By April Kinney
“You will be lucky to carry a baby to term.” I remember hearing my obstetrician utter those words in his office at my first pre-natal appointment. I knew he meant well. He was focused on making sure I was monitored regularly to avoid any unforeseen complications. At the time I was 47 years old and considered a high-risk pregnancy. But what he did not understand was the physical and emotional depth of the journey I had undertaken just to sit in his office, pregnant.
I was one of those women who was focused intently on building a career and my independence. In my mid-20s I told myself that I did not want children. I worked in a male-dominated engineering construction industry that rewarded hard work and dedication and overlooked women who returned to the workforce after maternity leave.
At the time I was 47 years old and considered a high-risk pregnancy. But what he did not understand was the physical and emotional depth of the journey I had undertaken just to sit in his office, pregnant.
I did meet someone and marry, but it was short-lived. We were on different paths and inside I knew it was not right. The upside was the divorce allowed me to focus even more time and energy on my career. Any thought of becoming a mother was pushed into the depths of my unconscious.
After my first divorce, I took 10 years and redefined my life. I was still focused on my career but was doing more of what made me happy. I learned to run and ride a bike. I ran five marathons, and dozens of half-marathons and shorter races. I completed five half ironman triathlons and competed in numerous cycling races. I learned to dance because music spoke to my soul. Morning visits to the gym became my new normal. I started exploring meditation and mindfulness. My heart was filled with happiness and pride for the woman I had become.
From that place, I found my next partner. I was 38 and full of life. Everything appeared to be going well until I realised he was not the person he appeared to be. Even if I wanted to have children, I knew he was not the right one. It took me several years to gather the courage to leave that relationship. I was 45 and well beyond my supposed childbearing years.
Not having a child was one of those life decisions I regretted. But wishing I had made better choices was not productive or healthy.
I started exploring meditation and mindfulness. My heart was filled with happiness and pride for the woman I had become.
My relationship ended, and my career plateaued. As a result, I focused more time and energy on my immediate family and my health and wellbeing. Lifting weights, running, and cycling made me feel strong and alive again. Spending time with my family solidified our bond and connection even further. I deepened my meditation practice and started attending regular sound healing events. I felt a new sense of peace and happiness in my life. I accepted the decisions I made and learned to appreciate all the beautiful opportunities and experiences in my life.
In that time of self-love, I met a wonderful man. He restored my faith in men and became my best friend. Over time, our relationship blossomed, and we made a commitment to each other. He asked me one day if I regretted any of my life decisions. “I have always regretted not having a child,” I said. He replied and said, “What if we could have a child?”. That question sparked a conversation I never expected.
I made an appointment with my doctor to understand my current level of fertility and health. Health and fitness had always been a priority, so I was confident my health was good. My fertility level was good, but I was still 46. My doctor recommended I work with a fertility specialist and acupuncturist to maximise my chances for success. I quickly booked the appointments and started down the path of conceiving a child.