What next?….. well, that’s a massive question and one that I have to work out sooner rather than later, but I’m trying not to make any knee-jerk reactions, which is easier said than done! I have already given this so much thought and my theory is to gain as much insight into the various options available before making any more decisions and in the meantime just enjoy life!
Part of this next stage of my journey is to ask questions of myself, one of them being, what kind of parent would I want to be. For all of you that are already parents, this may be something that you’ve never had to consider. When I say what kind of parent, I don’t mean how you want to parent, after all, there’s no right or wrong way, but what I’m trying to say is, of all the options which one is going to be my own version of happiness.
I’ve been asked a few times over the past year whether I’d consider being a single parent. This is certainly not a straightforward yes or no, but something I have to give proper consideration as it’s not a decision I would take lightly.
You may remember when I posted about my egg freezing experience last year the counsellor I spoke with raised this with me. At the time I was so emotional and I didn’t want to lose hope of meeting someone that I was adamant that it wasn’t right for me at that time. Back then I just wanted to freeze my eggs and then see which direction life was going to head. I’m not sure my mind has changed since then, but the one major difference is time, which has given me some perspective on my life.
I recently contacted a very inspiring woman who I connected with shortly after starting to write this blog. She has had a very happy outcome to her egg freezing journey, as she gave birth to a little girl a few months ago, from using her frozen eggs. She decided some time ago that she wanted to become a parent and choose to do this as a single mother. You can read her story on her blog, here or through the resources on my home page.
I’m not deluded, I know that one person’s perspective on being a single mother doesn’t provide all the answers I’m looking for, but it’s certainly given me some momentum to consider this as an option. She very kindly sent me a book which she found really helpful in her journey to becoming a single mother. The book ‘Choosing Single Motherhood’, is by the author Mikki Morrisette who has had a very interesting journey to Motherhood and one that just shows that life may not necessarily work out the way you had planned, but that doesn’t mean it’s any less fulfilled.
I’m only a few chapters in, but it’s already raised so many questions that I hadn’t considered about being a single mother by choice. Even that phrase doesn’t sit well with me, as like many of the women she interviewed for the book they didn’t initially feel like it was a choice, but more due to circumstances. I’ll share more about this as I get further into the book, but if you’re anything like me I’m sure it’ll be an eye-opener into the difficult decisions many women have made to become a mother. I’m sure there’s going to be many more interesting conversations with friends and family as I think about this in more detail, but however much of an influence they are I know being true to myself is at the heart of this decision.
I know I have heaps of things to consider in this exciting new chapter ahead, but I’m determined not to lose sight of ‘Being Happy’ in the here and now. So many people get wrapped up in comparing their lives to others, and I’ve been guilty of that too, but everyone is different, after all, that’s what makes people interesting. Even if the image that I had of my life hasn’t quite developed the way I thought it would, that doesn’t mean I can’t continue to carve out a different one that is equally as special.
My heart is still open to finding that someone special, and if time means that I end up having to make big compromises I need to ask myself what compromise will I be happier with?!
I know it’s a bit of a cliche, especially given what I went through last year, but I think it’s important that I don’t put all my eggs in one basket. What if, I just can’t have children, or decide that the options outside having one with a partner are just too big a compromise for me, I need to give proper thought to what kind of plan B will make me truly happy longer term.
To quote an extract from Choosing Single Motherhood, ‘Life reveals itself in ways you cannot control or predict, so allow yourself to mourn that plans are not going according to schedule, but don’t let it stop you from moving. Life has surprises in store for you if you just keep walking’………..Or to quote my very good friend, Barry, in my case ‘running’!