Vacation is finally here!

Ohhh, I am so exited. We leave for vacation today. The one I wrote about a while back.

The best part of vacation is getting to spend so much time with My Lover. I told him that the other night, and it sounded so gooey lovey. But its true. I just love being near him.

I feel good that we are waiting until after we get home to do the SA. (Send me some good love next Friday!)

I am excited to see so many good friends who we love but who live so far away.

I can't wait to debut my sparkle costume, complete with fishnet gloves and the most awesome sparkle tutu ever.

I feel prepared to talk about our struggle to have a family, on my terms and with my boundaries. I do not fear this conversation or question.

I won't have (reliable) internet access, but I am bringing my laptop and picture hours of time to write, ahhhhh. I love to write.


Foxy's Favorite Posts Shout-Out #3

from "Bottoms on and on a Break"
I "met" Augusta when she left a beautiful comment on Megan's blog. I worked my way over to her site, All in One Basket, and spent the next couple hours reading everything she had written. Augusta is a wonderful writer and I was touched by so many of her words. In one post she says, "The risk of hoping looms large in my heart." Oh my gosh does that resonate with me.  The eloquent Augusta doesn't write often but when she does, it is right on.

Speaking of Megan's Blog, Bottoms on and on a Break, I spent another bit of time watching the video's that she has created. Sometimes words just don't do justice to the feelings that are swirling round in our souls.

from Lily at "The Infertile Mind"
Another blogger who I adore, and who, through her infertility e-class this spring helped me connect with this amazing blogging community is Lily, at The Infertile Mind. Lily just published a little infertility e-book - Infertile Inspiration. I love the way that she uses simple gentle graphics and simple gentle words to encourage and support. Her website says that there is another infertility e-class in the works for this fall, and I can't wait to participate again. There is a form on her site where you can sign up to get notifications about the upcoming class.

My friend Determined Dory at Just Keep Swimming, who is also an amazing writer and who is preparing for a TESE IVF cycle wrote a really touching post about "What Makes a Man a Father". She got my tear factory going with her vivid descriptions of the future I dream of for my 'someday family'. Thank you Dory for reminding me to keep my eye on the prize, and not get so caught up with the details about how we get there.
My Sparkle Supplies

On the off chance that any of you will be at H.ornings next weekend, I would love to try and meet-up for a meander. I'll be with the gnomes and s.parkle party inspired crew. Send me an email (delete the spaces - f o x y p o p c o r n at gmail dot com) and we can coordinate a time and place.


I talked to ML about the SA, after I finished my post yesterday, and gave him back the 'keys to the bus'. I told him that I trust his judgement about the timing of the SA and that I would feel awful for ruining our  vacation. He suggested that we reschedule for the following Friday, which will be as soon as we return from vacation. I really do trust his judgement about this, and am at peace with our plan.

I have costumes to finnish sparkling, packing to begin, and some work that is leftover form last week to finnish today. Love to all!


Logic Prevails?

So much to write about, and so little time.

Our SA is next week. I talked to my therapist about it, because I want to make sure that I am prepared to receive and handle the results. She suggested that we have the Doc email the results rather than call, so that ML and I can read them on our own time, as opposed to getting a call while we are in the car (for 12 hours with two other people). We kind of walked thru my reaction if they are negative, which I had kind of been focused on. Then we talked about my reaction if there is sperm. Ironic as it sounds, I have a lot more anxiety about that. There are a whole series of actions that get kicked into high gear if this SA finds sperm. And I would want to start them all immediately, which isn't really feasible for 10 days while we are on vacation. So instead I will just obsess about it during our vacation, and since we'll be camping I will be without any access to the internet or reliable phone service to start planning.

Awesome therapist also suggested that I check in with ML about all of this. To see what he is thinking and feeling about everything, and to let him know what I am thinking and feeling. (Duhhh. She often has the most common sense suggestions, that I somehow fail to see clearly on my own.)  Although I think about this stuff a lot, ML prefers not to think about it and has some magical ability to turn off that part of his brain. (Can you sense my jealousy!) I know that he doesn't like to think or talk about it, so I try to be thoughtful about how often I bring it up. So we hadn't really talked about this...

...Until I brought it up the other night. He clearly hadn't been thinking much about it and started to panic a little when I started to talk about having the Doc email the results so that we wouldn't get them in the car with his friends. He looked at me like I might be totally crazy when I said that if the SA shows sperm that I fully expected us to find a sperm bank on our trip so that he could make deposits during our vacation. He was panicked because he is worried about me. and my reaction. and about these results 'breaking me', like the last results did. He wants to wait until we get home to get the SA. I cried.

I tried to explain that I will be fine, That I just need to talk thru the negative/positive reactions now and that I will be fine when we are in the car for 12 hours with other people and unable to talk about any of this. I am so much stronger now. I have so many support tools in place now. I can handle this. I've been planning on this SA being next Wednesday for months. I can handle anything, I just can't handle changing the plan.

He thinks that this will ruin our vacation.

I took a zanax, finished crying, and went to sleep. He couldn't sleep, woke up at 4am and watched the Tou.r de F.rance for 4 hours. He is concerned about me. and probably feels a little like he has no control over these plans that I am so focused on.

I couldn't see it that night, but he might be right. It might be easier/better to reschedule the SA for after we return. I suppose I should talk to him about this again. These are not my choices to make alone. and I trust that he knows me better than I know myself when it comes to things like this. and it really isn't fair that my out of control emotions should ruin our vacation. We are in this together.


SA Next Week

Oh my gosh, I think I might have actually blushed when I saw that someone had submitted our upcoming SA to LFCA. Thank you for such a kind and thoughtful gift. Really, I wish I could give you, whoever you are, a great big hug.

So, yeah, SA is scheduled for next Wednesday. One week from today. It's been taking up more and more space in my brain, but I can't quite figure out what I think or feel. The only thing I know is that I want to line up all of my support systems so that I can experience any disappointment, but then bounce back. I don't want to crash into the bottomless pit of sadness and despair that caught up with me last time we got bad news. I can't do that again.

In some part of my brain I don't expect that we'll ever get good news. ever.

And in another part of my brain I am so hopeful that I 'joked' about a miracle for me last month.

The doc gave us a 50/50 chance that this FSH therapy could, in theory, result in sperm production. He explained that even if it was successful, there probably wouldn't be enough sperm to spill into the ejaculate and would still require surgical extraction and ISCI.  But the thing is, this is an experimental treatment. Its not like the doc has seen/heard of more than a couple cases like this in his entire career. So really, anything is possible, but it is not a proven treatment, so it is more likely than not that this SA will be negative.

And if it is, I want to grieve, then move on.

So, to make it all a little more complicated, or possibly a blessing in disguise, we are leaving for 10 days of vacation immediately following the deposit next Wednesday. We'll be departing on a 12 hour road trip  with my lover's best friend and a hitch-hiker acquaintance. So we'll get a call with the results while sitting in a car with two, for the purposes of this kind of news, strangers. I'll probably cry, and they won't know why. But they are boys and probably won't ask.

I'll bring my xana.x and have it handy in case my emotions start to get the better of me. and I'll have my love, right there with me (way better than drugs!). I'll paint my nails, which for some reason makes me feel good. and I'll have my laptop, so I can write. Writing has been the most incredible therapy. It is an outlet for the pain, a place to put it where I know it will be safe and where I can deal with it in smaller chunks. I'm meeting with my most awesome therapist tomorrow and I'm sure we'll come up with a few more tools to pack in my little resiliency toolkit.

So, yeah, I've not wanted to think about this, and have put off writing about it. Apparently I needed the LFCA push :) Regardless of the results next Wednesday, I feel your support and love. and it really means a lot to me.


Little Bits of Advocacy - CDC Website

Imagine the power if we all took tiny little steps to advocate for one another and by doing so raised the awareness about infertility to the highest levels of the medical profession, researchers, and decision makers. This simple little email exchange led to a review and update to the Centers for Disease Control website to include information about male infertility! 

Foxy is feeling like a little rawk-star today :)

To Centers for Disease Control:

My husband and I recently learned that our efforts to start a family have been unsuccessful as a result of severe male factor infertility. To say that we are devastated by this diagnosis does not begin to communicate the emotions we are experiencing. As this is a highly personal and private matter, we prefer not to share our personal information at this time, however I can be reached via email at
Trolling the internet for resources, I came across the Centers for Disease Control website on Assisted Reproductive Technologies ( I can't help but wonder who wrote the content and how it ended up getting published on the internet. Specifically, I am offended by the implication that infertility is a women's problem. The site only references the number of infertility-related visits that women make every year and describes infertility services as “medical tests to diagnose infertility, medical advice and treatments to help a woman become pregnant, and services other than routine prenatal care to prevent miscarriage.” I can assure you that infertility affects both women and men. My research has revealed that causes of infertility are split nearly evenly between genders, with 40% female factor infertility, 40% male factor infertility, and 20% combination of bothh male and female factors. I can also assure you that infertility services include medical tests and treatments that assist a man's sperm in finding its way out of his body so that he can father a child. I am not suggesting that there was any mal-intention in the description provided on your site, however it is disappointing to see this type of mis-information being espoused by the Department of Health and Human Services.
I respectfully request that this site be reviewed for accuracy of both the factual information being provided and that it be edited to convey and imply the fact that infertility affects both men and women.
I appreciate your attention to this and look forward to your reply and update to the website. I have cc'd RESOLVE with this email and information, and trust that they would be pleased to assist you.
A devastated couple (Foxy)

Dear Foxy Popcorn,

Thank you for visiting the CDC website. Your inquiry was forwarded to
CDC's Division of Reproductive Health for a response. I am sorry to hear
that you and your husband are experiencing infertility, and I understand
your concern regarding the content on this webpage: and apologize if it offended you. That
is certainly not the intent, and we are reviewing the content and will
include more data about male infertility so this paragraph is a more
comprehensive picture on the burden of infertility.

The introductory paragraph and data were taken from the National Survey
of Family Growth which was historically
conducted with women only; however, the most recent survey does include
men and has some data on male infertility, so we will be sure to add
this to our ART homepage. In addition, we have published a recent
journal article on male infertility which may be of interest to you (it
is attached). CDC has also convened an inter-agency working group to
better address infertility as a public health problem. For more
information, please see this webpage:

Again, please accept our apologies and we thank you for bringing this to
our attention. We will work on updating our webpage. If you have any
other questions or comments, or would like a copy of the ART Success
Rates Report (, please let me


Kelly Brumbaugh, MPH, CHES
Health Communications Specialist
CDC - Division of Reproductive Health
ph: 770.488.6344, fx: 770.488.6253


Dear Kelly,
Thank you so much for your response to my comments about the need to include information about Male Factor Infertility on the CDC website. I understand that until recently there were not many options available for couples who were challenged with MFI, but ISCI and TESE procedures can now provide good options. When my husband's physician first reviewed the results of his sperm analysis, which had a zero sperm count, he abruptly left the room to call a urologist. Then he returned to inform my husband that some men just don't make sperm. My husband's physician, and our local urologist, were not educated about male fertility processes. Their conclusion that a zero sperm count was indicative of no sperm production is the type of mis-information that I'd like to challenge - in the CDC website, and other forums. Thank you for your help in raising awareness and reducing the stigma about male factor infertility.

Do you know if the CDC has any information about male fertility treatment, specifically TESE, ISCI, FNA mapping, Biopsy's, etc? I am needing to evaluate different reproductive urologists and treatments, but can only find impartial information about IVF centers.

Please let me know if there is any way that I can be of assistance to the CDC inter-agency working group on infertility. I can speak to the emotional and financial impact that this diagnosis has had on my husband and I, and our extended family.

I really do appreciate you thoughtful reply, and assurance that the content on the CDC website will be reviewed and updated to reflect current options.



Hello there,
Unfortunately, we do not have much information on infertility to offer yet. Our focus has been on using ART as a treatment. It was just this past year that we've pulled together the inter-agency working group to address infertility as a broader issue. We often refer folks to the following organizations for more infertility information: - search for 'infertility' - search research published in medical journals
Sorry we cannot be of further help, but hope you can find the information you're seeking. In the future, we hope to have more to offer folks. Best wishes to you.
Kelly Brumbaugh

Health Communications Specialist
CDC - Division of Reproductive Health
ph: 770.488.6344, fx: 770.488.6253


Journals from the Past

I reflected last week on the year anniversary of our first Semen Analysis and the devastating diagnosis we received. I've come a long way since then. At our Resolve meeting last night, yep I went again and it was awesome again, I was surprised by how confident and relaxed I felt. Today as I clean out some old files on my laptop, I opened an old journal to find some entries from last year, right after our first UR appointment. It's pretty powerful to read, and again a reminder of how far I've come on this journey. I wanted so much to share this with someone last year, but I wasn't ready to be so open. This seems like an appropriate place and time to share. Here goes....

I read everyday, but haven't been able to write. I want to contribute to the discussion, but I am struggling with balancing the need to connect with others who understand this experience and a strong desire for privacy. Even with screen names, the internet feels so public. 

We had our first consult with a reproductive urologist. I felt like an idiot, barely able to communicate, and definitely not strong for my husband. I had written out a list of questions in advance and actually handed the list to the Dr. My husband was great - following the discussion and asking relevant questions. I just sat there with tears running down my face. I'd prepared a letter to the Doctor and his staff to have put in our file, introducing my husband and I, reminding him that every interaction with him or his staff was highly emotional and stressful for us, asking for help in understanding the financial cost of any options that were presented to us, etc... and it had our picture on it. At the very end of the consult I handed the Dr the letter and it was like a lightbulb came on. He brought the patient coordinator nurse into the room to meet us, gave us the card for the financial counselor, and encouraged us to make an appt with the office counselor. The doctor was great before the letter, but after reading it remembered the humanity of us as a couple who were scared and in pain.
We are now waiting for results of hormones and genetic testing. I am putting all of my thoughts into hoping that the results show that we are lucky enough to move forward with a TESE, and trying to brace myself if that is not an option.
Speaking of bracing myself, I got a massage last week and realized that I was actually physically bracing myself for some sort of impact. As I started to relax, I started crying. I want to be strong for my husband. I need to hold it together at work. I honestly don't want to talk about any of this. But it is constantly swirling in my head. I am constantly in a state of apprehension. I am constantly on the verge of tears. I didn't realize how much I needed to be cared for. and how important it is going to be for me to figure out some ways to take care of myself - to create safe places where I can let my guard down. 
The physical exhaustion I've felt since getting the first SA results should have been a clue as to how much energy I am exerting to hold it together. Being at home with my husband is easiest. Being at work is okay if I can be focused on a specific task. I told my boss and direct co-worker that we had “some medical stuff going on... I felt like a zombie... I didn't want to talk about it.” They've been pretty respectful, but I know that they could ask about it at any time, and I hate that. With my irratinal emotional breakdowns and random days off for doctor appointments, I had to let them know that sometime was up and that it had nothing to do with them. Being around my one friend and two family member who know is okay. They want to be supportive, but I know that they can't understand. At least with them I know that I don't have to lie or pretend that everything is okay. Being around  friends and family who don't know is exhausting. I swear that talk of getting pregnant or babies comes up in every conversation. When we were trying, I had no problem lying and telling people that we were going to wait until I got better insurance, or until my husband got a better job, or that we just weren't ready yet. We'd wanted our trying to be private between us, as it is in fact among the most intimate and private activities that a couple ever engages in. Apparently I was so good at these fibs, when I recently told my best friend that we were having some problems, she was shocked. Ironically she was happy that her 22-week pre-nate wouldn't have to wait another 5 years for a friend, while I was considering for the first time in my life that I might never have a family. For whatever reason, when the topic comes up now I feel completely exposed and raw. and unequipped to participate in the discussion.  It takes everything I have to hold myself together so as not to let on that I want to run and hide and disappear.  We are married couples in our early 30's, so it really isn't an inappropriate subject. It's just that everything about it all of a sudden, to me, feels so invasive and out of control and, inappropriate.  I now brace myself for this part of the conversation everytime we hang out with friends. And it takes ….so.... much …. energy. 
Someone said that the first days and weeks after getting a zero SA are the worst, but it does get better. Thank you for that wisdom and encouragement. I think that I cried more in those first two weeks than I have in the past five years. For some reason driving was especially hard. Maybe the car is a private,  space where I was safe to let my guard down. I drive to meetings everyday at work, and I must have cried almost everytime I got in the car. Crying is exhausting work. I may have been physically present at these meetings, but I assure you that I was not mentally present. I was exhausted. And I couldn't eat. I've always had a hard time eating when I am under stress. It is so hard to swallow. To swallow the food, and to swallow the truth and reality of everything else that is hitting me. Besides, my stomach was in knots. Food really was not appealing. Breathing was hard too. It was as if I had to remember to breath. And as if the sobbing had hurt my diaphram, causing it to seize up everytime I exhaled. As I write this I realize that this has passed and that I can breath normally again. Reminds me of the saying, this too shall pass. 
This week has been much better. I had a full day without tears. I worked past 5 a few nights and didn't feel as thought I would pass out from exhaustion driving home. Looking back I think it started last Sunday at breakfast where I was able to eat a full meal. It is crazy to me how severely the stress of this diagnosis has physically affected me. It is unreal. 


Perfect Moment Saturday - Tomatoes in my Garden!

I sat down to write about the SA I scheduled for the 28th and all of the thoughts that I have about it, but then the dog distracted me and I wandered outside to discover.... drumroll please.... a couple little tomatoes! I grew some tomatoes!!! They are on the saddest looking plant I've ever seen, one I planted a while back with a bunch of other edible garden goodies which have all since died. But this lone tomato plant has somehow persevered thru my lack of watering, the poor sandy soil conditions, the salty ocean wind, and general neglect to produce some tomatoes. A grabbed the camera to snap a few pictures to share and caught the most delicious whiff of tomato plant - you know, wonderful that smell of fresh produce in summer all mixed up with sunshine!

It was a perfect moment to discover these little green tomatoes that are growing and thriving despite it all.


A Year Ago Today

I think it was a Monday. I was in my car. The meeting I was supposed to be at had been canceled. 

I was waiting for his text. 

ML was meeting with his new doctor. Getting the results of his first semen analysis. We’d been trying for 18 months and I kind-of knew something was wrong. 
     Foxy: Hi love
          ML: I’m at the office but haven’t spoken with the doctor yet
(about 30 minutes later)
          ML: weird news
          ML: Doctor went to call a urologist.
     Foxy: Can u call me?
     Foxy: no meeting - I’m coming now
          ML: Ok. I’m still at the doctor.
We must have talked at that point, I can’t remember. He told me that the results were zero. I didn’t understand. Apparently the doctor didn’t understand either. He looked at the results and had to leave the room to call a UR to find out what the zero results meant. 
My memory of the text exchange is crystal clear, as are a few other moments from that day. Searching google via my phone to discover the word azoospermia. Sitting at the taqueria for lunch sick to my stomach watching my lovers eyes fill with tears and seeing the pain that he was trying so hard to hide. Being at home later that evening, curled up together on the couch crying. Realizing that if I didn’t call my mom that night, I’d have to relive the pain again another day when I told her. Calling her, she was on the other line with her cousin, telling her and barely getting the words out. It was a short conversation, and I collapsed into uncontrolled sobs into the strong loving arms of ML. 
It hurt to breath. 
Thank god for google that night. We both searched desperately. Desperate to find a hope that we could cling to. A hope that the stupid doctor knew nothing about and failed to offer.
How is this possible. How could this pain hurt so much. How is it possible that my world could simply shatter around me so fast. I knew immediately that I would never be the same. I knew that we would never be the same. Everything had changed. I knew it.
How could my love for this man have grown so much stronger in a matter of a few hours. If I knew anything, it was that my love for him had never been so fierce. My commitment to him, to our relationship, was more important to me than anything. 
The loss I felt in those first hours was overwhelming. So many dreams had vanished into smoke. a natural conception. a house full of kids. a normal pregnancy. a savings account. 
I think I went into shock. I felt like I had been hit. hard. and that another hit was going to come at any moment. I had to brace myself for that next hit. I had to physically hold myself together. To hold my body stiff and solid so that I was ready for the next hit. 
I had to think about every breath. The natural reflex to breath had disappeared. Breath in. Breath out. Nothing was natural anymore. My world had stopped spinning. 


Whale Breath

As a follow-up to that awesome training I did two weeks ago I had a meeting planned yesterday to meet with a few of the other participants. You know how there are people who you feel so lucky to have crossed paths with - I feel so grateful to get to work with these two individuals. They are social scientists who have the most brilliant way of understanding group dynamics, group process, and how to actually get things done. We all work on a community collaborative as representative of our various organizations. They are a bit older and more experienced than I and really awesome mentors.

So yesterday morning I get an email asking if we could meet on a whale watching boat instead of at the office! Umm, Heck yeah! I was even able to bring my two girl cousins who are visiting for the weekend. So we bundled up and loaded up on the boat. As we headed out into the Pacific Ocean, the social scientists and I had the most productive discussion about how to proceed with our work. Before too long we were awed by the spouts of humpback whales. Pretty awesome to see these huge creatures breathing just above the water line.

My sweet cousins have never before been on a boat and were as impressed as two teenage delinquents could be expected to be.

Then we got lucky, the captain spotted a blue whale. We motored along to get closer and were overcome by the nastiest smell. Apparently Whale Breath is really gross smelling! We were in the vicinity of the largest animal in existence. And then it spouted - 30 ft into the air! Just as awesome was seeing it dive back down into the sea. I found this video on YouTube - not from our trip, but just as amazing. The span of their tail can be 25 feet wide!

At the training I had a fun conversation with the lady social scientist about wanting to tour all of the local outdoor fire-pits and write up reviews for them to post on a blog. The local Spa's too. I figure it would be a great excuse to explore my community a bit more and encourage me to keep writing.  So as we were boarding the boat, we started talking about social networking and the blurring line between privacy and self censorship. They were saying that they are selective about what they say in their social networks, because of the public nature of their work, yet we agreed that writing was a powerful process of self-reflection that allowed us to see problems and ourselves in a different light.

I don't know what I was thinking, but I confessed. I confessed to these friends that I had a secret blog, one that no one knew about, one where I didn't have to self-censor. I don't know why I told them, other than that it was an itty bitty teeny weeny step towards being more open about this whole experience.

Along the lines of being more open, and little bits of advocacy, I was at a healthcare forum last week with our Federal and State elected representatives. They were taking questions from the audience on little notecards. The question I submitted was about infertility mandates on health insurance, as a way to reduce the rates of multiples who require expensive NICU stays. At one point after I turned in my card I had the urge to run to the podium, interrupt the dialogue, and take back my card. I suddenly didn't feel strong enough to listen to then answer the question. A few deep breaths and I got my composure together. They ran out of time and never got to my question, but I am sure that the Reps at least read the remaining pile of questions and saw mine. Maybe it planted a little seed in their minds.

My awesome boss submitted the letter I prepared asking my employer to switch to an insurance plan that covered infertility services. She was gone last week, but we received a memo that the insurance rates will be increasing. Isn't that normally the same time that the whole insurance package is reviewed and the opportunity to make changes? I took the liberty of calling HR to follow up on her letter and ask them if now was the time to consider changes. I was informed that they were researching and preparing a response to my boss's letter. God, it would be so freakin awesome if I could get my employer to make a change like that! I would feel like superwoman!

Before I sign-off I want to send the biggest congratulations and lots of love to Julie and Jeff who are PREGNANT!!! 


Foxy's Favorite Posts Shout-Out #2

Happy 4th of July!

I was in a training from 9am-9pm all last week with two dozen community leaders learning conflict resolution and mediation skills. It was amazing. I have such high expectations for what can be possible if all of these different (and often competing agencies) worked together to solve the problems of violence and poverty and disenfranchisement that exist in our community. As we wrapped things up on Friday someone commented that we should really be celebrating today as Interdependence Day. Our County thrives as a result of our interdependence on on one another, and we could achieve so much more if we re-framed our story as one of connection and community and interdependence. A little food for thought on this beautiful summer day.

Welcome to the second edition of Foxy's Favorite Posts Shout-Out!

Circus Princess at Circus Children wrote a painfully honest post few weeks ago about the impossible choices that infertility can force upon us. I had to read it over and over again, because it put into words one of the deepest fears that I had when we started this journey. Having a family was the only thing I've ever expected out of life and I can't imagine, simply can't fathom, a life without kids, yet I value my relationship with my husband more than anything and can't imagine, simply can't fathom, my life without him by my side. When it became clear that our family creation options were narrowing I kept saying that living child-free was a choice that we needed to talk about - it needed to be on the table with ds and adoption. My lover kept saying that it was a choice he could reasonably consider, but that it was one he knew I would never accept, therefore it wasn't worth talking about. In so many ways he knows me better than I know myself. It gets complicated because he fears I would leave him if we decide to live child-free, and I fear he would leave me if we chose to have a non-genetic family.  I believe without a doubt that I would chose my husband over anything, and I know that he would chose me. But the reality of the choices facing us are not so black and white. 

One of the first blogs that I read was Jenny's at Among the Blossoms. Her site is so pretty and welcoming, and she has such a positive uplifted attitude. She recently opened an Etsy Store to sell her beautiful beaded fertility bracelets and is hosting a grand opening giveaway. Check out her beautiful jewelry and join the giveaway fun.

I can't stop thinking about my blogger friend Julie at Once More, With Feeling. She is PREGNANT! and I am so happy for her. Her story is similar to ours and I feel a strong sense of camaraderie. She is a beautiful writer and her posts are so easy to connect with. Her amazing dh Jeff also started his own blog, Don't Try this at Home, which makes me laugh every time I read it. I wish that Julie and Jeff lived in my town and that we could be friends. The thing is that Julie's beta is on the lower range of normal, and she is understandably anxious about what happens next. One of the first things I grieved when we found out that pregnancy would not come easily for us was the dream of a 'normal' pregnancy. The surprise of a late period and anticipation of a positive hpt. The unexpected call to my bff to share the news and the burst of joy that fills the room when I tell my mom. It will be different for us. There will be a caution, a hesitation, a protection of our hearts, a delayed joy. Julie comes across to me as being so positive and full of hope, yet she is unable to bask in the glow of this wonderful news that a perfect new life is growing in her belly. The fear of loss is overwelming. A part of me knows that I will react to my own pg with fear and anxiety, and that it is safe to feel so positive and hopeful for someone else. I wish that there was a magic wand that would free us all to experience all the love and joy and happiness of pregnancy regardless of what the future holds. 

I was reminded of this poem while we were in Vegas last weekend. It seems appropriate to share it here, with you, and as a reminder to myself. 

God grant me the serenity to:
Accept the things I cannot change
Courage to change the things I can, and
Wisdom to know the difference
Patience for the things that take time
Appreciation for all that we have, and
Tolerance for those with different struggles
Freedom to live beyond the limitations of our past, the
Ability to feel love, and to love each other, and the 
Strength to keep trying even when we feel hopeless

Wishing you all a joyful and safe Interdependence Day!


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