Kindness Comes in Many Forms

Kindness Comes in Many Forms

We all feel helpless when we witness suffering and pain. In the wake of the heartbreaking events I am reminded that one of the best ways to cope with grief and loss, and begin to heal is help another person who is grieving. This time of year, as the nights grow longer, we turn inward and reflect on where we have been and what awaits us in the New Year.
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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…

Free To Be You and Me

Free To Be You and Me

I’m not sure what possessed me to write it. Was it my cumulative annoyance at People magazine for devoting so much editorial real estate (for instance every week!) to celebrating all aspects of parenthood (hey – how about some equal time, People editors)? Was it the veiled tone of pity, the whiff of judgment, or the implication that there is only one happy ending to the infertility story? But write I did, and I’m glad for what came next… Dispatch from “hell:” It’s not all bad became an Open Salon Editor’s…

Two Movies, One Gets it Right

Two Movies, One Gets it Right

Much has been written about The Help — the book and the movie. The book contents remain locked in my iPad; I downloaded it several months ago but lacked the urgency to tap it open. The movie prompted a different response. I made a point of carving out 146 minutes to lose myself in the film after the August 10 opening sparked new debates about character authenticity and raised questions about who is best equipped to tell the complex stories of women living in a turbulent and racially charged time…

A Push for Conformity Means Less Tolerance of Difference

A Push for Conformity Means Less Tolerance of Difference

There’s real value in being jolted out of the day-to-day routine. In the past week or more there’s been very little in the way of the familiar — either in ideas or surroundings. The combination of Jon Ronson’s new book, The Psychopath Test, a few days caught up in the vastness of New York City, stimulating conversations with compelling companions, and holding a golden ticket to the irreverent and, at times, gasp-inducing musical, The Book Mormon, followed by a few stories in Sunday’s New York Times provided a supermarket of…

Speaking a Common Language

Speaking a Common Language

Spring can bring unique and difficult encounters, as outlined by Lucy, a long-time blog reader from a country in Eastern Europe. I remember the first comment she made, and the instant connection we felt despite the miles and potential language barriers. Some experiences transcend ordinary words or lead to their own language and understanding. Fortunately, she speaks English fluently and shares these thoughts with us today: I am the girl from page 151 of Pamela’s wonderful book. I’m not mentioned by name, but by country. Slovenia.  (I was so excited…

Guest Post: Never Being Called Mommy

Guest Post: Never Being Called Mommy

The latest contributor to A Fresh Start is Stephanie. I first came across her writing on More.com. A few emails later she invited me to join her on a radio segment where we both discussed our respective experiences coming to terms with infertility. In this piece, Stephanie shares her story and sheds some light on “disenfranchised grief” and where she found new strength.  You can read still more stories from strong women in this blog’s Tapestry of Voices category. * * * * “You’re both identical twins?! Wow! How many…