Mission TZ3 Cycle Update

It’s been crickets around here lately, I know. I’ve been doing a bunch of writing on the side, battling depression and having all sorts of weird feelings about this blog space that I’m still parsing out. Also, since only one person registered for my eClass that was supposed to start this weekend, I’m postponing it indefinitely right now. I may offer it again in the future – I’m not sure yet.

In other news, our donor egg cycle continues to move forward.

Mission TZ3 is now my official name for this whole shebang, by the way. TZ3 stands for Team Zoll #3. I’m not sure if I’ve ever talked about it here on my blog, but among family and friends, Larry and I have been referred to as Team Zoll for a while. I’m not even sure how it got started. For our second wedding anniversary (the cotton anniversary) I made us t-shirts that said “Team Zoll – Est. 2008″ on the front and #1 and #2 (1 for Larry, 2 for me) on the back.

Even though I knew we were facing infertility at that point, I went ahead and bought a small child’s t-shirt. When the time is right, I intend to make a Team Zoll #3 shirt. (And because, let’s face it – I might need a Team Zoll #4 at the same time.)

Mission TZ3

Coming this Fall to a womb near me.

We’ve done a bunch of preliminary testing. Good news, folks: no HIV or syphilis for Larry! Good job, honey. Thanks for that :) He’s also had the pleasure of not one but two semen analyses. When he had his first SA done a couple of years ago, his boys were… lollygaggin’ a bit. Plenty of them, just… takin’ their time to get where they need to go. My doc at the time suggested ICSI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection) when we eventually moved forward with IVF. Under our new health insurance, they require two SA’s within a month of each other to confirm authorization for ICSI. So yeah, ICSI will definitely be happening.

Which… is pretty friggin’ cool, if you ask me. The more high-tech our cycle gets, the more excited the geek in me becomes. I mean, we’re talking about directly injecting THE best sperm in to THE best egg to create THE best embryo. That’s pretty incredible.

We’ve also been dealing with the official sign offs on our mental health evaluations. It’s taken nearly 2 months simply because of scheduling and the fact that our friend who’s offered to be our donor lives out of state. She’s had her consult done for some time now while Larry and I just completed ours last Friday. I’ve also been waiting to write about it because I wanted to make sure we all had the official “you’re not crazy” stamp of approval.

Our friend had to complete an MMPI-2, or the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory. It’s 567-question long test consisting of nothing but true-false statements. It’s a standard measure for genetic mental health disorders such as schizophrenia, sociopathy and alcoholism. And the statements are really weird and random. It took our friend a couple of days just to finish it simply because of how long and repetitive it is.

Thank G-d she has a sense of humor. She’d be on gChat and occasionally message Larry and I while she was taking it, telling us how weird the questions were.

Our friend: “One of the questions was ‘I like automotive magazines.’ I said false. Hope you get a baby!”


After she completed the test, our social worker scored it and then had a phone consultation with her. Good news: our donor passed with flying colors! But we knew she would already :) Larry and I finally scheduled our in-person meeting with the social worker and met with her last Friday. It was a really great conversation talking about all sorts of important points along this journey.

She talked about how moms via known egg donors can get suddenly very protective of their children after they’re born. We talked at length about disclosure – who knows now and who will know in the future, our children included. And we talked a lot about why we made the decision to go ahead with a known donor, despite being opposed to it for so long. It was a lot to wrap our brains around and included many things Larry and I have already been talking about for months, if not years. It was a productive, enlightening conversation all the same.

And then we got dinner at this killer Italian place on Atwells Avenue in downtown Providence, Rhode Island since it was just down the way from our social worker’s office.

Next on our plates? On the medical side, lots of testing for our donor – the preliminary infectious diseases panel required by the FDA, as well as any genetic testing Dr. Warmenfriendly sees fit. And of course physicals, pap smears and all that lady-bits jazz.

I’ve stopped taking my birth control pills (aka, my low-cost HRT for my POF) and I’m already on estrogen pills – Dr. Warmenfriendly has me on 4mg of estrogen daily and then I’ll add in progesterone pills for the last 5 days. Once I start bleeding about 5-7 days after I finish the progesterone, I’ll call the clinic with my Day 1 and on Day 2, I’ll start another round of pills. At that point, both our donor and I will start syncing cycles which means we’ll both get to start injectables. (Hooray.)

On the logistics front, the only step we have left is legal at this point. Both our donor and Larry and I have secured separate representation, and we just need to hammer out the nitty-gritty of our egg donor contract. I have no idea what that entails – yet. We meet with our lawyer on Monday.

All in all, everything still looks to be on track for mid-September.

Which, interestingly enough, could be right smack in the middle of the High Holidays. Bonus: I probably won’t have to fast for Yom Kippur this year ;) I have a whole post in my head about how the Days of Awe are when G-d determines who will be born and who shall perish in the coming year but I’m not committing those words to paper (screen?) just yet until I know for certain that’s when we’re cycling. Not to mention, it’s when the story of Hannah is read in temple.

It would be some serious spiritual vindication if we cycled then, especially since I was diagnosed just a couple of weeks before Passover and was having a bit of a spiritual crisis at the time.

So that’s what’s new in my neck of the woods. What’s going on in yours? Who’s cycling? I feel so out of the blog loop lately. Help catch me up :)

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  1. polkadotsandsun says

    @KeikoZoll yay! Do you follow @MyLazyOvaries. she’s doing deivf too

  2. says

    So glad to see things are moving forward and that the wheels on the bus are spinning now, Keiko! This is exciting, indeed. xoxo

  3. almostbatten says

    So glad to hear that things are moving forward. As soon as I seen the picture in my reader, I had a little chuckle and said to myself “Ah, Team Zoll #3″ and instantly thought back to your New Years post.
    Honestly, when it comes to blogging and life, we all go through phases where we find it hard to post or just can’t seem to find the energy to post. I hope you find your stride again.

    • says

       @almostbatten It’s been a weird summer for posting and I’ve got lots of conflicting feelings on this blog as my writing space. I’ve kind of pegged myself into writing almost exclusively about infertility when there’s a LOT more I’d like to write about here. Perhaps I should just put the question to the masses.

  4. says

    If we go ahead, we’re cycling in September/October. Wouldn’t it be neat to be cycle buddies?! Regardless, I’ll be cheering you on, whenever you go ahead. TZ3 … definitely on deck! :)

    • says

      That would be AWESOME! I would totally be cycle buddies with you! I have no idea what being a cycle buddy entails, but I am looking for them ;)

  5. StolenEggs says

    @KeikoZoll exciting!!! I’ll know more Fri. Hoping for IUI Jul/Aug. And maybe FET in Sep/Oct.

  6. says

    I am doing a known donor cycle (my sister) in October. I this post very helpful as I have been very nervous about the psych eval part. Thanks for the post, it was very helpful