Tuesday, October 31, 2006

The Gift

Sometimes, when all seems a bit bleak and hard, someone offers you a gift. We've been struggling with the thought of giving up, but the reality is that with only one working ovary, and being nearly 40, our chances of a successful IVF are much diminished. At the highest doses of Gonal F that NZ doctors will give me, I still only made five eggs, and of those only two were really viable for transfer.

There is a saying it takes a village to raise a child - and perhaps in our case it takes a village to MAKE a child. So, when we had dinner with our friends Garry and Nicole a few weeks ago, and Nicole offered to be our egg donor, I knew we had been offered a gift. And one that we couldn't refuse. No matter what happens, we will always be so grateful that they were willing to do this for us. Rupert has known Garry and Nic for 20 years or so, and I've known them for eight, and I immediately felt comfortable with the idea of using Nic's eggs.

Basically, the reasons I felt comfortable were: Nic and Garry have completed their family and have two gorgeous little girls. As I said, we've known them a long time and have a good communication with them so any potential problems can be sorted out early. And, Nic has similar colouring to me so as not to make it immediately obvious that any child I carry is not mine! Also, Nic has followed and supported me through our two previous attempts, so she actually knows what is required and how the drugs and injections can affect you.

Under NZ law, Nicole has to have testing which she is undergoing now, and then both sets of couples have mandatory counselling appointments. Then, all being well, in about three months Nic will have another test run, and again, all being well, the IVF cycle starts. But this time, instead of me injecting myself, Nic will be injecting herself and stimulating her ovaries to produce as many eggs as possible, which will then be retrieved, fertilised in the lab with Rupert's sperm, and then implanted into me. I'll be on some kind of hormone treatment to get me in "sync" with Nic's cycle, and then progrestrone after implantation to assist any pregnancy.

It's not a done deal yet - we have a ways to go as far as testing and approvals go, but I think the most important thing Nic and Garry have given us right now is hope. I was very much struggling with the thought of spending another rather large amount of money on my own ungrateful ovary, and seeing a similar result to last time. At least this way, with Nic's eggs, we have a better chance of getting more eggs, and therefore, more chance of a pregnancy.

So. That's where we are at...and for those folks in our "real life" who are reading this, please, ask us any questions you may want to. You're part of our village and we would rather talk this through with you than have you having reservations or concerns we don't know about. There may be days when your help is needed - particularly when Nicole is undergoing the injections and running around having scans and blood tests. We'd love you all to be part of this if you would like to - the same as you have been part of it when Rupert and I were doing it alone.

For those in my "virtual world" - your support is appreciated. Thanks for all the emails and comments - while things will be a little quiet around here for a few months, I'll be updating as stuff happens (or not)...

To Nicole and Garry - thank you. We appreciate your love and willingness and courage and empathy more than we can say.

Paula and Rupert

Monday, October 30, 2006

Action Shot

Racing up the garden! All is well in our neck of the woods, Katie is definately ruling the household, but we are also managing to get a lot of chores and tidying up around the house done on the weekends...

As for baby plans, developments coming soon. Watch this space - but not that closely as it may be a wee while! Posted by Picasa

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Rupert and Skippy

Rupes making a new friend. I always knew he had a thing for Aussies! Posted by Picasa

She's getting bigger!

Katie (and my knee) - at six months of age, she was 21.2kgs - and trust me, that is a heavy dog when you have to lift her into the back of the car. The back garden is now Katie proof, so she can play out there to her hearts content - though with her digging skills we do need to keep an eye on her!

She "helped me" with planting renga renga lilies yesterday - I trimmed them, laid them all out, and worked my way along till I realised a few were missing. They were planted, teethmarks and all! Posted by Picasa

Paula The Quokka Hunter

This is a Quokka - on Rottnest Island. They are pretty tame there, and this one was hanging around our table at the Dome Coffee Shop. I finally downloaded the pics off my camera from Perth today - and this was one of them. Rupes took to calling me "Paula the Quokka Hunter" as I couldn't get enough of the cute wee things!

We've had a couple of really good productive weekends in the garden, clearing away lots of mess, putting in hose connections down at the vege garden, planting lots of seeds, marigolds under the trees out the front, and planting up my double concrete laundry tub with strawberries. Yumm. Can't wait for those babies to fruit. We've been steadily picking and eating fresh broad beans, and have spinach and rhubarb in abundance. I've planted out a lot of tomatoes, cherry and roma, and eggplants, watermelon, rockmelon, carrots, salad greens and radishes. Hopefully a good Christmas crop!

It's been nice to get some things done - and the very long list is steadily being ticked off. I think I am in a "nest building" phase - it's just nice to spend some time at home without worrying about treatments or IVF or feeling rotten/sad/down! But, we do have some options ahead of us, and all will be revealed soon. Posted by Picasa

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Poor hubby

I haven't been blogging much lately - mainly as nothing has really happened! We are still thinking about the way forward - the options available, be they adoption, fostering, another IVF cycle etc. I don't feel ready to give up yet on the dream of having a child, so hopefully we will have a decision soon.

In the meantime, for your amusement, my husband's workmate sent me this photo, with a note asking if I know the contact details of the driver! Yes, hubby left his handbrake off and his car in neutral, and it quietly rolled across a busy main road and into a ditch that had just been dug that morning. Needless to say, Rupes is NOT living this one down. Good news is the damage was only a smashed indicator which cost $40 to replace - this is one car that just won't die, no matter what he does to it!

Katie was spayed a week ago - she was very groggy on the Friday night I brought her home, but has recovered really well and only has one more week of walks only before she can get back to playing with her doggy mates at the park. She and the cats are still trying to find the balance that suits them - not always easy when Katie goes into puppy mode and bounces around barking at them! Hopefully as she gets older, and slower, they'll reach an understanding! Posted by Picasa

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