June 2008- after a year of TTC the "natural" way, we learn that DH (I call him C) has no sperm. By this time, I was 40 years old so we can consider "advanced maternal age" yet another limiting factor. All we need is donor sperm, right?
August 2008- DIUI cycle #1- BFN
September 2008- DIUI cycle #2- BFN
October 2008- DIUI cycle #3, this time with Clomid- BFN
November 2008- DIUI cycle #4, with Clomid- BFN
January 2009- invest in some new insurance that will cover fertility diagnosis and treatment. Everything up to now was out of pocket (what a great tax deduction that was!). Hook up with an actual RE, do the usual b/w, HSG, Clomid challenge, etc. I'm OK- just "old."
DIUI cycle #5, with Clomid (from Clomid challenge)- BFN
February 2009- DIUI cycle #6, with Clomid- BFN
March/April 2009- OI cycle using Gonal-F- planned for IUI, but converted on CD9 to IVF due to "exuberant" response to FSH. 11 eggs retrieved on CD11, 5 mature, three fertilized. Three embryos transferred- BFN
June/July 2009- IVF (on purpose this time)- Long Lupron protocol-
10u Lupron CD22-30 with instructions to call RE's nurses on CD1.
And that's where we are now. It's CD30 and AF's arrival is imminent. In fact, I was so convinced she'd arrived yesterday that I called the nurses at my RE's office and reported that I was on CD1. It was a little embarassing to admit this morning, when they called me back, that I had been mistaken but still expected my period to start "literally any minute now." If it starts today, then I'll have an u/s tomorrow, maybe some b/w, and they'll let me know when to start the Gonal-F. Because of my age (I'm 41 now), assisted hatching will be practiced and the RE wants to transfer up to five embryos. I'm perfectly OK with AH, but five... I know the odds are not in my favor, but what if they ALL stick? That's the only real conundrum this cycle, my only real worry... aside from failing completely.
Donor sperm has not proven to be the magic bullet we had hoped for. We're on our fifth donor now. The first wasn't very impressive, so we switched banks. I absolutely loved the second one, but he retired and stock ran out. The third one retired. The fourth one was fine, but now that we're doing IVF from the get-go, we had to find a donor with ICI vials available. Donor #4 had no ICI vials, so we found donor #5. If anyone's curious, unwashed sperm is preferred for IVF and I was instructed to purchase two vials for this cycle. I have seriously mixed emotions about choosing a donor. On one hand, I would love to match as many chacteristics of C as we can find in a single donor. But, at the same time, I would be happy with a baby of any size, shape or color. Most important are the family medical history and the openness of the donor. We want our child to have the best shot at being healthy, and we want her to at least have the chance to learn more about her bio-dad if she wants to. If the cryobank sends us the wrong donor sperm, we'll use it anyway (I've come a long way since DIUI#5, when I had a bit of a confrontation with the RE's office over my checking the cryotank contents before reporting to the office for an IUI).