The Exhilaration of Acceptance

The Exhilaration of Acceptance

It doesn’t matter what age, what ethnicity, what country we hail from — we all desire respect, acknowledgment and acceptance. This very human need manifests itself on playgrounds, in communities and in our day-to-day encounters.  It doesn’t need to be a grand gesture. In fact, it’s the gentle gesture that often leaves the largest impact. A friendly smile, a nod of the head, an extended hand or kind word can change someone’s day. It can also change someone’s life. I know. I’ve been that timid girl on the playground. I’ve…

Two Wiser Women On Society and Motherhood

Two Wiser Women On Society and Motherhood

  Welcome to all on the virtual book tour for Life Without Baby: Surviving and Thriving When Motherhood Doesn’t Happen.  (Don’t have your copy yet? You can get one here. Don’t worry, we’ll wait…) ~~ Right. Let’s get to it, shall we? Author Lisa Manterfield has done a tremendous service for those grappling with this question: “What if I never get to be a mother?” Smart, resourceful and deeply thoughtful, Lisa turned her search for an answer into a book that will undoubtedly benefit many. Take it from one who learned the hard way: you could not fashion a better…

First We Get Really Uncomfortable…

First We Get Really Uncomfortable…

Life would be a whole lot more comfortable and easier to navigate if it unfolded neatly or predictably. Alas, that’s not the case for most of us. Mix in a contentious, complex topic (e.g. the inability to reproduce) and watch the discomfort rise. It’s understandable. Beyond the biological unpleasantness, there is upheaval to our sense of order and what’s the ‘right’ way to proceed — directly (for those living with infertility) and peripherally (for those made to think about it). Add a dash of conventional wisdom, a little religion, some…

Tribe: Fitting In and How We See Ourselves

Tribe: Fitting In and How We See Ourselves

Our sense of who we are and how we fit in — or don’t — alters over time. The gawky growth phase — whether as an adolescent or as an adult going through complicated transitions are the most memorable — usually due to the mess involved. In the midst of it we feel awkward, restless and just plain out of sorts. Choose your metaphor. A eucalyptus tree shedding its bark.  An ugly caterpillar. A rumbling dark storm cloud. The growth and change that accompanies these periods is sometimes fast and…

Hello Strangers: I’m an Infertility Survivor and I’m Not Ashamed to Say It

Hello Strangers: I’m an Infertility Survivor and I’m Not Ashamed to Say It

Here is Part III of the ‘Bitter Infertiles’ conversation — on the anniversary of the day the podcast took place. This where we own up to our experiences as ‘Infertility Survivors.’  Mo:   One of the things I want to ask you ladies … people always focus on the negative of, as Pamela said, it’s not really ‘child-free living’ it’s more choosing not to parent so … Pamela: Let me clarify, I didn’t choose not to parent, I had to come to terms with the fact that parenting wasn’t part of…

Keeping it 100: Identity Crisis and Emotional Cratering in a Mommy Mad World

Keeping it 100: Identity Crisis and Emotional Cratering in a Mommy Mad World

In Part II of the ‘Bitter Infertiles’ podcast transcript (Part I here or listen to the podcast here), we talk infertility trauma, the assault to identity and misplaced mommy glorification… Mo: One of the big issues we discussed last month with a therapist was the devastating effect that infertility can have on the emotional well-being. There’s a point where you … you can be so far gone that you don’t know how to pick up the pieces. Pamela: Even though our paths are not in any way the same, there…

Infertility Community’s Black Sheep: Women Who Don’t Achieve Motherhood

Infertility Community’s Black Sheep: Women Who Don’t Achieve Motherhood

Some ‘no-holds barred’ conversations stick with you — like the one Loribeth and I engaged in on surviving infertility and the search for peace in a mommy mad world. (Listen to the podcast here).  Not achieving motherhood is a taboo topic in the infertility community, which is why we were unlikely guests on the tongue-in-cheek named podcast ‘Bitter Infertiles.’  The conversation was all the more surreal because both hosts, Cristy and Mo, were pregnant at the time of our discussion. To their credit, the hosts openly shared their fears and tackled…

New Philosophy: Everything To Gain

New Philosophy: Everything To Gain

How is it that the mind is so much more agile and able to turn over ideas and philosophies with such ease … in the pre-dawn? With rain falling softly against the window at 5am, and my iPad lighting up the room, I swiped my screen to find a Sunday Review piece called Abundance Without Attachment. With an engaging narrative, writer Arthur C. Brook challenged readers to consider the ‘Christmas Conundrum.’ That is the competing notions of generosity and goodwill this holiday season juxtaposed with the crass commercialism and related…

Silent Sorority Gratitude and a Look Ahead to a New Generation

Silent Sorority Gratitude and a Look Ahead to a New Generation

Thanksgiving gets all the attention and big league association with gratitude, but it’s the quiet, daily acknowledgement of thanks that actually serves us best. That’s one reason I want you to know that not a day goes that I don’t give thanks for the friendship, insights and kindness of all those who have taken the time — over the past nearly eight years — to drop by and share here (and, previously at Coming2Terms). In today’s noisy, fast-paced world of social media with ‘drop in and out’ online communities, 24/7…

Strong At The Broken Places

Strong At The Broken Places

This week my TV viewing intersected with life in a meaningful way.  Larger than life characters reminded me that in the long march of time, it’s how we cope with what comes our way that defines us. In turbulent times, sanity and clear thinking can be in short supply. That was made abundantly clear in The Roosevelts.  More than a history lesson, it overflows with wisdom, lessons learned and inspiring tales of overcoming adversity.  Eleanor Roosevelt is a stand out. Her fearlessness, empathy and no-nonsense pragmatism make a large impression….