I actually saw the ads appealing for donors on the tube - it seemed sad that there were women who were trying to have children who couldn’t, and couldn’t find egg donors at home in the UK. I am a blood donor and on the transplant registers (but not had to give anything like bone marrow yet!) so it seemed that egg donation was an obvious thing to do to try and help.
I also have a friend who is one of the first ‘test-tube babies’. He and his brother were from the very early set of sperm donors, so it seemed much more real to think about being able to help a family end up with a cool person like my friend as part of their family.
When I got in touch, the London Egg Bank service was excellent. I think Anna was the lady that I talked to initially. All the appointments were extensive and professional, and very carefully made sure they brought out all the things I might want to think about, and hadn’t yet. They gave me lots of information on all of the support available through the process, and counsellors you could talk to if you wanted to think through all the ethical implications. That was great and so important to have available. I didn’t need to use it, but I wouldn’t have hesitated in calling if I had any questions.
It was really reassuring having all the tests done and the history/backgrounds taken so thoroughly in case there was any reason I should not donate. It made me feel that the process was going to be really safe for me as a donor, and more importantly safe for the mother receiving eggs, and that she would be getting good eggs.
The nurse/sonographer who took care of me for all of the checks on egg size and cycles was one of the nicest women I have ever met, and she told me so much I didn’t even know about my own body/how things work. I have taken away incredibly good advice from things she just told me while doing scans that have also helped one of my friends find out a little bit more about things as she looks to start her own family.
Roxanne looked after my tests and paperwork at the beginning and was really enthusiastic and made me feel hugely positive about the process, and myself, so that was great too.
The hard bits.... for me, learning to inject my belly fat with the hormones was a very new experience. I didn’t get very good at it, but it was surprisingly okay after the first injection! There were very good instructions given with the packs by the nurse, including a good demonstration/help with the first injection, but it was a surprisingly odd experience. It was nice to feel a bit less nervous about it once I had gotten used to it.
The donation itself went smoothly I think! I don’t remember any of it. All the advice given about getting someone to meet you at the clinic and resting for the rest of the day was just right as I was still very sedated after the procedure. It was such a nice touch being given a little box with a thank you bear in it as well.
I was really pleased after donating!