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Would you consider clicking here to nominate me as your favorite Mommy blog? Thanks a million!

Logo design by Christine HepnerIn 2011, I joined the growing and oft-maligned ranks of online writers known as the “mommy bloggers” with my particular offering: grayhairedmom.com. Why, you may ask, did I become a blogger? Even more, you may be wondering, what gave me the gray hair, and why would anyone be interested?

Obviously, first things first, before becoming a mommy blogger, I had to become a mommy. Never one to rush into things, I was 51 when I had my first (and only) child. Becoming a “late life” mom isn’t that easy and help was needed. First, we had to find a doctor who would actually treat us. My (then) boyfriend and I were, at 48, well past the “cut-off age” of 42 imposed by most In Vitro Fertilization clinics. Only one, CWRC, offered a ray of hope: donor egg IVF. Over the next two years, I endured pretesting to determine my general health, nearly 40 blood draws to track my hormone levels, and countless gynecological exams and procedures to qualify. Meanwhile, my husband deposited a sperm sample in a cup. (Not that I’m bitter.)

After nearly two years of tests and retests, battles with my insurance company, and struggles to somehow come up with the 30K needed to pay for the treatment, we were ready for the next step: choosing an egg donor. CWRC has a pool of hundreds of healthy women in their 20s who give the gift of hope to infertile women every day, and yet none of them ever knows the result. The donors and patients at our clinic are anonymous, so the social workers and doctors use a list of our physical and social characteristics and requirements to match us. We heard about our donor’s medical history and background before making our decision. She was told nothing about us, and further, neither she nor we will ever be able to identify each other. No records are kept after treatment is complete.

Using different doctors to keep our anonymity, the donor and I began the process of synching our cycles, which consists of about 40 days of hormone injections, pills, daily visits to the clinic for blood tests and pelvic exams, and finally the actual harvesting of the donor’s eggs for fertilization. My husband deposited sperm in a cup. (Again with the bitter?)

To complicate matters, our first two donors failed to produce the minimum number of eggs, so we had to start all over again by choosing a new donor. But, the third time proved a charm for us, and finally after nearly 2 years, the embryo transfer day arrived!

Ten days later, I knew I was pregnant!

Positive pregnancy test October 10. 2011

We waited until I was 9 weeks along to tell family and friends, whose reactions ranged from disbelief to utter joy. I found one the best high-risk OBs in the country, Dr. Kirsten Cleary, and had a remarkably easy pregnancy. In June, 2011, at 9:07 am, into this world came our darling boy.

I wanted to be a stay-at-home mom for as long as we could afford it, which meant subletting our very tiny, very expensive apartment in Manhattan and moving back to my hometown. It’s a beautiful setting on a lake, but resulted in my husband’s having a brutal daily commute. He would get home each night with barely enough energy left to eat, be with the baby for a few minutes, and collapse into bed. For me, after a few weeks of full-time motherhood, I felt isolated and lonely. I knew I needed an outlet.

Blogging seemed to be the perfect answer. I’ve made a living as a technical writer, and I always wanted to try my hand at other types of writing. I just never thought I had anything original to contribute to the so-called blogosphere, which granted, doesn’t stop a lot of people or me, apparently. But, I wanted to document as much of the journey to parenthood as I could, not only for others who might be struggling with infertility, but also for my son, who may one day want to know more about me, us, and the journey that brought him into our lives. Of course, there’s also every blogger’s dream: someone will read my blog, offer me a book deal, and rescue me from ever having to return to the dreaded corporate cubicle. Or, dare I even dream it, Grayhairedmom.com the Musical….The Tony Awards…Neil Patrick Harris….ahhhhhh.

birth

I wasn’t even sure if I’d make my blog public when I started. I thought of it at first as a way to keep my friends and family in the loop. But my husband, who is a journalist and the author of several books, encouraged me to tell our story in a more public forum. Our dear friend, Christine Hepner, is a graphic artist and designed such a cute logo that I just had to let the “world” see it.

And so, here we are 2 years, 631 followers, and 103 posts later. I’ve learned how to use WordPress.com to create my blog. I’ve registered my domain name, printed business cards and pens, and marketed my blog in forums and mommy-blogging sites. Is it successful? Financially, maybe not. My display ads earned me $16.61 in 2012. Then again, I’ve heard from a few women who found my site and were encouraged not to give up on motherhood quite yet. Two couples have even made appointments at the clinic we used.

When I hear the best news of all from one of my readers, that’s when I’ll know it’s a true success.REDEY8YZDDHD

See me on CNN! http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-1037561

© Copyright 2013 grayhairedmom.com

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29 Comments
  1. momma permalink

    I have been reading your blog ever since you started! I am now days away from my blood test. I’m too chickenshit to take a test at home because it could be negative and I just don’t need the bad juju. Thank you for starting this blog!

    • grayhairedmom permalink

      I can’t tell you how much it means to me to get this kind of feedback! Thank you so much. There have been a few times that I’ve considered stopping, and then I get a lovely comment like this.

      So, fingers crossed for the BEST JUJU!!! PLEASE let me know how it turns out for you. grayhairedmom@gmail.com

  2. Just at a time in life when I was starting to feel completely alone in the whole thought process of becoming an older Mom (I turn 50 on Jul 2nd), I find your site through Pinterest! HALLELUJAH! I was beginning to feel a little crazy for wanting this and guilty for being “selfish” as I’ve heard others accused of. THANK YOU SOOOOOO MUCH! Now I know it is possible. I’m looking at adoption but am a bit discouraged by the $ involved and the age restrictions of parents (my husband is 64). But NOW I’m NOT GIVING UP!

    • grayhairedmom permalink

      Wow! Thank you so much for commenting! Please keep me posted (you can email me directly if you don’t want to make your comments on the site grayhairedmom@gmail.com

      All the best!!!

  3. You are an inspiration. Hope I get there one day soon….

  4. Of course it is not too old. I just do not envy you getting up at night, mine are all sleeping through…WooHoo!!!!

    • grayhairedmom permalink

      We are getting there thank goodness! Thanks for the comment.

  5. Striking Gray Pregnant Mom! permalink

    I think it is sexy to see an older/gray haired pregnant mom! I saw one recently, and she glowed from head to toe and was not concerned about her striking gray. She was beautiful.

  6. I’ll have to keep your blog in mind…I am 35 and haven’t had children yet due to health issues. I’m not sure if I’ll adopt or try to have one of my own. It’s just so frustrating when people ask about why I haven’t had kids or tell me I’d ‘better get started’! I’m glad to know that there are other people who understand.

    • grayhairedmom permalink

      I can’t believe people still say things like that to someone without children. I don’t know how I would react! All the best to you!

      • I’m in the Bible Belt, maybe that has something to do with it. I don’t know…but yes, it is rather annoying. It’s none of their business! Like the people who would go up to my sister and ask if her twins were the result of IVF…I would have wanted to slap someone!

      • grayhairedmom permalink

        OMG, well, I spent a fair chunk of time in Conway Arkansas, so I’m familiar. So very very rude. I know some people were very curious as I started to show, and honestly, I knew that a few of the people who asked wanted to share a personal story with me….to tell me their experiences or of their problems with fertility. Those people, I loved that they asked me. But some others were just plain nosy parkers, and then I wished I had the nerve to slap them!

  7. I love reading your blog, I have heaps of your old ones to go through and find them so real and honest. I am not an older parent but in a gay couple trying to have a baby and I know you read my blog, thank you so much for that. I don’t have a lot of followers but enjoy writing my story and I think its great reading other peoples stories. We are heading into our second cycle of IVF soon and after 10 IUI attempts and 1 IVF attempt and 2 failed pregnancies we are desperate to become parents. Thankfully being 32 and 27 we have time to become parents, we are just desperate for it to happen soon! Thanks again for sharing your blog with me and the rest of the world :)

    • grayhairedmom permalink

      I love your blog, too. I’m always so happy to see a new post in my inbox! Half-way around the world and seemingly different lives, and yet, the desire to become parents brings people together, doesn’t it?

      I can’t wait to hear/read wonderful news on your blog someday soon! All the best!

  8. Troii permalink

    I had my last at 40 and that was pushing my luck. If you are healthy well I guess it’s ok but not really fair to the child to have no one to relate to. Sometimes it is lard to relate to my youngest being 2 generations apart. Hard to understand the new stuff to our way of being raised.. Good Luck though. Be Well

  9. Rachelle DePinter permalink

    Dear Gray, a mutual friend told me all about your story. I was so inspired , not only because i think what you and your husband did, and are doing, to have a family is so incredible, I can also relate. I too met my husband later in life. I always knew i wanted to be a mother. we had to endure many years of obstacles(Dr’s,surgery,tests,IUI’s,ferttility drugs,) you name it,was not easy, put everything off the past year and a half due to no insurance!!! Im not giving up,i know me being a mom is still very much apart of me,even if im 47!

    • grayhairedmom permalink

      I’m so thrilled to read this post! I’m so glad you found my blog. In ny there are programs for people whose insurance doesn’t cover IVF or for those who don’t have insurance. Are you in ny or have you researched these programs in your state? Please keep us posted on your progress. All the best!

  10. Gray permalink

    I have chills just reading this! I’m so excited for you! I’m going to email you directly with some tips.

    You really have just made my day!

  11. roben permalink

    Hi, my Husband and I were just told today that this is our only hope to have a child. I’m 42, but one of my levels is too high to try and attempt IVF(under 10% chance of a healthy embryo) I happened to see your post on WebMD and was thrilled. Congrats and I hope I have a similar story to share one day! :)

    • grayhairedmom permalink

      Please keep me posted! I wish you the best of luck and email at any time with questions or if you just want to talk.

      • roben permalink

        Thank you! After reading about your experience and your success at Columbia, I made an appt for April 30th (1st one available) with Dr. Check. Anything that you might want to share, please do!! It’s a hike for us since we are presently living in NJ, but I like what I read about the program. We also have to pay entirely out- of- pocket so we want to try and go with the best program we can find.If you prefer to email, let me know. Hope you and your family are enjoying this beautiful day!

  12. Hi – you’re never too old and you’re never really financially secure enough – but so what! You just look at your beautiful baby and that’s what really matters. (by the way – we’re all gray haired moms under the hair dye!)

  13. Renee permalink

    hmmmm – are you really gray haired? ;>)

    • Gray permalink

      I would be if not for Tina at Jude and Me salon on the Upper West Side! But I’m thinking of letting it all go now that I’m a full time stay at home mom…..

  14. Addie Gamliel permalink

    Finn is the cutest little boy ever!!! I love my baby cousin!

  15. Cara Snyder permalink

    Great to read! And Love the logo!

  16. emily permalink

    i think everyone can relate to the stress of everyday life but adding a baby into the mix is AMAZING . how do you do this?

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