Shall I take my birthday cards down today? They are still on the mantelpiece and dresser. Normally we just leave birthday cards up for about a week, and then take them down. I haven’t done so this year for the stupidest of reasons; that, the next time I have birthday cards on display, they will be physical markers of the fact that our chances to have a baby will be over. Unless a miracle happens before then and our donor returns, or another comes forward.
It will be like an ending, every card that I put up will be another confirmation. All the time that I leave them there somehow connects me to last year.
And yet I know that I can’t keep them up forever – a kind of Miss Haversham, spending the rest of her life in her wedding dress and surrounded by reminders of her wedding that never was. (She did have a child, though!!! – sorry, that thought just came to me from nowhere.) Maybe I can ask everyone not to send me a card next year? But then that means I’ll have to explain to everybody. And they will be uncomfortable. And they won’t know what to do the following year. So I expect that I’ll just go on as usual. Perhaps we could have a holiday away, somewhere where nobody knows us. And where there are no children in the hotel.
Oh, I sound like a real old bitter grouch, don’t I? I don’t mean to, it’s just that seeing families at such a time will be really, really painful. But I’m going to have to get used to it.
I am lucky in that I come from a long-lived family. Who knows – I might live for another 50 years or even more, yet, and still have all my marbles and health! Do I want to waste all those years on bitterness and ridiculous longing?
No, of course not, but I have to know that I have tried everything that there is, and this is it; egg donation is our only hope. It is the last hope that there is for women like me, having to rely on the generosity of a complete stranger to make our life complete.