Friday, January 7, 2011

A Surprising Call

At work today I got a voicemail from one of my first cousins. This is a very unusual occurrence, and I initially figured she had reached the end of her babysitting list, and was banking on me (even though I live over an hour away)...what happened instead was a complete shock to me.

A little background: Growing up, my sister, brother and I were all the "babies" of the family. All of my cousins were 6-15 years older than me, and lived in different cities, so we never became that close. I see my cousins a couple times a year at holidays when we all gather at my grandparents.

I was a bit hesitant to call her back. I have a tendency to say Yes to everything and figured I would be roped into babysitting (though I LOVE LOVE my little cousin, I was looking forward to a relaxing weekend doing nothing after a stressful workweek). But instead, my cousin informed me that she had heard through our family grapevine (which Facebook has turned into a gaping free-for-all) that I was having issues with my eggs. She wanted to let me know she has been an egg donor before and even though she is now 36 and considered too old, if I wanted to keep it in the family she would "give me her eggs".

I think I started balling on the spot. I am so grateful and honestly shocked that she would want to do this for us. I told her that we were trying again with my eggs but that I would keep her offer in mind.

I have always figured I would have to use an anonymous donation. My sister has a list of emotional issues longer than the Nile that requires her to take drugs I would never want her off of, so I have never considered using her eggs (though there was once a scare when she thought she was pregnant and she asked me that day in tears if I would raise the baby....whole other story. Ended up being a chemical..leaving her with a sense of relief and me with a strange sense of sadness). All of my other cousins (except this one) are in their 40's, and I wouldn't even really think to ask them even if they were younger.

So, I now have a new avenue to think about. I have never considered using a known donor in the past. Anybody out there with any advice on using known donors? I am now worried about a whole new bag of issues since the child would grow up knowing the donor and being a part of their life. How do you establish boundries? How do you talk to the child about their origins when an aunt or a cousin is the donor??

Whew! Hopefully these will all be thoughts for the wind someday, and this next cycle will produce a healthy baby from my own eggs.

For now I am happy? grateful? confused? to have this other option. Obviously I don't know how to feel.

All I can say is this process is so hard and you are often left making decisions that seem completely unfathomable.

I'm going to go do my thinking man pose and ponder. Happy weekend my fellow bloggies.


  1. Wow. This is really touching that she reached out to you.

    Please keep us posted. I'll be thinking of you.

  2. That was quite a thing for her to offer and something for you to think about. I don't know how I would feel if I used a family member's eggs. I know I would have the same questions and reservations. But, at least it's an option.

    Good luck with this cycle.

  3. It's just a lot to digest, isn't it? A friend of mine from long, long ago first offered her ute on loan and then her eggs. While we aren't able to wrap our minds around donor eggs, we would consider her offer of being a gestational carrier if we could get back to making good quality embryos. It's all so personal, but we totally appreciate those kinds of offers. I'm glad that facebook brought something nice for a change!

  4. That's really sweet! I have two younger sisters and neither has made that kind of offer...But, it's also a lot to think about. I know time can seem of the essence, but definitely give yourself a good while to think about this.

  5. I love hearing these stories of unexpected kindness. Whatever you decide to do its wonderful to know you have a family that cares about you this much. x