Around four years ago, in the fourth year coming out of treatments, I found myself in a vehement phase of mourning. The pull towards expressing my love and losses through gardening continued to grow more fervent. It was then I created our candle and flower ritual to mark the conclusion of our final failed attempt – and to chauffeur me through winter in the absence of gardening. I was pulsing on a regular basis with the need for physical symbols that could mark, prove and memorialize. Read more
I used to have this notion of the life that would follow my heavy grief and recovery years. Read more
A couple of months ago I took myself to the dentist. Fitting in a tooth cleaning while the Covid infection rates remained low, I found myself in what felt like a surprisingly normal conversation.
In an innocent exchange of “work and business during Covid” stories, I shared a slice of how things were going in restaurant world. And the hygienist shared how thankful she was to get back to work in July. Staying at home with her toddler had not been good for her mental health. Read more
Well folks, here we are. In a worldwide crisis with no known ending. A crisis that entails a major loss of control, an utter disruption of our normals and a smashed view of the future. We are dealing with a disease that was initially not taken too seriously, a condition whose effect on individuals is intensely swerving and has the capacity to leave major wreckage in its wake. And all in a situation where social isolation remains one of the few ways to lessen bad outcomes, where much time and energy is expended re-learning daily life basics.
We’re fumbling our way through a global pandemic. And for me and many like me, it all feels so familiar. Read more
Strange things have been happening lately. When I’m out in the world now, something is different.
I find myself catching glimpses of someone I don’t fully recognize. She is emerging full force but I have yet to really see her. Life’s obstacles and hardships can serve as quite the blinders sometimes. Read more
We Are Worthy
I miss you! Life has been demanding a lot from me lately, leaving little time for reflection and expression. There are positive resolutions to some of my challenges and obstacles on the horizon though, so I’ll take it. I know I’m late to the party, but I just had to jump in on today’s World Childless Week theme in spite of my personal constraints. And even though it’s already yesterday in the UK. Hope you have or will get to check out WCW’s many offerings. More from me soon, I hope.
For those of us acclimating to living without the children we expected, certain unyielding realities become abundantly clear amid the implosion of our formerly held world views.
As we relearn the world through our involuntarily childless lens, we are brought face to face with the universally stringent conversational patterns that thoroughly omit our experiences and viewpoints.
It was a golden, crisper than usual mid September day as I made my way to my periodic neurology appointment. I chuckled as I found the office, a drastically cozier and quieter place than the bustling hub where I had always seen my doctor prior. This other location provided a much more cooperative environment for someone in the first part of an autonomic nervous system disorder, as I was now discovering two years and nine months in and approaching its merciful resolution.
I relayed as much to the friendly receptionist as succinctly as I could. “It’s funny what we don’t realize as we’re coping, isn’t it?” Read more
Fertiles Behaving Badly
“Do you know the date?” A woman to the left of me queried as I signed in at the office window.
“Uhhhhh, I’m usually the last person to know. The 7th? But don’t fully trust me on that.”
(Her) “The 7th?”
(Me) “Yeah, how does that sound?”
“Good enough I suppose” she said as we acknowledged each other with a knowing shrug and giggle.
Confirming it was indeed the seventh, she then pushed her phone into my line of vision.
“This is my husband” she stated.
I nodded and responded “Oh, okay”, leaving some space for what I sensed was to come. Read more
Shrieking expletives soon filled the air of my cozy yoga space, along with yoga blocks boomeranging off the walls and a few crow poses raised in shoulder injury defiance.
This had never happened to me during a practice before. I’m all for working within my body’s limits and even find the excursion intriguing. But something else was going on. And so, as my likely wiser self hovered in the background gently whispering over and over, “Easy, tiger – don’t make it worse”, another aspect of my wiser self knew I needed to let it rip. Read more
As an involuntarily childless infertility and IVF survivor, the best Mother’s Day gift I can offer my Mom is my own well being
I know it has been awhile, dear readers. More on my unexpected hiatus from blogging and the pieces above later.
For now, I‘m happy to report that I made it through my end of the week travels relatively unscathed by any Mother’s Day hoopla. A few people with whom I’m in regular contact even remembered to not bid me a “Happy Mother’s Day” and upgraded to the somewhat inaccurate but much more welcome “Have a nice weekend” instead.
Or at least I’d like to think so. I regularly check myself as I’ve been prone to fantasizing about people giving a shit over the past five or so years, often to find out they were not even dipping their big toenail into my shoes. But assuming it was intended, these seemingly micro considerations render a difference in one’s well being for the better. Read more
I haven’t been playing coy. At least totally not on purpose anyway. I’m well aware of what time of year it is.
The often bargain basement notion of “focusing on something else” has functioned as a dismissive annoyance for the better part of my healing process. “Focus on the life you DO have” – when that was thrown my way for many years people may as well have been poking me with a fire iron. So disparaging and unintelligent in its simplicity, isn’t it? While ultimately that was what I wanted to move towards coming out of treatments (because really, who HASN’T thought of that), the trip from point a to point b is nothing short of a brutal, painstaking labyrinth. And that’s putting it nicely.
Not to mention that when you are putting yourself through the wringer to try to have a child, and when you are coming to terms with the fact you will never be a parent, these things ARE major parts of the life you do have. This is not a trip to Vegas, people. What happens in baby making and involuntary childlessness land does not merely STAY in baby making and involuntary childlessness land.
And there are always those people around you hyped to find you a “distraction”, especially when your pain reaches its peaks and needs to be felt and expressed most. A distraction deemed for you when it is really for them, as if it’s possible to focus on anything else but trying to comprehend your missing children and make sense of this new life you didn’t ask for.
It seems though, I’ve finally figured out an application for the peripheral “focus on something else” modus operandi (perhaps there is a time and a place and a grain of truth to almost everything). Yes boys and girls, so far this year I’ve found that “focusing on something else” during the Christmas season may be my way to go for now.
Please do let me explain. Read more