Tenacity, Resilience and Grit

Tenacity, Resilience and Grit

There was a time when, like Scarlett O’Hara in a scene from Gone With the Wind, I felt trapped in a bad dream — lost in pea soup fog. I knew I was off course, and it was far from clear how I would find my way forward. There was a visceral sense of being unmoored.  I carried with me an uneasy sense of aimlessness. IVF ‘alpha pregnancy’ losses and disenfranchised grief once hung heavily around me. Without a north star, a beacon, a light house — something discernible, I…

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….

We Don’t Heal From Suffering We’re Changed By It

We Don’t Heal From Suffering We’re Changed By It

We usually want to believe we’ll be grace under pressure, stoic and even sunny in the face of adversity. The truth is we never really know how we’ll respond to unexpected, searing pain and loss — being truly in despair — until we find ourselves facing it head on.  Even then we don’t have any confidence that we’ll muster the strength to get beyond it — to push forward. Some do and some don’t. I am reminded how much suffering has the power to change us when I review my…

When Life is Interrupted By Failed Fertility

When Life is Interrupted By Failed Fertility

Missing from many of life’s conversations where infertility is concerned is the male perspective, which is why I was both pleased and surprised to see that the first questions asked during the Q&A portion of The Cycle: Living A Taboo Forum came from men. While I don’t remember the exact dialogue that unfolded, I do recall the powerful emotions conveyed as one man took the microphone and shared that he and his wife were approaching the end of their fertility treatments. Swallowing hard he recounted the toll treatments had taken…

One Small Step For Infertility Awareness, One Giant Leap For Society

One Small Step For Infertility Awareness, One Giant Leap For Society

My expectations for September 27 and The Cycle: Living A Taboo were very high — not only for those of us presenting at the forum, but for those who would join us. What transpired surpassed my expectations. As the evening drew near, we speakers assembled in Tribeca from Los Angeles, Silicon Valley, Spanish Harlem, Boston, and Manhattan. After we checked the mics, the camera crew took their positions, and the tall theater doors opened. In came those bringing genuine interest and (later) palpable support. The seats began to fill with…

The Wisdom of Experience and Value of Seeing the Whole Picture

The Wisdom of Experience and Value of Seeing the Whole Picture

Update: You can read the “The Grief of Infertility” #losschat transcript from the Twitter Chat earlier this week. The discussion is contained on Storify. Great sharing — we even had a man’s perspective. I’m not sure when I first started watching but every seven years I tune in for a viewing of a documentary series — the latest being 56 Up. It began in 1964 with a show looking at the lives of adorable seven-year-old British children. It’s unique in that every seven years since most all have appeared again…

Grief Is a Form of Love

Grief Is a Form of Love

It’s been a few years since I first began to pick up the pieces broken and splintered off in the tempest of infertility. Because there were no instructions for reassembly, no “how to cope with infertility” imparted by elders or learned through societal observation, I’ve had my fair share of trial and error. There were times when I tried to force a piece into place in a well-intended but bungled attempt to hurry the rebuilding process. For instance, feigning happiness at pregnancy and birth announcements before I’d fully come to terms…

Why Do We Pretend Away Infertility?

Why Do We Pretend Away Infertility?

Humans don’t do well with emotional discomfort of any kind. This has been proven time and time again, but no more so than with infertility. It can be traumatizing on many levels, but I guess I didn’t realize how difficult an infertility diagnosis can be on other people. They just do not want to see it, hear it or talk about it. They prefer to pretend it away. Are you cured? Boy, I sure hope so because that means I can finally relax. This universal sigh of relief was made…

Let’s Change Some Attitudes

Let’s Change Some Attitudes

“I don’t know how to deal with this…” That’s a common response, albeit usually unspoken, for people in the throes of reconciling an infertility diagnosis. Curiously, those are also the same eight words that pop into the head of someone who isn’t dealing directly with infertility when they learn someone close is swept up in the dreaded infertility maelstrom. And this begs important questions, such as: How can we talk about infertility, how can we help someone process infertility if we lack a common language or socialized behavior to do…

Your Sanity Matters Much More Than You Think

Your Sanity Matters Much More Than You Think

This post is dedicated to new readers — those who found their way here from the Bitter Infertiles (podcast Episode 20). If you’re new to this blog, I hope you’ll see it’s quite pleasant here. Contrary to conventional wisdom, flowers grow. Laughter is encouraged. All in all, we strive to make this blog a place where women, mostly those who are not mothers through chance or circumstance, gather. We kibitz about the world as we as see it and how we can make it better. Sometimes we discuss movies, books,…