Facebook memories often pop up on our newsfeeds and they usually put a smile on our faces! “Oh look – that time when Genevieve visited from Seattle after more than a decade of not seeing her… boy those bagels were good!”, “Ahh man! That was definitely not the most flattering haircut!!”, “Wow! Was it really 2004 when Virgin Radio launched… 15 years! Nuts!” — those were some of the memories that popped up on my newsfeed in the last few days. Each and everyone of them making me smile (except that haircut – that made me cringe!). Then there was yesterday’s… and I am not sure how I feel about that memory…
Here it is:
My first thought: I actually wore that dress Monday!
Then it sank in.
Wow — it’s a post by a radio station that interviewed me in the days following my Single Mom By Choice “coming out”. That very first blog had gotten quite a bit of traction in its first hours and a French radio host found it, read it and felt that it was courageous that a public personality would open up about such a journey. She reached out and asked if she could interview me about it. I remember that day like it was yesterday. I was sitting under a blanket, on my sofa, in my Plateau condo. As nervous as I was writing that first blog and pressing “Publish”, I was even more nervous about the traction it would get after that interview.
Well, first off, I was writing for myself. I needed to vent. I needed to cry. I needed to explain why I had not been myself lately and, part of me, thought that I was writing to put an end to my adventure. Before “coming out”, I had already gone through four failed inseminations and one failed IVF procedure. I thought that I was done – financially and emotionally. However, part of me did not want it to be over and, looking back, I wonder if I did not start posting my story hoping for encouragement to continue.
Which I got! However, the days following that first post were not all nice and dandy. I was also told how posting my story could hurt me in a future job search. I was also made to feel that my future child would hate reading about their journey so publicly. I got comments from people saying that I was selfish and taking away a father figure from a child just because I “didn’t need a man”. These comments infuriated me because I knew these blogs could help – me and others. I knew my future child would only read love and desire through this journey. I knew that I was doing this because I could not find a man, not because I did not want one. I also knew that any company would be lucky to have me and that if this stopped them from hiring me in the future, then it was not a company I wanted to work for. But it was still scary to be opening up like this to friends and family and even more as a public personality…
That frustration though, and the innate feeling that I knew this was right, pushed me to do the interview that day. I expected quite a bit of backlash, but I didn’t get it! Your encouragements, your stories, your kind words made me continue to write, continue to try and made me realise how bad I wanted (and still want) a family.
So why am I unsure about my feelings towards this Facebook memory? Good things came from it, no?
Yes… but it’s crazy to think that this was two year ago and it’s even crazier to think that I am still childless…
The desire is still there. Hope though is dwindling… I try to stay positive despite the 4 failed inseminations, 3 failed in vitro procedures with my own eggs, 2 failed IVFs with adopted embryos and 2 early miscarriages. However, it hard when you see friends having their second child in the same time frame… Patients coming in and out of the fertility clinic now holding babies… it seems to be working for them. Why is it not working for me? I am 41 – am I getting too old for this?
I didn’t share this yet, and I was going to write a whole blog about it, but why not put you up to date now. Last time we spoke, I had 3 embryos left over after that second miscarriage. Take two of having a little being in my belly for just over 5 weeks and losing it. I felt defeated, but also excited because – once again – I had gotten pregnant. Something obviously works down there! Somewhat… Despite not being confident, I went ahead with another transfer the following cycle. I changed my mind three times prior to transfer day, but in the end thought “why not?! My lining is ok-ish. I have three more tries”. On transfer day, I learned that one embryo did not survive the thaw process and then, two weeks later, I found out that the one used failed to implant. I blame myself a bit, thinking that I should have listened to my doubts and not do a transfer. Maybe if I would have waited, it would have worked. Stupid, I know… Now though, I only have one embryo left.
It only takes one, you’ll say! I believe it too! But I also feel like my doctor has ran out of options. I am on anti-coagulants for the first time and a high dose of vitamin E and folic acid. We are going along with my natural cycle hoping that my lining will thicken nicely on its own… I don’t want to waste my last embryo on a thin lining… Do I just keep going monthly until I feel confident to go ahead with a transfer? What if it fails? Am I making it fail because I’m scared it may fail? Do I put this embryo aside and pursue adoption? I don’t know… and the fact that it’s my last attempt scares the s**t out of me.
That’s where the mixed feelings come from.
I wonder if, two years ago, I would have put myself through this knowing how difficult it would be? I was just about ready to give up, but kept trying anyway. Was it a waste of time, money and emotions? No… I know it is just my disappointment talking right now, because obviously I did not give up and certainly wasn’t ready to (still am not). I’ve grown through the journey. However, it is tough to think that back then, I was nervous because I was going to be a single mom and now, I am nervous that I may never be a mom… THAT I am not ready to accept.
I think it’s time. Time to change it up a bit and that is going to start with the name of this blog. Single Mom By Choice — well, I am no longer single… I’ve been with my boyfriend for over a year now and despite him not being “on” this adventure with me, he is encouraging and willing to see where it goes. We talk about raising a child and I’d love to have a family with him. So “single mom” is not really fitting any more!
Also, this blog has transformed itself in the last two years and, I feel, has become much more about fertility – or more precisely, infertility. I’ve learned so much in the last 24 months. I feel like this blog has become a tool for some in the same boat and an escape for others feeling the lows of infertility. It’s only appropriate that I change the blog’s name to reflect that.
I was asked to host a TedTalk next October on the topic of fertility and I chose the title “Let’s Make A Baby”. That’s what this adventure has really been about! Those are the words all of us going through infertility whisper with each doctor visit! So that’s what I am going to call this blog for the next little while – at least until its next evolution, which I hope will be something like “My Crazy Family”…
All that… from one Facebook memory…