When Unexplained is the Modifier Assigned To Your Infertility

When Unexplained is the Modifier Assigned To Your Infertility

I’m more convinced than ever that women born between 1960 and 1970 came of age at a particularly weird time fertility-wise. Think about it. In 1960 the birth control pill was made commercially available for the first time, and by the time we were wrapping our heads around how babies were made (or not if on the Pill), in 1978 knowledge about what was reproductively possible changed with the delivery of the first “test tube” baby conceived with the help of in vitro fertilization (IVF). Among my cohort, in the…

If You Think You’ve Changed, Just Wait

If You Think You’ve Changed, Just Wait

“At every age we think we’re having the last laugh, and at every age we’re wrong.” -Daniel T. Gilbert, Harvard Psychologist How good are you at predicting who you will become? If you’re like most people you’ll underestimate how much change awaits you. This conclusion was born out in a research paper published in Science and covered in a recent New York Times piece, titled, “Why You Won’t Be the Person You Expect to Be.” Researchers measured the personalities, values, and preferences of more than 19,000 people who ranged in…

Ending Fertility Treatment Equated with Madness?

Ending Fertility Treatment Equated with Madness?

Halloween may be over, but the chance to really scare the living daylights out of someone remains real 365 days a year. How you ask? Declare that you’re stepping away from the path to motherhood — and to really induce shrieks wave around a copy of Silent Sorority. That will seal the deal. Horrors! Of course, the scariness quotient depends on your vantage point. This morning over coffee I read a comment in response to last week’s open salon between a mom-to-be using donor eggs (Keiko) and moi, a woman…

You’re The Author of Your Own Life

You’re The Author of Your Own Life

The life as a book metaphor isn’t new, but it does provide a novel way to infuse some creative license and fresh thinking into what can sometimes feel like stuff happening around and to you. I encourage those wrestling with what comes next to embrace the idea of becoming the author of your own life. At the same time you’re contemplating your own existence and character development, you can also observe more closely those around you and their life story construction. It’s never been easier to do what with all the online forums, blogs…

Narrative Bias and Why Context Matters

Narrative Bias and Why Context Matters

It’s hard not to be caught up in the excitement of the Olympics. Beyond the awe-inspiring athleticism, stories abound. They resonate in large part because we understand the context. The narratives fulfill a hunger of sorts — whether for inspiration, a sense of accomplishment or a common bond that goes beyond country or sport. Not all succeed though. Some narratives simply annoy. Salon‘s Mary Elizabeth Williams piece, “So she’s a mom. So what?,” underscores the weird and prevalent mom worship in today’s society noting: “Moms have been a running theme…

On Sisterhood, Healing and Dreaming Big

On Sisterhood, Healing and Dreaming Big

You don’t often witness those who did (or did not) go on to parent after infertility openly discuss — and I mean with real names not aliases — how infertility impacted their lives. We’re at a pivotal time, in particular, within the tribe of women who faced situational or physical childlessness coming forward with books, PhD dissertations, events, virtual lunches, video chats. Our star is rising. Our stories are being heard. I’m pleased today to share not one but two conversations. The first a Q&A, a video chat, among Women Without…

Post-Traumatic Growth

Post-Traumatic Growth

  A recent conversation with Lisa Manterfield, a fellow blogger, validated the delicate balancing act required when writing about a topic that is deeply personal — one that has wide-ranging impact and carries the power to reshape our sense of identity and the way in which we grow and move forward in our lives. Lisa described watching a frog swim valiantly and hard across a pond before resting and regrouping, and how it gave it her pause to reflect on her own journey. Further complicating matters, we don’t uniformly move in the same direction at the same time. Each of us…

Why Waste a Good Flood?

Why Waste a Good Flood?

This sentiment delivered with a laugh from a grizzled ex-Brit has now become part of my philosophy. The wise words came from a cab driver conveying us to the Brisbane airport on the last day of a two-week, five city journey. Our knowledge of Brisbane had been limited. We knew it was situated on the gold coast of Eastern Australia. On the map it appeared as a convenient stopover from the Whitsunday Islands in Queensland on our way back to San Francisco through Sydney. With few expectations we added the locale to the end of our itinerary. It turned out to hold discoveries in a…

The New Normal

The New Normal

Fifteen years ago this weekend I packed up all my belongings, waved goodbye to Michigan and the life I knew, and headed west to San Jose, California. I was truly a stranger in a strange new land. I knew two people in the Bay area: my brother who lived an hour north in the East Bay, and a long-distance friend who also lived an hour from my new home. I didn’t know the lingo — Silicon Valley buzzwords and acronyms filled a notebook I kept to try to make sense…

Silent Sorority: Two Years Later

Silent Sorority: Two Years Later

Wondering where I’ve been? Busy at the keyboard, among other things. I’ve been blogging and participating in The Ladies in Waiting Book Club, which chose Silent Sorority as its featured book.  It was disconcerting, surreal … actually a bit liberating to read and discuss the contents of the book, mainly because the experience is now so firmly in the rear-view mirror. On the horizon is the two-year anniversary of the book launch (April 18, 2009), and what a two years of growth it has been. I’ve also been immersing myself…