Procrastinating Our Family

You may delay, but time will not, and lost time is never found again.  – Benjamin Franklin

Gosh if that isn’t true, is it?  Being a procrastinator since birth I have lived my life putting things off later and later, letting time continually pass, while the “stuff” just piles.  I’ve delayed cleaning my room, studying for tests, finding a “real” job, paying bills and most recently…having a child!  And that most recent procrastination just hit me last night,  hard.  And I was frustrated with myself.  Frustrated with who I am at my core.  If I would just DO THINGS right away, we wouldn’t have missed the glorious window we had last night.  We wouldn’t have missed our opportunity to finally get our family started, when we saw that blinking smiley face on the ovulation test.

Let me back up, as there is plenty more procrastination that I have to bring you all up to speed.

About a year and a half ago, Sarah and I decided that we were ready to expand our family.  A was getting older, we were getting older, and our eggs weren’t going to be this fantastically fertile for long.  Time really does start ticking and we became more and more aware of it as we drew closer to 35.

Unfortunately, Sarah and I are collectively flawed when it comes to making big decisions.  Sarah, is not a self-starter.  I love her to death, but she’s not one to just do something on her own, without being prompted.  And me…I procrastinate.  I wait, until the very last minute and then I get overwhelmed and stressed out and my solution is to just not do that thing anymore.  SO, you can imagine how far we got initially.  That’s correct, nowhere.  We didn’t call any banks, we didn’t look through any catalogues, we just sat and talked about starting a family, but never actually did anything about it.  Meanwhile, everything just kept on getting older.

As 2016 began we swore that would be our year.  I finally called a fertility clinic, we had our initial consultation and she made the whole process seem incredibly easy!  We went home that night, and began researching…and researching…and researching.  And yep, you can guess where we ended up after all that.  Nowhere.  I got overwhelmed by all the options and all of the THINGS we needed to think about!  What does donor #4456 like to eat in the morning?  What does donor #8892’s mom do for a living?  What does donor #9783’s voice sound like?  What does donor #1539’s genetic history look like, 4 generations back?  If I considered every single option available I was literally left with nobody.  But when I went broad I ended up with hundreds of donor options.  HUNDREDS!  So I shut down, overwhelmed.  And our search continued to stall.

But at the end of this year, I finally had an “enough is enough” moment.  We had officially made it through an entire year and had nothing to show for it.  Not a sperm receipt, not a negative pregnancy test…nothing.  And I was frustrated, although still very overwhelmed.

And here’s why.

When I met Anderson’s father, he was a very pretty boy in a bar.  That’s it.  I didn’t know his genetic history, or what his mom did, or whether he ate eggs or cereal in the AM.  All I knew, was he was pretty.  And a few months later I stared at a positive pregnancy test.  Now you could argue if he HAD a genetic history of say cancer that I was aware of and if he ate cereal instead of eggs in the AM or if I didn’t like the sound of his voice that maybe I wouldn’t have continued to date him and subsequently I wouldn’t have had my son after all.  Which means maybe those said attributes, on paper, really are important when determining the sperm I’d like to use.  But the reality is, I had a hard time looking at sperm in a catalogue!  I didn’t want a designer baby.  I didn’t care about any of the attributes on paper.  I just wanted to find someone that I’d date.  And I then wanted to have their baby.

I’m of course being incredibly casual but I hope you get what I’m trying to say here.  I couldn’t just stare at pages upon pages of information anymore.  I needed to find someone that I would want to procreate with.  I needed to find someone who felt like a real human being.

So I called up the sperm bank we chose to use, talked to the woman on the other end and said “If you were in a bar, and your catalogue of donors were all in the same room, who would you want to grab a drink with.  Who would you want to get to know better?”  She laughed, but she knew exactly what I was getting at.

By the time our conversation ended, I had four dateable options in my inbox and I hit “purchase” on the one who fit some of the high-level criteria we were looking for.  I likened it to walking in to a bar, and leaving with the cute bartender.  The blonde haired, tall bartender.  Not the brown eyed, shorter bartender.  I wrapped up the receipt for the cute bartender, and gave it to Sarah for Christmas.

Yes, I bought my partner Sperm for Christmas.  Sperm that I just equated to a one-night-stand.  Just let that sink in a bit.

And so now we’re up to last night.  We FINALLY had our Sperm.  After over a year of procrastinating we were finally really ready to start our family!  We had all of the pieces at our disposal!  Except for one, small detail.  I procrastinated actually sending the sperm to our fertility clinic.  And our bank is in Seattle.  So that means, no go on having access to it at a moment’s notice…like last night.

Last night, as we stared at that positive test, I wanted to cry.  Because in that moment, my procrastination forced time to move without us.  Another month will pass without us being able to try for a baby.  Another month we all get older.  Another month A doesn’t have a sibling on the way.  I have nobody to blame but myself.  But my god is it depressing.

And so, January was a bust.  But here’s hoping for a better outcome in February!  And maybe, just maybe, I’ll finally learn my lesson.

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