It’s May by now. I’m staying in Jo’s flat in Liverpool to help her pack up before she moves to Ghent.
Along with her moving, everything else seems to be up in the air right now as well. After finding out about the legal implications of co-parenting with the father, we decided to give up on that dream completely. But where do we go from here?
Late at night, we sit on Jo’s faded red sofa and talk and talk. And eventually, we give in and Google ‘sperm bank’.
Jo clicks the first link that comes up, which is of a Danish sperm bank, Cryos.
There are hundreds of profiles of donors. You can choose just about anything – dark hair, blond, or red? Green eyes, or brown? Tall or short, thick or thin?
We click around the website, and it is as fascinating as it is weird. Once we start reading the donor profiles out loud, we share some giggles. Adores Arnold Schwarzenegger. Top of his class. Afraid of spiders.
Over the next few days we read the letters of these men – in-between packing boxes, sorting through clothes, and piling bin bags just outside the door until we can barely leave the flat ourselves. It feels like an odd dual reality. I am here with Jo, cleaning and moving furniture, and at the same time my mind is circling the idea of an unknown man in Denmark somewhere being the father of our child.
The website says that if we choose an open donor, any child conceived will be able to contact their father when they turn eighteen. Some donors say in their letters that they are looking forward to this, and that they would love to meet their children and answer all their questions.
But would that be enough for our child?
We study baby pictures and comment on gorgeous curls, tiny toes, and chubby cheeks. I want this so badly.
I lie awake at night, my thoughts speeding ahead to our eighteen-year-old having to fly out to Denmark to meet some weathered Viking they’ve never even seen before. To a dozen half-siblings out there somewhere in the world that they might never meet.
Would it all be worth it, just so we can be safe? So legally Jo and I can both be parents?
I hope so.