PLEASE NOTE: If you are struggling with infertility or are currently trying to conceive and you DON'T want to read about my pregnancy (which I totally understand), I recommend starting at the beginning of the blog (March 2010) and reading from there. I find out I'm pregnant in June 2011 so there is a lot of trying to conceive posts in between that you might find funny, helpful or relatable. Wishing you all the luck in the world!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Kindness of Strangers

I’ve wanted to write this particular blog entry for a while but I couldn’t figure out how to avoid it sounding like a LIFETIME movie. It’s not that I don’t enjoy their “Made-for-TV” movies. The Betty Broderick Story featuring Meredith Baxter is a personal favorite of mine. I just don’t want to be make it so touchy-feely, estrogen laden that you’d all get yeast infections from reading my entry.

I also don’t want to be over-the-top and come off like Lou Gehrig’s speech at the end of THE PRIDE OF THE YANKEES. “Today-ay-ay… I consider myself-elf-elf… the luckiest infertile in the world-world-world.

Here’s the thing though: Even though I would never have elected to be part of the infertility crew, I really, truly, genuinely am grateful I’ve gotten to connect with so many generous, kind, thoughtful, amazing, funny human beings.

In the last couple of months in particular, I’ve received so many acts of kindness that despite going on my third invitro, being financially strapped, still processing how sad I am about my struggle to become a mom, I’ve actually felt kinda lucky. I’m part of a community where if I have a question about cervical mucus at two in the morning, someone will respond to it in minutes. The people I’ve connected with take their providing emotional support very seriously.

As some of you know, I'm on the hunt for some medications as they cost so effen’ much and I want to save money wherever I can. Last week, @Le_Barren (her Twitter name), came to a show of mine and slipped me a brown paper bag of Gonal-F. We both laughed that if anyone saw “the exchange”, they would have thought it was hard core street drugs and not hormones.

Then, yesterday, @AdventuresInIF (also her Twitter name) and I went to the movies. During the previews, instead of buying me a bucket of popcorn, she gave me a box of Gonal-F. She also gave me a quick lesson in what needle to use when giving progesterone in oil shots. I’m sure when the man behind us bought his ticket to see JANE EYRE, he didn’t know that in addition to a seeing a romantic classic, he’d hear about how badly your ass can get bruised from giving yourself an injection.

It seems that almost every day lately, either my husband or I have come home to envelopes filled with Menopur or estrogen patches from such Twitter friends as @StolenEggs, @prncssbttrcp70, @Kat_Cushner, @pregnantjust, @LeLeIsMe, @Jennandtonica, @sassyNtubeless, @tiggsintxmama, @Laura129 and @IVFLondonUK. Lord only knows what the mailman must be thinking when he sees the words “Baby Dust!” written on these packages!

I’ve even gotten incredible, generous, BEYOND appreciated financial contributions from Lee, Lillian, and Carmel. Again, I can’t thank you enough for that. I’d offer sexual favors in return but Brad Pitt never returns my calls…

In addition to the necessities, I’ve also received such fun, thoughtful gifts as “fertility socks” from Christina and Lori Green LeRoy (@inadeconception) sent me her book, “The Inadequate Conception” (http://theinadequateconception.blogspot.com/) which I not only found relatable, but it made me laugh out loud which is impressive!

I’ve also received touching, funny and sweet emails from Amy, Melissa, Miranda, Jessica, Meg, Sabrina, Bessie, Susan, Meenakshi, Jevon, Stephanie, Naomi, Carolyn (just to name a few) and of course, from my very dear Canadian friend, Jaycee, all encouraging me and sharing with me their experiences.

There are also the many direct messages of support I've gotten from @MyLazyOvaries whose blog you can find at: http://slackieo.blogspot.com/. Both her humor and support have been relentless.

Then, there are my MANY Twitter and Facebook friends which are too many to list. If I did, it would sound like a modern, cyber, f*cked up version of Romper Room. (And yes, I know only a few of you are going to get that reference. Man, I’m getting old!) Twitter especially has provided me with endless love, support, humor and interaction with fellow infertiles (many who are now pregnant) that I'm incredibly grateful for. I'm honored to know them and exchange meaningful 140 characters with them.

I also must give a shout out to my Infertile Brunch Crew for being an outstanding, giving, honest and understanding group of women. They have also provided some of the best breakfast meals one could hope for:

@SecretSloper - http://parkslopepurgatory.blogspot.com/

@AdventuresInIF - http://adventuresininfertilityland.blogspot.com/

@madampumpkin - http://plantingapumpkinpatch.wordpress.com/

@thisispersonal - http://thisismorepersonal.tumblr.com/

@TheIFDoula - http://www.infertilitydoula.com/

And then there are all of YOUR comments. Some of them have made me laugh, some have made me cry and all of them have been more appreciated than I could ever possibly say without sounding like an overemotional, hormonal Sally Field accepting an Oscar. Whenever I’ve felt silly, you’ve laughed with me and whenever I’ve felt like I was drowining , you’ve thrown me a lifeline. I can’t thank you enough.

Infertility sucks. There's just no way around it but all of these people and many, many more have made this dark room I’m currently trapped in fill up with light more times than I can count be it by flashlight, candle, or fireworks. I honestly don't know what I've done to deserve such kindness but I'm profoundly humbled and honored. What moves me the most right now is that if I ever do actually get pregnant, what started as a project between just my husband and I, has become this huge collaborative effort.

My point is that if I do ever have a baby, this kid already has a massive list of thank you cards to write!

As always, with hope and humor,

Jay

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hey you, I am happy that you have found such a support team! Wow, people have been so sweet to you. That is just amazing. And you said it just right, it is not too soppy.
I was just wondering if you had tried acupuncture to aid conception, as that was what helped me.
Another bunch of hugs and "your in my prayers"
from me!
(and I don't mean to be anonymous, just don't have any of the listed profiles, I am Madelon from FB)

~C~ said...

It really is an amazing community, isn't it? As my husband puts it every time I get cards, packages, whatever before treatment, after a miscarriage, etc..."Girls like each other so much. They're so nice to each other." With a hint of jealousy, I believe.

kkasun said...

It is such a wonderful community and I am soooo happy to hear how many people have passed along their drugs to you!!!!
I don't have any good drugs, but I am here to support you and cheer you on through your Third Times the Charm IVF!!!!
And thanks for keeping me laughing!

Julia Lynn said...

I'm so glad I found your blog via Twitter! You have helped many people more than you can possibly know, through sharing your story and reminding us all (and helping us) to laugh! When I first learned of your need for meds, I immediately thought of my refrigerator full of follistim. Then I was sadly made aware they are expired...not to mention they've been moved across the country and didn't always remain in optimal temperatures :-/ I don't know why I still can't bring myself to throw them out. I suppose it's because they represent failed effort and continuing hope that one of our efforts will work. I'll have to get my husband to dispose of them when he gets home, I suppose.

Anyway, thank YOU for being there for so many of us!!! I'm so glad others have been able to support you in ways that are meaningful and tangible!

Wishing so often I could give you real hugs!
~Julia

Christina said...

This is such a profound and moving post! I am so happy that you found so much love and support from this community. Wishing you all the best on IVF#3 with your lovingly donated meds. I hope each dose reminds you of the wonderful ladies that are there for you!

lady pumpkin said...

Love you. Aren't we blessed? Long live the Brunch Bunch!! xoxo

Alex said...

This is so lovely! Isn't this community amazing?

marilyn said...

:) I just smiled through this whole post. Very sweet.

Natalie said...

I love this post.

Chon said...

That was really lovely and wonderful. I went to a 30th on the weekend for a girl who I met through the an infertility forum and there were four of us that have bonded over infertility, loss, ivf and babies. I feel very fortunate that in light of all the crap we have had to go through, somehow I have managed to make some new friends for life. You sound like you have a great support crew and I would send you my left over meds but they wont be able to get out of the country!

Lu said...

Thanks so much for the shout out! It's so true that we're all in this together and even though we have a "friendship" through crappy circumstances, the support is definitely there. Only other infertiles know what crazy stuff our minds go through and what our bodies get put through when we're on meds.

Very, very nice of you to write such a post.

Hang in there.

Josey said...

I think we all feel the exact same way. :)

Glad to hear so many lovely ladies have pulled together to help you out with meds!

Lucky Z said...

I have been a long time lurker and I have always loved your blog for making me laugh when I was feeling down. The infertile community is really amazing.

You actually are the person who inspired me to start my own blog... I figured if I could make just one person with infertility feel better about it, then it's worth it.

http://clubttc.blogspot.com/

SLESE1014 said...

I thank God every day for findng a place where people get it. If I have to be a part of the hellish world of IF at least I'm not alone. It really is the love and support from my IF blogger friends that has helped me get throguh all of this.

Thanks for reminding me how lucky I am....if I have to be unlucky in fertility, I'm at least lucky enough to have found people who get me.

Damita aka Carmel said...

I am just glad I could help :) xxx

Sam said...

AWWW! So happy you ended up finding the good stuff! Makes me tear up! All I had was progesterone, and the cream kind, which I told you lol :( But if I did have anything good for sure I'd know where to send it! ;)

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