About Me

...and how me became we! 

A child of the 70's. A product of feminism. An independent woman. A (no longer young) professional female.

I lived the dream.

I can call it the dream, because really it was. I don't regret it one bit. I went to uni,  travelled the world, had some great jobs, even earned good money in some of them. I had a great time. I worked hard. I had the privilege of working with some very inspiring youth, some remarkable professionals, some wise elders. I learned a lot. I made a life for myself, had the best circle of friends I could ever hope for, bought a house, became Australian. It was all great. I loved it all.

I had relationships with men too (in case you're wondering!) I even lived with a guy for 4+ years, but I didn't manage to find the man who would father my children. To be honest, I wasn't really looking that hard. Children were a thing of the future, not the now!

And then I woke up.

35. Single. Childless.

I have always wanted to be a mum. I never imagined I would end up in this situation, but suddenly my best reproductive years were behind me and I was nowhere near achieving motherhood. As remaining childless was not something I wanted to consider, it seemed I had 2 options.

A) Find a suitable husband
B) Go it alone (a suggestion made by some lesbian friends - "We can get you some sperm!")

As B was obviously a ludicrous idea, I chose A.

This is harder said than done though when you are living in one of the most isolated towns in the world (Alice Springs). I started internet dating. I met lots of guys, some were great (several are now friends), some were not so great... But still, my Mr Right eluded me.

So, believe it or not, a couple of years later, I actually began to consider that ludicrous option B. I read a couple of books Knock Yourself Up and Choosing Single Motherhood and started to realise that actually, this could just be the perfect thing for me. Despite the seemingly desperate timeline I was still, as my dad says, being too fussy. Maybe, but I would rather be single than in the wrong relationship. After some serious introspection, I began to realise that I could do this alone -so many women do. I made the decision to go for it and I started to plan.

I needed to move. I needed a house without a mortgage. If I was going to be a mum I didn't want to be working all hours to pay the bills, I wanted to be mum full time if possible. This meant I needed to both downsize and move somewhere with lower property prices.

As my child(ren) would be born using a donor, I also felt it was important for them to know their extended family. If I stayed in Australia I would be their only family in the Southern Hemisphere. Although I didn't really want to, I decided that I should at least try living in the UK once more. I returned on a one way ticket for a "6 month working holiday", and then decided I would try and stay for 5 years, so my children could at least bond with my family in real life before we had to depend on Skype.

The move back to the UK was hard. I was an alien in my own land. My skills, though valued in Australia, seemed worthless here. My friends were all on the other side of the planet. People I used to know had either moved on in their lives, or worse, were still doing the same thing as when I left.

Eventually (after the £ had crashed and my $$$ were worth more - thank you GFC!) I bought and renovated small house not far from my parents, found myself a job which didn't involve selling my soul, and reconnected with enough good old friends to get me through.

It was February 2010. I was all set. All I needed now was a donor.

There are a surprising number of options here. Most fertility clinics do actually work with single women these days, but at a price! There is also a website Free Sperm Donors Worldwide which I started to investigate. From the reading I had done, I decided that I wanted to have a donor that could be known to my child if he/she wanted to know about their biological father when they turned 18.  But it would be a donor who was just a donor and nothing more -not a friend, not an ex, nothing to complicate matters.

But then it all changed.

A friend knew an Aussie guy living in London who wanted to be a donor. He also wanted to be a Dad. This involved a complete rethink, but think I did. Lots. Potential Donor Daddy and I started emailing, and after lots more thinking, and emailing, and questioning, and emailing, we finally decided to meet.

Once we had met, the decision was made. Donor Daddy (DD) was fab. Although I was scared I was quick to realise that I now had no choice. I could no longer choose to bring a child into the world without a dad when there was a brilliant one on offer.

We sought legal advice, and drew up a donor agreement that protects us both. The Blissful Boy (BB) was conceived on our second month of AI, and born in July 2011.

DD is a big part of our lives, and he visits regularly.

Anyone who is thinking about following a similar path is welcome to email me. I am happy to discuss everything from making the choice to legal agreements.

Update Dec 2013

We decided to try for a second and I got pregnant for a second time in August 2012, but sadly I miscarried BB2 in October 2012. I took a couple of months off to recover and then we all set to try again, but the whole process was called off by DD's partner (PP). I was devastated, and began to investigate fostering and adoption.

Then PP changed his mind said it was OK to try again mid 2013. We had 7 more attempts, a possible chemical pregnancy, but no BFP. DD decided he had had enough and we officially gave up. 

I was devastated once more.

I made the hard decision to continue without DD and began treatment at a fertility clinic. Just in case he changed his mind, I chose the clinic at which he had previously donated (which typically was one of the most expensive in the country). 

DD did eventually change his mind, and agreed that I could use his donation. This was all arranged with the clinic. I had a load more (expensive tests) and we were ready to start with IUI, and then IVF if necessary.

Then DD changed his mind again. His reason being that if we went through a clinic he would have no legal rights and he didn't think this would be fair on the child(!). He suggested we try again at home.

Update Nov 2014

I agreed to try again with DD at home. He is good at being Dad, and it would be nice for BB to have a full sibling, and it would be hard to have one child with a Dad and another without. I gave my notice to the clinic and we got pregnant again, through AI at home, in March 2014. 

I miscarried 11 1/2 weeks later.

It was hard to give up. In my mind there has always been two. But, my eggs were turning 43, so the chances of miscarrying again were even higher. However - I was feeling pretty happy with my body. It's good at miscarriages. I have never needed intervention. I could do it again!

We tried a couple more times, but to no avail. I resigned myself to the fact that my eggs were too old and began looking at alternatives. 

I thought for a while as to whether it really was necessary. Although I am incredibly happy as a mum of one, I still feel there is a space in our family for a second child. BB really wants a baby, or two babies, "a boy and a girl" (I think that comes from an episode of Peppa Pig - though we do have a friend with boy girl twins too). IVF with a new donor, embryo donation, adoption and fostering are all currently being explored. 

Update May 2015

I explored all the above options and pretty much exhausted them all.  For various reasons, none of them really suit our family. However BB still wants a baby (or two) and so do I. So I have gone back to a clinic I was investigating in Europe with regard to donor embryo transfer, but instead I am going to go for double donor IVF. In this same time period I have also watched my Nana pass away and decided that now is the time to make the move back to Australia. So we are leaving on September 17th. It feels good. I am excited to be going back and to be offering my son a better childhood, and also happy that I am giving this second child thing a chance. There is also an end in sight (I Hope) as if I haven't managed to get pregnant by the time we go I think I may feel reassured that I have exhausted all available options and that I should accept my fate; as a single mum I am lucky to have one, I know this, and thank you universe for giving me that.

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