I couldn't do it.
So I made my husband do it.
I guess it's a lot like that earlier post about our wedding vows and the letter that we expected to write to our donor.
This time, though, I had him make the call to our donor agency.
It was just too hard to make the ultimate call to end our journey. But I knew I couldn't go forward unless I had some confidence that it really would move forward.
Too many disappointments with too similar of circumstances in too short of time.
So he told them we just couldn't move forward. And we wanted our money back.
People ask me how I feel about it .. do I feel good about the decision.
Not even a little. Not even for a second.
I feel angry and frustrated and confused and disappointed.
At one time or another, I've heard just about every one of my girlfriends tell me they were "done" having children. They felt their family was complete. They didn't want to go through childbirth. They didn't want to go through the baby stage. They didn't want to overextend themselves financially. Their career was too taxing.
I'm never ever ever going to feel done.
There will always be questions.
There will always be regret.
There will always be anger and frustration and confusion and disappointment.
Always. Forever. Without question.
That's something I've never really faced before.
I felt more peace when I made my toughest career decision -- leaving jou.rnali.sm for what I thought would be forever. I was in a bind financially. I was working at a place surrounded by uninspired and unmotivated people with no interest in helping me grow. It was time for a drastic change, so I quit.
Then the phone rang with an opportunity to make double the money and write a book. I thought it was the end of my ne.wspa.per career.
By all accounts, it should have been. You can't go to PR and then come back again.
I did that for 15 months and then made the easiest -- and best -- decision of my professional life:
Cut my salary in more than half and get back to where I belong .. in a ne.wsro.om.
If you look at the hours I work and the pay I get, I think my hourly pay is still lower than what I made in 1991-1992. And I've never regretted it for a second.
Here's the difference between that choice in 1991 and this choice in 2008: In 1991, My decision was based on changing something that needed changing. I had to get out of a bad situation.
Today, my decision maintains the status quo. It is based on fear of more disappointment.
I'm not sure that's a great way to live a life. It's not the way I do things. But I just can't bear the thought of going through this again. It's too hard. Too emotional. Too costly with a relatively low rate of success.
My head won over my heart.
But my heart will pay the price.
Maybe some surprising opportunity will present itself. Maybe my phone will ring because someone knows someone who has embryos leftover from IVF. They've been frozen for years and the couple wants to donate them. Maybe we'll win the lottery and pursue adoption. Maybe I'll wake up one day and decide that one kid is the perfect number, even if she'll never have a sibling to share the excitement of Christmas morning.
Or maybe I'll just move on. Reinvest in my career. Take more free time for myself. Maybe travel to Europe with my daughter when she's a teenager because, well, we won't have anything holding us back.
And while all these things could be good -- even great, there will always be that part of me that wonders about that second baby that was never born.
And maybe, at some point, I'll feel like that's OK.
That just doesn't seem likely.
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