Diminished ovarian reserve · donor egg · donor egg ivf · infertility · ivf · IVF with donor eggs

And we found a donor!

I apologize in advance for how this post may look, but I am posting from my phone and I can’t really see what I’m doing. But I wanted to come in here and let everyone know that we have found our new donor!

So last Thursday I received an email from Jenna saying that they needed and answer by Friday morning…Were we going with brown eyed girl, our original donor, or neither?  Ryan and I talked and talked and talked some more and finally settled on brown eyed girl. We decided that she was everything we wanted and we were bound to get a beautiful child, even if he or she had brown eyes. But Ryan still wanted to talk to Jenna about if we could change our minds later if someone else of that caliber came along that had blue eyes, blah blah blah. So we were settled, but I still didn’t feel settled. So Friday morning I emailed Jenna and told her we wanted brown eyed girl, but to please give ryan a call when she could because he had some questions. And then we didn’t hear from her…

Anyway, we both continued checking the database, either out of habit or because our subconscious was telling us something wasn’t right. And low and behold around 4:30 I get a text from ryan saying that there was a new blue eyed donor and she looked awesome. At the exact same moment I received an email from jenna saying that she was out of the office and asked if we could ask our questions via email. Well, after a quick scan of this girl’s profile, it was easy to see that she was perfect. She was of the same caliber as brown eyed girl, but with blue eyes. Ryan and I talked for about two minutes knowing that we would have to make a quick decision. We had figured out that girls of this caliber moved quickly, so there was no time to waste. We decided within those two minutes we wanted her. So I emailed Jenna back and told her to scratch everything. That we wanted this donor and if we got her no questions necessary. And then I waited–for what seemed like ages!  I even emailed Sam, the head of the department seeing if there was anything she could do to make sure we got that donor (I was scared because Jenna had said she was out of the office). Well, I almost instantly got a reply from Sam saying that unfortunately there wasn’t anything she could really do- that Jenna was the one who did the matching. She said that Jenna did time stamp her requests, but that the donor was a popular one and she couldn’t guarantee we’d get her. So I prayed and prayed and prayed.

Then we got the email from Jenna that said “she’s yours!” I felt like I had won the lottery. It all happened so fast, and I was truly working off of gut feeling. Luckily she attached her profile to the email  so we could see what we had just signed up for- and I can honestly say I have no regrets. I am so excited!

She is gorgeous! She’s a southern girl (originally from arkansas). She’s smart, has two kids of her own, and is a proven donor. So that means she’s $4,000 more. But she’s worth it. We made that snap decision, too- but again no regrets. We just have to find the $4,000. Oh back to money!

So the worst part about all of this is egg retrieval won’t be until July. Because the lab is so booked up until then. So that means we won’t do transfer until late August. Ryan as boards mid August so it’s important that we wait until that’s over before he has to deal with a trip out to San Diego- one which I’ll be on bed rest for two days. But I’m embracing this. I’m going to enjoy this summer. I’m going to rock a swim suit (I’ve been working hard at losing weight so I’m going to enjoy it this summer), I’m going to have fun drinking my pimms cups, and having the energy to play with Anadine. Because if things work in august, then we’ll have a May baby. And that means next summer I will not be rocking a swim suit! Ha!

So there it is. Now we work with legal stuff, find $4,000, and then count down until July.

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God · infertility · ivf · IVF with donor eggs · prayers · Siblings

My Heart—It’s Melting

Yesterday, Anadine and I were on our way to soccer practice and she strikes up a conversation that melted my heart. Here’s how it went…

A: Mommy, why is Miles’s daddy your brother? (Miles is her cousin who lives in DC – they adore each other)

Me: Well, Uncle Jim and I have the same mommy and daddy. We grew up in the same house. Then Uncle Jim became a grown up and had a little boy and a little girl. I grew up and had a little girl – you!

A: And a little boy?

Me: Well, no, unless you count Willie (our dog)

A: But what if you had a little baby and he was a boy?

Me: Then he would be your brother (*feeling a little weepy)

A: Well, I think we should have a baby boy so I can have a brother

Me: Well, that would be wonderful. We’ll just have to pray to God and ask him to send us a baby

A: (*puts hands together) Dear God, please give us a baby that’s a boy tomorrow. Amen

I just about lost my composure then. It was the sweetest thing I’ve ever heard. Our conversation continued about how we have to say prayers every day and we may not get what we want exactly when we want it. I explained that I had to pray for God to send her to me for a long time and then finally He answered my prayers. It wasn’t exactly when I wanted it to happen, but it was also perfect when it did.

I have this feeling that God will listen to Anadine, more than anyone else. Most people do! ha! She has always had this weird and special connection to God. Ever since she was very tiny, she spoke about God as if He were her best friend. I have no doubt that they became very close as she was waiting to be delivered to me. She is, after all, a miracle made by Him.

infertility · infertility awareness week · ivf · questions · start asking · what to say

What do you say? What do you ask?

It’s National Infertility Awareness Week. Eight years ago if someone had said those words to me, I would have thought aw, yeah that’s good that someone out there is thinking about those poor people, but it would have never been me. You never think it’s going to be you. In fact, I had a friend whose sister was going through IVF and I thought Wow! That poor girl! I don’t know how she does it! And then two years later I WAS doing it. So, yeah, here I am to spread awareness. This year’s theme (set by the Resolve people) is Start Asking. It’s a challenge to ask the big questions and to challenge others to also ask those big questions.

It got me thinking about what I want people to ask me, first and foremost. It’s a tricky thing to know what to say to people who are going through something that you know so little about. I think everyone going through infertility wants something different (we are female after all!) Some people don’t want people to say or ask anything, but they want to feel supported and loved. Some people want people to ask how they are feeling or handling the situation. For me, I want you to ask questions so that I can help you understand the process better.

I knew so very little about the reproductive system before all of this infertility stuff. I had taken my Biology classes. I had discussed female anatomy with my mom when I was hitting puberty, and we had the school wide “girl talk” when I was in fourth grade. But I really didn’t understand the ins and outs of how a baby was made inside of the female body. I knew I had a uterus and ovaries. I had heard of Fallopian tubes. I knew there was sperm involved and eggs, yadda yadda yadda. But how did they all fit together? How did they work? I didn’t know any of that, until I had to.

What I don’t like is when people ask questions like “so you’re going to need a surrogate?” or make comments like “maybe adoption would be easier” when they don’t bother to understand that my uterus is fine. My uterus has never been the problem. No one is telling me I can’t be pregnant – it’s the getting pregnant part that’s hard. Surrogacy would do me absolutely no good. Surrogacy and adoption are great options for people who have very different problems than me.

 
So, yeah, I think I want people to ask about the details – to make an effort to understand things better. Infertility is a huge umbrella from male factor issues, to egg issues, to tubal issues, to uterus issues. There is unexplained infertility and infertility dealing with multiple losses. The one thing we all have in common is that we are fighting to become somebody’s mommy.

I don’t have a problem explaining things to people. I have been known to draw diagrams for people to help them understand better. I try not to overwhelm people with too much information before they’re ready though. That’s why I want people to ask. I don’t want people to assume they know or be afraid to ask the dirty questions. That’s part of why I started this blog. My friends who know me well know that I have no shame in using the big, “dirty” words, and talking about things that make other people queezy. So ask away! I’m here to answer to the best of my knowledge.

So, what will I be asking? I’ll be asking for more infertility insurance benefits. It’s insane how little insurance will cover if it is tied to infertility in any way. I’ll also be asking my community for events to honor people suffering with infertility. We have 5K runs for all sorts of causes around here – but not for infertility. Why? It’s time for people to stop being embarrassed about their situation. We didn’t do this to ourselves. I didn’t ask for deformed Fallopian tubes. I didn’t ask for a diminished ovarian reserve. I didn’t do anything to get dealt this card. But here I am, and I’m ready to stand up and

donor egg · infertility · ivf · polyp · uterus

Polyp Removal

I thought this picture was so funny when I saw it. I remember those days of standing on my head and doing all sorts of stuff to try to get pregnant. I guess I am doing all sorts of stuff to try to get pregnant now, they are just a little more doctor involved. I’m lucky that my husband still has the attitude of “we’re in this together.” Bless him for that!

So I had the surgery yesterday to remove the polyp. All went well and it is out of there. They have sent it off just to make sure it’s nothing more serious, but no one suspects it is. I am in a little bit of pain today, but nothing too unbearable. I probably pushed it going back to work the next day though. I started off strong, but this afternoon I am feeling pretty weak and sore. I keep getting little twinges in my lower stomach that make me want to curl up in a bed, but I keep reminding myself that I have been through far worse and it is all for a good cause. My throat is the worst part of it. Something about the tube they put in my throat must have really irritated it. I don’t ever remember having that problem from past surgeries, but hopefully it will go away soon.

I do feel like I have at least made a step in the right direction. Now this is out of the way and we can move on once we have the money together.

I had a conversation with my brother and sister in law during Easter to let them know what was going on. They were pretty supportive of the whole thing and really didn’t give me a hard time about any of it. My brother did ask me if we had considered adoption, to which I basically replied…

I explained that at least doing it this way I get to be pregnant and carry the baby. And at least it will be half Ryan’s DNA. I understand that adopting is a wonderful thing to do, and I am certainly not opposed to it. But there is still heartbreak and financial burden associated with it. It is not an easy thing to do, and we’re simply not there yet. He understood that though.

So now Ryan and I have to really sit down and plan out a budget to get money together. We have to figure out how much we can save each month and really look into grants and loans that we can get. Our testing from CCRM will expire at the end of the year, so we really need to aim for doing the IVF by sometime in the fall. This blog may get a little boring for a while, but I appreciate you all staying with me.

Diminished ovarian reserve · donor egg ivf · Fallopian tubes · infertility · ivf · polyp · uterus

OBGYN Appointment

Sorry it has been awhile since I last posted. There hasn’t been much to report, as we are still at a stand still until we get some of these things taken care of. I had my yearly with my OBGYN yesterday though, so now I have something to tell. First of all, this is a new OBGYN as we have moved since my last yearly appointment. I actually would have just driven the 2 hours to the guy who delivered Anadine because I love him that much, but he’s not on our insurance. However, I LOVE this new guy just as much. He sat down with me and had me explain my whole complicated history to him. It’s always funny when doctors see my chart and see that overall I am a pretty healthy person – good weight, no diseases, typical family history, normal cycles, etc. but then I have all of this fertility stuff. Not just one BAM – blocked tubes, but BAM BAM – low ovarian reserve, and then this time is was a BAM BAM BAM – she also has a polyp on her uterus that needs to be removed. They get really confused when they see that I had a tubal ligation (tubes were tied) in March 2011 and a c-section in February 2012. I have to explain that they tied my tubes to give me the best chances of IVF, but that tying my tubes wasn’t really all that necessary because my tubes are deformed and unlike anything any doctor has ever seen or heard of (at least the doctors I’ve ever talked to!)

Anyway, we did my yearly and pap smear so that I’m all up to date on that. As far as he could tell, everything looked good. Then we talked about getting this polyp out. We scheduled it for April 5, which is two weeks away! I am so glad we can go ahead and get it taken care of. It will be an out patient surgery, but they will put me to sleep and I will have a little bit of recovery time afterwards. He said it is technically a D&C, which I wasn’t a big fan of using that terminology, but whatever. I’m just ready for it to be over with! Here is what made me love him – he is filling out the insurance forms and tweaked my charts to make it look like I am having this done because of irregular bleeding so insurance will pay for it. That means we are not paying $1200 out of pocket. We will be paying more like $650, plus we’ll meet our deductible. It’s still a lot of money that I’d rather not pay, and if my organs were normal I wouldn’t have to pay it, but OH WELL here I am whether I like it or not.

In other news, I’ll be seeing my brother and his family this weekend because they’re coming down south for Easter. The exciting part: I get to meet my new niece (born in December). The not so exciting part: I have to have a sit down with my family and explain my decision to them to use donor eggs. My parents both already know, but my brother is the one that I’m nervous about telling. I really think when it comes down to it he will be very supportive and understanding. I just hope I can clearly explain why I want to go this route and why it’s so important for me to have another baby. Wish me luck!

CCRM · donor egg ivf · donor eggs · estrace · infertility · ivf · ivf grants · ivf loan · lupron · progesterone · San Diego Fertility Center · sdfc

SDFC Phone Consult

We had our phone consult with the donor coordinator (Jenna) at San Diego Fertility Center yesterday afternoon. She was incredibly informative, was ready to answer all of our questions, and really put our minds at ease. I don’t have a single doubt that if we chose to go to SDFC, we would be in the best of hands for completing a donor egg cycle.

She walked through the process with us, detailing each step of a donor egg cycle. We would have to do a trial run cycle, in which I would start estrace (estrogen) when my period began to increase the lining of my uterus. I would have to have 3 total ultrasounds (one baseline and then 2 more at one week apart) to check to make sure my lining was increasing. Throughout that cycle I would increase the estrace gradually to see how my uterus responds. Then I would take progesterone to make my period start, start birth control pills to link up my cycle with my donor’s cycle, then begin to process again to build up my lining to prepare for transfer. Estrace and Progesterone: my two least favorite of the drugs! And then when I actually do the cycle, they will add in lupron (the shot that burns as I remember it!) Ah well, the things we do!

I asked if they had a bank of frozen eggs available. She said that they didn’t really do a lot of donor egg cycles with frozen eggs because the technology hasn’t developed enough to successfully freeze single cells. She said that they are constantly trying to develop new ways to make it more successful, but their thoughts are that using frozen eggs at this juncture does not have enough success for them to promote it. I found this information very helpful since that was one of the things I liked about the Chicago clinic ($15,000 cycle for a frozen donor egg cycle). I remember Dr. Surrey at CCRM saying something similar, so it’s easy to trust her: they have found great success with freezing and thawing embryos, but eggs just don’t have enough cells to keep them viable.

Ryan asked her to explain what should make their clinic stand out above the rest. He explained that we were doing a little bit of shopping around, and while we love their customer service (so to speak) San Diego is certainly not our cheapest option in regards to treatment or travel expenses. She said that they are really the pioneers in donor egg IVF. She said that CCRM is known for their successes in IVF and embryo testing: they have an impeccable lab and are on the front end of developments in IVF treatments and protocols (exactly!). Basically what she said, although not in these exact words, is that SDFC is for donor egg IVF what CCRM is for regular IVF. Their founder started donor egg IVF something like 24 years ago, and the first ever donor egg baby is not 32 years old (I don’t know if those are the exact numbers, but you get the gist). Basically, they’ve been at it for a lot longer than most clinics.

So, right now, they are top on my list and I think Ryan agrees. He was very pleased with the consult yesterday. We both know it will probably be a while though because we have to figure out the money issue. SDFC does have an agency that they partner with a lot who does infertility loans. Jenna is supposed to send me some information on that. I’m also looking into grants some more because now I know that they will accept money from third party lenders (CCRM wouldn’t so I didn’t want to go through the grant process if they wouldn’t accept the money – a lot of grants want to pay directly to the clinic).

I also have to get this polyp removed before we can do anything else. I have an appointment with my new OBGYN on March 22, and we’ll hopefully be able to schedule the removal for soon after. It looks like this is going to be a pretty long process. I would be thrilled if I could get pregnant this summer, but it’s looking more and more like it will be closer to a year from now.

Thanks for hanging in there with me!

Advanced Fertility · Chicago · donor egg · donor egg costs · donor egg ivf · fresh donor egg · frozen donor eggs · infertility · ivf · ivf costs · San Diego Fertility Center · sdfc

Comparing Clinics

So I have been spending the last several days searching and comparing fertility clinics across the US. My head is swimming with information. I have gone on the SART website and checked the stats on any fertility clinic in any place that either a. has family in that city or b. would be a cool place to visit. I have looked into the top 5 clinics on the list of “best fertility clinics for donor eggs.” I have little notes all over the place for each clinic where I have jotted down prices, donor information, etc. It’s been crazy!

San Diego- I have continued to be in contact with the nice lady at SDFC. She has been incredibly helpful. We have a phone consult with her on Monday afternoon to discuss more specifics. The problem with SDFC is its location. Out of all of our options, it would be the most difficult for us to get to. It would probably be an expensive place to stay as well. What I do like about them is their large donor database, and obviously the friendly coordinator who has been so accomodating.

Chicago – Looking at the SART website, Advanced Fertility Center of Chicago’s numbers really look good. In 2015, they did 45 donor egg transfers with a 91% success rate. 45 isn’t a big number of transfers (compared to San Diego’s 88), but 91% success rate is hard to look past. The other pluses for this clinic is that it would be fairly easy to get to from here, and we have family in Chicago which means a free place to stay. The other thing about this clinic is they have a fairly large frozen donor egg bank. This would mean a much lower cost (I think the cost quoted on their website is $15,900) and a lot less planning (I wouldn’t have to sync up my cycle with a donor). I’ll probably post about frozen vs. fresh donor eggs at a later time – I really have to look more into this. I hadn’t even thought about it before I saw it on their website. The annoying thing about this clinic is the nurse I have been in contact with hasn’t been the most approachable person. Granted, I have only talked to her through email, but she hasn’t been very forthcoming with answers to my questions. I have just emailed back a questionnaire she wanted me to fill out, so we’ll see if we can get a consult scheduled with them soon.

New Jersey- They are the second on the list of “best fertility clinics for donor eggs” and their stats look good. I have called them and gotten some pricing. Their prices for their cycles are about the same as SDFC. Who wants to go to New Jersey anyway? I’m going to keep them in the back of my mind, but I just don’t really see that being worth it.

Dallas- I have emailed and called them. Still no response. I’m a little annoyed by that. Looking closer at their stats, they have an 88% success rate for fresh donor eggs, but only did 40 transfers in that year. I still think those are good statistics, and it sure would be convenient. I just want them to call me back already. The real deciding factor there would be the cost and amount of donors in their database.

So that’s what I have for now. I’ve looked at several other clinics, but these are the top 4 at the moment. It makes me sad to be officially saying goodbye to CCRM, but 7 donors in the database at $40,000 just isn’t going to cut it. We have a follow up phone consult with Dr. Surrey next Thursday. I’m debating whether or not to cancel it. It seems silly to pay another $100 to tell him we aren’t going to be seeing him again. Although I still have some questions for him regarding my Doppler test on my uterus. We also haven’t gotten the whole report on the semen analysis yet. I guess I should decide pretty soon what to do about that!

infertility · ivf

Go Fund Me

I have started a go fund me account. I really hate that it has come to this, but I’m desperately trying to figure out ways to pay for all of this. I’m posting it here mainly to see if the link works and to get advice on what y’all think of it. I’m not quite ready to put in on Facebook yet. I know eventually it will have to be done, but I need to warn some people about that first (like my mom!) Let me know what you think. Seriously, criticism welcomed!

https://www.gofundme.com/poseypartyof4

blocked tubes · dealing with infertility · DOR · infertility · ivf

Sometimes I have to let myself be sad – just for a minute

My co-teacher told me today she’s pregnant. I’m happy for her – truly I am. She has been trying to get pregnant for a while now, and she isn’t someone who gets pregnant at the drop of a hat. She has wanted this for a long time. She has a beautiful little boy already. She’s a great mom and a good person. I am happy for her.

But I’m sad for me. Is that ridiculous? It makes me feel so selfish. I have my beautiful little girl and I feel so incredibly lucky – really blessed – for that miracle baby. I just feel like my family is not complete yet and it makes me sad that it won’t ever just happen. I have come to terms with this, don’t get me wrong, but sometimes I just have to let myself be sad about it again. When I hear stories (like I heard today) of someone taking a pregnancy test just because they felt like it and then surprising her husband because he had no idea it was even possible, it makes me sad that I will never get that. I know I have so much to be thankful for, and I have my own story of taking a pregnancy test and finding out I’m pregnant. Believe me, I don’t ever forget how lucky I am, and it does ease the blow SO MUCH! It’s just sometimes I want my story to be a little different. Sometimes I wish I didn’t have to figure out how to get $30,000 to make a baby. Sometimes I wish I didn’t have to make decisions about fertility clinics and donor eggs. Sometimes I hate the fact that I have these deformed tubes. Sometimes I just want to be able to have sex with my husband and get pregnant.

Okay, rant over. Sorry I had to put all of that out there. I know it’s not a fun thing to read, but this is my safe place and it’s better that I rant here instead of to anyone else.

On a happier note, one of my students walked in this morning with a giant stuffed zebra for Anadine – his Valentine’s gift for her. Talk about making my heart melt. It was just about the sweetest thing I’ve seen in a long time.

infertility · ivf

What NOT to Say

I’ve been wanting to post about this encounter for a while, but things have been very busy for this little blogger and I haven’t had much time to sit down and type it out. “Why have you been so busy?” you ask? Well, for starters, R and I are trying to sell our house so every spare moment has been taken with renovating our kitchen and bathroom. We have a realtor coming tomorrow to look at the house so this weekend was spent finishing everything – and it’s still not finished! Secondly, I am the director of an after school dance program at my school and our recital is this Wednesday – and I am nowhere close to being ready to putting on a recital! Plus, I am still looking for a place to live, still looking for a job, and trying to keep my sanity with a bunch of whining first graders (that GOD spring break is next week!)

ANYWAY – back to my original reason for this post –

Several weeks ago, when I returned to work after my surgery, a colleague came up to me and asked how the surgery went. I replied with my usual “it went fine — nothing has changed about my prognosis but we learned a lot, etc etc.” Keep in mind, I did not have this surgery with the hopes of changing my prognosis – it was more of a precautionary thing. Well, this woman replied with “well okay, there’s always surrogacy or adoption!” As if I should hug her and thank her for the wonderful solution to my problem.

There are so many problems with what she said. If you don’t instantly understand what’s wrong with it, please don’t feel too bad…unfortunately these kind of comments happen often. So this is why I’m writing about it today. On behalf of anyone who suffers from infertility, here are the reasons for why I was offended by that statement.

1. “Surrogacy” is a solution for women who are unable to carry a fetus in her uterus. There has never been a reason to believe that I would not be able to carry a child. My uterus has never been the problem. Surrogacy is for women who have had repeated miscarriages, or have something physically wrong that prevents their uterus from sustaining a healthy pregnancy for nine months.
2.There are millions more steps to go through before I get to the point of choosing either of these options. If this IVF fails, then I will try with donor eggs. That simply means that someone else (either someone I know or an anonymous donor) will go through the first steps of the IVF process – shots to grow follicles and Egg retrieval. Once her eggs are retrieved, R’s sperm will inseminate her eggs in the lab. Meanwhile, I do hormone treatments to prepare my body for the transfer of embryos into my uterus. So you see, this is much different from surrogacy. I would still carry the baby, give birth to the baby, etc. Surrogacy isn’t even an option for me because my problem is with my eggs – therefore if I am unable to grow eggs for my own body, I wouldn’t be able to grow them to be transferred into someone else’s uterus.
3. Now on to the adoption suggestion. If, let’s say, I had gone through the millions of other steps that I would need to go through to reach the point of choosing adoption, I would still have a painfully long and expensive journey ahead of me. It is not something that someone just decides to do for the heck of it (unless you’re someone who has no desire of having a biological child – which there’s nothing wrong with that, but obviously I am not one of those people!) The adoption process can take years and it is extremely expensive. It can be just as heartbreaking, especially if your are trying to adopt an infant. I have heard so many stories where birth mothers change their minds, etc…yes, these things really do happen! So to all of you people out there who know someone suffering from infertility – do NOT, under any circumstances, suggest adoption. Consider this a fair warning. I swear to you that I have come very close to slapping someone across the face for suggesting that adoption is a solution.

Now I realize that this woman did not mean any harm. She just doesn’t understand. She doesn’t understand the emotions involved (she doesn’t have children, nor does she want them), she doesn’t understand the terminology or the biology behind it, and she’s just trying to find a way to show her support. I get that – I really do – I just wish that she could take a moment to think about what her words really mean to someone like me. She’s also said things to me like “well why don’t you just take a break for a while – like wait a couple of years.” Even after I have explained to her that the longer I wait, the worse my prognosis gets…not to mention how I would go CRAZY waiting that long. We have been trying to have a baby for almost 3 years now – that’s how long I’ve wanted this.

So, this made me realize that this is another good reason to write this blog. Other than a log for my personal benefit, or a way to let those close to me know what’s happening, or a way for other “infertiles” to find information about IVF or CCRM – it’s a way for people who don’t know about these things to educate themselves. I know it’s too much to ask for everyone to go and search around on the Internet to figure out exactly what Diminished Ovarian Reserve means, or what fallopian tubes actually are…I mean I wouldn’t know any of these things if it wasn’t happening to me. I had no idea how the reproductive system worked before a year ago. Sometimes it’s hard for me to remember that time – when I didn’t know anything. It’s hard to remember that people just don’t know the process. It’s so normal to me now that I forget to explain things better.

So please, ask questions. I would MUCH rather people ask me questions then suggest what I should do. I don’t care if you ask me something that you think is ridiculous, because chances are I didn’t know the answer until 12 months ago. I forget what people don’t know.

I would be happy to draw you pictures or explain things in more detail – as long as you can handle the discomfort that it may bring. If you don’t want to hear words like semen or cervix, then don’t ask – but please please please refrain from making suggestions.