Saturday, May 29, 2010

I'm not alone!! Oh Great Goddess, I am NOT ALONE!

Unless you are nearing or over 40, single and childless, you cannot imagine how I feel and that's not your fault - we are just living different experiences. I have not been able to express to my friends how it FEELS to be in my situation, but I am now connected with other women who TRULY understand what it's like to want a child so much that they will do it on her own - even when deep down they really want the whole family package. Seriously, if we were given more time biologically, we would wait for the right relationship, but we don't have that luxury.

It means so much to me to have access to people who are going through what I am going through and to share their experiences too. The more I read in emails and on message boards, the more convinced I am that I am making the right decision.
I didn't "wait" to have children. I was not delayed by desire or drive to advance the corporate ladder or obtain some high-powered career. The opportunity to start a family with the right man just never came up. Now that I am older, men my age are either married, divorced and jaded or want younger women. Most have already raised their children and are done with that part of their lives. I don't have much interest in younger men - I guess it depends on the man, but mostly we don't have a lot in common.

As I have mentioned in previous posts - I STILL want the man to come into my life. I find this to be true of many of the women I have spoken with (well read about) so far.
I knew I wasn't really alone; I knew I was not the first woman to make the choice to be a single mother. It's just so nice to read that my feelings, hopes and fears are shared by so many others. I learn a little from each woman's experience, even those that are heartbreaking. I hope that I, too, can share my story and help inspire other women as I go through my own journey. I am so grateful to the Single Mothers by Choice organization. Without them I would still feel lost. While I am still a little uneasy about my choice, I know that with the help of women who have been through it I will make it through too. Next up.... I have no idea....something will come to me I'm sure.


Wednesday, May 26, 2010

I was Never a Thinker

I was never a thinker. I always knew that someday, somehow, I would be a mother. I remember being a teenager and saying to myself: “Self, if I’m not married by the time I’m 35, I’ll just have a baby on my own.”

Today is my son’s 9th birthday. It still boggles my mind.

There are mornings when I wake up and it strikes me all anew—there’s a child in the room next door and that child is mine. I’M A MOTHER. I want to scream it to the world. The word single doesn’t really enter into the equation. Yes, I’m a single mother. Yes, I did this on my own, consciously choosing to have a child who wouldn’t have a tangible father in his life. And we’re a family, a perfect little unit that suits us just fine. His friends know he doesn’t have a dad and sometimes they ask questions—but most times they don’t.

I was never a thinker. This has always been my destiny. Motherhood was in my soul. Sure, it’s hard, but I look at my married friends with kids and you know what? Their life is hard too. Parenthood is hard, whether you’re doing it alone or in a traditional nuclear family or in a divorced family or in a same-sex family. But parenthood is also magical. It opens your eyes to world again. It let me rediscover the wonders of this planet.

I knew nothing about dinosaurs before I had Marshall. Now? I can name them all. Who knew Star Wars and Legos could be so all-encompassing? I remember walking him to preschool when he was 3. The walk for me alone took 5 minutes. I left us 20 minutes because there were cracks in the sidewalk we had to follow; there were water access pipes that had caps that NEEDED to be spun EVERY SINGLE MORNING; there were stories to be told and songs to be sung along the way.

Today is my son’s 9th birthday. He was born two days after my 40th birthday—the absolute best birthday present I ever got. I was never a thinker. I was always a mother. It took a few years of trying and the stars to be aligned in just the right pattern for that vision to become a reality but I am a mother to an amazing boy. And together we forge a path and embark on an incredible journey. Sure, we make mistakes long the way but we also light new ways of thinking and doing that fill my heart and make my soul sing.

I was never a thinker. I was always a mother. Today, my son is 9, and I feel so blessed to have him in my life.

Nancy Nisselbaum

Sunday, May 23, 2010

"If I Could Turn Back Time..."

40 sucks for me at this time. I was looking forward to it; now I feel like a fool for being excited. I am sad that I have not done all I wanted to at this point. I am trying not to focus on the negative but right now I am not feeling very positive.

I joined Single Mothers by Choice (SMC) and now I am getting emails from the listserv. I purposely signed up for this because I wanted to learn from women who are in similar situations to mine and who have been through the journey I am undertaking. They have several awesome groups you can join including "Thinkers", "Community", "Trying to Conceive", "Pregnant" (or a similar title) and groups for women with children in different age groups. I guess I should have waited to join the Trying to Conceive (TTC) list though. I am hearing about women who have been through more procedures than I will ever be able to afford without successful pregnancies. I am learning that this may be more complicated than I initially thought. For years people have told me, "you have time". What a lie! We don't have time. Time, at some point, is no longer on our side when it comes to fertility. I am reading stories of single women who start TTC in their early 30s. I should have started back then...I was just waiting for "the right man" and "the right time". Gods I want to go back and do this all again!

I had a major freak out/meltdown on Sunday night. I was a complete and utter mess. I SOBBED for a hour or more - venting on FB about how terrible I felt. God/dess bless my friends and one of the women from SMC for helping me through it.

I know I am "pre-worrying" about something that I don't even know will be a problem for me, but I am SCARED!!!
I am scared that I "waited" too long. I am scared that I won't get pregnant. I am scared I won't be able to carry to term. I am scared of all possible complications. I am scared I will make the wrong choice in donor (I am SO going to have to order photos!). I am scared I won't be able to afford additional procedures if I need them. I am scared that I will be single for the rest of my life.

I am trying to pull myself together and be proactive. Today I am calling to make an appointment with my primary doctor to see about a referral to a reproductive endocrinologist (if I even need a a referral), I am going to call my insurance to find what benefits (if any) I have in terms of fertility treatments/procedures, and do more research on cryobanks.
I have GOT to get over being scared!

Tracie, 40, Thinker

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


I recently got together with some folks, including an SMC who is a full-time mom and her delightful 14 month old son. She was clearly relishing being his mom, and he was equally clearly adoring her. When we got to chatting a bit, she confided to me that she was feeling a little bit guilty about how much she was enjoying being a mother. After all, she said, didn't the women of earlier generations go through a lot in order for women to have the right to be liberated from being "just mothers"? Was it okay for her to WANT to spend her time being a mom? And to enjoy it so much?

Having been one of those women whose consciousness was raised in the tumultuous sixties, I pondered her question for a moment, and then remembered --- it was all about CHOICE. We believed that women should have the CHOICE to work and not to be a mom, or to work and be a mom -- or to do whatever we wanted -- and most importantly, we wanted to have the opportunity to achieve as much as any man.

Sure, some of the women in the movement felt we should reject motherhood and be more ambitious, that we should aim for loftier goals. But many of us also knew that there are infinite delights in being a mother, and we didn't want to miss out on them. I was one of those women. I worried, as the years went by and I didn't find someone I loved, that perhaps I would never be a mom. And then, when I became a mother in 1980, I remember thinking how fortunate I was to have that opportunity. I cherished every single minute of that experience, even the rough ones, especially during the early years of my son's life when I almost couldn't believe that I was really a mother.

I will never forgot how close I came to being childless. But thanks in great part to the women's movement, I had the CHOICE to be a mother as a single woman, a choice that the generation of women before mine did not have. And for that, I will be eternally grateful to the women who made it possible for us to have choices about what we do with our lives, even if what we want to do is "just" be a mother.

Jane Mattes, LCSW
Founder and Director, SMC

Saturday, May 15, 2010


A New Beginning??

Here's what I want.
I want a baby.

I am 39 years old. I am single. I have never been in a long term relationship. I am facing the reality that it is just not going to happen for me in time to have a baby.

I have always wanted kids. When I was a kid I wanted to be a mom. I used to love to babysit. I don't so much love babies, per se, as kids. I am great with children. I have 3 little brothers who I have essentially helped raise. They are now 16, 13 and 8. I am lucky to have them in my life. And now I want my own.

I am now facing the reality of having a baby on my own. By myself.

I am terrified. I have been thinking about this for years but it is starting to form itself into a reality. I have been thinking a lot about what it means to raise a child who has no father. This is tearing me up. I am really close with my dad and couldn't imagine not having a dad. This has been the main hindrance in making my decision. There is so much to think about and my head is swirling and I feel really good and relieved and really scared all at the same time. There is much to write about. I feel instinctively that this is the beginning of a whole new journey.

More to come.
Nicole E.