It comes down to two donors.

Two potential fathers for our – at this point entirely imaginary – child.

It makes me feel as if I am choosing between two possible children. One with that glint in their eye, one with the nice smile. They’ll be so very different, how are we meant to decide this?

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We struggled with Bourn Hall fertility clinic the first time we went there, and we continued to struggle with them for months after. They sent us the wrong bills. They refused to quote us a total cost for the treatment there. They didn’t respond to emails. They seemed scattered, uninformative, uninterested, and 100% out for the money.

So we agreed to do just one more. One more clinic to visit on the off chance that they were better, and then we’d have to make a final decision.

Enter ABC IVF!

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We’re in Barcelona. We have always loved this city, so it seems only logical that it would be here, on our same turquoise sofa where we first said that we loved each other… that we are sitting now, selecting sperm donors.

Oh, what changes in a few years!

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We had a cat when I was born, a fluffy Persian that I can’t remember but my mother says I absolutely loved. He was the first of a long line – I have adored cats for as long as I have been alive. Next was a black street cat, a hunter who brought home a grown rabbit once. A red tabby, who would track down rats at our farm. Princess, who I adopted from a shelter because she was the most scared one looking there and she was going to be put down that day.

I wanted to be a vet as a child. Our local vet let me watch surgeries and I was fascinated. I helped out in shelters, I fed the cats and played with them, I cleaned off their babies and washed out their infected eyes.

There were a lot of strays in the small town I grew up in as well, roaming the fields, whole gangs of them, and I eagerly attempted to befriend them all.

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As soon as I walk into the acupuncturist office, the whole vibe is different from what I had expected it to be.

Somehow I had imagined a nice curl of incense, an ohmmm-track playing in the background, decorative pillows on the ground, and a Buddha or two. I mean, this is an alternative treatment, right? Holistic and stuff?

Instead, the waiting room is entirely empty and bleak. It smells like a doctor’s office. There are health and women’s magazines, ten tips to please your man, things like that. This summer’s crash diet!

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