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Donating eggs has been surprisingly easy for me

Mirka Lievonen

The first time I donated my eggs was slightly more than two years ago. I was surprised by how easy the process is. I live close to the Ovumia clinic in Jyväskylä, so even the journeys weren’t a problem.

The process started with examinations to make sure I was suited to be a donor. I had blood and urine tests, and my motives, health, lifestyle and the risk of hereditary diseases were looked into.

I talked with a psychologist about why I felt I was ready for this, and I had an ultrasound examination to ensure fertility.

Now they just call me from Ovumia and ask if I’d like to come and donate again. I’ve always been happy to do it. During the process, I visit the laboratory for some tests and make an appointment with a doctor. At reception, I’m given the provisional date for collection and the hormone medication and injection instructions to take home.

The hormones help the eggs in the follicles to become fertile and prevent ovulation. Up until the collection, the process is similar to IVF treatment.

The first time I injected myself I felt a bit nervous. But in my work, I have given a lot of people medical injections, so there were no problems.

Helping has been my number one motivation

Before the actual donation, I had an ultrasound scan and a doctor’s appointment. After the eggs had been collected, I had to stay at the clinic for an hour for observation. Then I made an appointment for a check-up with a doctor.

I have donated eggs four times since my first time a couple of years ago, and my latest donation was last autumn. By law, you can only donate eggs to five families, which means that I can do it at least one more time.

Even though I work alongside my studies, I could easily donate now too. I mainly have shifts at the unit for disabled people at weekends, so I don’t feel that egg donation is in any way stressful.

I want to help people who can’t have a child naturally. While it’s a small inconvenience for me, for many people treatment with donor eggs is their only opportunity to have a baby.

My desire to help people is what attracted me to the health care and social services sector. I’ve always wanted to work with people. I’m empathetic, calm and a good listener. I’m approachable.

I became a licensed practical nurse in 2017 and worked for just over a year before I started studying to become a registered nurse. If everything goes well, I will graduate in December at the latest.

Work has brought variety into my everyday life. Next, I will be working at the new hospital in Jyväskylä where I have three practical training periods in the operating theatre and different wards.

The situation with coronavirus is alarming here, and all the safety precautions are in use. Ovumia too had a rule in place that everyone has to wear a mask last time I donated eggs. But it doesn’t scare me at work or when donating. There are professionals looking after me and they do everything as responsibly as possible.

I hope to be a mother some day too

I heard about the possibility of donating eggs from my godmother, who is a midwife at Ovumia. I’ve told my friends about it too.

Many of them have said it’s a great thing I’m doing and some have asked about the process. One of them has even become a donor herself.

It’s awesome to think that my donation may have resulted in pregnancies and babies. Still, I don’t think about that a lot. I haven’t even asked the clinic if there have been any pregnancies.

I know the children that may be born as a result of my donation have the right to find out where they came from when they’re adults. I’m fine with that. I understand why they might want to know.

But these children have their own mothers to raise them. I really don’t think of myself as their mother.

Although it’s early days yet, I would like to have my own children some day. At least I know now that my eggs are healthy.

The writer is a licensed practical nurse studying to become a registered nurse who has donated her own eggs at Ovumia.

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