Three Valuable Resources for Donor Egg Research

Fairfax EggBank has partnered with Parents Via Egg Donation (PVED) to launch a blog series written by Heather, a recent egg donor recipient at Fairfax EggBank. Our hope is that through PVED, Heather’s voice can be shared with others who are just beginning their donor egg journey and are seeking authentic experiences of others who have been through it.

Stay tuned through either PVED’s website or ours to read Heather’s upcoming blogs.

Three Resources to Use for Your Donor Egg Research

If you’re considering donor eggs, I’d like to share with you some resources I used to make the process easier. I’d be lying if I told you this was a total breeze. It does take a little bit of leg work, but every step is worth it. This is a major decision in your life that I hope turns out to the best one yet!

Take Advantage of Your Donor Egg Company

My main resource for knowledge on the process was FairFax EggBank. I was fortunate to work with such a special donor coordinator there. Maybe it was because she and my best friend share the same name, or maybe it is because she is just that awesome! She was very knowledgeable, kind and patient.  Many times there would be a question or two that would pop in to my head and I would dial her. Having this type of accessibility to a caring, responsive and knowledgeable human being is very crucial in this process. You want to make sure you choose a company that you feel comfortable with since believe me, it sure does help with the stress.

Join Group Boards on Baby Apps

Downloading baby apps may sound a little elementary; however, using them was a game changer for me. I used BabyBump Pregnancy Pro and What to Expect When You’re Expecting quite a bit.

These apps not only have a ton of information in relation to pregnancy, they also have group boards that people join and chat about all sorts of different topics. One of these topics that I found to be extremely useful was Donor Eggs. I was able to connect anonymously with women all over the world and read all sorts of posts, questions, and stories of others. I bonded with these internet friends and used them as a resource for information, as well as for friendship. We gave support and encouraged one another with our stories. It truly was one thing that strongly helped me through this process.

Use the Power of the Internet

Our computers and smartphones give us all the answers we need to know. Through my online research, I easily found information on the positives and negatives of fresh and frozen donor eggs, costs, and different egg banks.

Fairfax EggBank’s website also has a wealth of information. Everything that I had questions about was answered on the site.

Have questions for Heather? E-mail success@fairfaxeggbank.com

___________________________________________________

Heather’s Blog Series:

#1: Intro to my Donor Egg Story

#2: First Comes Love, then Comes Marriage, then Comes…Infertility?

#3: Our Decision to Use Frozen Donor Eggs

#4: Selecting an Egg Donor

#5: Three Resources to Use for Your Donor Egg Research


About PVED

Parents Via Egg Donation, or PVED, was created to provide an informational and supportive environment where parents and parents-to-be can learn and share information about all facets of the egg donation process.

Our mission is to educate, support, and empower families and individuals at any stage of the process who choose to use egg donation to build a family. We share information about agencies, legal and medical professionals, treatment centers, mental health therapists, pharmaceutical companies, and other resources.

PVED is a national, not-for-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization headquartered in Scappoose, Oregon

Their website contains a wide variety of information and ideas to help you in your family-building journey. If you can’t find what you are looking for, our listserves can link you to others who may have had similar experiences and are happy to share their knowledge.


Selecting an Egg Donor

Fairfax EggBank has partnered with Parents Via Egg Donation (PVED) to launch a blog series written by Heather, a recent egg donor recipient at Fairfax EggBank. Our hope is that through PVED, Heather’s voice can be shared with others who are just beginning their donor egg journey and are seeking authentic experiences of others who have been through it.

Stay tuned through either PVED’s website or ours to read Heather’s upcoming blogs.

Selecting an Egg Donor

Fairfax EggBank made it easier than anticipated to find an egg donor who was right for us, not just because how awesome my donor coordinator was, but also because of how detailed the donor profiles were. I was able to dig into each donor I liked, learning her and her family’s detailed medical history, her hobbies and achievements, childhood and current photos (professionally shot, no selfies!), and personal essays. I especially liked the audio interviews between the donor and Fairfax EggBank coordinators; while I wanted our donor to be anonymous, I loved that sense of connection I felt through hearing the donor’s voice.

My husband and I narrowed down our choices to four donors based on our priorities: preferably, the donor would look like me, have at least a college degree, have the same blood type, and be similar in age.  We learned two of these donors had proven success (meaning recipients before me had used their eggs and conceived) and decided to sleep on the decision to figure out which donor we should go with. Alas, good donors can go like hotcakes, and by the time we contacted our Fairfax EggBank coordinator, only one of the two donors still had eggs left. Figuring fate had made the decision for us, we chose to move forward with the one.

Undergoing the Best Transfer Yet

I will never forget the message “your eggs have arrived safely and are anxiously awaiting transfer!” This was the note my fertility clinic sent, letting me know the eggs were tucked away in their lab and ready for me. To say I was excited was an understatement. I remember doing my baseline, and my reproductive endocrinologist telling me all systems were ready to go. I started my meds and everything went well. I was not used to cycles going smoothly; I was used to many heartaches and setbacks just trying to even start. This was all something new to me.

In fact, this IVF cycle was unlike any other; it was super simple. My clinic’s lab was able to create 4 blastocysts from my 6 eggs. They even moved up the transfer of our embryos two weeks as my body was responding so well. Uh, what?? This never happens! I just knew this was going to be my miracle cycle. When we did the transfer I remember feeling very relaxed, which was nothing like the previous times. Everything from the get-go was smooth, and I was very thankful for that.

Getting the BFP

Let’s be honest – how many IVF patients actually have the patience to wait until their blood test to confirm if they’re pregnant or not? I know I couldn’t resist, especially given how positive I felt this time around.

About a week after our transfer, I cheated and took a home pregnancy test. That’s when I saw the words “PREGNANT” for the very first time in my entire life. I repeat, my very FIRST time. I had never been pregnant in my life.

How Pregnancy Feels

I’m still waiting for my baby to arrive, and it’s still a surreal feeling to have a baby in my belly. While it wasn’t my first choice to choose donor eggs in order to have a baby, now I often forget that donor eggs were even used. We simply can’t wait to meet our baby, and are so thankful there are companies like Fairfax EggBank out there to make our dreams a reality.

They say that the idea of parenting never happens the way you want it to. I think that’s true in every case; however the outcome is always the same. If a donor egg baby is the outcome for you, you will have so much joy in your life that you will never look back, I promise.

I’ve waited to tell you the best for last, we’re pregnant with twins! Both embryos took, how amazing is that!

 

Have questions for Heather? E-mail success@fairfaxeggbank.com

___________________________________________________

Heather’s Blog Series:

#1: Intro to my Donor Egg Story

#2: First Comes Love, then Comes Marriage, then Comes…Infertility?

#3: Our Decision to Use Frozen Donor Eggs

#4: Selecting an Egg Donor

#5: Three Resources to Use for Your Donor Egg Research


About PVED

Parents Via Egg Donation, or PVED, was created to provide an informational and supportive environment where parents and parents-to-be can learn and share information about all facets of the egg donation process.

Our mission is to educate, support, and empower families and individuals at any stage of the process who choose to use egg donation to build a family. We share information about agencies, legal and medical professionals, treatment centers, mental health therapists, pharmaceutical companies, and other resources.

PVED is a national, not-for-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization headquartered in Scappoose, Oregon

Their website contains a wide variety of information and ideas to help you in your family-building journey. If you can’t find what you are looking for, our listserves can link you to others who may have had similar experiences and are happy to share their knowledge.


Our Decision to Use Frozen Donor Eggs

Fairfax EggBank has partnered with Parents Via Egg Donation (PVED) to launch a blog series written by Heather, a recent egg donor recipient at Fairfax EggBank. Our hope is that through PVED, Heather’s voice can be shared with others who are just beginning their donor egg journey and are seeking authentic experiences of others who have been through it.

Stay tuned through either PVED’s website or ours to read Heather’s upcoming blogs.

Our Decision to Use Frozen Donor Eggs

Once we decided to pursue donor egg treatment, we did extensive research to figure out how we could find the best egg donor out there in the world to help us conceive.

We learned there were two major options available to start: fresh donor eggs and frozen donor eggs. There are advantages and disadvantages to either option, and so we carefully assessed our needs and evaluated how strongly each option measured up to them.

Need #1: Anonymity. We knew we didn’t want someone who we knew, or someone who was in an open donation program. Though many fresh programs offer anonymous egg donors, we felt frozen donor egg banks offered a much bigger selection of anonymous donors.

Need #2: Timing and Control. I frankly didn’t want to deal with the effort of being matched to a donor, having her undergo screening, then synchronizing cycles with her – which is the process when using fresh donor eggs. I wanted to do this treatment on MY time, for once – and not feel like I’m a victim to time and factors outside of my control.

Need #3: Cost. Through my research, I learned frozen donor eggs would cost about half the amount of fresh donor eggs. This was huge to us as we had already invested so much into treatment.

Need #4: Reliability. We were sick of bad surprises that could prolong treatment and make it even more expensive.  With fresh donor eggs, it’s harder to know what to expect: maybe we’d get a bunch of donor eggs from the donor, but there’s also a chance we’d get none. With frozen donor eggs, we knew we’d be guaranteed at least six to eight eggs, and that egg banks also offer a guarantee in the quality of eggs.

Need #5: Good Service. Throughout our journey, often times we felt like part of a cattle herd alongside other patients, and our care was rather impersonal. By that time we were ready to pursue donor egg, we were EXHAUSTED, mentally and physically. While not a deal breaker, it was important to us to be able to work with a donor egg company that was known for valuing and taking care of its recipients. And while we knew of no distinction between fresh and frozen donor egg companies in this regard, we did hear that Fairfax EggBank, a frozen donor egg bank, was particularly well known for its customer service.

After weighing our priorities, it was a no-brainer: frozen donor eggs were a better option for us. At this point, I started to get very excited. I finally felt that I MIGHT be able to be a mom. We had gone through so many disappointments, so I was reluctant to get my hopes up too much…but all I knew was that frozen donor eggs was the right choice for me.

I contacted Fairfax EggBank, and the donor coordinator I talked to further confirmed we made the right decision. I ended up working with her throughout my process, and she was beyond amazing. I seriously cannot praise her enough. When I talked to her the first time, I literally felt like she and I were friends for years. I could call her four times in an hour with questions if I needed (which, I’ll admit, I totally did).  She was so encouraging yet down to earth, and it made the experience that much better.

 

Have questions for Heather? E-mail success@fairfaxeggbank.com

___________________________________________________

Heather’s Blog Series:

#1: Intro to my Donor Egg Story

#2: First Comes Love, then Comes Marriage, then Comes…Infertility?

#3: Our Decision to Use Frozen Donor Eggs

#4: Selecting an Egg Donor

#5: Three Resources to Use for Your Donor Egg Research


About PVED

Parents Via Egg Donation, or PVED, was created to provide an informational and supportive environment where parents and parents-to-be can learn and share information about all facets of the egg donation process.

Our mission is to educate, support, and empower families and individuals at any stage of the process who choose to use egg donation to build a family. We share information about agencies, legal and medical professionals, treatment centers, mental health therapists, pharmaceutical companies, and other resources.

PVED is a national, not-for-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization headquartered in Scappoose, Oregon

Their website contains a wide variety of information and ideas to help you in your family-building journey. If you can’t find what you are looking for, our listserves can link you to others who may have had similar experiences and are happy to share their knowledge.


First Comes Love, Then Comes Marriage, Then Comes…Infertility?

Fairfax EggBank has partnered with Parents Via Egg Donation (PVED) to launch a blog series written by Heather, a recent egg donor recipient at Fairfax EggBank. Our hope is that through PVED, Heather’s voice can be shared with others who are just beginning their donor egg journey and are seeking authentic experiences of others who have been through it.

Stay tuned through either PVED’s website or ours to read Heather’s upcoming blogs.

First Comes Love, Then Comes Marriage, Then Comes…Infertility?

“You won’t be able to have a baby on your own”: Words that no one wishing to conceive wants to hear. Frankly, I wish no couple or individual has to hear them.

I don’t have to tell you about how this all feels like being a roller coaster; you’re most likely a reluctant rider too.

I embarked on my roller coaster ride in my late 20’s, though everything else took off as planned initially. It started by finally meeting the man I had been waiting for; the one whom I couldn’t wait to start a life with. We had a fairytale wedding and moved into our dream home together. Having a child was the next item down on our checklist. But, as months turned into a year with no pregnancy to bear, we turned to see a reproductive endocrinologist to see if he can easily fix our issue. Boy, was I wrong thinking it would be easy.

The Diagnosis

After my reproductive endocrinologist took what felt like half of my weight in blood to test for hormones and diseases, followed by a laparoscopy, he gave me my diagnosis: endometriosis. I had the severe type: the type that distorts pelvic anatomy and gets in the way of making a baby.

I still thought it wouldn’t be difficult to conceive despite this diagnosis. I figured drug treatment can help suppress endometriosis, and once I did the baby dance at the right time, BAM! I’d be pregnant.  Well, it obviously didn’t happen that way.

Months later, I developed a large ovarian cyst that caused me to be very, very sick. I couldn’t work for two months and it got so bad that I needed emergency surgery. Devastatingly, from this surgery I lost my ovary, fallopian tube, and appendix.

The pain I felt post-operation was indescribable, and it lasted over a month. Despite this, I pushed myself like heck to heal. I wanted to start IVF so badly, especially knowing my chances of conceiving naturally were that much lower with one ovary.

The Path to Donor Egg

To my excitement, in just two months after surgery, I was cleared to start IVF. However, the endometriosis and ovarian cysts still got in the way, and over the course of two years I completed two IVF cycles and one FET cycle – all resulting in BFNs (“big fat negatives” for those not on infertility boards).

My doctor explained that my egg quality was most likely being impacted by my endometriosis, and that my chance for success in future cycles was low. He recommended we look into donor egg or surrogacy.

My husband and I actually had the conversation two years prior to our journey about using potential donors on either side if we needed to. At that time, my answer was “heck no”.

But now that we were at this critical decision point, we thought about it more. If we chose surrogacy, we wouldn’t have the joy of seeing the first positive pregnancy test, or hear the dulcet sound of a heartbeat. To us, that meant the world.

We decided to pursue donor egg. And I can tell you I have never regretted this decision, not even for a second.

 

Have questions for Heather? E-mail success@fairfaxeggbank.com

___________________________________________________

Heather’s Blog Series:

#1: Intro to my Donor Egg Story

#2: First Comes Love, then Comes Marriage, then Comes…Infertility?

#3: Our Decision to Use Frozen Donor Eggs

#4: Selecting an Egg Donor

#5: Three Resources to Use for Your Donor Egg Research


About PVED

Parents Via Egg Donation, or PVED, was created to provide an informational and supportive environment where parents and parents-to-be can learn and share information about all facets of the egg donation process.

Our mission is to educate, support, and empower families and individuals at any stage of the process who choose to use egg donation to build a family. We share information about agencies, legal and medical professionals, treatment centers, mental health therapists, pharmaceutical companies, and other resources.

PVED is a national, not-for-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization headquartered in Scappoose, Oregon

Their website contains a wide variety of information and ideas to help you in your family-building journey. If you can’t find what you are looking for, our listserves can link you to others who may have had similar experiences and are happy to share their knowledge.


Intro to My Donor Egg Story

Fairfax EggBank has partnered with Parents Via Egg Donation (PVED) to launch a blog series written by Heather, a recent egg donor recipient at Fairfax EggBank. Our hope is that through PVED, Heather’s voice can be shared with others who are just beginning their donor egg journey and are seeking authentic experiences of others who have been through it.

Intro to My Donor Egg Story

If you’re reading this blog, you might be someone who is exploring the decision to use donor eggs. If that’s the case, you probably have a million questions you’re trying to sort out. How did I get to this point? Is donor egg the right choice for me? If so, how do I go about finding an egg donor?  Where do I even start?

I just want to let you know that all this soul searching, the confusion and doubts, the overwhelming feelings…it’s all normal. I’ve been in your exact shoes.

I have been beaten down by an emotional path of failed IVF and FET cycles. I questioned whether I will ever be the mom I’ve always wanted to be. I have been on the roller coaster of infertility with my husband, wondering if we will ever get to share our home with giggling children running down its halls.

But, guess what? I was able to stop that roller coaster…I’m finally pregnant! Donor eggs have given me that opportunity, and I have never looked back.

So, who am I? My name is Heather. I am (almost) 30 years old, and have struggled with infertility for two years. I have a professional career as a CPA. I’m a dog lover. I can be someone who is a tad stubborn…which, to think about it, offered me the strength I needed to never give up on my fight to become a mom. Like many of you, I’ve been through tests, surgeries, shots, retrievals, transfers and more.

I will share with you my journey in the upcoming blog series. Hopefully some of you will relate to my story and find encouragement that there is light at the end of the tunnel. And hopefully, like me, by choosing donors eggs you’ll also be blissfully pregnant a few short months from now.

 

Have questions for Heather? E-mail success@fairfaxeggbank.com

___________________________________________________

Heather’s Blog Series:

#1: Intro to my Donor Egg Story

#2: First Comes Love, then Comes Marriage, then Comes…Infertility?

#3: Our Decision to Use Frozen Donor Eggs

#4: Selecting an Egg Donor

#5: Three Resources to Use for Your Donor Egg Research


About PVED

Parents Via Egg Donation, or PVED, was created to provide an informational and supportive environment where parents and parents-to-be can learn and share information about all facets of the egg donation process.

Our mission is to educate, support, and empower families and individuals at any stage of the process who choose to use egg donation to build a family. We share information about agencies, legal and medical professionals, treatment centers, mental health therapists, pharmaceutical companies, and other resources.

PVED is a national, not-for-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization headquartered in Scappoose, Oregon

Their website contains a wide variety of information and ideas to help you in your family-building journey. If you can’t find what you are looking for, our listserves can link you to others who may have had similar experiences and are happy to share their knowledge.