future.

Obviously my first thought was to find someone else, another life partner, it took me 2 years to even consider it, I was convinced my ex would come back, but once I did start looking I went on date after unsucessful date, had ridiculous and soul destroying conversations and slowly, ever so slowly I lost the will. I found myself flicking through Tinder not even remotely interested in anyone. Messages dwindled and almost a year and a half after signing up and only one guy who proceeded to a second date (before he got back with his ex 6 weeks later) I quit, deleted them, gave up, realised I actually wasn’t interested in a relationship anymore, maybe I never had been, I’d been looking for a solution to the lonliness, but mostly a father to future children, I’m not a relationship person, I like my own space and I’m fiercly independent and I feel a slight trace of smugness when women at work complain about their men…

Ok so that was out, no perfect man, no daddy figure, no happy family, what was option 2?? A drunken night out, a one night stand that got lucky? No contact details just a baby. Maybe. It played on my mind for a couple of days, maximum. I’ve never been that kind of girl, ever. I couldn’t bring myself to do it, and knowing my luck I’d end up riddled, dying of some hideous sexually transmitted disease and leaving my kids motherless. No I couldn’t take the risk. Yes girls do it all the time and don’t catch anything, but as I said, it would be just my luck.

I don’t need a man at all really, just his sperm, cue some dodgy searches for sperm to buy online and the discovery of a danish sperm bank that shipped worldwide to clinics and individuals. At a minimum of £150/5ml for the lowest quality and then around £200 for shipping, it wasn’t cheap, and after reading some peoples less successful stories than the glowing recommendations on the site it seemed like a long and complicated process for what was unlikely to result in a pregnancy.

So no relationship, no one night stands, sperm was expensive and unreliable… What about a friend? This option seemed perfect. As many sperm samples as needed for as long as I needed, the father could watch his child grow up and be involved as much as he wanted, there must be some kind of legal stuff that would stop him having parental rights and it would all be simple. I talked to a few of my friends and one offered, actually offered. It was massive and I will never be able to explain to him what it means to me that he would have been willing to do that for me. It was discussed for months, almost planned, but then his girlfriend got pregnant and it felt wrong, looking further into it there was no removal of parental rights unless we went through a clinic anyway and even that wasn’t total, he could, if things got nasty, stake a claim, take this baby away from me…

So my final option, the one I avoided thinking about for so long because of the cost, I’m a single mum who only works part time after all, but all other options exhausted I finally looked into using a clinic. A fully medical way of getting a baby without a daddy. It’s expensive and cost wise I’m limited to 3 tries. Maximum. I’ll be paying that back to my parents for a year as it is, but a baby, a baby of my own with no complications with donor dads wanting contact or STIs.

So here I am at the beginning of this scary journey. Plunging into the unknown. Googling everything, comparing prices and sperm. All to hopefully complete my family.

Fingers crossed.

Stage 1

I’ll call this stage one as technically it’s the first day I’ve acted on anything but in reality stage one was when I said to myself I’d never have another child with a man who I couldn’t trust to stick around, to see every moment of them growing up. I wouldn’t put another child through that wonder of ‘why’.

Then, after my last brief attempt at dating ended so disastrously and I realised it wasn’t for me, I started researching, reading about other mums who have done it, seeing what it involves. Since then it’s been about all I can see in my future, another baby, a sibling for my son with no complications, no waiting for a dad to text to see them, no being cancelled on and having to explain to a distraught child. No, just me and my family showering it with love (and a complicated explanation when they’re a bit older but I’m trying not to dwell on that)

So what am I talking about? Becoming a single mum again, but this time on purpose. After all, how hard can it be? I’ve already done it once and I was totally unprepared. This time I’ll be going into it eyes wide open!

And today I sent an email.

I acted on the desire that’s been growing inside me for years, and now I wait.

I’m sure I’ll have to contact a few clinics and that this won’t be a straightforward journey, I know people won’t ‘get it’, that it’s unusual and unnatural and I’ll end up explaining myself over and over, but to me all that matters is completing my family.

Decisions and Maths and Money

So the clinic emailed back and the prices were higher than I expected from their website.

I discounted it, 3 tries and I’d be broke for a year.

I looked around. The clinic is 15 miles from my house, the next closest is about 70.

They were cheaper. About a grand cheaper when worked out over 3 tries.

But treatment involved scans every other day for 2 weeks. 8+ trips of 70 miles each way per try.

Days out, lots of driving, not to mention the petrol cost.

Stress.

Not whats needed when trying to be as fertile as possible.

Back to the first clinic.

As long as I can let go of the dream after 3 tries if it doesn’t work.

A quick whizz at stats online and if it’s going to work it will work within 6 tries but really within 3-4.

My friends have always joked I’m the most fertile girl around. Only took two months with both my babies.

So fingers crossed it works after one try and I can enjoy pregnancy without worrying about the debt.

Guess I now need to send my second email, asking more questions and making sure I really want to go ahead with this.

There isn’t a doubt in my mind at the moment.

Booking

I rang and arranged an initial consultation on 31st August. £300 for 2 appointments and a blood test! They couldn’t get the date for the second appointment today so they said they would get my local clinic to give me a call to arrange it.
This is actually it, I’m going somewhere and expressing my desire to be a mum again to someone who actually has the power to do something about it!
Big step!
I’m actually terrified they’ll laugh me out of there and say no chance.

How Long?

I received my welcome pack in the post today, all official and wow this is actually happening, however they have annoyingly booked my second appointment for me without checking my availability, normally this would have been fine, only it falls on my sons second day of nursery!
So I called up to change it.
They couldn’t find another date available, and their booking system goes up to the end of september, so they told me to keep the appointment just incase and they’ll make a note that I would like to change it.

This is the first time I’ve actually worried about how long this process is going to be. When I initially enquired I was told there was no waiting time with IUI, however what if the clinic is really busy and they just can’t fit me in? What if I cant start this process until next year? I have always had my heart set on having my babies 4 years apart, silly really and it doesn’t really matter in the grand scheme of things, but that would mean I would need to fall pregnant between now and January to have a chance. Will a busy clinic mean that is a non starter before I even consider that I might not actually get pregnant as easily as I almost expect?

Panicked

Ok so I panicked that this process will be really dragged out if I delay the second appointment, so I called the clinic and told them I will keep the appointment and my dad can pick my son up from nursery. I’m sure he will be fine. I hope. I’m a terrible mother, I know.
I am panicking because I still can’t believe that they will let me do this on my own, that they won’t take one look at me and tell me not to be so silly. Until I have the doctors word that they’ll do this for me I will not believe that this journey has really started, and the longer that is delayed the longer I feel like I’m in limbo. That, however hasn’t stopped me getting excited, dreaming of babies, and thinking about names. Maybe this will happen and a little hope never killed anyone.

First Appointment

My appointment was at 9.45 this morning, and my mum came with me (I will probably drag her to everything). We eventually managed to find the place ok – my satnav is old and the clinic is on a new development, which is not a good combination!
When we walked in there was quite a queue at reception, she eventually got to me. She looked through my forms, took my photo for the system and then told us to wait. There were 3 or 4 other couples in the waiting room and I felt rather out of place, obviously being on my own. We were called in by a midwife, and she went through my history. I told her about my previous loss at 21 weeks, my antiphospholipid syndrome and my overactive thyroid, she made careful notes, but didn’t suggest any major issues. She showed me a Gonal F injection pen which she suggested would be used in the treatment and then I had my bloods taken to test my AMH (egg reserve).
I feel like she expected me to ask more questions, but I have done my research so didn’t feel I needed to!
And that was it, back in a week to see the consultant! She didn’t give any indication that anything would pose a massive problem, so I am cautiously optimistic!

Consultant Appointment

So, honestly, I was dreading this appointment. Essentially the consultant has the power to say no, based on meeting me, my history, my fertility blood test results etc. he could shoot this whole plan down in flames.
But he didn’t!
Infact, he told me I seem like a very good candidate fertility wise and that I seem like a knowledgeable and sensible person!
Yay!
He did seem a little concerned by my history, the miscarriage and antiphospholipid syndrome, not a massive concern, but as IUI is quite uninvasive but with fertility drugs involved, there is a higher chance of a multiple pregnancy and he didn’t know offhand how antiphospholipid syndrome reacts to multiples – multiple amounts of hormones etc. however he said that as long as we assess the risks and do our research he is happy to continue down this route.
He suggested maybe a HyCoSy (checking my tubes are not blocked) however with two natural pregnancies and births under my belt he wasn’t overly concerned and didn’t push it.
He briefly mentioned IVF but agreed that as it is more invasive to start with IUI was as likely to work for me as anyone.

So here we are, I have to do a session of councelling to check my mental state and talk me through the donor sperm legalities etc and if she gives me the go ahead then off we go!

Councelling

I’m not a talker.
It may seem strange as I can talk for england on here, but in person, nah, forget it.
So counselling? Well that’s never going to work for me!
However, the counsellor was lovely and took the lead (she does this every day after all!) She explained the legalities of donor sperm, that the child can find their dad at 18 but the dad can’t find them etc. I already knew all this, but she told us about a couple of donor sperm kids she had met at a conference. Both were 27, but one had been told about his situation young and it hadn’t affected him, he had no desire to find out more about his ‘father’ but the other had only been told recently and had felt betrayed and lost her entire sense of self. Now I had always planned on being open with any future children, but this anecdote really cemented to me how much this, if handled wrongly, could affect them, but if handled right, would just be one of those things to the child.

She did pick up on my lack of chattiness and commented that people normally have a lot more questions – I guess the fact that I did my research before going negated that part!

She was amazed that at 26 I had my own house and was managing to work and pay the bills and raise my son alone, and she could see no problems in adding another child in the mix, afterall, I’ve done it before and know what I’m letting myself in for!

So I had my blood tests, to test my CMV status and blood type in order to find me a donor!
So now I’m just waiting on a phonecall!

CMV Negative

I got a phonecall today to say my results had come back negative and that they had NO CMV negative donors. WHAT! I was offered to take the ‘small’ risk and accept a positive donor, however the risks include miscarriage and deformity. Great. So thats a no from me. I know better than many the risks pregnancy brings, and as this is one I have a chance to avoid, I am going to.
However, now I am worried. This was supposed to be easy, go to the clinic, pick a donor, get inseminated. Boom.
But the lady on the phone told me I have to source the sperm myself. I asked if she could recommend anywhere and she did come up with three places they have used before.

So here I go with some dodgy internet shopping!

  • An 'Angel Baby' is a baby lost during pregnancy or early childhood, who sleeps in the clouds instead of our arms.

    A 'Rainbow Baby' is a baby born following the loss of an 'Angel Baby', a beacon of hope after a storm, while not denying the storm happened.

  • Follow Trying To Be A Good Mummy on WordPress.com
  • Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

%d bloggers like this: