I remember the phone call. I was sitting in the car next to my husband – my cousin had called to tell me that her recent round of IVF was unsuccessful; they had retrieved only one healthy egg, and it hadn’t taken. This was after a very sad miscarriage a few months prior, after naturally conceiving. She told me her and her fiance were going for ‘third time lucky’, but weren’t overly optimistic, as their doctor had informed them the chances were slim. Before I knew it, I had uttered the words ‘Honey, if it doesn’t work this time – you can have my eggs!’, to which she replied jokingly ‘I might just take you up on that’. And we laughed. We finished our conversation, I hung up the phone, and realised I wanted to talk to my husband about it seriously. I turned to him and said ‘I know that sounded like a joke, but I would totally do that for her – what do you think?’ He was on board immediately, he’d built up a beautiful relationship with my cousin (a woman ten years my senior – who I had literally grown up admiring), so was pro egg donation from the beginning. I called her back about 10 minutes after we’d ended the previous conversation to tell her I was serious. She cried. I cried. And we left it at that.
I had absolutely no idea what I was in for.
Sure, I felt 100% confident in the emotional side of it – I was a mother to two beautiful baby boys (at that time, one was swimming about in my tummy), and to see a woman close to me, a woman who I knew would be an amazing mother herself – struggling to conceive. Well, I just couldn’t sit by and do nothing. She had found her soulmate in her now fiance, and they were ready to start a family.
I was completely unaware of the roller coaster that was to come. I had absolutely no idea what being an egg donor actually entailed – from hormone injections to general anesthetic – I knew nothing. Except for one thing. My cousin deserved to be a mummy, and if I could help give a child – give life – to someone else, well then the smaller details I could handle.
Turns out those details, not so small after all.
Over the past few months, all four of us have gone through counselling and specialists appointments to discuss what was involved. Now here we are; a little over a year after that first phone conversation, about to start the egg donor process. In the coming weeks I am going to be putting my body through the physical ‘part’ of the egg donation. I’ve always been very open with my feelings, and extremely honest – and with the blessing of my cousin, I have decided to share my journey here with you. You’ll read about the ups, the downs, and the in betweens.
There is a lot of information to take in so I’m going to be breaking it down into smaller parts. All I ask, is that you please be sensitive with any comments. I’m opening myself up here, willingly, and would appreciate only love and support.
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