Saturday, May 31, 2008

Okay, enough idiocy!

Yep. Apparently, this happens a lot. Okay, so funny, let's everyone go and post a baby for sale on Craig's List. What a trend to start, eh? Hey, I know - I'm going to post for a bi-racial baby, little girl, cute as a button, IVY league school potential, no strings attached - you know what would happen to me? I'd be roasted alive, vilified in the media and run out of my building, stripped from every adoption agency book!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

I missed the sale on babies!

Yep, even Craig's List is getting into the baby selling business. Cutting out the middle man, who needs ethical adoption agencies, when you can just go surfing on the net.

Go ahead, read it, I'll wait. $10K for a baby. Well, that's cheap. A veritable bargain. Let me get my debit card. The phone number listed in the ad was from a stolen cellphone, the couple was known to police and have had addiction issues in the past. Well, who hasn't had addiction issues? No one's perfect. And so what if the police know them, they probably volunteered at the neighbourhood watch, and they probably used my cell that I lost last fall. And if you're worried about the adorable baby girl that was taken into government care, she'll probably be reunited with her mother today. It was all just a hoax, after all, no harm intended. Just a silly practical joke. Right? If you think about it, it's really funny! What new mother of a 7 day old baby doesn't get a little tired of her baby latching onto her breast? Come on, people, LAUGH!!!!

Okay, we've all heard worse, it's not against the law for people to be stupid. Or deceitful. Or greedy. Or cruel. It's just that I just sent off a whole new batch of profiles to the adoption agency and DH just completed all the effing immigration paperwork that once again asked questions that not even the your mortgage banker has (well, maybe). Sigh. How truly worthless must you feel about your self to actually post that ad? Even as a hoax, which I'm not entirely sure it was. I don't know. You know what's really funny? When I heard that report on TV, it actually hurt ME a little. It hurt me because I felt pity for them. It hurt me because it reminded me that even stupid ass people who purposely abused their bodies can have a baby, but not me or any other woman out there who actually worried they ate sushi or unpasteurized cheese last week. It hurt me because being good enough or healthy enough or smart enough or whatever else enough is not even the point. I pray that baby's life gets better from now on in.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

How to make friends and influence people

Do any of you ever get "solicited" to put your blog on some sort of health/wellness community internet site? I've had 2 so far, one from Verve Earth and one from Trusera. What do you do with these things? I don't really need a bajillion people on my site, but as you know, our blogs actually help and encourage people to not feel so alone.... what do you think? Not sure if I have the time to keep that up.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Fishy situation

Well, that "situation" we were looking for more details on has dissolved. We got a follow up phone call from the agency and it looks like it could have gone south on us. The birthmother had 2 kids already, wanted $1000 a month and she was due in September. The director had a suspicious feeling about it. Like maybe she was just angling for financial support for the summer. We deferred to his better judgment. Remember that Dateline news show when they tracked a deranged woman who had promised a several couples her baby, and then took all their money and cut off all communication? One couple gave her several hundred dollars and the cameras tracked her spending it in Wal-Mart on baby clothes, etc. In the end, I don't even think she was pregnant. Yeah, didn't want that to happen to us. You're not allowed to pay for living expenses like that in Canada. Health care is ensured, so that's not a concern. And you don't have to pay a hospital bill after giving birth.

Hubby has gone over our profile and suggested we remove mention of my Buddhism because we don't mention his religious beliefs. He's a raving atheist. I countered that in lieu of that, we brought up his athleticism. I don't really have any hobbies other than blogging and sitting on patios with refreshing alcoholic beverages. He thought Buddhism might be considered too out of the norm for Christian agencies. Said if we were looking at it from a marketing angle, then we should be trying to "catch more fish" so to speak, then when we meet the birthmother we could be more specific about our beliefs. I pointed out that I had already blogged about that some time ago and sent him that link (as he does not read my blog, well, not after one particular post). We still haven't revisited that issue in any great length. I guess I could, just to be accommodating, but it's in our homestudy package. I don't know. I think he's wondering why we're not getting more inquiries (on account of we're so fabulous!) It also could be that we're in Canada and depending on which state the birthmother is from, it might be considered too far to consider.

I'm not worried, things will unfold as they will. I'd like to think that this will be the last summer as non-mum. Remind me of this when I start to panic and get all insecure and neurotic and worry again, okay?

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Raising awareness

I just have to share this little bit with you that I got from A Road Less Travelled. From the National Post article.

Also this comprehensive article from Chateleine: It also mentions that Ontario covers IVF if you have bilaterally blocked fallopian tubes. Does anyone know if that is still the case because later is says it was delisted from the provincial health plan?

"Accepting infertility is an enormously emotional and difficult challenge
for any couple," she says. "The biggest hurdle to overcome is gaining the
ability to see that this is not the end of the world, that there are other
options, and that each can provide a satisfying and rewarding

Accepting and moving on is indeed a mighty mountain to climb, both
couples say. And even when the decision is behind them, those who choose to
remain child-free will always have a sense of loss and longing, Dalit Hume

"It is not something you can ever completely get over," she says. "You
have to accept that a continuing sense of loss is natural; motherhood and
fatherhood is hard-wired into us. What you must do is understand those feelings
will be part of your life always, and then find other raisons d'etre."

I guess that since we decided to adopt, I've occasionally felt guilty for mourning the loss of our own biological child, even though that was never going to happen. I still craved the intimate experience of pregnancy and childbirth that other people seemed to have. There are days when I think my life is fine without kids and I can barely manage to walk the dog sometimes and then there are times when I just sit and think about holding a baby to my chest, breathing in that lovely scent from the top of their heads. I think of stinky diapers and sleepless nights and then I think of showing them some incredible animal or teaching them to ride a bike. Seesaw. DH, for some strange reason, has been showing me articles of surrogacy in Canada and reminding me that I had great eggs. Great 44 year old dusty eggs, I remind him. He must be on that same seesaw.

Got another phonecall about a possible "situation" - yes, we threw our hat into the ring. Seesaw.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

And I thought it was just all about Victoria Day!

I saw a special public service announcement on TV yesterday. What do you know? It's the Canadian Infertility Awareness Week. Wow, how time flies. You can check out what they're offering in your town by clicking on the link below.

Mmm, acupuncture, check! Chinese medicine - check! Yoga for fertility - didn't try that one - rats!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Pink rose awards

Arg, I am so behind on all of these kind of things. I am getting up earlier and earlier just so I can read blogs and post and still start my day at a reasonable hour.

Pink Rose Awards

I'd like to send a Pink Rose to those bloggers who are to me Bodhisattvas of Infertility. Those who have gone through the infertility wars, come out on the white side of the stick and still go back into the trenches to inspire, encourage and support those who suffer loss and those who march on with vials of expensive drugs and hope in hand.

The rules are as follows:

1. On your blog, copy and paste the award, these rules, a link back to the person who selected you, and a link to this post. You will find the story behind the Pink Rose Award and other graphics to choose from there.

2. Select as many award recipients as you would like, link to their blogs (if they have one), and explain why you have chosen them.

3. Let them know that you have selected them for an award by commenting on one of their posts.

4. If you are selected, pass it on by giving the Pink Rose Award to others.

5. If you find that someone you want to nominate has already been selected by someone else, you can still honor them by posting a comment on their award post stating your reasons for wishing to grant them the award.

6. You do not have to wait until someone nominates you to nominate someone else.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Lesson to Learn - 3

Another friend in Toronto that I got to see, albeit briefly, made me dinner my first night there. He was so kind and thoughtful. He's been on a naturopathic diet, you know the kind where you eliminate certain foods and then try them again to see how you react. He made me a beautiful healthy dinner and it was like being at a restaurant. Serving and sharing good food to someone can be such a loving act. We talked and talked and made some tentative plans to hook up later in the week. Which didn't happen through one miscommunication or another. He also doesn't have a cell phone which doesn't help matters. As my plans changed, I couldn't reach him when he was out. Yes, I know, what a nerve I have of expecting people to rearrange their lives to suit my brief visit. How many friends do you have that have known you for years and still like you anyway? They become like family. But not family in the obligation sort of way, but the "you're a part of me" kind of way. When you live thousands of miles away from them, you just crave being with them. You want to soak them in and blab with them so you can soak in the experience and live with that until you see them again.

He's been dealing with a chronic disease for years, consequently staying healthy is a full time job. He has energy to go out during the day, but often stays at home in the evenings. He admitted to becoming quite the hermit, which I found disturbing because he's a natural extrovert who over the years has taught me to just go out and have fun and meet people and be a part of the world. Maybe it's a natural consequence of becoming older and wiser, you've been there and done that, and there's no place like your own cubby-hole. I also know that money is often an issue and if you can't afford cab fare or bus fare to someplace, you just learn to live within your own few blocks. So not having a surplus of energy or money (or control over either) can chip away at your world. I am grateful for my good health.

Which brings me to another lesson I learned. Let people love you. Let your friends hold your head when you throw up and pay your cab fare when they want to see you. Your real friends are the ones who will do this for you. Some will walk your dog and others will take you on vacation. Some will spend what little they have on really good food or champagne to treat you, some will let their husbands get them trips and spending money when they can't afford to do that for themselves. It can be seen as not being dependent or needy or just taking care of yourself on your own terms. Or it can be seen as denying people the opportunity to gain good karma by doing good deeds, repaying debts of gratitude, or get brownie points with God, however you want to put it. It can be seen as denying someone the opportunity to be a good friend. And that hurts.

I wanted to see my friends and get my hair done... which frankly cost me more time than I could afford. Another lesson. I spent 2 1/2 hours travelling to and from a place to get hair (which by the way was a very interesting adventure), waited over an hour with the hair dresser who forgot her key(!) to the salon. (By the time I got back to the hotel, I had missed my nieces and nephew. Don't ask why they didn't wait 20 minutes when they knew I was doing my hair.) But I'm a black woman who has not gained freedom from her hair. Yet. If you don't get this, ask a black woman how much time and money she has spent on her hair. (Do not, I repeat, do not touch her hair.) And if you don't know any, look at Oprah. She's had a full time stylist for years. I will have my East LA/Jane & Finch do for about a month after which I will have to jump into the tiny wading pool of stylists they have here. Leaving town to get your hair done is not unheard of.

Anyways, the dog awaits, my hair looks good and I love and miss my friends.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Lesson to Learn - 2

My week in Toronto was fast and furious - full of heartfelt communication and missed connections and surprises. And a new hair do. It's a little weird. I got a weave. Not exactly a LA movie star hair do, I don't have the cash for that, but her East LA cousin, I think.

Lovely hubby arranged my spontaneous trip via aeroplan miles, so it only cost $50 and a free hotel, the lovely Le Meridien King Edward. I was upgraded when I got there to platinum status (ooh!) which meant I had access to a special club floor where I had free continental breakfast, free wine (ooh-la-la) in the evenings and free internet. Mind you, I would have loved to post with a glass of merlot in my hand, but I didn't want to sit for an hour while someone was waiting for their turn. I had lugged my computer along, but I couldn't get a free signal and I wasn't about to pay $12.95 a day for internet in my room. I felt a little bereft without blogs to read.

The King Edward is old school charm (paisley print bathroom wallpaper and chintz curtains) but the bed was so comfy and heavenly I had no trouble sleeping at all. Great, speedy service and they made me feel like a VIP (which I am). The Hermes scarves helped.

I visited a couple of dear friends, both of whom were recuperating from difficult illnesses. One friend had her last radiation treatment for breast cancer last week. She is a Buddhist, too, but of a different school. I've always been in awe of her. She helped get me my first apartment, a full time job where she worked, she gave up so much in order to lead an authentic life. I've never met anyone quite like her. We haven't always kept in touch, but when we connect, it's like we just pick up where we left off.

This is her 3rd go round with cancer, and as we sipped champagne I blurted out, "thanks for not dying on me". She told she that we all had to die one day and she wasn't afraid of dying. It wasn't up to her. So true. When you get that call to do another test after a mammogram or women you know are getting diagnosed with breast cancer, when you know that not everyone survives it, you get that feeling that you too are not going to live forever and life seems so precious to you. She seemed very precious. And I realized that though she may not have been afraid of dying, but I was terrified of losing her.

Where was I while her other friends were keeping watch with her, caring for her? I was thousands of miles away behind the Rockies, grappling with infertility. Completely wrapped up with my own drama, my own life, my own navel. I get so angry when I think of all the fucking mindspace trying to conceive has taken up. It did require my focus, but at the same time, there were other things I could have done with my time! Do you know what I mean?!!! And I can't get that time back! Yeah, I know, I'm over it. But FUCK.

I wanted to give her something to show her how grateful I was for her friendship. For the hours she would listen to me blab on about myself, for the wonderful evenings on patios in Little Italy, for not judging me when I behaved liked a little idiot, for her rants in patois that left us both laughing so hard we gasped for air. In truth, there's nothing I could give her cause she doesn't need or want anything other than to connect with me, laugh with me, talk with me.

I got a lot chant about. I've been very emotional since I got back.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Fur Baby

I've never actually shown you a picture of my adored beast, my fur baby, Sampson. All 95 lbs of him. Just reclining after a good chew with his bone wondering what the hell I'm doing now with the shiny silver box in front of his face. His favourite things are going for long walks, chasing squirrels, eating anything, and snuggling.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Still not pregnant and still okay with that

I had my follow up visit with the radiologist after my lovely UFE, and he said my uterus was about 3 inches smaller than it used to be. From about 14 to 11 cm or so. Apparently, my uterus should get smaller though during the next several months. I told him I had a pain on my right side during strenuous exercise, he says not to worry about it. Thanks for the medical insight, doc. I have another follow up with my gyn in a couple of weeks, so we'll see if he has anything else to offer. I often wonder if fibroids was really the reason I couldn't get pregnant, I was told otherwise and that may be true, but I would think it would be hard to implant on a rocky surface and after repeated IVFs, and lots of estrogen, they would have multiplied and gotten bigger. Hindsight tells me I should have risked fibroid surgery years ago, but the specialist at the time didn't think it was imperative. Whatever.

I just found out through a friend that a mutual friend (in her 40s), who after many years, finally found Mr. Right and is now pregnant. I am very happy for her and will act surprised when I hear the news from her. This being the 2nd bit of new pregnancy news in my circle of friends, I have to admit, is a bit much, but hey, it's not all about me, is it? Aunt Flo, now a shadow of her former self thank you very much, has made her appearance, but her tradewind hormones have thrown me into a moody, grumpy carbohydrate seeker (see previous post) and reminded me once again that this Mother's Day will be about my mum and MIL and not me. BUT STILL, I'm feeling generous. I'm going to Toronto next week to visit friends (thank you DH and your blessed aeroplan miles) and I may have found a way out of hair purgatory.

Life is sweet.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Who's your daddy?

While some of us are hot in the pursuit of genetic offspring, readjusting our internal perspectives along the way, battling fear, doubt, and painful spiritual growth, there are those of us in the exact same battle in the pursuit of non-genetic offspring. And of course, lest we forget, those warriors who are only in the hot pursuit of their peace of mind without a child. I feel like I'm in the latter two categories. Mind you I've been looking for peace of mind for years, that's not news.

I think my father suffered from depression. As a father, he would be there, paying the bills, putting food on the table sort of thing. Occasionally, we had fun, I'm sure. But around my puberty, all familial hell simmered, brewed, exploded and went to hell. He was stoic, emotionally unavailable, and a cruel bastard to my mother. At Christmas time, he would brood in the basement and cry. He drove us to church, but never came in with us. He never saw me in school plays or came to parent/teacher nights(wait, he did once). At times, I wished he would drop dead (and once my sister challenged him to a race hoping he would drop dead from a heart attack) and other times I felt sorry for him. He's still alive, on his 3rd wife and I haven't spoken to him or seen him in years. My sister still sees him occasionally as he lives part time in the same state as she does. Apparently, having a grandson is a bit of magnet. He has other children who apparently have found it a blessing to be close to him. Why is it that the crappy fathers seems to be the best procreators?

Anyways, my point is that I've always believed my core work on my self improvement has always been on the self-confidence, self-belief part of me. The part I always attributed to my father's lack of acknowledgement in me. I know he loves me, but inevitably let me down. I honestly don't think he knew he was supposed to emotionally support me, instill confidence in me, spend quality time with me. I definitely sensed by the time I become a "woman" he stepped back, not sure how to proceed with a maturing daughter. I wasn't a boy, so he couldn't teach me how to play cricket like he did with others. His girls were now under the tutelage of my mother. As he said many years ago," your mother raised you girls well." Yep, she did the best she could.

I know that he did as he was taught, he has his own demons to contend with but his circle of compassion stops about a inch from his nose. I forgave him years ago in a general sense; as my mother used to say, he didn't beat or rape you, he wasn't that bad. No, he wasn't. But do I tell him that he has another grandchild coming soon?

Like him, I brood at Christmas time, vaguely uneasy in my husband's family cheer. I stay mildly inebriated the whole time. I like to cook and fuss over the food like crazy. I hate being caught up in the smoochfest kisses at bedtime, but I think they are wearing me down. I'm used to dysfunction and alienation at Christmas. And for years, there have been no babies at Christmas. I longed to bring our baby into that cheer and loud laughter, the smoochfest. And every fucking year since we started trying (6 years now), it's gaggles of presents under the tree for people who don't really need anything or pictures of us holding another couple's child that look like they could be ours. My husband is their golden child and the end of the line so to speak.

I'm glad my husband wants to adopt. I know he'll do his best. I just want to see up close what could be possible if a man really tried to be a good father. And it's not just about keeping a roof over their heads or putting food on the table.