We haven’t met yet but let me introduce myself. Don’t let the name fool you, as my 12 y o likes to point out, I am no longer thirty-something but rather just tipped over the other side of thirty, the grey side shall we say. I am a fertility junkie who is constantly looking for my next fix. I’ve spent the better part of half a decade…1465 days to be precise, trying to do my very best not to think about getting pregnant. And failing. Almost as much as my body has failed. I have heard the words from every person I know, and some I don’t, that ‘if I just take a holiday, stop thinking about it, quit everything, relax, drink, stop drinking, cut gluten, eat less, eat more, chart my cycles, stop charting, take herbs, prick needles in myself and meditate’…that it will work.
It hasn’t. Well not this far anyway.
I’ve pricked, prodded, bled and bruised my way through nine, yes n-i-n-e failed IVF cycles. We’ve thrown more money into trying to get pregnant than most would on a small house. I’ve sat in my specialist’s office and gazed wantingly at the soft pastel-hued birth announcements with tiny smushy faces of Luca, Imogen, Charlotte, Nate and countless others, hoping one day we’d be able to proudly nestle our own progeny’s welcome among those teeny little miracles.
But so far we haven’t.
I’ve woken up on a gurney so many more times than I’d like. I’ve verbally abused strangers from behind the wheel of my car for such a simple mistake as not indicating. My family has suffered more than they’d like. I’ve felt like the most useless woman on the planet. I’ve plucked at every godforsaken feather of hope and still zlichity zero has worked. Odds you see, are not in my favour.
I didn’t intentionally wait to have another child. Tragedy took that chance from me. But lucky for me, Lady Fate delivered me a second chance in the most divine human that is my better half (The Vet) and we’ve been trying to create a tiny piece of us ever since.
Every time I’ve thought, ‘this is it’ we’ve waited for the call only to be left deflated and broken. Baron is not just a high-faluting dude in tights with loads of dosh, it’s a motherfucking curse.
There’s no need to bore you with my list of ailments – but I will say they are far reaching. As are the medications I’ve been prescribed to treat them. The first time I heard our specialist Dr Babies mention those blasphemous words ‘donor eggs’ I wanted to punch something. He knew from the start there’d be a high chance I would need to use the eggs from a much healthier, younger donor. I deftly ignored him. I, you see, have a biological child and that’s where shit gets real.
There’s the little mole we both have on our chest that we like to affectionately refer to as the cocoa pop due to its resemblance of the chocolate cereal. My mum has one in the exact same place. It’s our identifiable mark, I used to tell him. If we get lost, we know who you belong to, just need to look for the mole. Except I no longer have mine. A skin clinic offered to whip it off for me for free a few years ago and I obliged. It gets in the way of a bikini anyway.
There’s the fact he has my dad’s ears and slight build. That we have the same smile and our faces are the same shape. He has a big head circumference too, poor bugger. And yes, I know what you’re thinking…fortunately for me, heads are super pliable during the birthing process.
Mostly, there’s the fact he’s mine. I grew him from a miniscule itty bitty egg all of my own.
If I’m honest with you, yes it’s been hard, fucking hard to accept I might never be able to do that again. And I want it, we want it, more than anything in the world. Me, my beautiful, caring loving amazingly wonderful bloke, The Vet – who deserves to be a dad from the start more than anyone I’ve ever known, he’s been poked and prodded, and copped a beating as he’s rollercoastered through far too much hope and devastation. Then there’s our incredibly loving and kind-hearted 12 y o, who has so much to give as a big brother…
And that’s where you come in, Ms Donor.
Maybe you’ll look nothing like me. Maybe you won’t be 5 foot 10, blonde, love handbags, shoes, chocolate almond clusters and KFC skin. Perhaps there won’t be any identifiable features in the both of us. Maybe you’ll be everything I’m not and I think I’m okay with that. I’ve got friends with the most beautiful kids who don’t share their genetics or even their race, yet they are the most incredibly tight-knit family you could ever meet.
But what you will be is kind. I know this much. Because it’s quite simply one of the most generous things one girl could do for another. For me, like the other one-in-five at my clinic who are anxiously awaiting the loving generosity of someone like you, kindness is what we’re counting on. It’s all we have left.
I have given this everything I have. It has almost beaten me and if the odds are to be believed, you are our only hope.
To ask for your help is not easy. It’s letting go of one dream. But maybe too, it’s holding on to another…so here I am, just a girl with a wish hoping you can grant it…
With love, hope and the gentle wave of a Chinese brass cat (apparently lucky), Lady Mama Gxox