This is the post in which I reveal my inner judgemental a$$hole.
Shopping for sperm brings out the ugly in me.
The information in donor catalogues is so shallow and simple, that it leaves one to try to read between the lines. And it leaves one feeling shallow and simple.
I start by looking for donors who have things in common with me and especially with A. Then I try to fill in the gaps. I look for a guy who has some math talent. I’m not terrible at math, but I’m no wiz, so I want the kid to have some strong math genes somewhere. (Of course, my own father was a geometry teacher at one point and look how I turned out.) I also look for someone who has some athletic ability. I think A and I fancy ourselves sporty. But we’re really really not. Not so much.
Then I have to face up to my own demons. Do I want a good-looking baby? Yes. A smart one? Yes. Why? I don’t know. It seems things come easier to pretty, smart people. As long as they are not too pretty or too smart.
Then I have to remind myself that some very amazing people I have known have actually come from pretty awful parents. It makes me wonder why I’m getting worked up at all.
I hear myself saying things in my head as I look at these profiles that I would NEVER say in real life. “This guy’s a little on the short side.” (FYI — Pretty much everyone I’ve dated and/or am friends with is shorter than me.) “Ooops! Looks like you’ve screwed up your perfect GPA once you hit college. Maybe he’s got alcoholic tendencies?” God forbid they make a grammatical error or misunderstand a question on the form. Because, you know, I’m just perfect in every way.
I don’t just have to match this guy up with A and myself. I have Cakie to consider. I’m sure you can tell from the shot of his torso above… my son is just gorgeous and charismatic and a genius. Just ask his grandma. She’s completely unbiased. Honestly. He is ridiculously cute and smart. I’m not just saying that. It is going to be a tough act to follow. AND I have to consider Cakie’s donor. He was 6’3. That means C is probably going to be pretty tall. He already is. People think he’s three. Though I am tall myself, I feel like the donor should be tall, too.
Then there’s the race thing. This is really problematic and also a little helpful in a way. We used a biracial donor for Cakie, thinking we’d also use him for the second child. I want the kids to look somewhat alike. So I’m limited to bi-racial and/or donors of African descent. This is helpful because I am not overwhelmed by too many choices. It is problematic because I am underwhelmed by the choices I have. For example, there’s one guy I kind of like. I mean, he works really well in terms of having things in common with both A and me. But he’s a year older than me. He’s a year older than me (I’m going to be 36 next week) and he’s still donating sperm? Here’s the reading between the lines. That seems weird to me. Like something’s wrong with him. Then there’s another guy who’s ok. But his writing is just terrible. I’m a writing snob. I know my grammar and spelling aren’t always perfect. Yet I am a writing snob. I can’t help it. Then there’s another guy I like, but he’s an open donor. I don’t really think it would be fair to have one child have an open donor, and the other child not have that option. I foresee strife in that situation.
So I’m stuck. Ok. I do like Drama Queen, despite the fact that he’s not good at math. But I don’t know. Then there’s this whole new CMV testing thing which I don’t understand at all, even though I called the cryobank and spoke to them about it. If you understand it, please share. I’m rambling. I hope you guys don’t think I’m a jerk, but I’m just being honest in my anonymous way.
The donor I used last month was really great. But when we printed out his long form, he had a half-sibling who had had a birth defect that resulted in an infant death. At the time, I thought, it’s just a half-sibling. I’m sure it is fine. But once I was inseminated, I started stressing out about it. What if my baby dies because I chose this donor? I know it isn’t entirely rational. I know that the donor was probably more honest about his medical history than other donors have been. But I also know that I don’t need to give myself the extra anxiety when I have a whole pool (ok, puddle) of other donors from which to choose.
This is just the kind of over-thinking at which my honey would internally roll her eyes. I’ll stop. Good night.