With the help of the members of SMC, I have just recently made my decision not to become an SMC. I should also preface this by saying that I came to this quandary late. I am 46.
Letting go of the dream of having a traditional family, i.e. a husband and kids, is a very big deal for most women. That’s probably one of the first steps in deciding to become an SMC. And that’s a rough one. I always had this assumption that it would happen, so it was hard to face the fact that it might not just “happen.” What if it doesn’t? How could it not? How long do I wait?
All kinds of people meet their mates and start families. My confidence about myself as an attractive, smart and lovable woman is a bit tangled up in that dream. I never wanted to visit the possibility … Continue reading
I’m starting to doubt if I can really handle becoming a single mom. The universe has thrown some tests at me the last few weeks. One of my friends is having a really hard time with her newborn where she isn’t getting any sleep even though she has a supportive partner, I’ve been invited on my dream trip to Greece this summer which I want to go but I don’t know how I will feel if I am pregnant, and I recently went on a few dates that reminded me about the way I always envisioned having a family. In short – the life I will be giving up is being thrown at me. I won’t have my relaxing evenings binging bravo shows, getting 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep, trips exploring new parts of the world won’t exist for a long time, and will I really be able to invest … Continue reading
One challenge I encountered with my friends and family was explaining that one egg does not equal a baby. I found that when I told people I had frozen 20 eggs they assumed my dreams of motherhood were all set. I had an insurance policy, my back up plan. But I knew that this “insurance policy” was far from a guarantee. Let’s break down how many eggs it can takes to have one healthy baby.
- Let’s say you are 35 or younger, have a successful egg retrieval where you get 10 eggs.
- From there, you can only fertilize mature eggs. About 80% of eggs retrieved will be mature. Now you are down to 8 eggs to fertilize.
- Next, fertilization happens. Again, about 80% of your mature eggs are expected to fertilize. That makes about 6 embryos.
- Now you wait a week to find out how many of those
… Continue reading
As an SMC, I often get asked “How do you do this alone?” The truth is, while I have chosen to raise my daughter without a partner, I never intended to do it alone. Building a support system of friends, family and fellow SMCs has been a crucial part of my journey. I do believe that it takes a village to raise a child and in my case it also took a village to make a child. My path to motherhood included donor sperm, 4 IUIs, two rounds of IVF, 2 miscarriages, loss and ultimately the birth of my daughter via surrogacy using my remaining frozen embryos. I wouldn’t have had the resilience to continue on my eight year fertility journey or my first years as a mother navigating parenting during a pandemic without a really solid support system.
As I look back on my journey I remember the “Choose … Continue reading
Thinking about having a baby on your own is only the beginning. Once you actually put your plan in action, expect a lengthy process. From my first consultation with my Reproductive Endocrinologist to completing my first round of IVF, it was about five months. Here are the 10 steps I went through, including, of course, joining Single Mothers by Choice.
1. Find a good Reproductive Endocrinologist
Fortunately, I already had one from egg freezing that I liked and trusted.
2. Schedule a consultation
This can be a long wait if you are not already a patient. So if you want to get more information, schedule this as soon as you can. Then make your list of questions, start thinking about a realistic timeline for yourself, and do your research ahead of time so you are familiar with fertility language.
3. Initial consultation
Your brain will be filled with terms … Continue reading
So I had finally made the decision to start trying to get pregnant on my own. I had found myself a Reproductive Embryologist, a handsome Italian doctor with full-sleeved tattoos on both biceps. I wrote the story in my head of how my doctor would inseminate me and then become my lover, my partner, my child’s father. It definitely seemed like the rom-com I had been waiting to star in my whole life.
I was sitting at my desk at work, just a few days away from insemination, and all of a sudden, an invisible brick fell out of the sky and hit me on the head. I could almost see the pebbles of concrete rolling down the sides of my hair and the dusty clouds billowing up around me like in a cartoon. Blamo. No way, I thought. No f-ing way.
You can not do this, I thought. I … Continue reading
I know lots of women who always knew they wanted kids. I was never one of them.
We already have enough people in the world, I always thought, so why do I have to go through the bother of having more? Plus, kids seemed like a total pain. They shit in their pants and whine and generally get in the way of you having a good time.
I wasn’t particularly excited when I learned my brother and his wife were pregnant, and when my baby niece came I didn’t care much. She reminded me of all the other babies I had ever seen. I remember my brother bringing this little bundle of boring humanity into the bathroom early in the morning, saying “look! Auntie is brushing her teeth!” It was too early for baby talk, and I barked at him to leave me alone.
I did have to admit she … Continue reading
You realize that you are so much of a cliché that if this were a sitcom pilot you’d find it trite. You even have a cat.
So you turn to your boyfriend and say, “We need to talk.”
Throwing away a solid relationship feels scary. I kept thinking, “a bird in the hand is better than two in the bush.” Except it feels like that bird keeps shitting in your hand, and you want to be holding a kid (also shitting in your hand, as it turns out).
I didn’t want to miss out on motherhood because of that fear. And maybe you don’t want to, either. So here are the reasons you should go ahead and get cracking on being a mother even though you might not have a partner.
- BECAUSE YOU WANT TO
It seems simple: you really want to have a baby. But for me, … Continue reading
In the mail last week, I received a storage invoice for cord blood from Elliot’s birth. In a few months, I’ll get one for the embryos I have on ice at the fertility place. They’re stored there, safe and sound. Three of them. I don’t think about it often, but when I am asked if I’ll have another child, of course it sends me into thoughts of what could be. My initial thought is no way, absolutely not. I’ve said it so many times that I have all my love in the world to give to a baby, but I have 1 set of hands- two children would be too much for me to handle on my own. Physically, financially, mentally, logistically.
But I sure am curious to know what would happen if I did. What the potential of that child could be in this world. I loved being pregnant. … Continue reading