A family member that I’m thankful for and why… My mother in law!

I’ve started a lists thing to ensure I post more frequently and to stop me only venting on this site.

I need to remember that things aren’t always bad and that there is more to us than babies and genetics and cancers…

So today it asked me to think about a family member that I’m grateful for. This in itself is a bit of a trial!

Obviously I dearly love my mum and dad, but I thought I’d take a different route and talk about my mother in law.

Over the years the standard mother in law has been the butt of many a joke. She’s seen as the meddling monster who interferes when you least want her to, always thinks she knows best when she doesn’t, and most relationships will have that moment when the wife/husband will be pitted against her in a who’s right and who’s wrong scenario.

All in all, pretty negative views.

My mother in law is different.

Because there’s quite an age gap between me and Alice, it has left only 9 years between me and her mum. I think this helps as we’re not from completely different times! We both know about the 80s. The only difference is that I was dancing around my living room pretending to be a pop star and she was sneaking into clubs.

I love Rachel to bits and I’m very lucky that she accepts me into her family.

The reason Rachel first sprang to mind this week when I saw this post topic is because last Sunday, the 17th of November, we lost Alice’s nan, Rachel’s mum.

It was so sad, but she had her family around her when the time came. Alice was the only grandchild there. She wanted to be there for Rachel and Rachel’s brother and sister.

Nan had been the very centre of this family and was loved by everyone – in laws included. She spoke to me as we were having photos taken when we signed the register at our wedding. She welcomed me to the family. It meant the world to me.

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Rachel will be my child’s grandma. She’ll be there for them with sweets and cuddles. But most importantly, she’ll be there for me and Alice.

Now don’t get me wrong, my Mum is a fantastic one!! She’ll be there for us no matter what. But this is, to me, about having love for someone that is basically a new addition to my life.

We live around the corner from Rach, and it’s nice because she keeps an eye on the house and the animals while we are at work. But more importantly it’s nice to have family so close. I’ve never been in that situation before. Family visits were planned ahead, scheduled for the weekend or perhaps even longer due to distance.

Last night we had an impromptu trip to ikea and it was lovely.

They’re both as mad as each other mind!

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I guess, I’m thankful for being accepted as Alice’s wife, when with other partners there’s often been friction and sometimes full blown hatred.

I’ve truly got two mums and that makes me a very lucky girl.

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One small pot for man, one giant leap for lesbiankind.

So we got our first deliveries.

It was definitely bizarre, but I’ll get to that in a minute…

So yeah, month one got under way so it’s and exciting time right now.

I’m taking my vitamins, no alcohol, not smoking now for several months.

Now if you know me, then you know that the two non-living entities that mean the most to me are a good whiskey and a cigarette, so life has already changed!!

Ok, so here’s how it happened…

We’ve known our donor for several years and we were surprised that we were able to iron out the finer details and progress under our terms of business shall we say.

Our donor had to listen to us basically break him down, and break his heart a little too I think, but being the good guy that he is, he agreed.

He said “of course I’ll still do it, I can see what it means to you both and I get to be the one that makes you both so happy.”

It was a revelation.

Right then…

The stars began to align and the moon was in the 93rd sector of Pluto or whatever crap, and basically it was time to try it out.

Me and the Mrs had made the agreement that she would speak to our donor during the day and confirm details etc etc.

Our plan was to turn up equipped with the suitable conduit, supply donor with said conduit, receive the goods and then drive the short journey home to complete the deed.

All very peculiar.

We arrived and watched our donor grab a few bits and pieces, switch off lights and head downstairs to meet us.

Oops.

Failed at the first hurdle.

Thankfully our donor had just moved so we were quickly able to divert him back inside the house for a tour of the new digs.

Once inside we mentioned that we thought it would be much easier and less uncomfortable for him to provide us with a sample to takeaway…

So very very awkward…

He was fine with it and was happy to oblige. So we gave him the pot and then it got really weird.

Now, normally we are all pretty comfortable around each other, but what had just dawned on us was the fact this poor lad was faced with two women and a pot. And they were making demands that even the strongest of characters would feel moderately pressured by!

To make it worse we were going to be in the next room. Waiting…

I have to say that given the fact we know each other well and have seen and done some mad things together, this was unprecedented weird.

Sitcom weird.

Anyways the deed was shortly done and off we jetted in the car and raced back home with the missus nursing the delivery, in the pot, in her bra.

God knows what would’ve happened if we were stopped by the police.

Anyhoo, night number two…

This time things were a lot less awkward and quite humourous. Although we had one minor issue.

Traffic.

Now this is worse than driving when you need the loo and can’t find one. You’ve literally got something in the car that’s at risk of becoming completely useless and yet the simple fact you have it means so much.

We rushed into the house and did what we could in the time we had. Romance wasn’t exactly at its best…

Humour however was as I’d left my boots on! Now the reason this is particularly funny is because of the donor’s love of dr martins. There I was afterwards, legs in the air, hoping that gravity would help us out and up against the wall was such a funny sight.

Firstly, the donor is known for his docs.

And secondly, all that was missing from our lesbian baby making attempt was a pair of dungarees on the floor and Tegan and Sara playing in the background!! Sometimes the stereotypes just find us…

Anyhoo, we have since then found out that the first attempt wasn’t successful. But I’m quickly learning that this whole process needs, humour as well as heartache.

Time to take new steps…

This week things are going to change I hope…

We’ve got a donor, he’s confirmed and it’s looking positive. I’m petrified that it’ll drop through yet again. We’ve never got as far as how it feels right now. There’s still no donation as it were, but on Wednesday we’ll be in receipt of the first batch of goods.

And if so that’s further than we’ve ever got.

There’s certainly something to be said about counting chickens before they’ve hatched…

Hopefully tonight we’ll be able to speak to him and get him to sign on the dotted line before we go to collect on Wednesday.

At the minute it’s all about charting temperatures and how my body is reacting. My alarm goes off in the morning and with eyes still screwed shut I turn it off and reach for the thermometer on my bedside table.

It’s quite a funny ritual.

Bleep. It’s turned on.

Then I lie there half asleep and wait.

Bleep. It’s done.

Now finally open my eyes and update the one of many pregnancy apps on my iPad. (I use Glow the most…)

Fall back to sleep.

Alarm goes off again. Crap! I’m going to be late if I dont get up now!!

Apparently when you’re ovulating the temperature will rise a little and stay that way if you’re pregnant. So it may help me aviod getting ahead of myself. Here’s some info: http://www.babycenter.com/chart-basal-body-temperature-and-cervical-mucus

I’ve got an appointment with the Doctor on the 12th of November. So hopefully we will have all the ammo we need to get help if we need it.


I guess we’re relying on the fact our donor has what he needs and that I’m ticking over perfectly. Being 32 does scare me as there are so many things that could be wrong, but who knows…


I didn’t manage to get to the hospital for my second blood test so we’ll have to wait til next month for that one.


It feels ridiculous that after 3 years of trying to make a family, we’re only just getting all the ingredients.


I really dont think I can let myself dream right now. Before I’ve seen little things and I’ve bought them. This time, I’ve got nothing. Not so much as a teddy bear. It hurt so much last time when I gave it all away. Baths, clothes, baskets, changing mats… I’ll never forget leaving all that behind.


If we cant conceive now, I don’t know how I’ll feel. I’m simply not thinking about it.


What will be will be, but please keep everything crossed for us!


Things are about to get messy.

We Got Married.

I’m really enjoying this blog. It’s so lovely! 🙂

Elizabeth Merritt Abbott

On the hottest day in June we stood on a gravel path that cut through a prairie in central Iowa. We held small bouquets arranged by my mother-in-law, calla lilies and freesia. My brother combed his hair and tucked in his shirt. My mother cried. The dog behaved. My wife-to-be looked beautiful, like the best kind of summer girl in her green dress – even when she made that scrunched up cry face while saying our vows.

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Back at my mother’s house, just down the road, our families and friends gathered. More people than I expected Food. Games. Beer. Wine. More love than I deserve. I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect day.

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Life has a funny way of making you run in circles.

Well here we are again, we’re back to square one. Well, Square one plus VAT I guess. We have a donor.


God knows what that means for us as we’ve had donors in the past. There’s been no medical problems or other issues as we far as we know, the one issue has been reliability. Everytime, we’ve been let down by the person, not nature.

I’ve got blood tests next week and an appointment next month with the Doctor.

I dont even dare to dream at this stage. I’m holding out hope, but I think I’m just a bit broken by it all and would rather be negative than anything else.

One thing I know about me for sure now is that I’ll be damned if I’m going to give up. I’ve wanted kids for as long as I can remember, and after 3 years of being messed around, we’re not really much further ahead. I know I am biologically further along than I’d like, but I can’t turn back the clock now.

I do wonder what help, if any, we will get from the NHS. We decided after the adoption fell apart to visit the doctor to start with getting help from the NHS and to be fair, he didn’t have a clue.

We went to see the nurse last week, and although she was a lovely lady, she didn’t have a clue either…

I said was there any help or advice she could give and basically it was a no. She’s just referred us onto the Doctor.

All of the forms were very stereotypical. We watched as she had to scribble out “Male Partner” and put N/A in a lot of the sections. We took it in good faith and had a laugh about some of the questions. Obviously there’s a lot wrong with our sperm count and Alice can’t get it up. *Insert Fake Laughter here*

But joking aside, I felt a bit like it was a complete waste. I said to the nurse that we’d been looking online and really needed some help as there’s so much information you just don’t know what to believe.

I even asked about physically how we should go about it and her response was “Well there’s always the Turkey Baster method!!”

You're kidding right??

You’re kidding right??

I laughed but I think she saw that I didn’t find it all that funny.

It’s just never ending at the minute. There’s a light at the end of the tunnel, but I can’t tell from here how far away it is.

Until there’s a blue line where it’s supposed to be, I haven’t got a sodding clue.

There’s no title that can express this feeling, or even explain it

The worst sentence I’ve seen in black and white for a long long time.
I can’t even type how I’m feeling.
The excitement from everything at the beginning…
The first thoughts on adoption, the first meeting, the conversation with the adoption officer, the fact it would only take about 6 months…
How perfect we seemed to the adoption officers at the meeting.
Seeing and hearing the success stories.
I guess no one wants to talk about the supposed 7 out of 8 applicants in the UK who get refused at the first enquiry.
(I know it’s the Daily Mail, but still… Here’s the link)
No criminal record, no substance abuse… Still no good for the thousands of children desperate for a home.
Right now, it hurts to the point that I can’t even bear this blog.

Cat amongst the pigeons…

We may have a donor…

I’m confused now. Do I trust them to be a donor for us and possibly get let down (again), or do we continue down the already stalled adoption route?

What would you do?

We have 4 months to try with a donor I guess… Or do we focus on the adoption? The preparation for adoption pretty much the same that we’d want to do for having a child with a donor…

 

Oh god I don’t know…

 

This would spin everything around.

Adoption: Alice is the one off work on “maternity” and I remain at work. Which I will admit hurts and I feel like I’ll miss so much.

Donor: I’d be the one to carry the child and go on maternity as Alice couldn’t (or rather wouldn’t because of various reasons) carry the child.

 

Adoption: Our lives are going to be scrutinised to the finest detail and we may not pass their requirements. However, we’d get to give a second chance to a child that really needs it.

Donor: We could have future issues with the donor’s partner if they don’t like it. It’s a lot to ask of someone. After all the heart ache of people letting us down, we’ve stopped asking and closed that door. Now it’s potentially open again. We could experience various issues with having our own child as there’s no guarantees in any situation and I know that having a child over 30 is always going to be more risky. Also Alice has always worried about not feeling as connected to the child or like a third wheel between me, her and the donor. At least in this case, the donor isn’t actually connected to us personally. He’s a work colleague for Al.

 

All I know is I want to be a Mum and it’s been a desperate gap in my life for a long time.

 

I have this app that lets me know what I was blabbering on about 1 year ago, 2 years ago etc and 2 years ago almost to the day as I write this, I posted on Tumblr about it:

“My life feels like it will mean nothing until I have kids. There’s a massive hole where my kids should be.” – Thursday August 4th 2011.

My friend replied to me saying:

“You will have them eventually, you deserve them and you and Al will be the best mams ever! Just kind of be patient and I know that’s hard and sucky but you will get there! I wish I could help xxx love you”

 

That woman is now one of the best mums I know, and has a beautiful girl that spurred me on to look at adoption further.

I saw her baby and knew that if someone told me I was to take over and look after that little girl for the rest of my life, I would love her as if she was my own without question. It really made me rethink about what family really is.

But would I always wonder what it would be like to be a mum through it all, from pregnancy to birth onwards??

I know I appear impatient but I’ve wanted to be a Mum for as long as I can remember and I feel like 32 years is too long.

 

Either way I know we’re getting ever closer, but now I’m confused about what to do.

I feel like I left the donor option behind me forever. I made a conscious decision to write that option off and follow the adoption route. After being so hurt in the past by people letting us down at the last minute, this feels like we’re picking at a scar that’s not fully healed.

 

It may even be irrelevant as he wants to ask his girlfriend. I know I’d say no if I was her, but I’m aware that I can be selfish in that respect.

Maybe she’s a better person than me.

 

I dunno…

Please help.