Monday, 24 April 2017

A great example of knowing better and doing better

I’ve written a bit lately about how I feel some IF (and post-IF) bloggers react to some of our blogs; when we write about strong women, they see it as elevating No Kidding women above those who are still trying, and when we ask for a bit of sensitivity – asking people who know better to do better – we’re accused of trying to live in a bubble.

So I wanted to point out that not all IF and post-IF bloggers are like this, even though I know I am stating the obvious because many of those wonderful women read my blog and are very thoughtful in their own blogs, having learnt and grown from their own experiences, as have we all.

I was recently delighted however, to see a comment from a blogger (a mother, and currently pregnant) called mamajo23, who wrote a comment (on Different Shores’ blog) about whether having a child is the holy grail and delivers automatic happiness, as we all seem to assume when we are desperately trying to conceive. Her comment was interesting:
“I can now say first hand that a child(ren) do not make life happy … but rather the incessant pressure from society to procreate finally subsides.”
This comment alone would have sparked a blog post from me, but as I have more to say today and only eight sentences to say it in, I’ll simply point out that you don’t have to have a child to notice that this pressure abates as you enter your mid-40s and beyond, and along with the wisdom and confidence that comes with these years anyway, there is a real feeling of a burden lifting.

I then visited her blog, finding that she has recently been thinking about some of the issues I’ve dealt with here in recent times, in particular triggers (through pregnancy announcements) and the idea of “giving up.”

I found it totally heart-warming to read these posts from her perspective (knowing of course that when I write I could be accused of being over-sensitive or bitter), as she and her equally sensitive readers and commenters reinforce the importance of us all considering other people’s situations, and of trying to be kind in our everyday and blogging lives.

Thank you, Mamajo23, for knowing better, and doing better.

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Asking to be heard is not a threat

Someone said to me last year that some No Kidding bloggers were trying to elevate the No Kidding above others in the infertility community, putting down those who were trying to conceive or those who had resolved their infertility with children.

I was very surprised at this, and obviously disagreed, as what I see is that we are all talking honestly about our No Kidding situations, about how we got here, what we learned on the way about the fertility industry, or how parents or pregnant women relate to us (for example), and in doing so, we are seeking equality, seeking recognition and legitimisation.

It struck me that this comment was the classic example of a privileged group feeling threatened by a minority that is beginning to speak out. It was no different to men saying that they are being downtrodden, as women reach up to them, to members of the white majority that see equality of minorities as being a threat to them, or to those who see gay marriage as a threat to traditional marriage. All any of these groups want is equality – of opportunity, of respect. In the process of any of these movements, I like to think that we learn more about our societies and communities and ourselves.

This is the aim, as I see it, of No Kidding bloggers, who just want to be recognised, to be included in our community and wider society, and most importantly, to be heard.

No more, but definitely no less.

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

An important reminder

Yes, I missed another Microblog Monday last week, but I was visiting my niece and her parents (see What Charlie Taught Me) so I figure I have a good excuse.

A dear friend has just been told by her body, in the nastiest way, to take good care of herself. It's a good message, a reminder we all need from time to time, to slow down, smell the roses and breathe. Too often we do what we think we should be doing, rather than what's really important, and that applies to the No Kidding amongst us as much as busy parents, as we've all put on a brave face, or kept busy to the point of exhaustion to avoid having the time to think. Take care of yourselves, you're important!

Soon (but not soon enough!) we leave for our first big trip for almost four years, which is the longest break between (major, ie not Australia) destinations of our marriage. Go check out A Separate Life, where I'm going to run a small competition to guess where we're going. I know I've told one or two of you, in comments on your blogs, about at least one of my destinations, so feel free to email me (rather than enter the competition) and you'll get a postcard too.

Monday, 27 March 2017

The gift of acceptance

I've spent the last week feeling rather sorry for myself - though I figure I've got some reason for that - though I'm also very thankful for your good wishes! But I know that it could be much worse (though almost every time I think that, it actually is!), and I'm accepting that I might need to learn to live with an underlying level of pain.

It's that Pain Olympics thing, but when Pain Olympics work in our favour, not against us. I am able to see how good I have it, and how much worse it could be (and has been), rather than comparing myself only against those who are in robust health and never have any issues.

I am also not under the illusion that life is fair - infertility and pregnancy loss taught me that - and yes, sometimes further injustice can feel like a slap in the face.

But infertility and pregnancy loss has also taught me to accept that life is not fair, and I've emerged from that stronger. I don't take it personally any more, and I don't feel as if my self-worth is threatened, knowing that I am who I am, not what my body will do for me. I am thankful for that, for infertility's gift to me, making it easier to deal with life's blows, and making the joys in life even sweeter, the gratitude easier to find.

Friday, 24 March 2017

Checking in

I had reason this week to be grateful I didn't have to look after children as well as cope with a TGN attack.

I was grateful too for the tui in my trees last night, chirping and clicking and clacking madly.

I was also grateful for my husband cooking and looking after me.

These are small things, but being able to feel gratitude in the midst of any painful (emotional or physical) time helps.

Hopefully I'll be back and posting again soon.