I almost missed the greatest show on earth.
I was 46 by the time I had my first child. Late by anyone’s standards.
It wasn’t that I didn’t want to have children sooner, but my body didn’t cooperate. I had the famous IUD device that in my 20s famously rendered millions of women sterile. I was an unlucky member of that club.
Tons of kids run in my family. My mom had 10 kids and 8 of my younger siblings already had a few. I made the assumption that I could have kids whenever I wanted so I was shocked to learn I couldn’t have a family of my own. Every family get-together was all about the joy of children and the talk about the challenges of raising them. When I found I couldn’t conceive, it made me want it more. Few things in life feel more empty than a couple desperately wanting to have children and can’t. It’s a long term heartbreaker.
At 40 I made up my mind to use the science that rendered me infertile to change my lot. Invitro wasn’t common then and was more guessing than fact. It was expensive and thank God I had my apartment and a good real estate market to come up with the money. Every failed try felt like the death of a child. But 8 tries, 23 embryos and
6 years late, Bill and I finally gave birth to a healthy little boy Tom. Becoming a mother was a miracle and it continues to be the happiest day of my life! Tom is all grown up now and a wonderful guy like his dad.
10 years after Tom was born, at the ripe old age of 56, we adopted our little Kate. It seemed a lot easier. Adopting Kate was second happiest day of my life! Kate is 16 now and very kind. She says I’m too old to be mean to.
For me, Mother’s Day is about heart felt gratitude. Not children being grateful for their mom who they naturally take for granted, but about me being grateful for the joys, the struggles and the extreme privilege of becoming a mom. I almost missed it. I’m so, so grateful.