Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Spring Break Can't Come Soon Enough

I sometimes wonder what is motivating me in my drive to have a baby RIGHT NOW. And, before anyone reads this thinking that they will get lovely ruminations on baby toes, and the wafting scent of baby powder, pastel blankets, contented baby sighs, and strolling in the sunshine with a baby snuggled in its sling as you wave to passersby and play fetch with the dog with your perfectly fit and back to better shape than before pregnancy body, be warned that what follows is a horrible, horrendous vent about a horrible, horrendous couple of days. Don't say you weren't warned....

On days like today, I worry that it is my burnout and stress from work talking, driving me toward the best break from teaching I can come up with. This school year has taken so much out of me. From the stress of the crisis in leadership within our division (which reads like the stories of school systems like Hartford, Dallas, Miami, NYC or LA rather than the nice, genteel city that we are) to the number of times I have been asked to speak on behalf of my members on issues that I don't fully agree with, to the number of times teachers have been publicly bashed in the media by parents and community members, it has become too much. My students this year are a particularly difficult bunch of kids, and I haven't clicked with them in the way I normally do. With nine weeks left, I finally feel that they trust me at the level I have normally reached by October.

But today was the final straw. All pales in comparison. I have been interviewed for the news three times in the last three days, bringing it to a total of 10 or 12 times in the past three weeks, and now have another interview scheduled for later this afternoon. I was taken to task by the guidance counselor because she felt that a Child Study meeting did not go well yesterday--despite the fact that I have suggested numerous times that guidance counselors should run child study, and she rebuffs it every time. Apparently, she doesn't know enough to do it herself, but she is expert enough to tell me how to do it.

After we finished our calling on the carpet in front of five of my students (very professional of her) I went to my computer to log on and check my email and jot down a phone number. My keyboard and monitor were coated in a thick, white sticky substance. The open bottle of Elmer's glue led me to deduce that the sticky substance was glue. As I began to dismantle the keyboard to see if it could be cleaned, the distinct smell of urine began to waft out of it.

I reported it to the principal, since it happened after school yesterday. Because I inadvertently left my door unlocked when I left school yesterday, there is no way to pinpoint how and when it happened. Our assumption is that the custodian who was fired yesterday for inappropriate flirting with female teachers thought I was the one who turned him in and retaliated with a final expression of his devotion.

Even though I was not the person who complained about his behavior, it seems that I may have become the scapegoat, likely because I am known to be a lesbian, and that comes with a lot of stereotypes of man-hating, vindictiveness, and bitterness.

The nice thing is that by lunch time, I had a new keyboard happily plugged in, and was typing away, working on grades, and updating IEPs.

Today, I would give my right arm for an excuse to not work full time next year. I wait impatiently to hear if I got into school, and even my father agreed yesterday that it is time for me to take a year off of teaching. As a 34 year public school educator, and current state teacher of the year, he is my mentor and best advisor on all decisions work-related. He was worried when I told him three months ago that I plan to quit my job, but after hearing how the last 9 months have gone, he agreed that I need some time away. Since I can't switch divisions without a major uproar (the president of the education association leaving to teach elsewhere sends a powerful message), he agreed that leaving to go to school fulltime is the cleanest, most honest exit I can make.

I only hope that in addition to grad school, there is soon a little one to explain away my exit....

2 more days until spring break. Dyke Two just called me and told me to figure out what I want to do this coming week to make it more relaxing. We are off to a black tie benefit dinner Saturday night, which involves a stay in a hotel for the night. (Her favorite treat!) Now, I get to decide what I want as my treat. Right now, I think just knowing that the dress I wore last year still fits may be treat enough for me, though a massage sounds pretty appealing too. I feel like a fat brood sow because of all of the stress eating, lack of exercise, water retention, etc that this crazy school year has brought me.

If spring break does not cause a noticeable improvement in my mood and stress levels, it may be time to get back in touch with my doctor for a referral to a therapist for a tune-up. My old one has closed her practice in the years since we worked together, but it might be time for a brush up on my stress management techniques...

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

And On To Plan B...

Dyke Two had breakfast this morning with PKD and finally got the whole story. He has decided that he cannot be our KD. (We pretty much assumed that from his actions this past weekend, but were glad that he finally got up the courage to talk to us about it.) As always, open communication saved the day.

He told Dyke Two that after thinking more about it, he had a vision of being an active third parent, with partial custody, participation in parenting decisions, and full acknowledgement to his family and the world. He realized while talking to his mother that he wants too badly to be a father, and cannot trust himself to honor any donor agreement that might be drawn up.

We switched gears pretty quickly from being hurt and offended that he was blowing us off and thought so little of our friendship to feeling honored and impressed by his clarity of vision and unswerving integrity. (We knew that he was a great guy--which is why we chose him as a KD, but now, we know how great a guy he is! ) Had he been devious or manipulative, he could have signed the donor agreement knowing full well that he would ultimately sue for custody.

We heard back from the good doctors yesterday with a brief email saying that they are putting their heads together and will get back to us before the weekend with a few potential names.

All in all, this has ended up being a very positive experience. We are blessed with friends who care about us, the knowledge that PKD can be counted on with a serious decision and will continue to think about the best interests of all involved, and the reassurance that our relationship with each other is not dependent on everything working out just perfectly.

Dyke Two has expressed a desire now to more fully investigate the anonymous donor option simply because we can do it ourselves, and don't have to rely on anyone else. I assured her last night that this plan is always ready for re-evaluation, so we can continue to discuss more fully whenever she wants.

Monday, March 28, 2005

Heels Are Dragging...It Doesn't Look Good

Now that it is Monday morning, the window of time for PKD to call is over, and he is officially dragging his heels. We spent the weekend feeling like schoolgirls during prom season, "Will he call?" "When will he call?" "What do we do if he doesn't call?" "Why isn't he calling now?" "If he calls now, do we still want to go with him?" "What did it mean when he said such and such two weeks ago when we last saw him?" "What did we do to make him change his mind?" We all know the drill, because we have all been there. I just hoped I had outgrown it.

We were both extremely stressed this weekend. I went into full meltdown mode because I couldn't get the printer to properly print our Save the Date cards (which should have gone out months ago, but better late than never.) Dyke Two sulked and pouted because the restaurant we went to on Friday night for a friend's birthday had terrible service. After I stood in the kitchen bawling Sunday afternoon, Dyke Two looked at me and we both said, "I'm not sure we can do this waiting again. If PKD isn't on board 150% with a complete commitment, then we need to find someone else who is."

We are still waiting to hear from him officially, but we have already moved on to a slightly modified Plan B. Surprisingly, it doesn't include any of the people we identified two weeks ago as our next candidates. Dyke Two went to see one of her doctors last week, and during the course of the checkup, he mentioned that if we needed a donor, he would help us find one. About 4 months ago, her other doctor in the same office made the same offer. The two doctors are gay men, a couple and business partners. As weird as it felt for her doctor to be involved in finding a sperm donor, the idea has grown on us over time.

Our state laws are very vague about how "donor" is defined, and makes it clear that sperm obtained from a bank is "donor sperm" but doesn't include anything about sperm obtained through private arrangements. It also talks about doctor supervision and treatment for infertility in its definitions of "donor sperm." We are cautiously optimistic that using the docs as an intermediary/reference for obtaining a donor might make the legal stuff more clear cut.

We are also hoping that by using a donor recommended by the doctor that we might find someone with a better sense of responsibility, punctuality and obligation. Additionally, if the doctors recommend someone, the recommendation comes from their gut feeling that he is medically clean. And, if he is already a patient of theirs, they can help us tremendously in getting the insurance company to cover the costs of most of the tests. We both talked about how even if PKD comes back to us today with a yes, we are not sure that we can trust him to be timely with donations.

The silver lining this weekend is that we both are aware that we are on board. We both want a baby, and are excited to move forward. We both have experienced the stress of waiting for a deadline and we both have experienced the letdown and disappointment when the answer you get after the deadline is not what you expected. We also both realized that this is not a process either of us can do alone. It is going to take both if us giving all of our strength and support to the other to get us through this.

I jokingly said that our 2WW is not over. It feels akin to having received a negative HPT, but no AF yet. Dyke Two looked at me in dismay, and said, "You mean it will be like this every month?!" Surprisingly, we are more frustrated and disappointed that we have to continue the search for a donor, not that PKD finked out on us. I think we both knew in the back of our minds that it was a distinct possibility and were more seeing this through to the end. If PKD calls today with a yes, it is actually exciting to think that we have moved to a space where we are back in control and need to decide if the conversation and process is something we want to pursue.

I also think it is good that we are seeing this now, instead of after going through the expense and hassle of drawing up legal paperwork, undergoing testing and getting ourselves geared up for a specific cycle. Even if he had agreed smoothly now, it doesn't mean that come insemination time, he would have shown up as scheduled.

So, while the weekend brought us some disappointment and frustration, we have come through it clear-headed and ready to move forward. We might have been temporarily disappointed, but we are now re-grouped, energized and ready to move in a new direction.

Friday, March 25, 2005

Mental Health Update

In January, when I discontinued my meds, my psychiatrist told me that if I made it through the winter, I would be fine. I have had some of the emotionality return, and find myself crying at the drop of a hat over stupid things. I have teared up reading some people's proposal stories. I have caught myself sniffling while reading the newspaper. I have cried full on because I am frustrated about minor things, like getting a flat tire.

I don't even like to talk about the anxiety. I have caught myself in so many situations having to short circuit the catastrophic thinking cycle I always engage in. There is a part of me that is convinced that I will both not get into graduate school for next year and will not be pregnant. I feel so trapped and overwhelmed by my current job that the thought of being back next year is unacceptable. I have to stop the cycle of thinking that leads me nowhere and constantly identify alternatives to it.

I am also finding myself back where I was with spikes of anxiety. I received an email from my supervisor asking me to call her, and I immediately felt my heart racing, felt a little dizzy and began to have trouble breathing. I am disappointed that my public speaking skills and presence have become less polished as the anxiety returns, but I am excited to discover that I can recognize and handle the symptoms on my own, and now know the triggers that will lead me back to the darkness I was in when this started.

I am now aware of how hard I am on myself, and how much I expect myself to be perfect and completely in control of all situations. Now that I know that perfectionism doesn't have to be a part of who I am, I am beginning to recognize it in myself and laugh it off as I work to let go of the need to be perfect.

The surprising gift that this has brought me is that Dyke Two finally knows the unmedicated version of me. And, she likes it better. While the constant replaying of anxiety-provoking situations wears thin on anyone, she sees a spark in me that wasn't there on meds, and she sees a better, more alive version of the woman she fell in love with.

I am also pleasantly surprised by the slow changes I am encountering in my cycles. I have more cervical fluid than I have had for the five years since going on anti-depressants. I am also experiencing cyclical changes in my sex drive for the first time in five years. The changes in libido were so subtle that I never noticed them until the meds were out of my system.

I had had so much fear and apprehension about going off my meds. I have seen too many friends struggle too hard with weaning themselves off their pills, so I have been relieved to discover that this process has been effective and successful for me.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Operation Known Donor: A Status Report

I just got off the phone with Dyke Two who had an email exchange with PKD today.

Dyke Two: Do you think that we will have an answer to our question by the end of the weekend?

PKD: Definitely. I am having dinner with my mom tomorrow, and will talk to you this weekend.

I am trying not to be too excited and difficult to live with, but I am so excited, and probably difficult to live with--hopefully no more so than usual.

This really brings home the fact that we are selecting the person to make a baby with. It is kind of weird, because when people marry each other, they have fallen in love. While the thought of raising children with your spouse may be part of your decision to marry someone, I think very few people look at someone as a provider of genes. Yet that is clearly what has happened here. We listed things that were important to us, and then selected a person who met the highest number of our criteria. It makes the whole thing kind of clinical and a little bizarre.

It sometimes makes me a little uncomfortable, especially as a special education teacher. I hate the idea of people engineering their children, or selecting traits that are steeped in racist, classist or elitist traditions and assumptions. Yet, here I am choosing the genetic material that will be passed onto my children. I think that this is why I am adament that C. have the ultimate choice in who the donor is. I want the genes to be hers, and since they can't, I want her to have picked the person who fits her and feels right to her.

Still plugging away...

After some angst surrounding my ovulation date this month when my signs did not all line up perfectly, I realized that I am going to have to figure out a way to relax about all of this. I mean, come on, we weren't even inseminating this month and I was scrutinizing my chart for signs of how to resolve the conflicting messages.

This morning I realized that this is just another example of how I expect myself to be perfect, and am disappointed when I don't perform to my exact, precise standards. Dyke Two and I agreed that I would chart for these months leading up to insemination so that we would know and understand my cycles and rhythms, not so we would pinpoint to the hour when I was ovulating so that we could plan insemination accordingly.

While my cycles haven't been perfect this month, we have met our goals. I know a lot more about my cycles, and clearly, the menstrual cycle is not something anyone can ever control without hormonal intervention from a doctor. We have already agreed that the medically managed route is not for us at the beginning, and will only be considered as a last resort.

We continue to worry about Dyke Two's mother, sister and niece. As it stands right now, we think that a positive step has occurred, since sister signed over temporary custody to mother. Sister is voluntarily attending therapy and substance abuse day treatment. We are all hoping that reunification will occur successfully in six months or so. Sister tried so hard to have our niece, and we hate to think that someone will remove niece from her care. It is hard to monitor from 600 miles away, but we have to trust mother when she tells us all is under control, and that she can take care of our niece without compromising her own health.

We continue to wait anxiously to hear from PKD. Dyke Two is supposed to be having lunch with him today or tomorrow, and we are hoping for an answer. If he doesn't have one, then I think we will need to give him a deadline of April 1 so we can move forward with asking one of the other men on our list. I am still hoping that it will work out with PKD. He was the first person who came to mind for both of us once the phase of ridiculousness ended.

We knew it was time to focus on reality when we were watching Oprah one afternoon and saw Usher being interviewed. Jokingly, we decided that we should write him a letter and ask him to be our donor. We didn't do it, and it is probably just as well. In this day and age of heightened celebrity stalking awareness, we probably would have been arrested.

We both trust and respect PKD. He and Dyke Two share some physical characteristics (skin tone, basic body build, hair texture) and he is funny, intelligent, motivated, creative, artistic, and loving. If our children received half of these intrinisic qualities from PKD, we would be honored to raise children that wonderful.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Pardon the Interruption....

Now seems as good a time as any to talk about what makes Dyke Two special and why I was ready to commit to her for the rest of my life. Dyke Two and I share a lot of commonalities in regards to professional goals and passions. We are both wholeheartedly committed to social justice and equality for all people, and our work overlaps in more ways than we can count.

In fact, it was our professional network that initially brought us together. We were both asked to serve on a panel regarding issues of sexual orientation in the schools, which gave us the opportunity to continue a conversation we had begun a few years earlier when a policy decision was made in her division that addressed bullying, discrimination and access to education.

From those initial professional conversations, personal connections soon followed. I discovered that Dyke Two, while different from the partner I envisioned for myself in so many ways, was exactly who I had been looking for. She is kind, compassionate, considerate, funny, intelligent and makes me feel alive.

She challenges me to grow further and take risks, mainly because I feel so comfortable and protected when I am with her. She provides me with a safe shelter in which to examine my own motives, needs and desires. She encourages me to move forward and never grow complacent.

She also laughs at the things I do that are funny, cries with me when I am sad, and recognizes that my fears and worries are a normal part of who I am, and will only get worse if i am forced to hide them or deny them.

When I see her with children, I see a softer, goofier side of her. She rolled around on the floor with my 3 year old nephew, and read him stories over Thanksgiving. She showed him how to use her digital camera to take pictures of the family, and then emailed him the photos he took. I had the privilege of attending a school field trip with her this fall. I watched her bring out of the high school students who were with us the same sense of being respected, valued and safe that she brings to me.

She is excited to have children, and begin the nitty gritty process of making a baby lesbian-style. Yet, whenever I begin to stress that maybe I am not ovulating, or maybe I will never get pregnant, she just smiles, and says, "that's OK. We can always adopt." Perhaps even better, I have come in the room to find her watching baby shows on TLC or Discovery Health, and have even caught her "with something in my eye" as she so stubbornly says after she wipes away the tears that have welled in her eyes.

I think that perhaps the greatest gift the two of us have received in this process so far is the knowledge that we are secure in our relationship. May we continue to be so lucky...

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Just like everybody else...

While much of our journey is very different than that of straight couples making babies, there are actually a lot of similarities. We lie awake at night, worrying about my cycles, which are off this month from last month. We pore over paint chips, nursery furniture, bedding, slings, strollers, and baby clothes as we dream about and plan for the little one we hope will join us soon. We drool over babies and toddlers we encounter in our daily errands and lives. We worry about finances, child care and how our lives will change with the addition of a baby to our lives.

We also struggle with the competing demands of couple time, family obligations, work related stresses and demands, and personal interests and hobbies. We are both becoming frantic with worry about Dyke Two's mother and one of her sisters. This sister is struggling with some addiction and substance abuse issues right now. We would be worried enough with just that, but because the sister has a 5 year old daughter with special needs, we are becoming downright frantic. Currently, Dyke Two's mother is caring for the little girl, and despite her own health needs and disabilities due to chronic arthritis, the little one is well cared for. However, protective services is stepping in and asking for a more permanent and stable living situation.

This means that Dyke Two and I have begun discussing moving Dyke Two's mother and niece the 600 miles to our city. I am surprised at the willingness we both have to parent this little girl with all of her needs. Our biggest concern is what it will do to our relationships with Dyke Two's side of the family.

We are currently playing it by ear to see what happens within the family and the social workers. Our biggest hope is that the mother will follow through on treatment and sobriety so that our niece can remain with her mother. However, we are poised and ready to take action if need be.

Monday, March 21, 2005

And so we wait...

We're still waiting to hear from PKD. We are going to give him until the 26th to get back to us without us pressuring him for an answer. That will have given him a two week window to discuss it with his mother and a couple of his close friends. Kind of ironic that we are currently in a different sort of 2WW than couples who have started the ball rolling with actively trying. We are both trying our hardest to remain sane and calm. Dyke Two is such a stabilizing force for me as I start to freak out, since I can watch her wait so calmly.

I was very frustrated and disappointed last week when I called the attorney the Education Association uses for it discounted rates on members' personal legal needs. The attorney is a dedicated and knowledgeable man who I know from other advocacy events and situations. He drew up my mother's will last year and did a wonderful job getting her stuff in order even with her trying to honor Dyke Two's and my relationship in the face of oppressive and discriminatory laws in our state. He was excited to help us draw up our wills, joint tenancy and power of attorney.

When I asked about parenting issues, in loco parentis and known donor contracts, he was apologetic, but said he is unable to do it because he doesn't have experience. While I appreciate his honesty, and will definitely call the lawyer he recommended, I am frustrated that a benefit that is part of the dues money I have diligently paid for 6 years is now not available to me because the attorney the Association has on retainer is not knowledgeable about my needs.

As I wait in this frustrating stall pattern, I am trying not to think too much about why we selected PKD as our first choice. Thankfully, Dyke Two recognized my fear and nervousness, and together we outlined our next plan of attack in Operation Known Donor if PKD does not work out. We have decided to approach a former student of Dyke Two's who lives in the area if PKD ends up backing out. PKD2 is a kind, funny man with a wife and young child, which means that in many ways, he is a better choice for legal reasons, as he is unlikely to ever want custody. If neither PKD nor PKD2 works out, we have also identified a former coworker of mine, PKD3, and a friend who lives out of the area, PKD4, as potential donors.

The wait continues....

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Operation Known Donor Continues

With those parameters outlined, Dyke Two approached a good friend of hers from work, henceforth known as Potential Known Donor (PKD), about five weeks ago, and asked him to consider being our donor. Once he got over the initial shock and speechlessness, he said it was a conversation he would like to continue.

We then went through a period of four weeks where he never mentioned it again. We were both beginning to get anxious, and started the cycle of sizing up any and every man we know as a potential donor. Thankfully, he emerged from the silence and suggested that we all go to dinner.

Last Saturday night, the three of us went to dinner together to discuss things further. We went to one of Dyke Two's and my favorite restaurants, a small Afro-Carribbean place in the downtown area of our city. The meal was great, and the place was almost empty, thus affording us a sense of privacy. There was an extended family seated near us that included one of the most beautiful little four year old girls any of us had ever seen.

PKD immediately asked about the role he would have in our child's life. He seemed to understand, and look forward to, being considered an uncle to our children. He is already an uncle, and knows what unclehood is all about. We all felt comfortable with the idea of PKD being involved on a regular basis with our kids, though not making any parenting decisions, and not being guaranteed overnight visits. He was also comforted by the fact that even though we have every intention of leaving our state, my mother is still here, and lives only about 10 miles from his home. When we do leave, we are likely to be back in the area at least two or three times a year.

We left dinner with the agreement that PKD will get back to us in a week or so, after discussing it with his mother, and that we will then begin the legal and health discussion, as well as ironing out logistics. PKD feels, rightly so, that if his mother is uncomfortable with the idea of a genetic grandchild or two who are being raised by lesbians, then he cannot continue. We whole-heartedly agree, as we are afraid that if he went forward without her blessing, she would then seriously consider suing me for custody.

Dyke Two and I have spent a lot of time obsessing this week about the unspoken messages in his body language, word choice, etc. Both of us have a twinge of fear that PKD might still be envisioning more of "fatherly" role than either of us, but neither of us think that strong communication will not resolve this. Both of us are ready to move the conversation into the legal and medical aspects, and are optimistic that PKD will agree to, and paperwork and medical testing will be ready for, a May insemination.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Commence Operation Known Donor

Of course, Operation Known Donor comes with its own set of problems....

1. Legally, it is far riskier than using an anonymous donor from a bank. An actual person who has participated so much in the creation of a life needs to be trusted to give up parental rights to free Dyke Two for second parent adoption later.

2. In terms of health, it is also far riskier. HIV and hepatitis both can be transmitted through semen, as can all of the STDs that are not life-threatening. Banks carefully test the specimens, and freeze them for six months of quarantine before testing the man again to make sure that he is not HIV positive or carrying hepatitis. There is no way to do this with a known donor and fresh sperm.

3. Finding a willing man can be difficult.

Dyke Two and I went back and forth a lot regarding the first two issues, and finally determined that we wouldn't want a donor who we couldn't trust regarding parental rights or safe sex practices, so we needed to wait until we found a potential donor who we felt we trusted on these two fronts.

This led to many crazy conversations between us and some of our closest friends as we bandied the names of various men back and forth. It seemed that everyone had an opinion and suggestion of a man to consider. When Dyke Two asked her doctor for the name of an OB, he too jumped into the discussion with two different men he thought would be good donors. When I asked my union guy for advice on which attorney to use to draw up paperwork, he offered me a couple of names too. For a while there, we were watching strange men at the gym, and thinking of which of them we should approach and ask. When we saw the ads in the paper for egg donors for the local hospital infertility clinic, we contemplated running our own ad.

Thankfully, that phase ended in about two months, as we settled in with a short list. Once we had created our short list, we decided that Dyke Two should be in charge of finding the sperm for us. After all, I had chosen who I wanted to raise a family with, and my genetic material is here for better or worse. Since she cannot give us any genetic material, it felt right for her to decide whose sperm to use. I have ultimate veto power if I think the donor she has selected is a jackass, but unless my feelings are overwhelmingly negative, it is her final choice.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Where the story begins...

We both thought that we wanted to be together forever about month 3 or so, and a horrendous medical emergency that had me racing home from a conference during the early part of month 7 simply sealed the deal. There is nothing like seeing someone you care about in a hospital bed with an oxygen tube in her nose, and EKG electrodes strapped to her chest to put your relationship into perspective.

After she recuperated from her "vascular episode", as the nurse so euphemistically referred to it (though we felt it really wasn't an episode per se, as it was more like a mini-series) there was still a major surgery, the purchasing of a house, and an engagement to be accomplished before babymaking even made it to the list.

I have always known I wanted to use a known donor for creating my children. In my fantasy world, it has always been the brother of my partner. Of course, since Dyke Two's brothers don't carry the personality traits/accomplishments we are looking for, they were out. We spent about one day contemplating using anonymous sperm from a bank, but quickly ruled it out for three reasons:

1. it is really expensive
2. it is much harder to get pregnant from
3. there were like 5 African-American men listed on all of the sperm bank catalogues who had given up the juice for women like us to buy.

That one day foray into sperm-buying led us to some interesting discussions, since the sperm is often graded by the "quality" of the donor. I'm not talking motility or sperm count here, I mean education level, health/medical background and other fairly subjective characteristics. This got us into a whole debate about genetically engineering our children. While we both agreed that we thought the whole thing was silly, we were also concerned that when our future children asked, "Why did you pick the donor you chose?" our answer needed to be better than, "it was the cheapest sperm we could find."

After that one day of insanity, we decided to go back to plan A: Using a Known Donor.