As I shared in my last blog, becoming an egg donor was such an awesome decision for me. Egg donation helps thousands of couples every year build the family they’ve been wishing for, filling their homes with love and joy. I was so honored to be a part of the process, but it isn’t one I took on lightly. Read part two of my egg donation story.
Egg Donation – It’s Real Now
After your profile is accepted and you complete initial testing (learn more about the full egg donation process), you’re invited to attend Donor Day—a 5-hour day where you learn everything there is to know about egg donation. Donor Day offers a thorough explanation of the process and is very informative, but I’ll admit, it was after this day that I felt the gravity of this decision.
I was scared mostly because all new things are scary, and this was very, very new. Lucky for me, everyone at Shady Grove Fertility and my friend who had donated before eased my mind and assured me that my fear was normal. After 2 weeks, and me asking a lot of questions, I was cleared to be added to the Donor Database (an online database where donor egg recipients can view the anonymous donors who are currently available).
If I didn’t realize it was real after Donor Day, now I truly felt it.
Sharing the News about My Egg Donation
It felt very real all of a sudden; so I finally decided to open up about my egg donation. The Egg Donor Program at Shady Grove Fertility is phenomenal and I wanted the people closest to me to know how incredible this opportunity was and share my new life experience.
My family will tell you I am a daddy’s girl, and my dad was the first person I wanted to tell. I’m the oldest and we are very close, but my dad is conservative and Catholic so I didn’t think he would quite understand my decision. That being said, my dad has always been loving and supportive, even when I came home with a tattoo shortly after I turned 18. I was nervous to tell him because I was concerned that the myths about egg donation would cloud his judgment around my decision. However I was so pleasantly surprised that when I told him he said with much enthusiasm “Is it anonymous?” I told him it was and he continued to surprise me by saying “I think it’s great.”
After that I had a renewed sense of excitement for the process because I felt so loved and supported by the people who meant the most to me. I knew I wanted to help a couple become the kind of amazing parents mine are to me.
The Joy of Being Selected & the Fear of Messing Up
My nurse called maybe a week after I’d been placed on the database—I had been selected by a family! It’s hard to put into words how that felt because it was such a unique experience. But what I can say was how grateful I was to this couple for choosing me to help them build their family. How much more special could I ever feel? My heart was filled to the brim with joy.
Soon after being selected, I started birth control and injectable medications. I remember being terrified when the medications arrived. I did not want to mess up the dosing or hinder this process in any way.
My donor friend was very helpful when I started the injections. Her suggestion was to stay consistent and remember it was only a pinch. She also reminded me that the hormones I would be taking made her “glow” and she felt very happy during her egg donation. Her advice rang true for me—I felt almost exactly the same—a little happier than normal but I also was a little more emotional than I typically wouldn’t have been, including getting a little emotional during baby commercials.
My nurse was always kind and I felt completely comfortable asking questions, which included my small freak outs over the timing of the shots, my concern about any small feeling in the general area of my stomach, and most commonly, am I doing this right? I was so grateful to have someone to check in with every day.
Excitement and Nerves on Egg Donation Day
When the day of my egg donation arrived, I felt excited. I was nervous, of course, but mostly excited. I remember how special everyone made me feel that day. All of the nurses and doctors thanked me and told me how amazing egg donation was. I remember getting sleepy very quickly after being taken into the operating room. Afterwards, the doctor who had retrieved my eggs kiddingly called me an overachiever (because of how many eggs she was able to retrieve). She said I did so well and, once again, I felt special.
If you would like to hear more about my egg donation story, learn more about the full egg donation process, and are interested in becoming an egg donor, call me, Joanna at 1-877-DONATE-EGGS.
My name is Joanna and I’ve donated my eggs twice at Shady Grove Fertility. Becoming an egg donor has been the best and most impactful decision I’ve made in life so far. Seriously.
I recently joined the egg donor team at SGF because I wanted to help women better understand the process so that they can also have this experience. Being a part of this phenomenal team gives me the opportunity to share my personal recommendations AND be able to help other women through the process. So, here goes my heartfelt recommendations to you.