Michelle, co-founder of Orchid Experience, sat down with her mom, Gail, and asked her to share her experience as a mother seeing her daughter struggle with infertility. Their conversation sheds light on how a mother would do anything to help her daughter, but sometimes all she can do is be there to listen and support her any way she can.
Michelle: “We’re designed as human beings to procreate. I had never thought about that before. I had never thought about how that innate design kind of drives the desire to have a baby.”
Gail: “I hurt for you, because you were struggling. Mothers always fix things for their kids, no matter what age they are or become. […] I couldn’t fix it, there was nothing I could do.”
Michelle: “Part of the challenge when I went childfree was reconciling the checklist of well, shit my life doesn’t resemble the status quo of what it means to be successful as an adult. There was a lot of guilt that my life doesn’t resemble the status of giving my parents grandchildren. That was hard, I felt really guilty about that.”
Two main highlights from this conversation Michelle never knew are:
Her parents also had to field the painful question ‘how many grandchildren do you have?’, and how much pain that brought them. And just like Michelle, with time, it became easier to answer the question.
Her parents feel just as much freedom as Michelle does living childfree. Unlike parents with grandchildren, Michelle’s parents are able to enjoy their retirement without having to worry or feel guilty about being away for extended periods of time.
Listen to the full conversation here.