Let’s start with the acronyms:
TTC (trying to conceive)
O (ovulation or orgasm? I still don’t know)
IUI (inner uterine insemination) not to be confused with ICI (inner cervix insemination),
G (total number of pregnancies)
P (total number of delivered pregnancies)
I could keep going …
I’m learning a new language. Really, I’m learning a new everything: a new way of thinking about parenthood, a new way of managing expectations and thinking about finances; a new way of getting pregnant (the least sexy part of this whole process!), a new way of relating to men, my friends and myself. New reading. (If you could see the things I’m Googling these days, such as: ici home insemination and orgasm. I know, right?!?) Hopefully, a new life.
Two nights ago I spent almost an hour on the phone with my cousins friend in L.A. who used a frozen sperm donor eight years ago. I’d had a long (but good) day of seeing clients and was walking around the lake with my dog, blathering on about all things sperm. (Still weird.) I had a thousand questions and, lucky for me, she had a thousand answers. She told me about “Mom’s by Choice” the on-line community of single parents, and sibling registries where you can see if your potential child has 20 half-siblings running around. We talked about the lonely bits of raising a child by yourself, along with the endless supply of love you gain, and all the vulnerability you learn to withstand.
I left the conversation grateful but exhausted.
I keep coming back to an email my friend J wrote me earlier in this process: Love, is the thing. Isn’t it? You want a child biologically but you want the love of a child, and a child to love. That’s the essence. That’s the thing to concentrate on. Everything else is dross.
Love is the thing. I have to remember this when I get overwhelmed with exacting my knowledge of ovulation, calendar matching it with Fed Ex-ing frozen sperm, not KILLING the sperm in the defrosting process, or SPILLING it during insemination. This strange, expensive process … it all comes down to love. And really, don’t we all do crazy things in the name of love?