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Tag Archives: rant

Eff This

28 Apr

I spent two years building and nurturing this space. I’ve changed my mind. I don’t think I want to abandon it after all.

But heed this oh ALIers, I will not take any shit from anyone. If one person dares to make a bitter comment I will unceremoniously serve you with a can of whoop-ass. I don’t quite know how to whoop ass virtually but that doesn’t mean I won’t try.

Yes, I am pregnant. I am also terrified. I’ve spent the last two months on modified bed rest. I’m now two and a half weeks away from viability. I am now a week away from the date I lost Nadav. I am having daily panic attacks.

I cry when people ask “how are you”. This is how bad things are. So if anybody dare question my pain and difficulty, step away now. I don’t want you to read this. I don’t want you to read anything I write because you are an insensitive selfish asshole.

Seriously, go away.

Everyone else, feel free to hang around. Or come back. or whatever. I don’t know how often I’ll post here now, but I do know that things are getting really hard around here, and some bloggy venting certainly won’t hurt. And this is where I would like to do it.

So if there’s anybody still out there, welcome back. I hope you stick around for a while.

Unless you’re a bitter asshole who can’t handle the fact that I’m pregnant and freaking out about it. In that case I really want you to go away. Comments are fully moderated for the time being, so it won’t even get you the attention you may be seeking.

Ok good. Point made. Hi there everyone!

**Edit for a technical note**

My domain name needs renewing, so for the time being find me at the wordpress.com URL. Hopefully I’ll get that sorted soon. In the meantime, hope it’s not messing too much up. 🙂

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My Reader Runneth Over

23 Jul

A little housekeeping before I jump in:

GTT is still on! I had to push it back a week because I spent Thursday cooking for 14 people and Friday feeding 14 people.

My date with Ole’ Wandy today confirmed that I ovulated sometime over the weekend. But from the left, so I’m not too optimistic.

Now back to our regularly scheduled blog post.

Some of you guys may have noticed that I don’t comment as often as I used to. This is because I have developed google-reader-phobia.

I open my reader, click on a post, then immediately upon reading the header, I close the page.

That’s mainly because nine times out of ten the subject of a post is something like “X week bumpdate”.

Guys – this is freaking ridiculous. When did you all become so freaking pregnant?

Don’t get me wrong – I’m incredibly happy for all of you. I am just unendingly sad for me. (Emily wrote about this feeling far more eloquently than I ever could about a week ago.)

Here’s the thing – I’ve been lapped in real life, and now I’m getting lapped in the blogoverse.

There are generations in the ALI blogosphere. Every few months or so, a new crop of IF bloggers comes in, and an old batch of IFers move on to parenting. The people who’s blogs I initially started following (with very few exceptions) have long since moved on to parenting. I’m now about 5 “generations” behind those guys, still here. Still stuck in the same exact place only fatter and sadder (hey! That rhymes kind of!).

I can’t even hope to be rid of my phobia when I get knocked up again because I will never have a blissful pregnancy. Even most IFers tend to calm their anxiety once they hit viability. I don’t think I’ll have that luxury, and it sucks. Reading all of the happy updates has just become a constant reminder of something I’ll never have.

I’ve ranted before against preggo bloggers, but that was during a very bitter phase. I’m not even mad, because unlike before, I know all of these women and I’ve been following their stories for so long that I’m emotionally invested in their successful outcomes.

But it doesn’t make this any less hard for me. So to all my pregnant/parenting bloggy buddies out there – I’m sorry if I check out for a while. Please know that for once the cliche is right: It’s not you, it’s me.

Preggo Don’t Preach

20 Dec

Ok – I’m going to start this post off by telling you guys a few things (some of them you may not like):

  1. I didn’t stop my anti-depressants when I found out I was pregnant. In fact, last week I started a transition from one med to another and to help ease me in I’ve been taking Xan.ax once a day. Yep – Xan.ax. While pregnant.
  2. I have on average one caffeinated beverage per day. Some days I have two.
  3. Currently I am neither on a stringent diet nor on an exercise program.
  4. Though I think I may attempt to go for a natural delivery, I am 100% aware of the fact that there’s a good chance that I’ll break down 10 minutes in and beg for an epidural. I’m Ok with that.
  5. I have – gasp!- smoked more than one cigarette since finding out I was pregnant.

Here’s the thing: When I found out about my first pregnancy, I quit smoking cold turkey, quit caffeine cold turkey, and couldn’t stomach anything but saltines, and I felt crappy for not eating more veggies. After that loss, I immediately went back to smoking, drinking caffeine, and gained about as much weight post-pregnancy as I did during it. And I hated myself for it. The second pregnancy was pretty much the same story.  In the months leading up to my third pregnancy, I was on this crazy self-improvement regimen. I quit smoking, I did yoga, I barely drank caffeine. I was CONVINCED that if I just did everything right this time, a pregnancy would stick.

You all know how that turned out. And of course, the few months after that loss, I hated myself more than ever. I backslid once again.

But I also learned a very important lesson from that experience. NOTHING can be done. At the end of the day, 99.999% of miscarriages are either chromosomal or physiological. Not smoking during my first pregnancy didn’t prevent that blighted ovum. No caffeine during my third didn’t keep it from being ectopic. I had no control over this from day one. I still don’t. The outcome of this pregnancy was pretty much decided as soon as sperm met egg and they started to dig in. There’s a reason the world population has risen steadily in the last centuries. And I’m pretty sure it’s not because all pregnant women cut out caffeine on King George’s orders or whatever. There’s a reason most of our moms smoked throughout our pregnancies and ate medium rare steaks and we came out fine and dandy.

Because the human body is a miraculous thing, and because one medium rare steak will not cause a miscarriage, and neither will ten (though I’m not a fan of medium rare, but you get the point).

I made the decision that self-hate and self-punishment would do more harm to my baby than the anti-depressant that would make those feelings go away. I decided that I had enough anxiety to be going on with, and I didn’t need to also deal with the nightmare that is caffeine withdrawal. I decided that I need to give myself just a bit more flexibility, and to demonstrate to myself that my control here is minimal.

And so I did. And I’m almost 14 weeks in with the Shmaby going strong, and I don’t hate myself. Which is a nice change of pace.

So why do I tell you all of this?

(I think you can tell from the video embedded above where I’m going with this…)

When we first started this journey Shmerson and I were basically the only ones in our extended circle of friends trying for a baby. In the year and a half since, that number has grown. Several friends and acquaintances have already given birth, others are close to it.

Now most of these people know my history. With all due respect I have spent 9 out of the last 19 months pregnant. I have been part of the ALI community for over a year. I follow more than 200 blogs. I’ve never once gone through IVF yet a close friend of mine who is now making a baby with his life partner through DE and a surrogate came to me when he needed information because I know it (yes, I congratulated a gay man yesterday about being PUPO, and because of me, he knew what I meant. Hi Ababaderech! Good luck on your TWW!). I can list 1000 complications that can happen in a pregnancy. A 1000 more that happen before the sperm meets the egg. I know what can go wrong. More than most people, because I’ve seen (or read) it all in the last year. Heck, I experienced quite a bit of it myself, thankyouverymuch.

So, dear fertile preggo friends – don’t preach to me about my over indulgence on carbs. My food aversions are too extreme for me to stomach something else right now.

Please don’t spend 15 minutes lecturing me about Xan.ax. I’ve read the research, and in my particular case (and with my doctor’s blessing), the benefits outweigh the risks.

Please don’t look at me weird if I have a sip of coke zero. Trust me, the chances of that doing damage are slim to none.

Please don’t lecture me on the benefits of natural childbirth. I know them all. I also know that 95% of women eventually opt for an epidural, and I’m a realist (Oh, and I bet you anything that my pain tolerance is about 1000 times greater than yours – let’s just see who lasts longer, shall we? You haven’t experienced the awesomeness that is an HSG with blocked tubes, or your uterus contracting after a D&C. If it’s down to you and me, fertile preggo friends, I think I’d win that contest).

Don’t spend an hour touting your brave abandonment of prozac the MOMENT you got knocked up. You may be able to do that. I on the other hand would most likely lose it completely without my anti-anxiety meds, because, you know, I’ve had three miscarriages and that kind of messes with a girl’s head.

Don’t look at me weird if I sneak a cigarette on a bad day. You’ve never smoked, you don’t know what a slave you can become to that horrible weed.

I have a couple of pregnancy tracker apps on my iPhone. My favorite one, from baby center gave me these words of wisdom the other day (I’m paraphrasing):

“If you’re not perfect in avoiding things during your pregnancy, there’s no need to get stressed out about it. Our mothers had no idea about these things and we came out fine.”

Hear hear pregnancy tracker elves! My mom smoked a pack a day and drank copious amounts of coffee while she carried me. I came out perfectly fine. No horns or anything.

I’m not saying all pregnant women need to take up smoking, drinking and meth use during their pregnancy for the fun of it.

What I’m saying is, we all have our ways of dealing. I chose to give up control, and to go easy on myself. So far, it’s working out pretty well for me.

And no offense my fertile pregnant friends – but I think I know just a BIT more about this than you guys do.

Please, let’s discuss the risks of pre-eclampsia and why our blood pressure is critical to the health of our unborn babies.

Please – let’s talk about infections and fevers and how they can affect the health of our children.

Let’s talk about the risks of low amniotic fluid. Let’s discuss the importance of staying well hydrated during our pregnancies.

Let’s talk about placenta previa. Let’s talk about uterine fibroids. Gestational diabetes. Toxoplasmosis. Placental abruption. RH factor. Incompetent cervix.

And let’s talk about it over a nice tall glass of coke. Because trust me, drinking that won’t make any of the things I mentioned above more or less likely.

And it may just help me hold on to a bit of my sanity as I go through this roller coaster.

You may not agree with me, but you can’t argue with this: I’ve been around the block enough to know my limits. To know what’s best for me, and how it will affect my baby. I think I know that just a bit better than you. So stop preaching. You may as well just look at me sideways and tell me to relax. Either one of those will give this hormonal preggo lady ample reason to punch you.

And I loathe violence.

 

More Facebook Action – In Defense of Infertiles

6 Sep

So – for those of you who don’t read Elphie’s blog, please check over there for some context. In short, her very eloquent post about the problem with the so called “breast cancer awareness game” received some pretty nasty comments from some ignorant people. People were calling those of us offended by this game “selfish”. Accusing us of not being able to be happy for our pregnant/mommy friends.

I’ve decided to take this discussion as an opportunity to explain why it is that women with fertility issues have problems with FB pregnancy announcements. And trust me, this has nothing to do with being selfish. In fact – it’s quite the opposite.

In the year and three months since my first pregnancy, I’ve seen pregnancy announcement after pregnancy announcement. I’ve seen birth announcements. I’ve seen pictures of happy mothers and fathers holding their newborns. These have come from my friends and acquaintances. On every one of those announcements I gave a hearty congrats. In some cases, when possible, I went to visit baby and mom in the hospital. In one case, I even spent several days keeping a friend company while she was going crazy, because she was overdue and getting VERY uncomfortable.

I did all of those things happily. I was happy for them.

I was sad for me. Sad because each one of these kids was a potential playmate for my lost children. Sad because I could have had that happy announcement five months ago. And again 3 months ago. And again three months from now. I would be holding on to a huge bump now. Or holding my child. Their happiness is a reminder of my losses. Of my sadness.

So I rejoice with them. But in the privacy of my own home, in front of my computer screen, I have every right to cry. They don’t see my tears. They don’t see my sadness. Some of them, who know my situation, are sensitive enough to acknowledge it and allow me to show them my sadness. But most either don’t know, or, frankly, don’t care. That is their right.

Just like it is my right to cry in the privacy of my own home when I am reminded of my losses by a barrage of happy baby pictures. I don’t complain about those much. I’m sure I’ll be the same when hopefully I bring my own baby home. That is their right. Just as it will be mine some day.

But it’s not my lot in life yet. Now I’m faced with my losses, and nothing more. So yes, a picture of a baby, in certain emotional states will send me off the edge. Other times I’m ok. I don’t comment on their photos and say that they have no right to post them. I “like” them as often as anybody else. Because that is the part I show – the part that is genuinely happy for those newly minted parents.

So why is this stupid meme different? Because it’s cruel. Not only to women in my situation. To every mislead friend and family member. But yes, especially to people suffering from infertility.

Because seeing one pregnancy or birth announcement a week on average is enough. Seeing ten at once, not knowing the true motives behind it, is enough to send anyone in my situation over the edge. That’s a reminder of my losses ten times over. All at once. I didn’t comment on these “announcements” cursing the “new soon-to-be-mommies” out. I took a moment to breathe, and to cry, and braced myself. Ready to congratulate them all.

And then I found out they were fake. Each and every one of them. So all of that emotional turmoil was for nothing. For a stupid meme that is supposedly “to raise breast cancer awareness” but doesn’t send anyone to a foundation. Doesn’t give any helpful information. In fact, it doesn’t even have the word “breast” in it.

I’m not mad at the women who posted it. I’m sure they meant well. I’m sure they did it all in good fun.

But that doesn’t make THE SITUATION any less offensive. It’s not the individual act, but rather the collective effect of it. It did NOTHING for breast cancer awareness. What it did was make 1 in every 16 women cry. Or at least feel a little stinging pain in her chest. It’s the RANDOMNESS of this, and the UNINTENDED cruelty of it that is offensive. It’s the MISGUIDED intentions behind it. That’s what is causing the uproar.

It has nothing to do with my or my fellow infertiles’ “bitterness” or “selfishness”. We did not choose our situation. We are women (and men) desperately wanting to have children, being reminded on a minute-by-minute basis of the failure of our own bodies, and having to put on a strong happy face to the world.

We don’t begrudge our friends their happiness. We mourn our own struggles. We are not “bitter” about our friends’ luck. We are jealous sometimes, yes. But even this is something we don’t share, because we know it’s not our friends’ fault that we are infertile, or having repeat miscarriages.

So we smile. We click on “like”. We congratulate and go to baby showers and attend the bris, and come to the hospital with flowers and chocolate.

But it is our right to mourn our losses quietly when we go home. And it’s our right to be offended and hurt by a barrage of fake pregnancies. Because for us it is a cruel joke. Crueler than it would be for the potential grandmother who sees her daughter’s status and cries tears of joy before finding out it was for “breast cancer awareness”. Or the sister who was offended because she wasn’t told in person of this “pregnancy”. It’s crueler because for us, it stung to begin with. And to find out that it was for nothing makes it sting all the more.

Again – I don’t blame the individuals who posted this. I’m sure they thought nothing of it at the time.

However, I reserve my right to be angry at the collective situation. And that’s not selfish. That’s self-preservation.

Stuff Infertiles Shouldn’t Watch: Teen Mom

3 Sep

It was inevitable I would get to this show sooner or later, wasn’t it? I mean, how can you watch “16 and Pregnant” and NOT watch the spinoff? It’s impossible. So I do. All for you guys! (Ok not really. But at least you guys get a ranty blog post out of it! Yay masochism!)

I’m going to take a bit of a different approach today, and break this down according to the cast of super-moms that are on this show. Ready? Here we go…

Maci

The Drama: Maci had Bentley with Ryan. Ryan and Maci were engaged. Ryan acted like an asshole, so Maci left him. Now she and Ryan share custody.

Mother of the Year Award: Maci met a new guy, and moved two hours away from Ryan in order to be with him. A couple of months later, she decided to move back (how’s that for stability?) and the new guy came right along with her. Ryan has been stepping up and really trying to be a good father, and be respectful of Maci and her new relationship (even going as far as friending Maci’s new guy on FB, and trying to help him get a job). So far she’s reciprocated by laughing him off and denying him visits sporadically. Now Ryan is considering taking her to court. I don’t blame him. Plus – she named her son Bentley. After the car. No, really, she did.

Why she makes me bitter: Maci is now 19. She’s blowing off college, and has already begged Kyle, her new boyfriend, to have another child. Not in the far off future – now. At 19. When they’re both unemployed and she’s considering dropping out of college.

Farrah

The Drama: Farrah’s baby daddy died when she was pregnant with Sofia. Farrah’s parents are a bit overbearing. She and her mom got into a fight after her daughter was born, which landed her mom in jail overnight and having to do community service.

Mother of the Year Award: Oh, where to begin! Yes, the circumstances she and her daughter are in are tragic on the surface, but the truth is, this girl is a spoiled ungrateful brat. She calls her dad “Michael” (and he’s her biological dad), she takes her parents’ help for granted, and she now has decided she wants to get as far away as possible from her parents, despite the fact that they are her primary child care providers. I looked for some clips of her whiny bratty rants, but couldn’t find any because of youtube’s copyright policy. Honestly? Better that you don’t see them. Your ears may start bleeding.

Why she makes me bitter: Again, I don’t even know where to start. So indulge my bullet points:

  • She applied for social security benefits because her baby’s dad passed away. She was pissed when she didn’t get them. Then a week later she took out a loan for about 10,000 dollars so she could get a boob job to “help her modeling career”.
  • To celebrate her Associates Degree, she went and bought a designer dog (isn’t that the epitome of financial responsibility?). Then she hid the dog from her mom. Oh, and she didn’t bother housebreaking the dog. The dog wears a diaper. Yes, you read that right. A diaper.
  • After convincing her parents to fly with her to Arizona to look into whether she wants to move there, Farrah proceeds to spend the two days there acting like an ungrateful brat, as her parents drive her around to look at potential places to live. When she and her mom enter a complete dump of a house, Farrah yells at her mother for disparaging the fact that her daughter wants to move halfway across the country with a two year old and live in a dangerous neighborhood.
  • General conclusion: Everything this girl does seems to be to spite her parents. I’m sure that If her parents were encouraging her to feed her daughter healthy food, she would starve her just to make them mad. She is a spoiled brat, and never considers the best interest of her child.

Amber

You know why this looks like a mug shot? Because it is one.

The Drama: Amber had Leah with a guy named Gary. He’s not perfect, but he seems like an ok guy and for some reason he’s madly in love with her. They lived together, got engaged, and then broke up. Then they got back together again and moved in together again. Then they broke up again. Then they moved in together again. Then they broke up again. Amber is now seeing a guy named Clinton.

Mother of the Year Award: Gary is seriously a victim of spousal abuse. No matter what he does Amber explodes at him. It got so out of hand that Amber hit him. On camera. Recorded for all posterity. Here’s a little taste of it:

CPS got involved and she lost custody of Leah. Amber then moved to yet another house (I believe this was the fourth or fifth in two years) and regained custody. They haven’t shown it on the air yet, but from what I understand she has since been arrested again, and has once again lost custody of her daughter.

Why she makes me bitter: See above. Oh, and it came to the point that she saw her daughter so infrequently that Leah began calling her “Amber” instead of “Mommy”. Again, Leah is two. Amber cries all the time about missing her, yet somehow continues to find herself in jail. That’s appreciating parenthood, isn’t it?

Catelynn (and Tyler) 

**WARNING: I am about to lose all cynicism***

These two are awesome. Seriously.

The Drama: Catelynn and Tyler are actually step-siblings. Catelynn’s mom is married to Tyler’s dad. Tyler’s dad has been in and out of jail his entire life. Catelynn’s mom is just – well, unstable. It seems that Catelynn and Tyler got together because they really had no one to take care of them, so they decided to take care of each other.

Mother of the Year Award (truly deserved): When Catelynn found out that she was pregnant, she and Tyler decided to give their daughter Carly up for adoption, because they didn’t want her growing up in such an unstable environment. Parents on both sides protested. They all insisted Catelynn and Tyler keep the baby. The couple bravely went against their parents’ wishes and gave Carly up in an open adoption. Before having Carly, Catelynn and Tyler were both struggling in school. Now they have both graduated, moved in together, and gotten engaged. Tyler is going to college because he has decided he wants to pursue social work. Catelynn has become a vocal adoption advocate in her community. They always say they are working their butts off to make their lives better so that Carly will be proud of them.

Why she makes me bitter: She doesn’t. Not only did these guys help an infertile couple get their forever family, they have proven their maturity and grace time and time again in this very complicated situation. They are amazing role models. I wish MTV’s casting department would find a few more kids like them. In the history of 16 and Pregnant, this is the only couple that has opted for adoption rather than parenting.

In Conclusion…

Catelynn and Tyler are the only couple still together on this show. They are also one of the few that have managed to further their education. They are slowly building stability into their lives and their initial selfless act has strengthened them. They are poster children for adoption. So what’s my beef? In the 16 and Pregnant world, they are the exceptions, whereas Supermoms like Farrah and Amber are the rule. Some would say that MTV is sending a pro-adoption message through this. I say MTV needs to balance things out a bit with a few more Catelynns and Tylers.

So for every time I coo and tear up at Catelynn and Tyler’s bravery and maturity, I gag at yet another snarky comment from Farrah. I wince at Maci’s tactless approach to co-parenting. I bang my head against the wall at Amber’s abusive behavior.

And I wait with baited breath for their childrens’ tell-all books.

Stuff Infertiles Shouldn’t Watch – Toddlers and Tiaras

28 Aug

Some of you already know about my masochistic, unexplained obsession with 16 and Pregnant. Well folks, my unhealthy obsession with reality TV that makes me crazy has taken a turn for the worse. I have decided to make it an ongoing series.

Yes – I will be watching stupid reality TV that pisses infertiles off so that you don’t have to! Look how I much I sacrifice for you people (ok not really)!

So for my inaugural post I have decided to take on the mother of all reality trash. I’m sure you’re all dying to know what I chose first. Oh, wait – it’s in the title. Oops.

Toddlers and Tiaras!

I discovered this little gem while recovering from my lap surgery. I admit that I marathoned the heck out of it during my almost week of stabby pain hell.

Don’t ask me why. It’s like crack. Only more masochistic than crack.

For those of you who don’t know the premise, Toddlers and Tiaras follows kids as they compete in beauty pageants. Kids and their insane parents (who apparently have money to burn). The competition ranges from newborn babies to teens. But of course, the show wouldn’t be interested in the teens. The oldest contestant I’ve seen so far was I think about 10 years old. Most of the featured kids are around 4-6 years old.

These kids (and yes, there are boys who compete too!) get spray tans, fake teeth (known as “flippers”), and hair pieces. Yes – the boys get spray tans too. There are also swimsuit competitions. Even the 6 month old babies do the swimsuit competitions.

Now here’s the kicker – the kids wear outfits that usually cost upwards of 2000 dollars. Their parents pay entry fees in the hundreds. They stay at hotels. They pay coaches. They build elaborate sets.

All so their kid can walk onto a stage in a rather shabby looking convention hall in bumfrak nowhere and compete for crowns.

The “Ultimate Grand Supreme” (apparently this means the person with the highest overall score in the pageant regardless of age category) will sometimes win cash. But I’ve never seen a prize higher than 1500 bucks. No one breaks even here. Yet all of the parents claim they’re doing this to “invest in their children’s future”.

Here is a list of things they could spend this money on that would truly “invest in their children’s future”:

  1. A college fund
  2. Private School
  3. Museum trips
  4. Tutors to teach them a foreign language.
  5. Violin lessons
  6. Piano lessons
  7. Ballet lessons
  8. Art classes
  9. Karate classes
  10. An internet specialist that will go in and erase all pictures of their dolled-up kids from the web so pedophiles won’t oggle at them, and a google search of them in 15 years won’t keep them from getting a job.
  11. A therapist to undo the damage the parents have done to the kids.
  12. Put the fund in a trust account for a lawyer – they’re going to need it for when their children attempt to file for emancipation.
  13. Give the money to a nice infertile couple who can’t afford treatments.

Ok – the last one doesn’t really involve the kid’s well being, but that would be nice, wouldn’t it?

I think what surprises me most here is just the sheer trashiness of it all. Here is a picture of an “Ultimate Grand Supreme” winner:

Hopefully this will eventually pay for this girl's therapy.

Yeah so apparently they give the money in cash, glue it to a paper plate in the form of a fan, and make the winner pose with it. Is it just me or is that just… Wrong? Cheap? Gross? I don’t know if there is a word to describe this, really. So I’ll make one up: horricheapagusting. That just rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it?

And you know these parents are teaching their kids the right things to do with their money. Check out this girl’s solid education of fiscal responsibility (skip to minute 41:52):

Yes! Cheese dip! You know what? I should invest in cheese dip futures. There’s a market for that, right?

Oh, but this is nothing. Please, meet Makenzie (mangled spelling courtesy of her parents):

Now I don’t know about you – but I have a sinking suspicion that her mother has a whole road planned out for her. A couple more years on Toddlers and Tiaras, then she can move on to America’s Got Talent, be a cast member on The Real World, and finish it all off with a nice emotional arc on Celebrity Rehab. Once she’s out of there, she can probably make a couple of extra bucks shilling out her tell-all book: “From Ni-Ni to Cocaine: How My Mother Ruined My Life”

Speaking of substance abuse – most of these parents are well on their way to educating their children about a healthy lifestyle, evidenced by this little gem:

Hmmmm… She can’t get herself together? Really? Perhaps it’s the constant stream of refined sugar that you keep shoving down her mouth? Just a thought.

PS – they also give their kids Red Bull. I just couldn’t find a clip of that. You’re going to have to trust me on that one.

I could go on for hours, but let me end with…. Drumroll… Eden Wood.

Eden is currently 6 years old. She has now officially “retired” from the pageant circuit. More on that in a second. First, here’s a look at her (and her mother) in action:

Eden’s mother has decided to capitalize on her daughter’s Reality TV fame. At the ripe old age of six, Eden is currently on a mall tour across America singing her “hit” song – Cutie Patootie (as seen on the cheap imitation of The View The Talk).

Note the horrified look on Sharon Osbourne’s face. And this is the woman that is married to a guy who bites heads off of bats and who has raised Kelly Osbourne. ‘Nough said.

I read a blog post not too long ago (sorry – can’t remember where!) about how infertiles sometimes look at parents and feel all superior, and say “I’ll never be like that” only to find out that once they are parents themselves, they make some of the same mistakes.

Here’s what I think is comforting about Toddlers and Tiaras: I can totally feel superior to these parents. I know my feelings are justified. Guilt-free.

Here’s what’s not so comforting: I’m going to have to work to get my kids. Work  really hard. And these parents most likely didn’t. And they’re pretty much abusing them. Which honestly, I’d like to say I find funny, but mostly it just makes me sad.

And perhaps that’s why Infertiles shouldn’t watch it.

(On the other hand, it is a really good target for our hostility. Just sayin’)

Not All There (Here, Actually)

20 Aug

You know what the problem is with this whole TTC break?

Taking a break does not make the baby-crazies go away (surprising, right? I know, totally.).

In fact, since losing Ole’ Lefty I believe my baby crazies have reached peak levels. We’re talking 9 on the richter scale. Code Red. We’re so high up we need oxygen masks.

You know how sometimes you read IF blogs, and the blogger writes about not being able to look at babies? And you feel for her, you really do, but yet you think to yourself – “eh, that’ll never be me!”

Well, here’s a warning to all you IFers in training. It could very well be you. I too was convinced there would never come a day when I would have serious problems looking at other people’s babies, talking about other people’s babies, or seeing preggo bellies.

Now I know better.

The last couple of weeks have been crazy on a lot of levels. But the baby crazy has ramped up to levels that I thought were unreachable.

I have now officially done the following (yay! It’s time for a list!)

  1. Avoided going to a birthday party because I knew there would be several preggos there (including the birthday girl), even though I truly love the birthday girl. I just couldn’t bring myself to do it.
  2. Went to a family function where there was a six-month-old in attendance that I didn’t know was coming, and held back tears while watching the rest of my family coo over said six-month-old.
  3. At that same family function, told off two family members for telling me their “oh! I know this couple who went on vacation…” stories. Trying to explain to people that a vacation does not create neon arrows leading a fertilized egg to your uterus is hard work.
  4. Hid a preggo friend on FB. (Ok, she’s an acquaintance, so that’s ok right?)
  5. Had several crying fits that were completely unexplained, except that they immediately followed thoughts about babies, or seeing a really pregnant woman out in public. Or hearing about another person who just gave birth. Ok. I guess they’re not really unexplained.
  6. Playing rounds of “find the infertile” while watching reality TV. Toddlers and Tiaras is an awesome platform for that game, by the way. I highly recommend it for masochists. (Don’t worry! I’m totally gonna post about that one of these days!)
You always think “It’ll never be me.”
Then you find yourself in the middle of AF, sitting in a bathroom stall and blowing your nose while looking down at this month’s proof that once again, nine months from now, you will not be a mommy.
Over the last few weeks, I’ve been told by a bunch of different people how great a mom I would be. I know! Right? Maybe we should do something about it?
Alas – not yet. Shmerson and I have set some strict ground rules. Sanity, stability, and a second (or is it third at this point?) opinion from an RPL specialist before jumping back in.
I think I’m on the losing side of the sanity part of that checklist. I’m currently a few fries short of a happy meal.
Off my rocker.
A beer short of a six pack.
Nuttier than squirrel poo.
I’m going slightly mad.
I’m really ok though. I swear. (Shmerson, pay no attention to the baby crazy woman behind the curtain!)

This is the Part Where I Get Angry

3 Aug

I think everything kind of crashed down on me today. Anticipating tomorrow, and whatever prognosis it will bring, I’ve had a swelling of anxiety, but today at my shrink’s we got to the heart of the matter.

I’m pissed. I’m pissed because just over a year ago today, I had a botched D&C, and I know that’s what started all of this. One doctor, which I trusted, which came highly recommended, who didn’t think to prescribe antibiotics, or make sure that my uterus was left unscarred, caused all of this mess. A 5 minute procedure that has irrevocably altered my life.

I can’t sue him. There’s no way to prove that this was the cause. But I know it is. I know that I had a healthy uterus before this. Healthy enough to hold on to a sac for 8 weeks. An empty sac, but a sac nonetheless.

So I’m scarred. I’m scarred not only physically from those 5 minutes a year ago. I’m scarred mentally, emotionally. This was a doctor I trusted. He came “highly recommended”. He was “the best” in the area.

He fucking messed up my body. And here I am, one year and two additional miscarriages later, about to go under the knife of yet another doctor, who is “the best”, who comes “highly recommended.” Who’s to say everything will go as planned? The last time certainly didn’t. How am I supposed to be calm when the last time I was put under sedation my body was permanently damaged, and my life path was altered forever?

I was supposed to have a baby in my arms by now. Instead, by this time tomorrow, I may have no fallopian tubes. I may have internal organs REMOVED because one fucking doctor didn’t do his job properly. How can I trust that this one will? How can I be calm?

People keep telling me it’s a minimally invasive procedure. So is a D&C, and look where that has brought me.

So I’m pissed. I’m pissed and I’m scared. And I can’t be grateful for “the path” or “answers” right now. All I can do is be bitter and angry at the fact that one incompetent doctor screwed up my body forever. And hope that this doctor will fix the damage, as much as it can be fixed, and not do any more.

This fucking sucks. And I’m fucking pissed off.

I want to make sure this one does the job properly. I want to come out of this with at least part of my fertility intact. And I feel helpless to do anything about it.

Dear readers, you have been so amazing and supportive through all of this. I need you to come through for me one more time. I need your comments, your love, and yes, even prayers. Even as a heathen, I know they can’t hurt. And tell me if I’m forgetting anything. If I should insist on anything being done. If there’s anything I should be asking for to at least try to make sure that no more damage is done.

I go in for the lap in 23 hours. I probably won’t post again before it. If I’m conscious enough after I promise I will, and if not, I may just have Shmerson do it for me.

Thanks. Love you all.

Revenge of the Preggo Blogging Meme

14 May

I’ve been stopping and starting deep emotional blog posts for the last 24 hours. But I’m not there yet. Today, I’m just annoyed. This post is gonna make me look like a bitter infertile, and I don’t care, because, well, this has to be done.

There’s this blogging meme going around, a preggo questionnaire.

I have about 50 IF bloggers on my google reader, and a few of those are newly preggo IFers. They used to be eloquent, funny, emotional bloggers.

Now that they’re knocked up, they’ve decided to become smug preggos and just plain lazy.

Seriously, there are a couple of bloggers who just post this questionnaire once a week and that’s it. Blogging done! “Look at me! I’m happy and pregnant!”

No – you’re smug and obnoxious. I’m sorry. But you are. Look, I’m really happy for you. Really. But have you forgotten that your blog is read by infertiles? That that’s where you yourself started? I get it, the questionnaire is cute and all, but it just reeks of smugness. And did I mention it’s just plain lazy blogging (yeah I did. But it’s worth mentioning again)?

I’m getting to the point that from now on, if you’re a newly preggo infertile and post this thing, I will unceremoniously remove you from my reader. I don’t care if we’re blogging buddies. I don’t care if I used to comment on your every post. I will be breaking up with your blog. Go stand in the corner with the easily preggo fertiles. Cause you’re acting like one, and really, I thought you were better than that. You disappoint me.

And now, you leave me no choice but to post the meme myself. Because this is the only way I can make you feel guilty enough about it to freakin’ stop. No offense, but to paraphrase an old saying: “If you don’t have anything interesting to blog, don’t blog anything at all.”


My reader is clogged up with smug. Please make it stop. I am taking a stand! Bring on the meme!

Week 50- Weekly Update 

(why 50 you ask? That’s how long it’s been since my first BFP)

How far along: Well, it depends on which pregnancy. My first would be two months old about now. My second is due in two weeks. I’d be 8 weeks preggo with my third. So let’s just call this one a bust, shall we?
Size of baby: It’s a peanut! No! It’s a blueberry! No! It’s an orange! No! It’s a garbage can full of extra thick sanitary pads!
Maternity clothes?I wish. Then I’d have an excuse for the latest early pregnancy two pounds I gained. Now I just look a bit fatter than usual and with nothing to show for it.
Sleep?Not that much, since I’m waiting to see what instruments are going to be stuck up my uterus in the coming weeks.

Best moment of the week: The one day when I went into my google reader and didn’t see a single post with this ridiculous meme.

Movement: I’ve been told to start doing half hour walks to both relieve my anxiety and prep my body to actually hold a pregnancy to term. Does that count?

Symptoms: Well, I’ve got this recurrent stabbing pain in my right side, which is a constant reminder that there may be something wrong with my tubes. Other than that, it’s a sore throat and stuffy nose… Oh, right, sorry, those last two are symptoms of my COLD, not a pregnancy. Oh wait, I’m not pregnant! So I guess it’s all good.

Food cravings/aversions:I’ve been told to move to a low sugar diet to help ensure a baby sticks around next time. And I really want a hot chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream to comfort me while I feel endless grief and frustration. Ahh well, too bad for me!
Gender:Up until a few months ago, I would have said I wish it would be a girl. Now I don’t give a crap. Just give me a baby.
Belly button in or out:In – and will most likely remain that way for the unforeseeable future.
Stretch marks: Oh! Yeah! A bunch! But they’re mostly non-pregnancy related.
What I miss: Morning sickness. I loved living off of crackers and knowing that this meant that I had a baby growing inside of me.
How is Mommy Feeling? Bitter. Haven’t you noticed?
How is Daddy Feeling?  Depressed and nihilistic. Check out his blog post from a couple of days back.
Total weight gain? About 15 pounds during the last three pregnancies. Mostly due to numbing my feelings with carbs.

What I am looking forward to: A day when this blogging meme gets wiped off the face of the earth.

Message sent. Hopefully it will be received.

Envy, Atheism and Neil Gaiman

12 May

Hi Everyone. It’s Shmerson again.

So I’ve been feeling like shit for the last week or so. Yesterday Shmersonette told me I should write a post about it. I replied that a post about it will be the shortest post ever: I FEEL LIKE SHIT. Then I had the last 24 hours to think about it.

I feel like crying all the time. I try to distract myself and it works: when I’m not at the University, or at work – I watch something stupid on my phone or computer. Or do some chore or other. When Shmersonette’s around I feel better. But when I have none of those things, it’s horrible. I’m not even talking about “when I’m alone with my thoughts” because it has nothing to do with thoughts. I don’t think about something and then get that bad feeling. I just look away from my phone and through the window of the bus and get that feeling – the thoughts only come later.

I think subconsciously I was waiting for Shmersonette to calm down a little so that I may freak out. I also think I am now feeling all 3 miscarriages at once, because when the first two were happening, I focused on Shmersonette, and relatively I didn’t feel anything close to what I feel now.

I see a pregnant woman on the street and I want to punch her in the face. Not really, but I’m pissed. And I’m not a violent person at all. I just think that she’s a stupid bitch who does not now how lucky she is. Also, these last few days I saw some pregnant ladies and they were all skinny – seriously, no pregnant butt, no pregnant thighs, not even pregnant boobs. And they were all just doing their job, or riding the bus, as if there isn’t a miracle happening in their body.

Of course, I’m just being mean. Some of them might have gone through IF or MC. Still, when I see one, I just decide that they don’t appreciate what they have, and we should be the ones having that baby. Now I’m reminded that an old friend once told me she had to take hormones for some reason, and the doctor told her that a side effect is thinking about sex a lot. “how much exactly is a lot?” she asked, to which the doctor replied “as much as a man does”. And she did. “Is this really how your minds work?” she asked me. So now I ask you ladies: Is THIS how YOUR minds work? Thinking about babies all the time?

I’ve been thinking about Neil Gaiman today. He’s one of my idols. For those of you who’ve never heard of him, he’s a writer. He’s written comic books, short stories, novels and scripts. By the way, the next Doctor Who episode? He wrote that too. He really knows his way with myths and legends, and because of him I’m currently doing a minor in Mythology.

Neil Gaiman in a TARDIS

So I was reminded of a short story he wrote. It is called “The Wedding Gift” or something like that. The story is hidden inside a prologue he wrote for a collection of short stories called “Smoke and mirrors” (Take that, people who don’t read prologues! How cool is that?). It goes something like this: A couple gets married. When they open their presents, they find a paper with a single sentence: “Will and Kate got married on a lovely sunday afternoon.” (Okay I don’t remember the characters names, and Gaiman IS british). They don’t throw it away. A few months later they look at it again, and see that there’s another sentence in it, describing what happened since the wedding.

Some time later, the sentences in the magical paper start to say mean things. Like one of them cheated on the other, or the other got sick. Those things were not true. They keep looking at the Paper every now and then. At a certain point in the story, one of them understands that it is a gift. Whoever gave it to them wanted to make sure that the bad things will happen to Will and Kate in the story, so they don’t happen to the real Will and Kate.

Don’t get me wrong, in a lot of ways we’re the real, happy Will and Kate. Our relationship is getting stronger each day, and it was strong and honest to begin with. We’re on the right track in many ways. When we hear about another couple having a fight over some stupid, trivial thing we thank the Flying Spaghetti Monster we never do that. But in other ways, I feel like we’re the couple stuck in that story within story, the ones who go through the bad things.

It’s so easy being a believer. I used to be religious, and at the age of 15 I became an atheist. About a minute later, that was my first atheist conclusion: It’s easier and healthier to believe; in belief there’s order, fairness, a plan, a fate. You believe that there’s something writing your story. My next atheist conclusion was that I want to be a believer again. My third – that I can’t. Partly because I know how comforting and easy it is. But I wish there was some god (no capital g for you, you’re a noun now!) that I could blame. Now I feel we’re stuck in the story with bad things, only nobody is writing it.

When we were in the hospital, 3 weeks ago, before the results, we were trying to pretend it’s okay. We calculated the dates and decided that if Shmersonette ovulated like 7 days after her period, and got a BFP 7 days later (both unlikely, I know) then everything is okay. Then I said – if this is true we’re going home, looking for a charity fund we both like, and giving it 500 Shekels (150 Dollars more or less). That was a religious thing to do – I was making sort of a deal with god, or the universe, or whatever – but I don’t believe it works like that. It’s not that I want there to be a god. I just want to believe, even if there isn’t.

Neil Gaiman started as comic writer. His most famous series is “Sandman”, in which he took all religions and mythologies and blended them into one story, adding his own mythology: The endless; seven siblings, more powerful than gods, each of them responsible for a function that even gods comply to: Destiny, Death, Dream, Destruction, Desire, Despair and Delirium.

Most of the siblings act in accordance with their purpose. Except Dream, AKA Sandman, on which the series focuses – he’s grumpy and official. And Death is really cheerful and fun, you’ll love her. (Yes, Death is a she). So besides those two – destruction left his role, his domain and his siblings. Delirium used to be called Delight, but something went wrong with that. Now she’s a delirious manic-depressive little girl . Desire is a beautiful, charming man-woman, and so on.

But the point I was getting to is this: Desire and Despair are twins. Desire is kind of a bitch/douche, always plotting. Despair helps her/him, not because she’s evil – she’s just passive. So usually, Desire makes the first move towards someone – sooner or later he will belong to Despair’s domain. So that’s how I feel right now – a healthy pregnancy was our desire for a year now, and every time Shmersonette went through a miscarriage we wanted it more. but now, for now, I’m in Despair.

And maybe the answer is not to let Desire trick us like that. Sure, we will do the tests and then keep on TTC. I’m not sure how to phrase this without saying “just relax and don’t think about it and it will come” because that’s not what I mean. It’s more like we should not desire it, just do it. Stop TTC and continue to make love. stop doing things for the baby, but do the same things because we need to do them anyway – for ourselves.

Okay. This is really long. I’m done now. Thank you for reading.

You know what would really relax me? Punching you in the face.

10 Apr

Ok. I love my family. I really and truly do. They may be messed up in certain ways, but in general, we’re a small family who are very close. I really love them to bits. My cousin’s kids are like my neices and nephew. I love having heart to heart conversations with my aunt. Everybody is in everybody else’s business, and we’re ok with that.

But today – I wanted to punch the lights out of almost all of them.

It was my second cousin’s 30th birthday today. Again, we’re a small family, so my second cousin and I spent most of our early years glued at the hip.

A surprise party was thrown and of course the whole family came. Shmerson couldn’t come with me because he had to work.

I’d usually be completely fine with that.

Today I guess I was particularly sensitive, considering that I was gearing up for the day of doctors tomorrow.

So I had it on my mind. So I naturally wanted to talk about it.

So first I talked to my aunt. And the conversation basically went like this:

Me: So I’m going to that doctor tomorrow…

Aunt: Ok. Why?

Me: Because I don’t feel like Dr. Blunt gave me any answers.

Aunt: You know what you need to do? You really just need to relax.

Me: (trying my hardest to keep my anger at bay) I’m relaxed. I’m just trying to take control of my care.

Aunt: You’re not relaxed. Seriously. Just stop thinking about it. Everything will be fine.

Me: (through clenched teeth) But you don’t understand…

Aunt: I do. But it’s a known fact that the less you think about it the easier…

At this point I lost my cool.

Me: OK – did you have two miscarriages?

Aunt: No. And I can’t imagine what you must be going through…

Me: Exactly. So don’t tell me to freaking relax.

At this point I really want a cigarette. I work hard to regain composure. I decide to step outside, where my mom is standing with my cousin. Hopefully there I’ll get some sympathy. And some second-hand smoke courtesy of mom.

Me: So – I’m really sick of people telling me to relax.

Mom: But you really do need to relax!

Me: *fume*

Conversation continues. I explain to my cousin about why I’m going to Dr. Twofer. My cousin, who I love and I believe is probably the sanest person in my family tells me the following:

Cousin: You’re looking for validation for your choice to keep on testing. I get that. But you won’t get that from the family. We all think you’re taking this a bit far. I mean, get the tests if that’s what will make you feel better. But we all think you are too stressed about this.

Me: I am as relaxed as I freaking can be in this situation ok? I CAN’T HAVE ANOTHER MISCARRIAGE. I JUST CANT!

Mom: See – this is the problem with your thinking.

Cousin: You’re in the middle of it so you can’t see it. Just stop looking for validation and do what you need to do.

Me: Fine.

I walk away again.

*****Half an hour later******

We’re sitting at our table. My mother and I are having a jaunty conversation while I stare longingly at a little baby at the table next to us. I look at my mom in a moment of weakness.

Me: God, I want one so bad.

Mom: I know. But you need to relax. you need to lay off of it. You know so and so? They had two kids right after they adopted because they stopped thinking about it….

Me: *turning bright red again* Please stop telling me to relax. I am as relaxed as I can be, ok? I need to go to that doctor’s…

Mom: You’re living from one doctor’s appointment to another. And this is all you ever talk about anymore.

I know she’s right. I argue anyway.

Me: I do not only talk about that! I talk about other things!

Mom: You talk about it with everyone. Everyone here knows about your miscarriages. You share everything.

Me: (knowing she’s kind of right) I only answer if I’m asked!

I walk out again. Ahh – there’s my brother. A voice of sanity.

Me: Sissy, do I talk about my miscarriages and wanting babies all the time?

Sissy: Yeah. pretty much.

Me: Really? I’m that obsessed?

Sissy: Um, I read your blog, remember? (PS – hi sissy!)

Me: Yeah  – but that’s the blog. What about everywhere else?

*crickets*

Me: If one more person tells me to relax I’m going to punch them in the face.

Sissy: Ok. But you should relax, though.

URGH!!!

Help me out here. Seriously. What if they’re all right? I mean, Elphie got her BFP when she relaxed. What if it’s freaking true?

HOW THE HELL AM I SUPPOSED TO RELAX?

I don’t think all of the xanax, cigarettes, yoga, and pee sticks combined would make me relax at this point.

I’ll say it again:

URGH.

 

PS – thanks to everyone who chimed in on yesterday’s post. There’s  still almost 24 hours until I get to Dr. Twofer’s so please feel free to add anything else that comes to mind. Of course, I will be describing the Day O’ Docs in detail tomorrow. Maybe after that I can relax. No? Yeah, didn’t think so. Frak.

 

My Response Letter to PETA

7 Apr

I’m in a crappy mood today. So I’m sure you can all guess how happy I was to receive what was obviously a form letter from PETA regarding the protest email I sent them yesterday. (For those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about – click here)

So, I won’t copy and past their stupid form letter here, but it was basically them telling me that it’s legitimate that men get vasectomies, that I should just adopt, oh – and they asked me to donate money to them! Lovely.

They signed it “the PETA staff”

Thanks guys. Real personable of you.

So – since I’m in complete and total hostile bitch mode today, I figured, what the hell – I may as well take out my hostilities on these assholes.

So before I reveal my – ehem – polite letter to them, let me suggest some choice viewing in the form of a rather scathing expose on PETA done by the show Penn & Teller: Bullshit a couple of years back. Check out part one here and the rest can be found on that sidebar.

Anyway – without further ado, my hormonal bitchy response:

Dear PETA Staff,

Thank you for the form letter, which I assume you have sent out to the hundreds if not thousands of angry women who have contacted you in the last 24 hours. I’m sure the copying and pasting is getting very tiring for your mouse hand.

Unfortunately, you are ignorant of the point we as a community are trying to make.

Give away as many vasectomies as you’d like.

Just don’t do it to “honor” Infertility awareness week.

I suggest that if you are so passionate about the issue of animal adoption, next time you want to create a buzz,  offer to help a childless couple adopt.

I would love to take in an abandoned and neglected child, and give them the love and the home they need.

That process however, costs about as much as it would to feed and clothe that child for about a decade, and alas, I don’t have access to those kinds of funds, and therefore hold on to hope that my currently unfriendly and barren uterus will eventually be able to hold on to a baby that I have created, so that I have an outlet for that love sometime before I rob a bank.

Countless  Infertile women spend their days in shame and darkness, and you making light of their medical condition doesn’t make things any better for them, and makes you look like ignorant bastards.

If you’re so concerned about the overpopulation of the planet, why don’t you mandate all of your pregnant employees to have abortions?

Because that’s about as sensitive and intelligent as your vasectomy campaign. And I’m sure all of your female employees will go right along with it because of their lofty ideals.

You people are a bunch of freaks. I don’t know why anybody supports you at this point. I hope you enjoy alienating some of the biggest animal lovers on the planet because of your sensationalism and ignorance.

Oh – and fuck you.

Sincerely,

Me

Ahh – I love the smell of flame emails in the morning (especially when I’m in raging hormonal bitch mode).

The Power of a Word

23 Mar

Ok Let me start with a bit of an apology. I started this little corner of the weboverse as a place for me to vent and share my experiences with others. It was never meant as a virtual soap box. In fact, I tend to shy away from bringing politics into this space for the simple reason that I live in Israel, and I’ve had my fair share of experiences in which I was hated, and even verbally abused, strictly because of where I’m from. So in short – I tend to keep politics out of here because this is not what our community is all about (BTW – welcome ICLWers! For more about me – feel free to click here,  here, or on the “about” page above).

But today I’m going to step a bit outside of my usual ranting to voice an opinion. First, for those of you who don’t know me, a little background:

Though I was born and currently live in Israel, I spent about half my life in the United States. 8 years as a child, and another 7 as an adult. The result of this is that a) I think and write primarily in English (exhibit a: this blog) b) Nobody guesses that I’m not American upon talking to me or reading this blog, until I point it out to them, or in real life, they hear my name. c) As a lover of politics in general, I am especially a lover and follower of American politics. In those terms, I consider myself a staunch Democrat. Even a stereotypical one. I get my news from the Daily Show and Rachel Maddow.

Now that I’m done with all this prefacing it’s time I get down to it.

During one of my undergraduate women’s studies classes, which talked about women and Judaism, my professor (who I to this day consider a role model and a mentor), brought in an expert on the Hebrew language, to speak to us about its built-in gender bias.

I won’t go into the talk in detail, but during it – apart from pointing out certain linguistic inequalities, this expert also pointed out how in Hebrew, some words are casual, whereas their English counterparts are incredibly “charged”.  As an example, this expert used the word “fetus”.

In Hebrew, “fetus” (or Ubar)  is a word used rather casually. This is how pregnant women refer to their babies before they know whether it’s a girl or a boy. This is a word doctors use often. In English, at least in the United States, “fetus” is a charged, almost taboo word.

I think this is because abortion in Israel is not a controversial topic (let’s face it, we’ve got enough controversy without it). It’s legal, it’s done. It’s not debated. Israel is a country with universal healthcare, and legal abortion. Here, if you want to get an abortion, and have it funded through government healthcare, you have to sit in front of a committee comprised of three people, 2 of them doctors, and one of them has to be a woman. Statistically, these committees authorize over 98% of the requests.

If you don’t want to go through a committee, you can opt to fund the abortion in a private clinic. No muss, no fuss.

The result of all of this is that apart from the religious right, there isn’t much of an anti-abortion movement in Israel. This is, I believe, because Israel was founded based at least partially on socialist values that go hand-in-hand with individual rights. Each time someone has tried to pass anti-abortion legislation in Israel, this legislation has not even gone up for a vote, because it is looked at as infringing upon a woman’s individual rights.

There was a TINY bit of controversy (again – from the religious right) when the morning-after pill was introduced here. But it passed quickly, and now it’s openly sold in pharmacies, and several cute commercials with smiling girls wearing pink tank tops were aired on prime time TV.

So yes  – here, fetus is not a dirty word.

In terms of American politics, I’ve always considered myself Pro-choice (being a staunch Democrat, it kind of comes with the territory). However, I also knew that when it came to my own body, I probably would not have an abortion.

Of course, now that I’ve had two miscarriages my opinion about my own body has become even more solidified, and yes, I admit, I would look sideways today at a woman – say in her mid 20’s and with relative financial stability – having an abortion. But this is just because of my own experience and issues. At the end of the day, it’s her body, her life, and her choice.

The results of the 2010 elections in the US shocked me. Mind you, I have some issues with what Obama has done as president, but I still could not fathom, after so many years living in the damage that a Republican administration had done to the country, why anybody in their right minds would vote Republican.

It’s not that I don’t understand (and sometimes even agree with) Republican policies. But what Republicans promise on the campaign trail (more jobs, less taxes, fiscal responsibility and the like), is worlds apart from what they do once they are in office. I could write for hours about the ludicrous union-stripping that’s been going on in Wisconsin for example. But in all truth, considering my own experiences over the past year, I am far more upset with the sheer weight of anti-abortion legislation that is happening all over the United States.

Because I’ve always been pro-life when it comes to my own body, I never openly advocated for a woman’s right to choose. I would give pro-choice picketers the thumbs up sign happily, but you would never find me holding up a sign, because I always found myself a bit detached from the topic.

Now that I myself have become a “repeat aborter”, I find myself wanting to get on a plane and march on washington.

Some people may think it’s ironic that a person like myself – who has a newly-found appreciation for the preciousness of pregnancy – would all of the sudden feel this way.

But to me, it makes total sense. As a part of this community, I’ve read the stories here of women who have had to go through heartbreaking late-term abortions because they had no choice. I’ve followed bloggers who rely on planned parenthood for their birth control because they can’t afford to have it any other way. I’ve seen the true implications of the silent victims of anti-abortion legislation. It’s the women of this community – who sometimes feel like they have no control over their own bodies – who need laws in place to at least retain their right to choose what to do when it comes to their bodies.

There are Republicans in Washington currently trying to de-fund planned parenthood.

There is one nutcase Republican lawmaker in Georgia who is trying to make MISCARRIAGE a crime.

There is a bill in Indiana that is trying to force doctors to warn women that abortion could possibly cause breast cancer.

Keiko Zoll, an IF blogger who I read regularly, speaks and advocates about this far more eloquently than I do. So I strongly recommend you hop on over to her blog every once in  a while to see what she has to say.

But I feel the need to speak out about this because seriously – and there’s no other way to put this: This is getting frakking ridiculous.

We in the ALI community should be doing everything we can to stop this kind of legislation from happening. If I had the money, I’d hop on a plane and march on washington tomorrow. But I don’t, and I seriously fear for my friends living in the United States. I sincerely am afraid of the consequences of these laws on their lives.

And I find it maddening that in a world with such harsh words as “death”, “terrorism”, “tsunami”, “infertility”, “poverty”, and “hunger”, the word “fetus” is getting all of the attention, and for all the wrong reasons.

Those are just my two cents. Thanks for reading.

The Facebook Miscarriage Announcement

19 Mar

Note – I’ve noticed lately that a lot of women have come to this post after googling “How to announce a miscarriage on facebook”. If you are one of those women, I’m sorry for your loss and for how you have come to this blog. Please know that you’re not alone. There is a huge community of women out there – including myself, who have been through a loss and have come out safely on the other side. Please feel free to contact me using the link above if you feel like you need support. I will be happy to point you in the right direction.

The following post is meant to be satirical, although, if you manage to get some good tips from it, even better. 🙂

And now, without further ado – the original post. 

Ok – so practically every single one of the wonderful ALI bloggers that I follow has, at least once, posted about her bitterness of seeing happy-go-lucky preggo announcements on facebook.

I myself have been guilty of that on several occasions.

Since Shmerson and I have been back on the TTC wagon, I’ve given a lot of thought as to when, how, and to whom I announce the pregnancy when it happens.

On facebook, my initial instinct told me to wait until the second trimester, and then write something like: “After two devastating losses, Shmerson and I are happy to announce that I have finally made it into my second trimester safely. Wish us luck!”

But here’s the thing  – publicly, Shmerson and I have started to be huge advocates for NOT waiting. For breaking the silence around miscarriage. For sharing so others won’t feel like they’re alone. Shmerson wrote very openly about it on facebook. I’m not quite there yet because I have a lot of professional contacts on there. But honestly, for the last couple of weeks I’ve been toying with the idea of just sharing a link to this blog, without privacy settings and kind of just going: Ha! In your face bitches! I lost two babies!

Or something.

The only reason I don’t do this is actually due to the fact that I speak very openly here about my depression and anxiety, and I don’t want that publicized to future employers.

So yeah – posting the blog publicly – a problem.

But my miscarriages?

Well – I really do feel like screaming it from the rooftops. I’ve had two losses! I was (and still am) heartbroken!

Though I know at this point it’s a bit late for this.

On the other hand – what if I break the taboo completely? What if – as soon as i get a BFP I post a status that says:

Preggo for the third time after two losses. Hopefully this time it sticks. Cross your fingers for me!

Four weeks along.

Why the hell not? I admit it’s very tempting and kind of rebellious. I mean, I’ll obviously be posting about my BFP on here. So why the hell not on FB? Why not shatter the taboo? It seems like an interesting social experiment. Just to see what people will say in the comments. (though if anyone tells me they’re praying for me and those other losses happened for a reason I will unceremoniously remove them from my friends list).

But let’s say I do that. Inevitably, that thought process  brings me to a much darker place. Say this next BFP doesn’t stick. That means I have to actually announce my miscarriage on facebook.

So – in the spirit of this, inspired by this, and egged on by this, here are ten ways to announce a miscarriage on facebook (now with extra humor, denial, and cynicism!)

***WARNING: some of the following is highly inappropriate and some people may find it offensive or hurtful. I have let my bitter flag fly. Consider yourself warned.

  1. The Casual Approach: Yeah – so I’m not knocked up anymore. Thought you should know. Kthnxbye
  2. The April Fool’s Day Status Update: We safely made it to the second trimester! Psych! April fool! I actually lost the baby last week.
  3. The “Borrowing a Cliche while starting a betting pool” Approach:Three miscarriages down – who knows how many to go? Come on – we’re taking bets! Whoever guesses correctly will get to change a poopy diaper for me once I actually manage to carry a baby to term! (On second thought, I should probably think of a more attractive prize for the winner)
  4. The Charlie Sheen Approach: Nope – that wasn’t tiger’s blood coming out of my cooch! (I know that one was a bit much. Sorry, I couldn’t help myself).
  5. The “You Lucky Fertiles Suck” Approach: Had another miscarriage. Anyone with a child who wants to tell me “everything will happen in good time” is welcome to step up so I can punch them in the face!
  6. The Wayne’s World Approach: I’ve just been told I will carry this baby to term! NOT! And monkeys might fly out of my butt! (But no babies will be flying out of my uterus any time soon!)
  7. The Bad Pun Approach: Well – There goes another pregnancy down the drain…
  8. The Roundabout Approach: I am happy to announce that I am back to smoking a pack a day, and I can have as much caffeine as I want!
  9. The Posting of Pee Sticks, Redoux: Take a picture of your BFP, and date it with a magic marker. Then once the HCG is out of your system, take a picture of a BFN and date it as well. The smart people will figure it out.
  10. The Ultrasound Annoucement, Redoux (Inspired by Elphie’s #2): This one is specific to Blighted ovums. Post the ultrasound pic, with a big red arrow pointing to the empty sac. In case your pool of friends is particularly challenged, write “Doesn’t that Empty Sac look just like me?” above said red arrow.

Well – those are mine. Feel free to post your ideas in the comments!

Let cynicism and bitterness reign supreme!

(was that a cheesy line or did I live up to my promise from yesterday?)

You Know What Really Pisses Me Off?

14 Mar

There’s this woman, who is a friend of a friend, who I made the mistake of adding on facebook a few months ago.

Two years ago, at the age of THIRTY FIVE, this woman got pregnant by her boyfriend BY ACCIDENT.

SHE ALSO SMOKED AND DRANK DURING THE ENTIRE PREGNANCY AND GAVE BIRTH TO A PERFECTLY HEALTHY BABY BOY.

A few days ago she happens to pop up on my news feed with a belly that’s 7 months along. At the age of 37. Without a hitch. And I bet she’s still smoking.

And today, i go out to lunch with my mom and a friend of hers. Her daughter, who is 34, is now 15 weeks along with her second child. No complications all is well. What was supposed to be a pleasant day was spent cooing at pictures of this woman’s one year old grandaughter and talking excitedly about how “she hopes this next one is a boy” and how her “poor daughter just feels awful physically”.

At that point I wanted to yell at her: So fucking what? At least she made it to 15 weeks. Now shut the fuck up before I throw something at you.

Then we drove past a store with maternity clothes and I wanted to cry.

I want a fucking cigarette.

 

Urgh

18 Feb

Me: I want my internet back!

Me: you know, this would be the moment where I’m supposed to tell you that it’s healthy that you’re disconnected for a while, and it’s not so bad. It’s only till sunday.

Me: Me want internet! Me want internet now!

Me: you realize that this means we either have to hang out at the parents’ or at cafes?

Me: I don’t care! INTERNET! INTERNET!

Me: and you’re so excited when you’re finally online we can’t concentrate enough to write a decent blog post.

Me: Um – we can’t concentrate because we have either our parents or some waiter breathing down our necks. But it’s worth it!  INTERNET! INTERNET!

Me: Yeah, I’m kidding myself. INTERNET! INTERNET! INTERNET!

Me: I’m glad you’re finally seeing things my way. INTERNET! INTERNET! INTERNET!

Me: (for some reason I have a feeling that letting her win will come back to bite me in the ass).

Me: did you say something?

Me: Um – no! of course not! INTERNET! INTERNET! INTERNET!

Editor’s note: we promise to be back with our regularly scheduled blog posts on Sunday. Until then you will have to put up with our endless whining. Our sincerest apologies.

Internet Withdrawal

17 Feb

So I woke up this morning to find that my internet was down.

And remember, dear readers, I not only blog from home, I work from home!

Turns out the rainstorm last night shorted out my phone line.

And guess what? The lovely isp said that they didn’t have a tech available until Sunday!

I then proceeded to rock back and forth in a fetal position for half an hour.

Finally, I regained my sanity, and called them back:

Me: Listen, I work from home. I need the internet. If I don’t have it I’m basically screwed.

Operator: Ok. Please hold.

Me: *holding* *getting withdrawal pangs*

Operator: Yeah, we can maybe try to squeeze you in maybe tomorrow. We’ll call you and let you know.

Me: Screw you.

*two hours later*

Operator: please hold

Me: *shake* *shudder*

Operator: Yes ma’am (she called me ma’am! I’m not 60!) I’m sorry but we can’t make any promises. We’re fully booked.

Me: Screw you.

I decided to say screw it – I’m gonna go to a new ISP! I hate these guys anyway.

I call the potential new ISP:

Me: Hi – I work from home, my old ISP has screwed me over, so if you can get a technician here to install in the next 24 hours, I’m yours, and I’ll take the rest of the business with me.

Operator: Please hold.

Me: *shakes*

Saleswoman: *sucking up to me* *kissing my ass* I can’t promise you one today, but I’ll work my ass off to get you one tomorrow.

Me: Deal. *shaking. thinking why the heck can’t I be reading ew.com or something while I’m talking to these people? Oh, right, I have no internet. shudder*

Saleswoman: *continues to kiss my ass*

So yeah – MAYBE tomorrow I’ll get it fixed if miss saleslady manages to make some magic happen. If not, I very well may be AFK for a while.

Well, actually no. The upside of no internet at home? I intermittently get to go to cafes and order ice cream so I can leech off of their connection (sort of like I’m doing right now). It’s not good for the size of my ass, but it keeps the withdrawal pangs at bay.

MO is AFK

*shake*

*shudder*

*eats another bite of vanilla*

Grey’s Anatomy and I are no longer friends.

5 Feb

Ok, first: SPOILER ALERT! If you have not seen this week’s episode of Grey’s Anatomy and you don’t want to be spoiled on what’s going on, please read no further. But come back after you watch it, because you may well be just as ticked off as I am.
I’ve already talked about how Grey’s ticked me off a couple of weeks back with their complete glossing over of Meredith’s miscarriage and Callie’s magical pregnancy.
Well – this week things got worse.
Callie started bleeding and she was freaking out. She’s like, six weeks along or something like that. So she’s freaking out and I’m secretly hoping this woman miscarries (hey, she’s fictional, I’m allowed!) and maybe they finally address the freakin’ issue properly.
But no. She camps out on her OB’s table until she brings out a miraculous super Ultra Sound machine and hey! Look at that! A heartbeat at six weeks! That’s totally realistic and Super Sensitive Ultra Sound machines exist especially for dramatic character revelations everywhere! Yay!

Oh look at me! I’m Callie and I’m super-fertile! I got preggers and I’m bleeding but I’m super cool so everything is awesome and I got to hear my baby’s heartbeat at six weeks! Yay me! And now I’m not gonna be worried ever again because I have my hot baby daddy and my lesbian girlfriend supporting me! You see, the freak out was metaphorical. I wasn’t REALLY worried about the baby, I was worried about my stupid relationships. Of course my baby is going to be fine! This is TV! We gloss over miscarriages and celebrate easy pregnancies!

Screw you, fictional character.

Oh? And you know what makes it worse? It’s Sloan’s baby, right? And he and McDreamy are discussing Callie’s Super-Uterus and all McDreamy says is “I don’t get how you guys did it so easily, and we’ve been trying for months”.

Oh have you now? Really? This is your frustration? Not that you LOST A FREAKIN’ BABY?!?!

McDreamy – you and I are no longer friends. And I don’t like your post-it wife much anymore, either.

Hi I’m Meredith Grey. I may be dark and twisty but I am completely capable of glossing over my miscarriage and having lots of sex with my super hot brain surgeon husband! Yay infertile me! I don’t care about it at all and I haven’t addressed the issue since the beginning of the season! I’m the coolest character ever!

You know what the sad part is? I will most likely continue to watch. I’m a masochist that way.

I was a masochist too until I had the sense to quit the show and go adopt a kid.

Katherine Heigl, I’m starting to like you more and more. Now if you’d just stop making crappy movies, I may be friends with you again.

Ok. I’m done now.

Hollywood is Stoopid

16 Jan

Did you hear that Natalie Portman is Pregnant? Oh! So is Mariah Carey! And Selma Blair! And Alicia Silverstone! And Jane Krakowski! And Grey’s Anatomy spoiler alert: So’s Callie!

Is it just me or is there a pregnancy virus going around? Because if it is, please give me a piece of that action.

What kind of peeves me about these things is that all of these women are over thirty (with the exception of ms portman), and I’m pretty much convinced that at least some of them had a hell of a hard time conceiving. But nobody ever really talks about that, do they?

I read a couple of months back that lilly allen miscarried at 4 months. I’m not really a fan of hers but I was still devastated for her. But other than a small blurb about it, nobody talked about it. They were much more excited for the engagement ring she was sporting after the holidays.

Media: Oh look! Everybody is preggers and engaged! Happy happy fun times!

Me: Piss off.

I have to go back to Grey’s Anatomy again. I watch it. I have sort of a love-hate relationship with it. Since Sarah Drew became a part of the cast it’s more love than hate.

But I’m pissed at them. Meredith had a freakin’ miscarriage during the season finale. And they totally glossed over it. Everyone else’s trauma was talked about, but hers? Nope. Not really.

Now they have her obsessively POAS which is cute and all – but where was the grief? Dealing with the loss?

I think Shonda Rhimes (Grey’s exec producer) is a very sensitive strong woman, and I’m so incredibly disappointed with her handling of the subject.

I’m sure that MerDer’s TTC storyline will be very cute and all – but I don’t know, I just feel like it’s kind of missing half the point.

It’s bad enough I need to read about all of these over thirty celebrity women miraculously getting pregnant. Now my TV is betraying me.

End rant.

 

 

17 day diet my ass!

9 Jan

Ok – I watch Dr. Phil. I know, it’s a show that is at times ridiculous, incredibly preachy, and cheesy on many levels. But I watch it. Sue me.

Today I saw the episode kicking off the shill-a-thon that is the “17 day diet challenge”, and I’m pissed off.

This man is supposed to be a mental health professional and it’s seriously upsetting to me that he’s pimping out this BS program.

I’ll start by saying this: weight issues are solved not by changing what you eat (though of course that is something you need to do). Weight issues are caused by emotional eating. They are a symptom! Not the problem.

And the fact that this supposed mental health professional basically ignores this  in what he preaches is incredibly upsetting to me.

I’ve written here before about my own struggles with my weight. Since the age of 17, I’ve been yo-yoing between 120 pounds and 190 pounds.

I gain the weight, go on a diet, lose the weight, and then gain it again.

Now that I have some clarity – it’s obvious to me why this happens.

I was depressed, I suffered from extreme anxiety. I self-medicated with food.

I was raised to see food as a comfort. I celebrated with food, I mourned with food, I ate and ate “because I deserved it”.

I do not know one single person who is overweight, that does not also have problems with depression, anxiety, and/or low self-esteem. Not one. I literally ran through every person I know who has weight issues, and they all meet this criteria.

Since going on zoloft, and beginning to deal with my emotional issues, I have lost weight, and I’ve done so without even trying. I don’t have the urge to binge anymore, I’m not obsessed with food, and I no longer eat until I’m stuffed – only until I’m full.

I realize that especially because of my high cholesterol and high blood pressure I need to take more steps to eat healthier, and I need to exercise more. I’m working on it, step by step, and getting better at it every day.

There is no magic diet. You lose weight by eating healthy and moving your body. It’s not rocket science, yet people struggle with it all the time.

“Dr” Phil showed taped segments of the competitors in this 17 diet whatever, and each one of them mentioned, at least in passing, going through some tragedy in their lives, becoming overweight as a result of a major life change, or emotional eating.

Yet for some reason – nobody even brought up the thought that treating these people’s obvious issues with depression would be a far better approach – instead of making them run through tires on national television.

Yes – of course they need to learn how to eat healthier and exercise – but when you’re depressed, or feeling bad about yourself – are you really going to be able to find the motivation to get off your fat ass and do something about it? Of course not!

Losing weight is about loving yourself – it’s about saying to yourself “I deserve to be pretty and healthy”.

Gaining weight is about self-hate. I never stuck to anything because in my heart of hearts I felt like I didn’t deserve to feel pretty. I didn’t deserve to be healthy. I was engaging in self-destructive behavior. Period. This is what substance abuse is. Self-medication. It’s the same for smokers, for alcoholics, and yes – for people with weight issues.

Why is it that when a heroin addict goes into rehab he or she spends most of their time dealing with childhood trauma or abusive spouses or depression or whatever, but when an overweight person goes on a diet not one moment is spent in figuring out why they overeat in the first place?

I saw a few months back a story about some guy who was on “The Biggest Loser” and lost something like 200 pounds, and then a year later, away from the cameras, he gained it all back.

Of course he did! Because losing weight did not solve any of his REAL problems.

It pisses me off that a supposed licensed psychiatrist would be so irresponsible as to perpetuate the myth of magic diets.

There is no such thing as a “diet” that works. What works for people with lifelong struggles with weight is to figure out the true cause for their self-medication.

“Dr” Phil needs to stop peddling some bullshit goods that will supposedly make these people magically thin and happy.

They may end up thin – but trust me – the second those cameras go away, those people ain’t gonna be happy.

Zoloft is not a magic diet pill. The reason I’ve lost weight while taking it is because I have real medication for my emotional problems, and no longer feel the need to self-medicate with food.

I still have a long way to go – and many pounds to lose. But I will not be buying any gimmicky books to do so. I’m just going to work on getting healthy and moving my body more, and I know that if I continue to look after my mental health, my physical health will easily follow.

It’s not that I’m against legitimate programs like weight watchers that help a person deal with the day-to-day practicality of eating right. They do good things, and emphasize long-term change.

But I went on weight watchers – and I lost 30 pounds on it – and then I gained it all back – BECAUSE I WAS DEPRESSED.

“Dr” Phil needs to take a good hard look at his own (overweight!) self and start educating his audience about the real causes of weight gain. It’s not the fast food joints. It’s not the dramatic pounds of lard that he dumps on his stage to illustrate what his guests consume every month.

No – it’s people with emotional issues that are self medicating in order to deal with them.

Deal with the cause – and the symptom will eventually take care of itself (with a little bit of hard work of course – but I know that it will).

I’ll end with an anecdote: last night I went out to a show with friends. When it was over, we went to a restaurant. I was starving because I hadn’t really eaten all day. I ordered food (some healthy, some a bit less – but nothing too damaging), and I ate until I was full. And then – I didn’t order dessert. I didn’t even consider it. It wasn’t on my radar. I was full, I didn’t need to eat chocolate cake because “I was out with friends” or because “I deserved it.”

I just didn’t need it because I wasn’t hungry anymore. It’s as simple as that. And I was clear headed enough to see this. There was no internal yes or no battle here. I wasn’t hungry so I didn’t eat it.

These last few weeks have been the first time in 13 years that I have gone out to eat on several occasions and not even broached the subject of dessert.

And no BS book was involved. All that was involved was clarity.

 

 

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