It’s easy right? You go to school, when you finish you either go to college or sixth form, or get an apprenticeship. Then you either go straight into a job or you go to university then work. Somewhere along the timeline you find the man of your dreams and you settle down, maybe get married, and you have children. Simple! That’s just how life is planned out right? Well, that’s what I always believed. Every year from the age of around 16 I thought, “This is it! This is the year I find Mr Right!” Up until around 30 when I started to think, “Please can I just find a man!”
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve not been perpetually single. But I genuinely believe there has been some announcement somewhere that says all men who just want someone to use should get in touch with me! Please don’t think I am feeling sorry for myself, after all, I pick them! But it does make you lie awake at night thinking about what kind of a person you are if you cannot find “the one”. I have found at least one man who didn’t use me as the other woman against my knowledge, but our paths were going in completely different directions. That is, he has had kids and doesn’t want more, and me… well, I believe the word is desperate!
And that is what leads me onto this blog and where I am today! A couple of months ago, at the age of 37 and after years of thinking about the option, I have made the decision to go it alone. If I can’t have a child wit h someone, I will do it alone. Every cell in me is screaming to have a child that I can love and nurture and help turn into a (hopefully) happy and successful adult. So, I am going to use a sperm donor and go through the process of IUI (intrauterine insemination).
There is it, decision made! What I never realised was that decision was just going to be one in a long list of decisions I would have to make. It’s not that I haven’t thought it through, I just didn’t think it through down to the finest details! Once you have decided to go ahead with trying for a baby you then have to decide which clinic you want to use. My Mum came with me to open evenings where we met consultants and embryologists and other people who are getting help having a baby. And it seems once you have made the choice to have a baby, that biological clock start ticking louder and louder (as mentioned by one consultant on every PowerPoint slide during a 20 minute presentation!), so you feel pressure to make that decision quickly.
On this, I was actually lucky, there was one particular clinic that I just felt comfortable with. The open evening was personalised for you, no group presentation, no mass tours of the “facilities”, just you and the people who will be helping you achieve your dream. Ok, so it helped I knew the consultant, but my Mum agreed, it just felt right! So actually, easiest decision.
Ok, so far I know, I am having a baby and the clinic who will help me try. Next decision, conception vitamins! Easy right? WRONG! Do you know the choices out there? I have stood looking at rows of vitamins, I was able to quickly discount the His & Her boxes, (well I wouldn’t be here if I needed those) but do I want just folic acid? Do I get more if I pay more? And then there is the fact I have Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, so do I want to spend more and get the specialist one that has myo-inositol? I mean, if your spending money on fertility treatment you should go for that right? But then do I need it? AAAAGGHHHH!!!! So I have bought a cheap one whilst I think!
Ok, vitamins sorted (well, almost) now I have to book my blood tests. This can be done at your GP surgery, saves you some money! Except, you have to have 2 lots of bloods done, on specific days in your cycle… so if you can get that at short notice you would be one of the lucky ones! You need a blood test 7 days before the 1st day of your period to check your progesterone level, you need bloods on the 1st, 2nd or 3rd day of your period to check your FSH and LH levels. Again, if you are one of those that has a regular cycle and know what day your period will start, lucky you! Part of my PCOS means my cycles are not very regular. You can have a test called an AMH test instead but I decided to try and guess it! You also need rubella, chlamydia, thyroid function, prolactin, Hep B, Hep C and HIV tests!
Once all this is done and you start moving ahead you need to pick the sperm donor! I thought this would be easy, I don’t really have any special requirements… or so I thought! But looking through I find I’m looking for the same colour hair and eyes as me, their height (I’m short so give the kid a fighting chance!), I’m even looking at hobbies and education! No idea why, my priority is the baby!!!! Once the treatment starts I will need to track my ovulation, so this will involve an ovulation test… and here is where I find myself back in the vitamin situation! This time I have gone for the middle of the range, and I’m starting now so I can see how accurate my ovulation app is! Oh yeah, if you’re like me, they have those too!
And this is only the beginning of my decisions! I have a lifetime full of them to look forward to if I get my way! I promise future posts won’t be this long but I have a lot going on in my head right now!
See you soon!