My IVF journey has left me with some treats that just keep giving lol. For the most part I have moved through the cycle, and am grateful that I have goals, unrelated to pregnancy and birthing and raising a child, to guide my life forward. I am also accepting that not falling pregnant was a good thing for me. I seriously think I would have lacked the necessary patience to survive. 

As a long time single person, people are surprised that I have no real desire to be partnered. I think I am just too selfish/self-absorbed/happy. However, my IVF journey did leave its mark once a year on this state. 

I struggle with my birthday. The last time I celebrated big was about five years ago. I was going to relaunch the Tina Birthday Festival last year but the investigation was raw and I decided to wait until it was over (little did I know that it wouldn’t be over for another eight months). 

This year, in transformation, I can’t afford to throw the big party (saving it for my fiftieth). 

I dread the day. The one day that I believe everyone should feel really special, I haven’t for a while. This is the only day each year that I feel very alone, like I’m not important to anyone really, that I’m not a priority. My doing for the most part. There are only so many birthdays you can organise yourself before you are just over it. 

I understand that most of my friends are part of a couple. I understand that they are each other’s priority. I think though, that there are different expectations of single people. I am expected to be available for others and that somehow, things are easier for me to juggle. I have the energy to do and to be for others more than I can realistically expect from them. IVF highlighted this for me. Meh. Ridiculous, really. 

So, a couple of weeks ago I started to feel sorry for myself (yes, I’m usually strong, empowered and inspiring but I’m also human lol), just wishing someone would say, “Let’s do this for your birthday,” and I would do it and feel loved. Then I chided myself and reminded myself that if I wanted to celebrate it, I should celebrate it and organise something. It’s just that my low self-esteem can’t take people saying they are unavailable to celebrate my birthday – childish I know, but I never used to feel this way so I need to work out what it is that shifted. Maybe it’s just that I don’t feel that I’m valued as much as I feel I should be; a lot of my friendships are one sided – I’m there for guidance and support only. 

Anyway, as I unravel the threads of insecurity, value and worth, I was reminded that the universe provides when we trust that it will (and sometimes even when we don’t). 

One of my friends bought me something I’ve wanted for ages, a Himalayan Salt Lamp, and I should have trusted this turning point. It was something I could not justified fy spending money on myself. 

I graciously accepted. 

And then a week later I received a message from another friend ordering me to dinner for my birthday. I have graciously accepted this too. My instant response was to say no, it’s all good, but my head said, this is what you wanted, we have provided it, accept it. 

And so I have. 

I’m now not dreading this birthday. 

It’s funny how things sometimes work out. 

Thank you M and N. 

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