Middle School Prep- Triplets Style

My triplets already started middle school this week. I know every parent would be tempted to follow that statement with: “My babies are getting so big!” Or… “Where does the time go?” but I’m not surprised that my kids just turned eleven or already graduated from elementary school. This middle school thing is just another blur to me which is a small part of a much bigger blur that began somewhere around 2005 when I first got pregnant.

The night before school started– middle school eve, erev middle school– each of my kids prepped for the big first day in his or her own inimitable style:

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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.
If you’d like to get emails about Laughing IS Conceivable please subscribe to the right. Also consider my ebook at the right: Laughing IS Conceivable: One Woman’s Extremely Funny Peek into the Extremely Unfunny World of Infertility. (Free at Kindle Library)

How to Get Relatives Off Your Back & Out of Your Ovaries This Holiday Season

I’ve been writing the past few weeks about how to best dodge impertinent, indiscreet, and very personal questions from our so-called family and friends during this holiday season.

Relatives are a necessary evil at holiday time. There are three categories of kinfolk:

1) Those we can’t wait to see.
2) Those who are great to see a few times a year and
3) Those who make you certain that in a past life you stole from a children’s charity and their visit is your little holiday gift from Cousin Karma.

Sometimes infertility turns holidays into one big ugly sixth grade dodge ball game for us. You spend family gatherings ducking and side-stepping personal, obnoxious, stupid, and embarrassing questions.
And you spend (did I just misspell “waste”) weeks before the family powwow anticipating who’s going to ask those questions and trying to duck and side-step those people altogether.

Here’s the solution: Present them with a nice gift. A book. Wait! I know you probably think this is about me trying to hustle my ebook which I do on a regular basis. You don’t have to give them my book. It would be damn well appreciated. But my book might not be the one they need to read. (Did I just type that? My fingers must be possessed. Where’s my eraser?)

The point of giving them a book is to minimize your angst and your pain. Sure, it’s gift tag has their name on it in your handwriting, but make no mistake, it’s a gift you’re giving yourself.

It doesn’t really matter when you give the gift. You can do it a week before the family brouhaha. Call it preventative medicine. Instead of waiting for the holiday joy to nose-dive: When you’re mid-holiday soiree and the yentas corner you in the kitchen and your only response to their barrage of conception questions is to squirm and hyperventilate.

Days before the big family gala, give the book (even better– send it–what you pay in postage you’ll save in hand sanitizer). And make sure you include a note in big bold, neon letters:

“I’m really not comfortable discussing what we’re going through, but this pretty much covers it.” OR

“I know you’ve been concerned that I’m not pregnant yet. I think you’ll really enjoy this and it will explain it better than I can at the moment.”

I recommend you start your statement with something to the effect of: “I’m not ready to get into my personal business…”

By starting off with a statement like that you’re swatting the gnat before it starts buzzing in your ear. So if after reading your generous gift, they come back and say:

“I was shocked by chapter 8! You’re not really doing what’s in that chapter are you?!” Now you can just hit “rewind” and say:

“Remember two weeks ago when I said I wasn’t ready to get into my personal business? Yeah…well…ditto this week…Bye”

The point of giving them your present is: You’re giving them lots of information about your infertility situation without giving them any information about your infertility situation. For example..just an example..not hustling: If you give them, let’s say, my ebook, I’m spilling my infertile guts to them so you don’t have to. I don’t care if they know my business. I’m not related to them. Screw them. They mean nothing to me. My ebook, I’m told, is fast, fun, humorous reading. Your family and friends will get what it’s all about, and what you’re going through daily, but it’s not profound enough to leave them feeling overwhelmed or freaked out.

But maybe you don’t want anyone to yuk it up over infertility. Maybe you want them to better understand your particular issue that’s causing your infertility. Then find a book written by a Reproductive Endocrinologist.

Or maybe you want them to understand the emotional toll it’s taking on you better and a more serious book by a psychologist is in order.

The point is: No matter what the title of the book you give them, the sub-title is: “How to Get You Off My Back & Out of My Ovaries…(You Nosy B)”

Below are just a few books out there you may want to consider for yourself this holiday season or as a gift which, as we said earlier…is really a gift for you too. You just can’t lose with this system. It’s fool-proof. Remember that ebooks can also be given as a gift via Amazon if the giftee has an account. These are just ones I know about. Nobody’s giving me any cash or sexual favors to tell you about them…except the last one.

1) Dr. Richard Marrs’ Fertility Book

2) On Fertile Ground: Healing Infertility (Helen Adrienne, LCSW)

3) The Fertile Secret: Guide to Living A Fertile Life (Robert Kiltz MD)

4) Conquering Infertility- (Alice Domar Phd)

5) Laughing IS Conceivable: One Woman’s Extremely Funny Peek into the Extremely Unfunny World of Infertility
(Yes this IS MY ebook. It’s my blog for chrissakes. Throw me a bone will ya?)

Holiday Shopping Weekend: What? No “Infertile Friday”?

Skip next paragraph if you’ve had it up to here reading about my ebook.

(If you’ve wanted to help someone understand what you’re going through with infertility but don’t want to get into your own personal details with them, consider my ebook: Laughing IS Conceivable: One Woman’s Extremely Funny Peek into the Extremely Unfunny World of Infertility as a gift. $3.99 on Amazon. Free at Kindle Library- Chapter Previews & Reviews: www.amazon.com/dp/B007G9X19A or click icon at the right)

Stores are really revved up for this holiday shopping season. This year, they didn’t wait until midnight or 4am to start peddling their wares. On Thursday, Thanksgiving…Somewhere between the time everyone finished getting drunk on turkey and football and had time to sleep it off on the couch, the stores already had busted their doors open and were welcoming every form of payment. I’ve always prided myself in being too good to be caught up in the melee. I’m just…well…above it all. This year was different. This year I needed a TV.

My husband called me from Wal-mart to see if I needed any parmesan cheese. Apparently that’s where they kept the masses waiting to purchase a cheap TV at 10 pm: In the parmesan cheese aisle. So everybody was bucking for our business this Thanksgiving weekend. From the Thursday Turkey Trot at Wal-mart to Black Friday to Cyber Monday… Everybody was fighting to give us the best holiday deals. Everybody except the fertility clinics… Where the hell were they? Continue reading

Holiday Gatherings: Mastering The Art of the Escape

(If you get a chance, consider subscribing to Laughing IS Conceivable for updates and discussions on posts etc. If you get a second chance, look into my ebook: Laughing IS Conceivable: One Woman’s Extremely Funny Peek into the Extremely Unfunny World of Infertility. Available on Amazon for Kindle and all Kindle devices (Ipads, phones etc) Free at the Kindle Library. Reviews on http://licthebook.com. More reviews and chapter previews by clicking the book icon @www.amazon.com/dp/B007G9X19A)

When I moved out of NYC for the first time in my life, I took with me, as all NYers do, a healthy dose of paranoia. When I took a job in an office, my first thought as I scoped out my new surroundings was how I didn’t have an escape route. (Hm, I’m a writer who was taking an office job. And I freaked out because I had no escape route. I wonder what that means. Anyhoo…)

I mean, here I was working in a huge building where it seemed like anybody could walk in and out as they pleased. Strangers could come to your cubicle, stand two feet away from your face, and you had no exit, no physical way to get away from these people in case of emergency….Much like a holiday gathering. And this is why planning your family gathering escape routes ahead of time is vital.

Let’s say it’s Thanksgiving and your curious aunt, (feel free to replace “curious” with “nosy”) or sister-in-law or second cousin corners you between herself and the stove or her husband and an end table, or her chunky son and the vase with the dusty silk flowers that seem to be growing and starts a conversation which the pit of your stomach tells you is a’goin’ down the ol’
“So…Why don’t you have a baby yet?” path … This is an emergency. And you need an escape route. Maybe your physical well-being isn’t in danger like paranoid NYer me in the office, but certainly your mental and emotional well-being are in jeopardy.

So what are your options at one of those black tie, high end holiday bashes that your family throws every year?

1) The Ol’ “There’s that person across the room whom I’ve been dying to talk to since March” standby.

Two choices here. When the person in front of you seems like they’re revving up to pose some embarrassing questions about your fertility either:

a) Wave across the room and yell at no one in particular: “Hey! When did YOU get here?” or if you want to emphasize the urgency to ditch this person yell: “Oh, you’re leaving already?! Wait! I have to talk to you!” and head in that direction. You may not want to name a specific person because your aunt probably knows the same people in the room that you do…On the other hand:

b) Screwing with her works well too. “Hey Judy! I really have to talk to you right away!” You and your aunt have both been attending these holiday shindigs for the past 17 years. Let her spend the evening wondering who the hell this Judy person is all of a sudden.

2) The “Imaginary vibrating phone” trick–

So you’re considerate enough to keep your phone on “vibrate” during the holiday festivities. But wouldn’t you know it, just as this aunt/cousin/sister-in-law starts rambling on about her kids and how lucky you are you don’t have any, you glance at your phone and it’s a call that you must take. Not only must you take it…but you must take it in private (hint hint) and/or you can pick up the call in front of the aunt/cousin/sister-in-law but then quickly dash off to a place where you can hear your fake call better.

Or if you’re more daring and want to get rid of the person for not just the duration of the party but weeks to come as well just feel your pocket and say: “Oooh something’s vibrating down there. I can’t wait to be alone so I can find out what it is.”

She’ll probably knock over you and a lamp to get out of there first.

This Halloween: Bewaaare of Idiots

(If you haven’t seen my ebook yet, please take a look….it’s $3.99 here..and free if you’re part of the Kindle Library. Reviews when you click on the book icon to the right or at Amazon. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007g9X19A.. Also, would you like to join my merry band of subscribers? (also to the right))

So last week’s post dealt with my own version of Ghost Stories–Infertility Style. But you really do hear a lot of infertility horror stories… almost entirely from, by the way, people who have never dealt with infertility and haven’t a clue what they’re talking about.

Somehow, you never hear the tragic report directly from the person who’s gone through the traumatic experience. They’re from her sister’s best friend… or her nephew’s second cousin…or her neighbor down the block–not the one who lives there now.. or the one who lived there before those people, but the one before that.

A lot of times, this poor unfortunate infertile woman who had some unnatural infertility disaster happen to her, lives all the way over THERE… in that other county… or two states away…or Nova Scotia. Or the tragedy happened in Serbia, but not now…when it was still Yugoslavia. I think one woman’s uterus exploded right there on the examination table, or they put the needle in the wrong place during IUI and perforated her ear drum..One or the other…maybe both. Maybe her uterus exploded first, then they went ahead with the IUI anyway and the doctor was so shaken up she perforated her ear drum.

Then there was the one who had a psychotic reaction to Clomidin and started hallucinating and thought the pills were gummy bears and popped 40 of them. I’m sorry but I’m from New York City, the “Show Me” state (okay, I know that Missouri is the “Show Me” state and that NYC isn’t even a state at all, but I thought it was politer to say: “Show me” instead of “Put up or Stop talking Sht!”)

I’m serious. If you’re going to pull some story out of thin air to scare the fudgicles out of us, I want proof. I mean if this lady’s uterus exploded during the procedure, it must have been a mess. There must be cleaning people who would remember. What clinic was this in? I don’t imagine that happens a lot there. They must all still be talking about it.

You’re telling me a friend of your mother’s had a baby with her own eggs at age 70? Wow! Where is this “miracle of science” woman? I’d like to invite her to tea. I want to know her secret to eternal ovarian youth. There are several possibilites, of course, of what’s REALLY going on: a) She used a 25 year old egg donor and didn’t see any reason to tell you about it, because, well, it’s none of your business. b) She carried the baby for her daughter who couldn’t and she’s really the grandmother. c) Her daughter had the baby and she’s raising it d) Your mother was just joking when she told you about her “friend” but it went over your head. And, the most likely possibility: e) There is no 70 year old woman and you just pulled the whole story out of your crack to get attention.

So, this Halloween season (and forever after), I beg you: Keep your finger on your “I doubt it!” button. I have yet to figure out why people make up or exaggerate infertility horror stories. I think they somehow just want to fit into the conversation or like to impress us with their vast knowledge of infertility experiences. Maybe it’s to deflect the truth: They really know nothing about infertility or the whole idea freaks them out. Regardless….there are enough spooky infertility goblins to scare us without their tales from the darkside. So if somebody starts to tell you a story that seems to be heading down that dark, shadowy path, run! And if you can’t run, just get your finger on that button and keep saying the mantra in your head: “I doubt it”, “I doubt it”, “I doubt it”…that’s assuming you’re too nice to chant: “Bull Sht” Bull Sht” “Bull Sht”

The Season of My Infertility–The Joys of Fall

Okay, I wrote the title and already I’m depressed.

I love autumn. I think subconsciously it’s a self-love thing. I have odd hair that changes from blond to brown to red all by itself. So somehow I think I’ve always fit into the autumn. (Why people don’t pack up the family and head to my house every October to see my hair turn colors, I have no idea.)

Autumn outdoors is beautiful. The autumn of your fertility is a lot less attractive.

Normal fertile people love to discuss their biological clocks. “I’m 34. I’m starting to hear my biological clock ticking. Quiet. Can you hear it? Tick tick, Tick tick. I’d better get pregnant. Oh look I’m pregnant. Whew that was close.”

When you’re diagnosed with infertility AND you’re in your thirties AND you’ve been doing treatments, AND nothing’s happened, AND a few years have gone by, the biological clock turns into a frickin’ gong. It’s like living with your head stuck in the Liberty Bell, yet ironically, the last thing you feel is liberated.

Well I didn’t get married until I was thirty-nine and a half.

(Only two categories of people say their ages in half years: People under eight and women over thirty-five who want to have a baby.

The people under eight do it because they just can’t wait until their birthday. The women over thirty-five do it because with each passing moment they picture another one of their eggs turning into saw dust. We would tell you our age in minutes if we thought we could get away with it without getting slapped.)

After trying mightily for a year to have a baby the so-called “normal” way, I realized that my eggs were a year older than they were when they walked down the aisle and that a few were “no longer with us.” (Maybe they were captured on the wedding video. I’ll check.)

My biggest gripe with infertility in general is the gigantic question mark. You never know what you’re getting into or how long you’re going to have to be into it. That’s the worst part of being an older mother-to-be-one-day-soon-I-hope-when-the-fk-is-it-going-to-happen-already?:

You have no way of knowing how many eggs you have left, or which ones are in good shape and which ones have turned into Pixy Stix powder.

Once you’re over say, thirty-seven, you don’t need a doctor. You need a psychic:

“I see fifty good eggs left that will remain good for another five years.”

“Okay, great! So there’s no hurry for treatments. We can just screw around (as it were) for at least another four years. Thanks. Here’s your five bucks. You really earned it!”

All of these high tech tests and procedures and treatments. All of the doctors. Isn’t there anybody who specializes in just taking a flashlight, looking up your woo-hoo and telling you how many decent eggs you have left?

Isn’t there some easy do-it-yourself home device? It doesn’t have to be anything complicated. It can be an “As Seen on TV” item.

“Ova-the-Counter”: Just 3 Easy Payments of $19.99. And if you order now, we’ll throw in a second one free!” (Why would anyone need two? One for each ovary?—Or have they had a rash of women whose hands were shaking so violently while trying to read it, they dropped one in the toilet?)

“And that’s not all… If you order in the next ten minutes (start clock on screen) you’ll get this handy “Ova-the-Counter” carrying case (Where would you be taking the damn thing? To work so you can count your eggs on your lunch break to see if you still have the same number as when you left home that morning?) It can also hold bobby pins or odds and ends, and it drains spaghetti…”

I’ll be like any resourceful woman: If I can’t find an “Ova-the-Counter”, I’ll just have to invent it. “Hello? Shark Tank?”

(And, if you haven’t yet, please check out my little ebook over there to the right. See what top fertility experts are saying about: Laughing IS Conceivable: One Woman’s Extremely Funny Peek into the Extremely Unfunny World of Infertility) $2.99 – Free at Kindle Library

I’m Infertile: Shhh..Pass it On

I think we all go through a phase when we don’t want to discuss our baby-making issues with anyone. And sometimes we don’t even know whether it’s because we’re too emotional or just too pissed. We teeter on the fence between:

“This is so personal and painful I don’t want to talk about it.” and

“Screw you. This is none of your business!”

Maybe we think if we tell people we can’t get pregnant they’re going to think:

“They’re probably just not doing it right. I don’t know about him, but I know in high school SHE wasn’t too swift.”

Or maybe we’re protecting our loved one.

“I don’t want to tell them I can’t get pregnant. They already think my husband’s gay.”

And what does “gay” have to do with being fertile? Nothing to the smart people in our lives, everything to the imbeciles.

I think if it weren’t for the intimate nature of what it entails to get pregnant one way or another, we would talk about it more openly. But bad enough we start mentioning our endometriosis, and motility issues, and irregular period issues, and ovaries that don’t work…then we REALLY tell them what’s going on: You bring up the whole sperm donor or egg donor or surrogacy issue. Oh my gosh! Are you kidding me?

Bad enough we’re talking about our delicate body parts- now you’re going to bring a stranger’s unmentionables into the conversation too? Some other woman’s eggs?

“Do you know for a fact where this woman’s ovaries have been?”

And a sperm donor?

“What exactly does a man have to do to be a sperm donor? Nevermind! I don’t want to know!”

And a surrogate?
“Are you kidding me? You’re going to let your baby come through somebody else’s ‘you-know-what’?”

If it weren’t for all of these “dirty little infertility secrets” that most of us have had to deal with, like I said, we could talk openly about infertility…just like any of the disgusting and often idiotic afflictions those close to us make us listen to:

“I’ve had this wart on my toe for like a month. Can you see it? It’s not really on my toe. It’s between the third and the fourth–the middle and the ring toe or whatever it’s called.”

How dumb would it be keeping every ailment and injury from everybody like we do with infertility?

“I have a broken leg.”

“Oh my gosh, Danielle! I can’t believe you’re telling total strangers! You’re embarrassing me. Just suck it up and drag it along!”

The problem with infertility: It’s too easy to keep it a secret. You have the choice to keep it to yourself. If you don’t tell anyone, nobody will ever know. They may hint, cajole, and annoy, but the ultimate decision to tell or not to tell is yours.

I mean, infertility is something you can physically hide. You look okay. Nothing’s gangrene. Nothing’s falling off. Your skin’s not a funny color. Maybe you don’t want to flaunt being short or obese. But if you ever thought of keeping either a secret… Let’s face it: If your profile on Match.com says you’re 5’11, 130 lbs and you show up looking 5’2″ 320, the jig is up. For better or worse, infertility gives you the option of being a big fat liar.

I mean your fallopian tubes look fine from where I’m standing. You know, when they closed shut, nobody heard a door slam like when one of your friends signs off of AOL. It’s almost a test of sorts. You can pass yourself off as a fertile person if you want. Be my guest. I promise, I won’t be the one to “out” you.

(If you like to laugh about infertility, feel free to do so at my expense. My ebook: Laughing IS Conceivable: One Woman’s Extremely Funny Peek into the Extremely Unfunny World of Infertility is $3.99 on Amazon /Free at the Kindle Library. See reviews @http://licthebook.com /More reviews & previews of each chapter) http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007G9X19A Click on book cover)

Infertility: Pssst: Your Boss Thinks It’s a Scam

It’s tough to be go through fertility treatments. No kidding. It’s extremely tough going through fertility treatments while you have a full-time job. I mean, infertility is a full-time job. And there are some things during treatment that have to be done when they have to be done. Not the day after. Not on Saturday instead of Tuesday. Most employers don’t want to hear it. And I’ll have to admit, to someone who hasn’t been through it, infertility does sound like a pack of lies.

“Okay, so you had to come in late today. But you’ll be in on time tomorrow, right?”

“That’s a tough one. It depends. You see I have to wait until the nurse calls me to see if I have to go back tomorrow morning…And she won’t call me until tonight…when you’re already gone for the day.”

Even the employers who are trying to be understanding,… we’re really trying their patience.

“Okay, so you took off Wednesday afternoon. So, Wednesday’s are good for you to go to your appointments. That’s perfect. I can just get someone to cover your Wednesday afternoons until your treatments are over.”

“Well, no. You see they check my blood and my uterine lining (Please note: Studies have shown that nobody hears a syllable you say, once you’ve said: ‘my uterine lining’ in a sentence ) and then they’ll call me to let me know if I have to alter my shots…let me back up…you see, every night I have to give myself hormone shots in my stomach with a pen and the nurse tells me if I have to dial the pen up or down and whether I have to come back the next day or the day after that.”

Luckily, the boss hasn’t heard a word you’ve said since “my uterine lining” otherwise they would probably think your issues aren’t really about fertility-related illness nearly as much as they’re about mentally-related illness.

I mean, I’ve been through the treatments and yet when I tell people, it still sounds like I’m making it all up.

And then, if on top of it, you’re trying to maintain some sort of privacy…forget it. Your whole story already sounds like a bad pot-induced hallucination. Now you’re going to be all cloak and dagger about it on top of it and expect someone you work for to just go along?

“So, I have to go to an appointment tomorrow morning.”

“You mean a doctor’s appointment?”

“Well let’s just say it’s an appointment.”

“What kind of an appointment? It’s a job interview isn’t it?”

“It’s not a job interview.”

“If it’s not a job interview, what’s the big deal? Why can’t you just say it’s a doctor’s appointment if it’s a doctor’s appointment?”

“It’s an appointment. My husband’s coming with me. He’s taking off also.”

“Oh…your husband…It’s one of those appointments. I’m sorry, I can’t give you time off to have sex with your husband.”

“It’s a dental appointment. Okay? Let’s just say I’m going to the dentist. I have this tooth, you see it? Way back heeeah. Ya see bach heeah?”
And if you have a chance, please subscribe to this blog, consider buying my ebook and/or reading reviews of said ebook by top fertility experts around the U.S., (all can be done with a simple click at the right).

Also, (my husband’s right: I AM a demanding broad): Please visit my posts at Fertility Authority and The Fertility Blogs: http://fertilityauthority.com/blogger/1013368 & http://thefertilityblogs.com/trying-to-conceive/the-infertilit…other-olympics/4711/

Infertility… Oh the Guilt

We’ve all got something to deal with. With me, it’s that I’m pretty old. And most likely that’s solely to blame for my fertility issues: My eggs were apparently even older than I was. Even though I got married and started trying to get pregnant at 39 1/2 +, I still felt pretty spry. Come to find out my ova were sitting down there rocking away in my ovaries wearing shawls and bifocals just waiting for the white truck to drive up to the front porch and cart them away to the nursing home for the reproductively shriveled.

I’ll be honest: I never understood my age. Year after year I see it written on paper at the doctor’s office and I still feel like: “Who are they talking about?”

I know there are worse explanations for a diagnosis of infertility than: “Old Fart” but I just couldn’t accept it. People always told me I looked younger than I was. I always exercised and kept in fair shape not to mention that I’ve always prided myself on being immature. I play hopscotch on a regular basis and go to the playground for the twisty slide. (I’m sure my picture’s displayed prominently on some parent watch website with red flashing exclamation points around it.) So how dare my eggs wither away into Pixie Stix dust?

Artists, if I may be so bold as to refer to myself as such, just tend to be that way. Our hearts and souls stay young while the rest of us rusts from the inside out. Every time I see on TV,the Rolling Stones in a recent concert, and there’s Mick Jagger leaping all around the stage I’m saying to myself, “He’s going to wake up tomorrow morning (or afternoon) aching from head to toe and the first thought in his head will be: ‘What the f was I thinking?’ (If you’ve now paused to ask yourself who Mick Jagger is, please just log out. I’m already depressed enough.)

Infertility may keep you from breeding but it breeds plenty itself: Plenty of guilt, blame, anger…whether you admit it aloud or just keep it quietly tucked between your third rib and your lung.

“It’s his fault I can’t get pregnant. If I’d married someone else, I’d have kids I’m sure.”

“It’s my fault I can’t get pregnant. If I wasn’t so fat…so old…so skinny… such a ho’…so stressed out…
If I didn’t have endometriosis, or PCOS…or long cycles…long eye lashes…short cycles or a short temper…if only I’d known sooner that I didn’t ovulate… Right…

And as one of my favorite expressions goes: “And if grandma had balls she’d be grandpa.”

Of course if I had met my husband a decade earlier, I might have married him a decade earlier. Or maybe I could have married somebody else before my eggs turned into papier mache. Or just did a guy for his sperm. That’s romantic. Done the deed, got impregnated, wiped up and went home. Yeah, that would have been better. I could have hooked up with a loser so I wouldn’t have to go through IVF. Sounds like a solid plan. I could’ve named the child Baby Booty Call.

But that’s how human nature is sometimes. And that’s definitely how woman nature is sometimes. Blame and guilt. Guilt and blame. “Unexplained Infertility” is probably the worst. That’s definitely our fault.

“I’m so screwed up, nobody can even explain why I can’t get pregnant. Fertility Experts from around the world, doctors who’ve won the Nobel Prize for Infertility, people who have won Tony Awards for ‘Infertility the Musical’… the greatest minds in Reproductive Endocrinology can’t figure out what’s wrong with me…It MUST be my fault.”

And of course the point is: What’s the point? How does endless stirring of the self-pity pot help this whole pregnancy trek?
Next time you’re about to blame yourself or someone else for your infertility issues, just remember what they used to say on TV way back when this old lady was young, when the show you were watching came on with just the picture but no sound, the explanation was: “Due to Technical Difficulties Beyond Our Control…”

And if you’d like to hear more of my ramblings, (look to your right) please consider subscribing to this blog and/or purchasing my new ebook about my infertility travels: Laughing IS Conceivable: One Woman’s Extremely Funny Peek into the Extremely Unfunny World of Infertility. (More Reviews and excerpts from the book available at Amazon.com- Laughing IS Conceivable)