As a recipient of donated embryos, I was recently asked to write a letter of support to help continue funding for education and awareness of embryo donation and adoption. It was my honor and privilege to help support this cause. Knowledge about this option of third party reproduction is what brought my son into my life.
I was first introduced to embryo adoption, many years ago, by my former doctor. He’d become suddenly ill, and had passed away from Leukemia very quickly. Before his illness, he’d discussed third party reproduction with Josh and me, as a viable alternative to building our family. As he spoke those words for the first time, it was like a punch to the gut. Realization set in: I could no longer be in denial that we probably would never have a biological child.
At one of our first appointments, he’d given us an about an 80% chance of pregnancy. Sitting in his office, almost three years later, he’d said our chances of a biological child had dropped to 10%. I’m not sure where he got his percentages. Maybe it was the 13 unsuccessful IUI’s, and the two failed IVF attempts, that got him thinking along those lines. Josh and I were not thinking along those lines.
With what felt like a stab through the heart, he had said,“You are both attractive and have good genes, but so do other people. I think we need to discuss third party reproduction….embryo adoption”. I had been fighting back tears when our percentage dropped to 10%, but holding on to every last bit of hope, I was waiting to hear what options we had left to maximize our 10% chance.
After hearing the words embryo adoption, I felt like my world was crumbling. Tears streamed down my face. I could no longer hold back the floodgate that was erupting inside my mind. My dreams were being dropped on me like a wrecking ball to glass, being shattered to pieces, in one 30 minute appointment. My doctor had a reputation for being blunt. He didn’t sugarcoat things. It wouldn’t be kind to do so in the infertility business. You would only give people false hope. He wasn’t giving me any false hope that day.
The thought of not having a biological child was devastating. Adopting was NOT EVEN CLOSE to being on our radar. Traditional or otherwise. The concept of embryo adoption was totally foreign to both Josh and me. We couldn’t grasp the idea of carrying a child, from someone else’s genes, in my body, and giving birth to a child not of our blood. But time wears you down. And procedure after procedure wears you down even more. It took Josh a bit longer than me, to warm-up to the idea of third party reproduction.
Fast forward to today…
Awareness and education about ED/EA is how we got our son. After trying procedure after procedure, Josh finally accepted, that if we were ever going to have a child, it would probably be through third party reproduction.
If you read my first blog, ‘Acceptance to Elation’, you’ll know we had a close friend who offered to be a donor for us. While researching donor IVF, we came across the NEDC blogs and website. It wasn’t until after a failed IVF cycle with our donor, that we decided to pursue embryo adoption through the NEDC.
My heart, John Luke Foster, was born November 26th, 2012….
All thanks to the information and awareness obtained through the NEDC website and blogs. Thanks to a loving couple who sacrificially donated their embryos. And initially, thanks to a very sweet man, Dr. Samuel Thatcher, who passed from this life much too soon. He had the boldness to tell me words that I didn’t want to hear. But words I needed to hear for my own good.
Words that would forever change my life…embryo adoption.