Part One: Is This Your Donor?
24 hours after I wrote my blog post about my donor, I received an email via my personal Facebook.
“Hi there! Totally random message haha but I saw your name on a Fairfax forum and I was wondering if this is the same person. Sorry to sound like a creep.”
It was in my “secret” inbox (where you get Facebook messages from people that aren’t on your list of friends).
I stared at the message for a minute. How did this person know my real name? Why wasn’t she messaging me on sarahseekingbaby?
Then it hit me. I had used my real name as my username on the Fairfax Sibling Registry Donor Page. I had typed a message asking if anyone used the same donor as me. How stupid was I? Why had I used my real name?
I clicked on the photo of the woman who had written to me and saw that she was married, living in the United States, and liked hunting turkeys.
“Haha! Totally is” I wrote back.
“Oh good! I was wondering what your experience was with using that donor and how many times it took if you don’t mind me asking. My husband and I are using a sperm donor and doing IUI. We searched and searched and he has made it to our number 1 choice.”
I wrote back about how much I loved the donor and how it had only taken me one round of IUI to get pregnant using his sperm. I gave as much information as I could and logged off.
Before I could figure out how I felt, I received a direct message on Instagram from someone that followed me on sarahseekingbaby.
“Is this your donor?” the woman asked, complete with a baby picture of my donor.
“Yes” I quickly typed back.
She explained that she originally wanted him to be her donor but he said some things in his interview that made her change her mind.
“Such a small world” I wrote back.
Then I started getting more questions from other people on Instagram.
“Is your donor number -”
There were a lot of messages and I was starting to feel a bit uncomfortable but I didn’t know why.
I started worrying that I had given away way too many details about my donor. So many details that people were starting to identify him.
I wanted my baby to be the first one to find out who the donor was. I wanted to allow him the decision to connect with his donor siblings if he wanted to. Then I started to feel terrible.
I tried to delete my Fairfax (sperm bank) account and I couldn’t do it.
“Please delete my username and delete my account at this time” I typed in an email to Fairfax.
Then I went back to my blog from last week and deleted as many details as I could. Within 24 hours two people had identified him and I started to become worried that it would keep happening.
All of this was so new to me. I needed time to decide how I felt about donor siblings. I needed time to figure out if I should reach out to other people. It was all happening too fast so I shut it all down.
Have not heard from anyone since Monday evening which has given me peace. Sometimes the world is just too small.
Part Two: The Mass
On Wednesday I went for my Research Ultrasound at Mount Sinai (part of a group in a study where they are studying placenta).
“I need to tell you something” I said to the physician doing my ultrasound. “They detected a mass on my right side and I don’t know what it is.”
“Well let’s have a look” said the physician.
She stared at it for about ten minutes and showed me what it looked like on the screen.
“It is your appendix” she said. “You aren’t in any major pain? They didn’t do an MRI?”
“No to all of the above” I said.
“This is a little tricky but I am not giving up” she said.
After about five minutes of her magnifying the mass a smile formed on her face.
“I can say with 100% certainty that this is an ovarian cyst. Did you take fertility medication when you were trying to get pregnant?”
“Yes” I said.
“It was caused by that” she said.
I wanted to hug her. She didn’t need to look into the mass for me. I was having my anatomy ultrasound on Thursday. She gave me all of the answers that I needed and calmed me right down.
She then proceeded to do the research ultrasound but baby boy was moving around far too much. In fact, she got a picture of him with his foot near his eye.
From there, I went to my OB for an appointment.
“If you have a c-section, we will remove your cyst” said my OB right after I had the research ultrasound. “You also have low-lying placenta right now. Hopefully it gets better as your pregnancy progresses or you will have to have a c-section.”
After my appointments on Wednesday went well, I was just hoping that Thursday my anatomy ultrasound (where they measure the baby) would be okay.
Part Three: Anatomy Ultrasound #3
“How are you feeling?” asked my Mom as soon as she saw me.
“Okay. Just super nervous” I said.
After my second anatomy ultrasound where they found the mass, my mother stated that someone was going to accompany me to my next appointment. I had a choice – my brother in law (because he works from home) or her (because she is retired). I couldn’t even imagine my brother-in-law taking any of this information in so of course, I went with my Mom.
The appointment was for 2:30 and by 3:00 my ultrasound was being done by the nicest woman, named Erin. Erin did my first anatomy ultrasound where she wasn’t able to get anything.
“He is moving around a lot today” she said.
“Please tell me I won’t have to come back” I said. “What is the record for someone coming back to have an anatomy ultrasound?”
“This has to be the final one. They won’t go over three. If we can’t get it right now, you’ll wait and have it done later tonight.”
I suddenly wondered how late they were open.
“This is such a miracle” said my Mom watching everything. She gave me constant updates on what baby boy was doing.
“He is kicking. His butt is facing down. He is flipping over. He has a nose like you.”
During an anatomy ultrasound you can”t see the screen so you are just staring at the wall forever.
“He is not in the right position” said Erin. “We are going to need you to move.”
For over an hour, I was moved into various positions.
“Okay” said Erin. “I hope we are done. We shall see what the doctor says. Please just wait in the hall.
We waited and waited and waited.
In fact, we spotted Erin in her coat.
“I am leaving for the day” she said. “The doctor hasn’t had a chance to look at the pictures yet but I think they are okay. If not, she will do the ultrasound again.”
“Fingers crossed” I laughed.
Then we waited and waited.
The ultrasound area closed up for the day. I had never seen the floor for Mount Sinai so empty.
Sure there were a couple people – some having naps, some crying and being guided to “Special Pregnancy” or “High-Risk”, some on their phones trying to take their mind off the long wait.
“Sarah?” asked a doctor who came out beside the ultrasound area.
I felt sick to my stomach as soon as I saw her. I had seen her call patients after their ultrasound and then patients would leave in tears. I had heard “this is not a big deal but —–” said to so many people.
“Yes?” I asked.
“You can go home!” she smiled.
Baby boy had officially graduated! No more anatomy ultrasounds for this little one!
“How do you feel?” asked my Mom.
“So relieved” I said with the biggest smile on my face.
I finally felt at peace.
“What a week” I said with a smile.
Every week in pregnancy has been a massive learning experience for me.
This week I learned that I don’t want to be too open about my donor and need to respect my donor/my baby/my privacy a bit more. I also learned so much about my body and the growth and development of this little one.
It only makes me wonder, what will I learn in the week ahead?