As you can imagine, I have a number of things to say about this. The bottom line, however, is that it is your fault. I applaud Davies for working through her grief and coming out the other end with a positive outlook. However, she hasn't quite missed the chance to become a mother but rather is choosing to focus on other things. Her choice.
|Ruth and Naomi|
Like Davies, I also chose to hold on to relationships that were going nowhere because I was enjoying myself and hoping things would change - even though I knew deep down that they rarely do. When I started IVF treatment it was because I had managed to give up on the whole fairy-tale package and focus on what was most important to me - becoming a mother. I also wasn't oblivious to the friends who started out with the fairy-tale and tragically things went wrong.
Like Davies, I also chose not to do it alone while I felt I was financially insecure. I lived in rented accommodation throughout my 20s and 30s and I'm a teacher (nuff said). I was marginally better off by the time I reached 40 but it was still my choice to delay. It was only the shock of being 40 and childless that made me go ahead regardless. Whilst I no longer enjoy the life I once had vis a vis travel and entertainment (unlimited heat in the winter, a take out meal once in a while...), this is also part of the choice I made and I don't regret it at all.
I know many women in their 40s who are single and childless. I know married couples who were not able to have children. I also know many women in their 40s and couples who did not accept being childless. Most of them started out with IUI and IVF and if they were unsuccessful, upped the ante to donor sperm and/or eggs. I know those who have used a surrogate and those who have adopted. All these people could have been emotionally infertile (or as I used to call it circumstantially infertile) but they chose not to be.
For me, becoming a mother was the most important thing, as I said, and I thank God that I realised this before it was too late. It wasn't an easy journey and I lost a few good friends over it on the way. I went through all my savings in the process and I didn't speak to my mother for almost half a year. Without going into details, I chose to leave behind any negative baggage in whatever form it appeared, and forge ahead with single determination. I was lucky to have the support of many good close friends but essentially I was on my own.
To Megan Lloyd Davies, I want to say that the period of mourning you experienced at 38 is probably largely biological as many women (even mothers) go through an intense broodiness as they approach the end of their reproductive years. It's there for a reason. By giving reasons why you would not follow any of the options open to you, you have made your decision very clear. I don't think any less of you for not having children any more than I wouldn't look down on women who decide not to marry or any other life choice. I'm happy for you that you have a fulfilling life and that you have such a great relationship with your nieces, nephews and godchildren. But all our lives are a result of the choices we made. It is your fault, sorry.
Disclaimer: I certainly don't want to offend anyone who has tried every possible route to parenthood and is still childless. There are people like this and I am not belittling your pain and loss. There are unfortunately, people with severe obstacles to parenthood.
Credits: All the illustrations on this page are taken from Google Images under childlessness.