A Few Good Eggs

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A lot can be said for an egg. It's a delicate balance of a strong outer shell – or permeable membrane, hearty contents which can lead to life, nourishment or strength, offer a blend of chromosomes ranging in number, and can be housed both internally and externally.

I was recently caught off-guard after reviewing some marketing materials released by a local Fertility Clinic. Egg donor applicants must be "between the ages of 21 and 32…" It was the latter number was caused me to pause, and reflect on this cutoff. Having recently turned thirty, I now pay more attention to age limits which are set ahead of me. Turn forty; must schedule mammogram – check. Fifty candles; make appointment for colonoscopy, check-check.

Never did I plan on reviewing the heartiness of my eggs at the ripe age of thirty.

To be clear, I am not necessarily interested in scurrying to my local harvesting clinic to offer up my internal pearls; however, as a single woman, I have often thought about my future – and whether or not children of my own would be a part of this portrait.

My mother was 28 when I was born, and my father, 36. As society may have it (in 1982), I grew up knowing that my parents were older than most of my friends parents, and made a pact with myself that I would have children at a younger age. As life would have it; that time capsule has come and gone, and now re-sealed to prepare for better things ahead.

My priorities to-date have been to focus on my career, to establish myself within my civic community, supply support and love to family and friends, and of course – to dabble in the ever-evolving dating circuit. According to ForbesWoman and TheBump.com, 20% of American women now wait to have their first child until after the age of 35.

Last year, the story of Marissa Mayer – her rise at Yahoo and appointment as CEO while pregnant, was a buzz about the community of women professionals and mothers, alike. Very few women have the means and the opportunity to take a "short maternity leave" and to continue at the level of professional fortitude as Marissa Mayer, or Sheryl Sandburg, COO of Facebook. While it sounds lovely to have your celebratory motherhood cake, and to eat it too…this is rarely a feasibly reality for most women.

As single women everywhere ponder their dating lives, careers, involvements and future expectations and opportunities, I wonder how many also consider the vitality of their child-bearing necessities.

Apparently, post age-32, there are very few good eggs circulating in the world of fertility. The University of St. Andres and Edinburgh University in Scotland report that by the time a woman has reached 30 years of age, she's lost 90% of her ovarian eggs.


While this number was shocking to me, I can certainly think of a multitude of friends and colleagues who have been blessed with pregnancy – well beyond their 30th birthday cake. I don't dispute the medical facts that call attention to changes in our bodies as we age, but I also am one to firmly plant my stance that women should not feel pressured to become mothers at a given benchmark – or as a trade-off for certain life ambitions.

I thrive in a bustling business environment, have had opportunities to accelerate my career, engage in worthwhile and fulfilling charitable work, and maintain a very robust social calendar. As young women are being encouraged to pursue elongated and elevated careers, how do we balance this teeter-totter of age limits and expectations?

I am not writing to shun those who choose to have children and settle at younger ages, nor do I wish to push women toward childbearing into their elder-years. I do; however, condone women who chose to respect their desires and lifelong dreams. This quote by Sarah Ban Breathnach seemed appropriate.

“Our deepest wishes are whispers of our authentic selves. We must learn to respect them. We must learn to listen.”

If we listen to the core of our being, we will be guided upon the right path. No age, no fertility clinic, and no Tarot card reading, can give you this kind of roadmap.

In my humble opinion; overall, I'm a good egg. With healthy ambitions and a burning desire to enjoy a fulfilling life. My eggs-appeal has no expiration date. Be it 30, 32 – or beyond. I choose, simply…to be fabulous.

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