An experience I had this evening left me thinking about how far I’ve come from the scared (okay, terrified) almost-40-year-old woman who started tentatively on the road to single motherhood 4 years ago and I wanted to share it, since many of you may have had similar experiences.
When I decided to move forward with this crazy plan, the thing that scared me most was what on earth I would tell people about my “status” as a single, pregnant woman. I see similar posts on the Single Mothers by Choice (SMC) organization’s “Thinking” section of the online Forum and my heart always goes out to those women. I want to reach out to them and reassure them that in the larger scheme of things it really won’t matter after a few days or weeks or months. At least, it didn’t for me. I embraced my pregnancy with such joy that by the time I needed to come out of the closet I did it with pride and confidence. I’ve maintained that level of comfort with my decision, and it has been interesting to me to see how people have just accepted my “status” as normal or at least not particularly shocking. It’s especially surprising since I live in the Western US – one of the most conservative areas in the country. I know some people I work with don’t approve of my decision, but I truly believe my comfort and confidence have left them in silence. Which is fine with me.
The bigger surprise has been the women who have asked me about how I approached my decision, what steps I took, how difficult and expensive the process was, all (they eventually disclose), because they too have had thoughts about becoming single moms but didn’t know it actually was an option. I answer their questions thoughtfully and honestly, without going into intimate details about my son’s conception or his donor.
Tonight we were visiting with a new friend, a 30 year old, attractive and educated young woman who I never imagined would show an interest in single motherhood by choice. I told her about this wonderful organization, Single Mothers by Choice (SMC), how its members have encouraged and supported me though my journey, and I encouraged her to follow her heart, wherever it leads her. She told me after all the years of dating and not meeting “the one”, she was coming to the conclusion that maybe she would need to take a different approach to having the baby she dreamed of.
I send out a heartfelt “THANK YOU!” to all of you who have supported and encouraged me and held me up when I think I can’t make it one more day.