It Pays to be Cute… Or So They Tell Me

Let me tell you something about stand-up comics and people in the business of making other people laugh in general: We’ve never had any delusions about being beautiful. It’s not that you can’t be funny and physically beautiful (whatever that means) at the same time. It doesn’t mean you have to be hideous to be humorous. It just means that very early on in most of our lives, we realized like most people do, consciously or otherwise, that pretty takes you places. Maybe it made you the teacher’s pet or the aunt’s favorite. So for those of us who were never considered pretty (whatever that means) we one day decided consciously or otherwise: “Okay, I’m not earning any points with my sweet smiles or dimples, let’s see what else I got.” I’ve always really admired people like Jodie Foster and Brooke Shields who are physically beautiful, and talented, and strong, and have gotten great educations. They didn’t let the rest of themselves rot trying to skate by on the “Look at me. Aren’t I beautiful?” card.

Then there’s my niece, Carla. She’s as cute as a button. It’s not an opinion. It’s a proven medical diagnosis. First there was the eye glasses place. We went in together. Everyone in the store turned to look at her. It was like Virgin Mary had just walked through the door. Never mind the other stumpy, kinky-haired Jewess holding the door so she could walk through it. Three sales people walked up to us. Are you kidding me? I’ve been going to this optical store for two years. Since when do they have three employees? I usually have to wander into the back area and beg someone to come help me when they’re done with their coffee.

“Good Morning. How may I help you?” I thought they were going to break out in song.
Carla was in need of a pair of glasses. I remember this sales guy, Steve. When I was here last month he measured me for glasses by holding up the ruler from across the room, closing one eye, mumbling, “close enough” and putting the ruler back in his pocket. But now Steve was a changed man. He was like a born again optician. He spent twenty minutes measuring Carla’s face. Then the saleswoman did the same thing to confirm his numbers. I really wanted to say: “Hey, you guys are much better customer service people than they had here last month. They really sucked!”

Everyone was so attentive and courteous to Carla. They brought her dozens of frames to try on that would look just right with her eye color and the shape of her face. Even the salesman who was working with another customer brought some over: I was dying to ask: “So when did you guys start working on commission?”

They lavished Carla.
“Here, take this glasses case. Your glasses won’t be ready until next week, but sometimes we run out of these cases. And they’re the nicest ones so you want to be sure you get one.”

Here I had to intervene:

“Look, I paid you people $300 for my glasses, and I’ve been carrying them around wrapped in tissues for two months because you keep telling me you have no glass cases. Could I possibly get one of those?”

Okay, so I got a dirty look and the case was tossed in my general direction and I had to scoop it up before it hit the floor but it still felt like a victory.
And the optical debacle isn’t the only example.

I won’t even go into the whole incident at the minor league baseball game. The wind-up of it: An usher walked over without saying a word and handed a baseball from the game to my niece. Twenty thousand fans were in attendance that day but he handed the ball to her without her as much as putting a hand up to request it. I wondered if the ball had been fouled back and knocked me unconscious if he would have called 911 or just pretended he didn’t see me slumping to the floor or hear my head hitting the concrete, and keep on dusting off the seats for the cute girls.

I’m also wondering now after reading over what I’ve written if it’s petty and obnoxious that I’m jealous of my own niece… And if I should have maybe, perhaps, started this whole post by telling you that she’s seven.

Please consider subscribing to this Laughing IS Conceivable blog. Also, if you are dealing with infertility, or know someone who is and would like to better understand their plight… take a look at my eBook: Laughing IS Conceivable: One Woman’s Extremely Funny Peek at the Extremely Unfunny World of Infertility. (Both can be accessed on the right- over there– up a drop— yeah, right there.)

We All Get Along with Our Co-Workers Until…

Most of us can go to work every day and get along well enough with the majority of our co-workers… until someone screws with our snacks. The sad thing is, in my case, it wasn’t even a snack. It was the case of the disappearing ice pack that I use to keep my snacks chilled.

I work in a medical clinic. I admit, if I saw a co-worker walking around with my ice pack on their fat lip because a patient got miffed about a co-pay and beat their face to a pulp, I might feel a little bad. But even then I’d probably be thinking: “Geez… it’s a medical facility. That’s the only ice pack you could come up with?”

So here are all my co-workers, pretending to care about my lost ice pack and even worse, pretending to look for my lost ice pack. Five women, shoulder deep in the freezer on top, refrigerator on bottom, all huddled in there, joining forces supposedly determined to solve the great ice pack mystery. They searched high and low, often elbowing each other out of the way in the process. A couple of times one would uncrouch herself from the refrigerator only to get bunked in the back of the head with the freezer door by one of her teammates.

I stood back and let them proceed with their mission. And I’ll be honest, call me a cynical New Yorker, but something didn’t ring true about the whole scene. It reminded me of when you’re in third grade and the teacher calls on you when you didn’t raise your hand and have no idea of the answer so you “search” for the answer: On a blank page in your notebook, out the window, in the braid of the girl in front of you, until the teacher mercifully gets the hint and moves onto someone else.

And still these women, risking hypothermia to save the life of my little ice pack, out there all alone in the cold, cold, world, proceeded with the charade often offering absurd possibilities: “Maybe it fell on the floor.” “Check the garbage. Maybe someone threw it out accidentally” All the while I’m scrutinizing each one thinking: “One of you shady motherfuckers took my ice pack.”

It’s textbook. Arsonists hang around to watch the fire burn. Murderers help search woods for people they’ve folded neatly into the trunk of their car. Ice pack thieves return to the scene of the crime and join in the hunt.

I fought the urge to say: “Here, let me help” while pushing them all aside and hurling each item out of the refrigerator a handful at a time, until there was nothing left in there but a light bulb.

Instead, I stood back with my arms folded to give room for the crook and her accomplices-after-the-fact to continue perpetuating this obvious fraud, I’m looking around the tiny kitchen and wondering where kitchen security was when I needed them. You know, the self-appointed kitchen police. Every job has one. You know, the woman who is so fed up with the rest of us, she has 8 signs screaming at you from the top of their little paper lungs all over the 6 x 8 room:

“Clean up after yourself! There is no maid!” And if you didn’t get that subtle hint, three feet away there’s:

“Keep this place clean! Your mother doesn’t work here!”
“Any food left in the refrigerator on Friday at 5PM will be thrown out!”

She’s very vocal, yet nobody knows who’s responsible for those signs because she puts them up when nobody’s there and they’re all done on a computer so coincidentally nobody can analyze the handwriting.

I remained there, watching the five asses of varying widths sticking out of the refrigerator/freezer and thought to myself: “If this whole fiasco goes on much longer I’m going to add my own signs: ‘Return my ice pack or else…!!!’ and ‘Please be considerate of your co-workers. Refrain from wearing black thong underwear under white clothing!!!’

I planned my strategy. I figured I’d smoke out the perpetrator. I’d embarrass them into returning the damn thing. To everybody I came into contact with for the rest of the day I casually mentioned:

“My ice pack is missing from the freezer. It’s about yay big and dark blue. If you happen to see it…” and of course I prefaced this plea with: “It’s really not a big deal, but…” to all 87 people I told.

I stopped short of printing up a photo I had on my phone of us at a picnic, drawing black magic marker arrows pointing to the ice pack, and wallpapering the facility (even the waiting room) with the copies with the caption:

“Have you seen me?” (Reward: If returned, I’ll consider not publicly humiliating you by sending an email with your picture to everyone who works in the building.)

And guess what I found in the freezer, right where I left it, bright and early the very next morning?

Hmmm… I looked around the medical clinic at all the nice, friendly, cheery staff and thought: “Like I said: ‘One of you shady motherfuckers took my ice pack.”

My Insurance Company vs My Bank: It’s a Tough Call

I found myself this week dealing with the age-old philosophical dilemma: If my insurance company and my bank were both on fire in the middle of the night, and I happened to be passing by, and I could save only one, which one would it be?

The solution is obvious: I would back up a tanker truck filled with gasoline within half a block of both, then jump out and run like hell while the engine was still running. So I guess the answer to the riddle: Whom would I save? is “me”.

This is what happened. My husband signed up for the new healthcare back in January and couldn’t get them to send him a card to save his life. They kept saying he had coverage but he couldn’t get the stinking insurance card. They sent him about a thousand letters about various stupidity. You’d have thought they could have just shoved that flimsy, fake-looking paper card in one of them. (I guess the insurance companies can’t go totally paperless… You’d have no card.)

So while we were all mixed up in the great card debacle, that was nothing compared to the battle of the payments. As I understood it, the payment was due on the first of the month but it wasn’t considered to be late until the last day of the month at which time they would cancel the policy. Got it? Me neither.

So when I paid the payment in January, they made me pay for two months because apparently you’re paying a month ahead. Got it now? Right. Me neither.

Okay so my husband sets it up with them on the 25th of last month that the payments will be taken out on the first of the month. They verbally handshake on it and it’s a done deal… Until 20 seconds later when they took the money out of our account… or tried to. You can’t take out what ain’t there.

Now to my bank. Suddenly I notice that I have a (meaning singular, uno, one) new charge on my checking account: An overdraft fee for 35 dollars. Okay, if I have an overdraft fee, doesn’t it stand to reason that I should also have the charge for the insurance payment on my bank account? Apparently not.

I called the bank. Well, it seems, according to JoJo, that the bank has the option of paying or not paying the charge when there are insufficient funds… So on this one they flipped a coin and decided not to pay it…fine… but they still charged me an insufficient funds fee. Of course, since you didn’t pay the insurance company, my funds weren’t insufficient… until when?: Correct: When you charged me a 35 dollar insufficient fee charge.

After JoJo explained it to his own satisfaction he shut up. I said nothing. We sat in silence. He was obviously waiting for me to congratulate him on his brilliant knack for recitation. I just sat there, wondering if it was quiet for a moment, if he would replay what he’d just told me in his head and think:

“Wow. What I just said makes me sound like an imbecile.”

Finally JoJo reached deep into his pockets and reimbursed me a whopping 50 percent of the fee. Meanwhile, back in Gotham City, my husband took a shot at tackling the insurance company again. We could just envision them trying to get the money out every fifteen minutes around the clock until the first of the month. And there would be the bank, fox-trotting with them, keeping up with them step for step with insufficient funds fees- bankrupting our future generations, 35 bucks at a time.

Yes, when it comes to getting their money, the efficiency of both institutions is unparalleled. I guess the ones in charge of straightening stuff out are in a different department altogether. Somewhere in the way back of the building next to the ones who send out the paper insurance cards.
****
Please consider taking a look at my ebook to the right there: Laughing IS Conceivable: One Woman’s Extremely Funny Peek into the Extremely Unfunny World of Infertility. Free sample chapter available via the book icon or at http://licthebook.com

Yoga: Could it BE More Stressful?

If you haven’t visited my blog in a while, take a look at the last post regarding a big change in blog topics. (“This Blog Has Taken a Turn… Hopefully not for the Worse.”)

Anyone will tell you that yoga is great for relieving stress. I beg to differ. I’ve never been so stressed out until I started taking it. The first day was a dilly. First of all, every instructor loves to whisper. (I’m guessing there aren’t many New York Jewesses such as myself who teach yoga. I, for one, am not genetically pre-disposed to being a good whisperer. “YOU IN THE BACK! WHO TAUGHT YOU HOW TO DO THAT POSE? IT’S ALL WRAAAAWNG!”) When I first walked into the yoga room/studio, whatever, it was dark.
“What happened? They canceled the class?”

Apparently it wasn’t darkness afterall but tranquility. Then the instructor spoke… very very softly. It was like she’d started the volume on her inner remote control on a 7 and hit the minus button three times. I couldn’t make out a word she was saying. And it was too dark to try to read her lips. All I kept thinking was: “Crap, I hope she’s not calmly telling us there’s a fire in the building and we have to evacuate immediately.”

I had flashbacks of going to the cheapy movie theater in Florida with my father and he and all of the other 80 year olds would bring their ear phones that were supposed to enhance the sound of the film. All you would hear the whole movie were the rustling of baggies containing smuggled-in snacks, the ear-splitting squeal of sound-enhancement devices when they were turned up too high and the entire audience “whispering” in their New York whispers to the person next to them: “WHAT DID HE SAY? CAN YOU HEAR WHAT THEY’RE SAYING? WHY IS EVERYONE TAWKING SOOO LOW?!”

So getting back to yoga hell. Among this serene environment created by and emanating from the instructor and wafting around the room to the others, there I was wreaking of negative energy mumbling to my neighbor trying not to move my lips: “She’s not really saying anything. She’s just screwing with us, right?”

She responded: “Socks”
I thought that was somehow yoga code for: “Shut the hell up”. I was pretty sure she wasn’t using the acronym: “Serving Our Community with Kindness” Finally, I looked down and realized I was the only one in the room who wasn’t barefoot.

Having spent most of my life in a big northern city, I haven’t had the opportunity to run barefoot much. When we moved, and I mentioned to a woman in the park that her kid was running around without any shoes or socks, she said:

“It’s okay. You’re in the South now.” To which I replied:

“You have no broken glass in the South?”

So anyway, I pulled off my socks wondering whether the class would abruptly change the “barefoot” rule once they’d all gotten an eyeful of my yellow toenail.

A friend of mine who takes yoga elsewhere said they have a rule that you’re not supposed to eat before coming to class. I assumed it was so that you would somehow be cleansed and purified and more connected to your inner spirit before entering the sanctity of the room. She said she’s pretty sure it’s so that nobody lets out gas mid-pose.
*****
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This Blog Has Taken a Turn…Hopefully not for the Worse

I started this blog a few years ago with the intention of using my background in humor (as a stand-up comic, newspaper humor writer, and general all-around smart-ass) to de-stress people dealing with the horrors of infertility that I’d personally endured- specifically the devastating frustration, anxiety and sadness that can easily accompany the bastard. That’s always been my first goal and priority and still is.

The problem is: There are many great writers who have wonderful imaginations and I’m not one of them. When I’m not just fresh out of a crisis, it’s hard for me to remember the battle let alone feel it in my guts. If I can’t remember it or feel it in my guts any longer, it’s hard for me to be amusing about getting through it. I’ve always compared my type of humor to having the chills when you’re sick. (It’s not as depressing as it sounds. I don’t think so anyway.) When you have the chills it’s not because you’re cold inside. It’s because your body’s so hot from the fever, you’re shivering to try to push out the heat. That’s how I feel about laughing at infertility. Unless you’re some kind of a nut, you don’t think it’s a hilarious topic. It’s more like there’s so much pain involved sometimes, your mind and body have to laugh to push it out… just as an act of self-preservation… a way to keep some perspective so you don’t totally lose it. (I’ve since found out that that’s not why you have chills when you’re sick but the real reason doesn’t fit with my analogy so screw it until I come up with a better one.)

So what I’ll be doing now with this here blog is just broadening my scope of topics. I’m definitely going to be sharing any articles about infertility and humor etc and I’m hoping that any new topics I write about won’t send all of you screaming into the streets: “What the fk is this woman doing???!!!” The idea is that if I keep writing specifically about infertility, I’m just going to be so stale and boring it’s going to put everyone to sleep. Hopefully if I write about stuff that’s more current in my life and it’s funny, it still will help people de-stress from infertility… and anything else that might be irritating you that day.

I’m still very sensitive to the infertility issue. You’re a jackass if you’ve lived through months and months of that and don’t feel any empathy for everyone in that rickety boat. I’ll be writing a lot about work issues, husband issues, sister issues (that would be a decade-long blog in itself), traffic issues, random annoying people issues… whatever… but I’ll avoid any topics which are obviously going to be unsettling to those dealing with infertility.

I really hope you stick with me and still find humor and comfort in Laughing IS Conceivable.

Thanks!!
(Ps. If you click the book cover to the right, the option to get a free chapter of my ebook is just being installed. It will be working within the next week. The entire ebook is free at Amazon if you have access to the Kindle Library. www.amazon.com/dp/B007G9X19A)

Infertility & Reality TV: The Reality IS….

My guilty pleasure in life is tuning in to watch the real housewives of wherever occasionally (okay, every week). My husband is conditioned. The second he hears the voice say: “Last time on The Real Housewives of…” out he goes. He’s perfectly syncronized. The very same moment the Bravo channel comes on, so does his jacket. He’ll sit outside and brave arctic temperatures, losing all feeling in his limbs until he can creak the door open and hear: “Next time on the Real Housewives of…” then he’ll count to twenty and come in, touch his frozen fingers to my face to show me how much he’s suffered and race upstairs to lock himself in the laundry room where the heat is strongest before something important on his person snaps off.

If you’ve followed any of these shows or similar ones you’ve seen a lot of fertility issues: On the Kardashians, the Braxtons and now The Real Housewives of Atlanta.

I watched intently as Kenya Moore who is forty plus talk to a doctor about her options. As was inevitable, she asked the doctor how all of these celebrities are getting pregnant at 42, 44, 46. I sat on the edge of my couch waiting to hear the doctor’s reply: She said quite diplomatically: “It’s possible that they might have had a little help.” Bam!

A woman’s fertility starts to drop as early as thirty. But somehow we all like to believe that that’s just one of a thousand things that the rich and famous are exempt from. There’s a concert that’s been sold out for months but looky-here, there they are dancing in the front row. Maybe they won tickets from a radio station. Maybe they diligently pressed “redial” for twenty minutes and were caller number 40. They also don’t seem to be concerned about their wedding venue already being booked. They met somebody in July, got engaged in August and that castle on that private island that they’re flying their 600 closest friends to two weeks later for the wedding just happens to be sitting there vacant awaiting their arrival. Their table is always ready at the most exclusive restaurants. No reservations necessary. (Last week we waited an hour for a table at IHOP. One may ask why the wait was so long. One may ask why we actually waited.) And of course, celebrities don’t have to worry about a minor detail like being too old to get pregnant naturally any time they want.

So is the answer: They can get pregnant at 52 because: A) They are in such great shape from taking spin class 8 times a day and feasting on kale chips that they’ve not only staved off menopause but spun and kaled their wrinkled eggs into pristine condition that resemble those of a 20 year old or B) They’ve used the eggs of a 20 year old donor whom they’ve snuck in through the back door under the cloak of darkness and the reproductive endocrinologists in L.A. are working around the clock to give them the same treatments as we mere mortals and most important… Most of what we see and read about them is utter bullshit and rightly so because most of us grapple every day with what to tell or not tell those closest in our lives. Who needs millions of Entertainment Tonight watchers all up in our ovaries? .. You decide.

For more humor at Infertility’s Expense, please check out my eBook: Laughing IS Conceivable: One Woman’s Extremely Funny Peek into the Extremely Unfunny World of Infertility- icon to the right or http://licthebook.com $2.99 USD or Free at Kindle Library

Will You “Come Out” in 2014?

My husband has a friend who referred to 2013 as a -let’s just say- a “something” of a year. You can imagine how vulgar the word he used is, if I, of all people, can’t even bring myself to type it.

Like every year, lots happened in 2013. I think we can all agree that amidst all of the events: People trying to recover from natural disasters, a royal baby being born, beloved celebrities passing away– the one event which will stand out in the forefronts of all our minds when we look back at 2013 will be when professional figure skater Brian Boitano announced he is gay.

I said it. Now what’s say we all just tip-toe away from it. The point is: Will this be the year you “come out”? Many of us who go through infertilty don’t have enough to worry about with needles, tests, expenses and everything else inherent to the infertility rollercoaster. A whole lot of us also struggle with what to tell or not tell people.

“Do I tell them that I’ve been trying to get pregnant for a while?”
“Do I tell them that I have tube issues?”
“Do I tell them we haven’t been able to do IVF because we’re broke?”
“Do I tell them there’s a male factor?”

There are only two things to consider to determine what you’re going to tell people:

1) What do you really want to tell people? and

2) Who the f are these people anyway?

For some crazy reason, we (that’s us females) think we always owe people explanations. We don’t. Screw ‘em. And, sorry to say, mostly it is a “female” thing.

Could you imagine your husband or boyfriend, or whatever he is ever saying: “I feel bad I haven’t said anything to Bob. We’ve been friends since third grade. He’s always shared everything with me.”?
(If you can imagine those words coming out of his mouth, you may wonder if he has more in common with Brian Boitano than you thought.)

From my vast experience (I’m a woman of the world you know) a guy could know another guy for 20 years and all he knows about him is a vague idea of where he lives… or where he used to live. Some guys dealing with infertility really do want to talk to other guys going through it but most don’t feel compelled to spill their guts to their poker buddies, or their neighbor, or the guy in the next cubicle.

So this notion of: “I really should explain why a) I haven’t felt like hanging out b) I didn’t want to get together for the holidays with all the aunts, uncles, and cousins c) I’d rather not go to that baby shower for that woman at work”… Bullshit. Guilt is for suckers.

For me, the list of aaaaallll the people I absolutely had to tell every aspect of my fertility journey to was a list of one: My husband. I figured that if he was decent enough to offer to father this future child, the least I could do was tell him everything. Besides, he attended all my appointments and I didn’t have the heart to tell him to put his hands over his ears while the doctor was talking.

And that’s it— Nobody else is entitled to know anything. As you can tell, I’m a chatty sort. Yet going through infertility made me very monosyllabic.

“Are you coming to the baby shower?” “No” (I’ve answered. Now watch as I turn away and get smaller and smaller into the distance. You have a follow-up question? Sorry, I’m already too far away to hear you. I walk faster than you think.)

“Are you trying to have a baby?” “Yes” (I’ve answered. Now watch as I turn away and get smaller and smaller into the distance. If you squint, you can still see my hair blowing in the wind.)

“You’ve gone to a lot of doctor appointments recently. How’s are you feeling?” “Fine” (Eat my dust.)

Oddly enough, at work, where you might not be that emotionally attached to anyone in particular, you may have to give up some info just so you don’t get canned while rearranging your schedule if it clashes with your appointments.

But that’s an exception not a rule. Sure people are nosy… call it “curious” if you’re feeling charitable. So what? Everyone–close to you or an acquaintance, family member, parent, sister– is entitled to well, nothing… or exactly what you want them to know and not another syllable. So put on some running pants, lace up those sneakers, limber up those muscles in anticipation of your next heartfelt discussion about your “situation”.

(** My eBook: Laughing IS Conceivable: One Woman’s Extremely Funny Peek into the Extremely Unfunny World of Infertility can be purchased for $2.99USD at the icon to the right, at http://licthebook.com or on Amazon /Amazon UK. It is also available FREE at the Kindle Library)

Leave Me the Fa… la la Alone

Okay, let’s get out the Ba Humbugs right now. The great thing about every infertility support forum, site, blog, kvetchfest ever written is it’s a safe place for everyone to scream their combined heads off. I’ve written many posts over the years about holiday time. Let’s face it: Among all the merriment and joyous TV commercials (I’m still waiting for my car with a giant red bow on it) holidays can be tough. They’re tough for lonely people, stressed people, poor people and… infertile people (who, by the way, are usually at least two out of the three).

You know the expression: “Suffer in silence”? Jewish people have never heard of it. Therefore, the thought of sucking it up and going to a holiday gathering while having fertility issues, only to listen to people I don’t really want to spend time with anyway talk about me behind my back in front of my face about why I don’t have kids yet or even worse, actually asking me to my face… or passing the evening looking at pictures of their kids while their kids are right there at the little folding table next to me… absolutely not. I’m not setting myself up for a night of that bullshit. No chance.

There are always two main routes to take when telling your relatives why you don’t want to celebrate with them this year. One is to tell them the truth. The other is to tell them a lie. They are equal. It does not matter which you choose. The objective: Getting yourself out of a bad situation. They want you to join in the festivities. You don’t want to. The bottom line is not to attend. It really doesn’t matter what you say. As long as you keep that goal in mind: You don’t intend to attend. No matter what you say and what they say back you must never be swayed. You must remain focused. You must remain tunnel-visioned. No matter what they say, you must drown them out with the mantra in your head: “I do not intend to attend.”

The truth may cause you pain. A lie may cause them pain. ‘Tis the season of giving. In other words: If someone must be sacrificed- Better them than you.

If you really feel like it’s time to “come out” to someone, the truth may be the way to go.
“Aunt Jen, Joe and I have been trying to have a baby for a long time now. I really don’t feel like being around all those people for the holidays. I really don’t want to answer a bunch of questions from the cousins. I’d also rather not see their kids running around all night. I hope you understand.” Short, sweet, and most important: You’re not attending.

If you tell the truth, your options of what to say or not say are limited. The truth’s the truth. A lie on the other hand has endless possibilities.
For example:
“I’m sorry we can’t come over for the holidays this year”:

“I’m allergic to 1) your cat 2) your cooking 3) your perfume 4) your boyfriend 5) your stank attitude.”

“I don’t celebrate holidays. I just became a Jehovah’s Witness last Thursday.”

“We have no way to get to your house: 1) The car broke down 2) The train de-railed 3) The bus went down an embankment and 4) No, Aunt Sue can’t stop by and pick us up on her way. Because didn’t I mention? We don’t live near her anymore. We moved last Tuesday. (It’s been a busy week. We relocated and converted.)

“What is that you ask? Would it be easier for us if we made everything over at our house this year so we wouldn’t have to travel? No that wouldn’t be easier. Because I don’t want all of you loud, annoying, greedy people with your empty array of Tupperware to take home all the leftovers of things that you didn’t bring, in my house.”

And that is option three of the “I do not intend to attend goal”: 1) The truth 2) A lie 3) A cathartic happy medium.

Please consider more holiday yuks at infertility’s expense by checking out my ebook to the right or http://licthebook.com. It can also be given as a gift for someone else going through infertility or someone you’d like to better understand what you’re going through. www.amazon.com/dp/B007G9X19A Free download available at Kindle Library.

8 Days of Infertility Lights

Hanukkah is to infertility as gay is to being an artist. When you’re among your own, no explanation is needed. When you’re among others, no explanation will suffice.

Having been Jewish my whole life, and infertile for a sucky stint, how much the two surprisingly had in common was apparent around Hanukkah.

Try telling a Christian person who has never known an even slightly Jewish person (or so she believes) what it’s like to be Jewish.

Try telling a fertile person who has never known an even slightly infertile person (or so she believes) what it’s like to cope with infertility.

“Why don’t you have kids yet?”
“No particular reason. I just haven’t gotten pregnant yet.”
“Oh. Have you been trying?”
“Yes.”
“Oh. So why don’t you have kids yet?”
“I don’t know. We just don’t.”
“You know they have treatments for that now. I know.”
“Are you sure you’ve been trying?”
“Damn sure.”
“You shouldn’t be waiting this long you know.”
“I know.”
“It’s harder to get pregnant when you’re older you know.”
“I know.”
“Although Hollywood stars get pregnant well into their sixties you know.”
“I know.”
“Have you tried having sex somewhere else?”
“Like where?”
“I don’t know just somewhere else. Or maybe you don’t have enough sex.”
“We have enough sex.”
“Well maybe you’re having too much sex: He’s exhausted his sperm supply.”
“I don’t think that’s possible.”
“Well, then why aren’t you pregnant yet? Your cousin Sarah got married after you and she’s on her third.”
“I know.”
“And if Sarah has two and a half, you should have at least one: You’ve always done everything better than she has.”
“If you say so.”
“You’re probably just worrying about it too much. My cousin Amelia couldn’t get pregnant either and then she and her husband James went to Jamaica and she came back pregnant. The baby doesn’t look anything like James though, he does look a little Jamaican………anyway.”

While I happily admit that the vast majority of Christians would never have the following conversation, I actually have had this conversation:

“So, are you ready for Christmas?”
“We don’t celebrate Christmas.”
“Oh, what do you celebrate?”
“We celebrate Chanukah.”
“Oh. Did you get your tree yet?”
“We don’t get a tree. We don’t celebrate Christmas.”
“You don’t celebrate Christmas? I’ve never heard that before.”
“You just heard it ten seconds ago.”
“You don’t celebrate Christmas? All Christians celebrate Christmas.”
“We’re not Christians.”
“Oh. So why don’t you have a tree?”
“We don’t celebrate Christmas. We celebrate Chanukah.”
“Oh. Are you going to church that day?”
“No. We’re not Christian, we’re Jewish.”
“Oh. what church do you go to?”
“We don’t go to church. We go to synagogue. But Chanukah isn’t so much a religious holiday as it is a potato pancake eating, chocolate coin eating, jelly donut eating while you’re shlepping through the desert holiday.”
“Oh. Did you get your tree yet?…”
“We don’t do the tree thing. We’re Jewish. We’ve been around for zillions of years. This is the first you’ve heard of us?

And of course, Chanukah and infertility are both all about miracles… and eating to celebrate and/or mask intense emotional pain.

If you’d like a little more humor to get through the holidays/weekend/infertility daily life… Take a look at my ebook over there to the right. $2.99 USD or Free at Kindle Library. Thanks… http://licthebook.com

It’s Infertility, Charlie Brown!

As an annual tradition, I post the following at this time of year. Readers seem to enjoy it and it gives me a chance to recover from my Halloween candy hangover.

(Ebook info to the right. Reviews there + more reviews & chapter excerpts by clicking on book icon at
www.amazon.com/dp/B007G9X19A)

Okay, now I’ve done it. I’ve never hidden the fact that I love the autumn and every corny thing associated with it: Football (not the least bit corny), Macy’s parade (cool with many corny parts), fall foliage.

So in the past few weeks, I’ve written about going through infertility later in life (“The Autumn of My Fertility”) and spooky infertility stories for Halloween.

I can’t see what could possibly be left to write about that’s autumn-related except, of course for the obvious: Charlie Brown.

This long lost Charles Schulz classic, “It’s Infertility Charlie Brown!” was shown on TV for years in between the Halloween and Thanksgiving specials.

I’m not ridiculous enough to suggest that Lucy Van Pelt grew up and battled infertility. With her stank attitude, likely the only men who would even talk to her would be a chiropractor or an orthopedist treating Charlie Brown for ailments caused by decades of her pulling away that damn football. (Then again there are lots of men who seem to adore crabby women: Have you seen “Bridezillas?”).

Here’s the episode in its entirety. It takes place in the classroom. Hope I don’t give anybody a Peanuts allergy. (ar ar ar):

I present to you: “It’s Infertility Charlie Brown!” (more…)

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