I haven't written for awhile, because I've struggled with the writing of this post. This is the post that I didn't want to write, that I was afraid to write, that I didn't know how to write.
You see, I haven't told you the whole story.
Unlike most infertility blogs, I haven't laid out my medical history, listing every step in the journey that's taken me from a bright young chick who was so assured of her fertility that she started picking out baby names the day she stopped taking the pill, to this bitter old crow who's tried every trick in the book and still has a chronically empty nest.
I've written in general terms about my own experiences, intending to reach out to all infertile women regardless of their diagnoses or treatment plans. But also - and maybe mostly - I wanted to keep some things private.
I write here anonymously (Surprise! My name's not really Jenny and I'm not really a bird. I know you're shocked and secretly imagined me hopping around on my laptop, hitting keys with my tiny beak and I'm so sorry to burst your bubble) but some of my readers know me outside of the internet, so I don't always feel entirely free as...a bird...to say whatever I want.
But keeping certain facts to myself is starting to feel dishonest and that's so not the point of this blog. It's one thing to pretend to be a bird, it's quite another to fake being candid.
So, yeah. <deep breath> Here's the deal: not only am I not really a bird, if I were a bird I wouldn't even be a wren. I'd be an infertile partridge.
According to medieval mythology, the partridge takes the eggs of other birds and raises the hatchlings as her own. Which is my roundabout and nerdy way of telling you that I am using donor eggs in my IVF attempts.
I chose a bird metaphor for this blog because years of fertility treatments made me so obsessed with eggs (How many eggs can I produce this month? Are they good eggs or bad eggs? Are they hatching yet?) I felt like I was about to sprout feathers. And after two IUIs, and two IVFs - none of which yielded even the faintest glimmer of success - we were forced to admit that they were very bad eggs indeed.
The decision to create our baby using another woman's DNA did not come easily. We summarily rejected the notion when Dr. S first brought it up. How we got from there to here is a story for another day.
When I told Mr Wren (also not his real name or species*) that I was considering writing about donor eggs because keeping it a secret implied there was something shameful and embarrassing about it he looked at me and said, "well, you are embarrassed, aren't you?" And that's when I flew into a rage and threatened to peck his eyes out for not understanding me AT ALL.
When I un-ruffled my feathers, I realized I needed to write this post. Because no, I am NOT embarrassed about wanting to have a child badly enough that I will take advantage of whatever options modern science can offer to get me there. I'm not ashamed that we live in a time when medical research gives us choices our grandparents could never have imagined. Of course, our grandparents probably never would have HAD to imagine them, since they were obviously fertile or none of us would be here, but I digress.
I'm proud that I am strong enough to survive the failures and disappointments and rise again with new hope. I'm so grateful for the young women who give a piece of themselves to help create families when all other hope is lost. I'm scared that one day people may judge my child differently because of how he or she was conceived, but you know what? Fuck them. There will always be haters. But my child (God willing) will be brought into this world with love and will be surrounded by an abundance of it their entire life and that matters so much more than who donated their genetic code or what anybody thinks about it.
And it is NOTHING to be ashamed of.
The abundance of bird puns in this post, however, is another story and for that I humbly apologize.
*Mr Wren would like you all to know that he does not identify with the male partridge AT ALL. Read the link if you're wondering why.