I had a rather nasty moment during the week that kind of knocked me for six. I call it my ‘Sliding Doors’ moment, aka the British American movie back in 1998, where it follows Gwyneth Paltrows’ character living in two kind of parallel universes, with two very different life outcomes..
Most of us at some point have probably had a Sliding Doors moment where you realise a decision you made at some stage in your life has greatly affected the outcome of where you are now. And sometimes that outcome might be confusing to live with. Hard to know whether begrudgingly, it should be filed under ‘Big Time Regrets’.
Around the same time that this movie came out, I was leaving a long-term relationship, putting the chance of marriage and babies with this man, firmly behind me.
What I didn’t foresee then was that I might have been putting at least the baby side of the equation out of my life forever. I wonder if I’d known back then that all these years later, that I would still not have found a man who would fit into my life as partner and future parent, and knowing that, would I have stuck around?
My sliding door opened on me this week as I sat in the office of our family business, when my brother piped up behind me and said ‘Hey look at this!’
I turned around to see him pointing at his computer screen, which had on it two large photos of the most beautiful baby I think I’d ever seen. ‘Wow, who’s that?’ I asked already kind of envying the lucky new parents.
‘It’s Justin and Kate’s new kid,’ he replied in what I quickly decided was just a tad on the thoughtless side. My ex boyfriend’s first child. And not just his first child, but the child that looks the spitting image of himself.
Now sure most people might say ‘for heavens sakes that was so long ago that relationship’, but in truth it was the last real relationship where future and the big life commitment topics were for me at least, ever genuinely on my plate.
And I chose to go, to leave him and our dreams behind.
Of course it wasn’t quite that cut and dry and I did leave with huge sorrow and dragged it out for as long as I could. We weren’t making each other happy but we did love each other very much, but not I thought, enough to make happy parents to a child.
As the day wore on last week, with the perfect, gorgeous child’s face etched in my mind, I became engulfed in a cloud of regret, that perhaps I had made bad decisions in my life, and destroyed my chance at having my own perfect child.
So as most women, and some men do when they’re in the eye of an emotional storm, I called my girlfriends and cried like a nut down the phone. And although they were all full of support and tender wisdom, the one thing they all offered as a ray of hope, I couldn’t take on. And I won’t.
‘You know you can still have a baby if you want. You can do it on your own.’ Yes, it is true that more and more women are opting for sperm donors in order to conceive.
Or, and this is an option I find more disgusting than anything I could fathom, there are those that get themselves pregnant by tricking a guy into unsafe sex, or conveniently encouraging ‘so called passionate’ reckless sex, all with the aim of getting what they want. Which I believe is absolutely sick!
I believe it’s a bit of a worry the way society is becoming so accepting of women going into single parenting as a decision before conception, because that decision is about themselves, not the child.
Just because something can be done doesn’t mean it should be done. For me, my child needs a father, and I will not make a decision to remove that.
EVER HAD A SLIDING DOORS MOMENT?
WOULD YOU GO IT ALONE WITH A SPERM DONOR?