Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Barren Bitches Book Tour

I've just done my first leg of the Barren Bitches Book Tour.

The book we read was Lolly Winston's Happiness Sold Seperately. Pop over to http://stirrup-queens.blogspot.com/to find out the questions asked about the book and to see who else has answered them.

I loved the book. Well, maybe I didn't love it ALL the time as it was v close to home and brought up all sorts of emotions. I was tearful at times but also laughed along with the lovely, feisty, sharp and bright Elinor. I enjoyed the other characters - handsome, sensitive Ted; sexy Gina (lucky enough to be a mother) and Gina's geeky but endearing son Toby. I think I was so wedded to Elinor that I was less connected with the others. Having said that, some of Ted's reactions and emotions made me sad for Mr G and what he's going through.

Here are my views on some of the book tour questions:

Question 1
In the beginning of Chapter 4, Elinor finds it difficult to look at a newborn and its mother in the seat next to her. She says she isn't so much sad that she can't have a baby of her own but that she can't give her husband a child. Do you find your infertility more painful because of your desire to experience pregnancy and childbirth or because of your desire to see your spouse as a father?

I think my sadness and pain is a mixture of both. I have always imagined (with some naivety I'm sure) how it would be to be pregnant - all swollen belly and maternity clothes. I expected to have that experience and now may never do so. That's starting to hurt and i've started experiencing a sad pain in my chest sometimes when I see a cute baby or catch a whiff of that warm baby smell. I'm also sad about not seeing Mr G as a father to our child. I know how much he wants to be a Daddy and how wonderful he'd be. His family produce such gorgeous brown-eyed babies, i've always been able to imagine them. It hurts that those babies may well stay in my head.

Question 2
Elinor takes up laundry and Ted works on the hutch. What new hobbies did you pick up or abandon during treatments?

Blogging! I'd never considered it before. I'm not sure it's a real hobby, but blogging, internet research and socialising with my Mind Body group and the new group i'm mentoring, takes up enough time to warrant the title hobby. I'm a full time, paid-up infertile! Where Elinor was hiding from life with her laundry, i've immersed myself in one aspect of my life.

I'm not sure i've abandoned much. Perhaps, enjoying wine and going out for unrestrained drinking sessions with Mr G. We're too guilty about drinking too much, so it just doesn't seem worth it. Having said that, we haven't stopped communicating as Ted and Elinor did. We're v much connected still. That part of the book made me realised how careful we have to be and scared me a little too - that I should be careful not to freeze my husband out or he may find comfort elsewhere.

Question 3
At the very close of the book, having discovered her balanced translocation, Elinor likens herself to a screwed up silverware drawer. "Yet there's solace in discovering something is tangibly wrong. A diagnosis rather than you're old" Have you ever felt like this? Do you have a diagnosis for your fertility problems? Was it a relief? If your problem is unidentified, or age is against you, do you wish that you did have a reason?

We started our journey with a v clear reason - severe MF. It should have been easy to fix as I was functioning ok. As time has gone on, we've found another reason - my ageing ovaries and low reserve. The first problem requires IC.SI to fix it and the second makes IC.SI more difficult as the eggs can't cope so well.
In some respects it's good to know why things weren't working out for us, but it's also made it harder for me to get over as it's such a dead end. I know this will sound crazy and will perhaps incense those with unexplained issues, but i'm almost envious of them. I KNOW that we'll never conceive naturally - the door was slammed in our faces and it just ain't happening. At least with an unexplained problem there's the slightest chance of a natural pregnancy. Ted and Elinor conceived naturally and at that point I felt betrayed by the book - I was in it with El but suddenly she was the lucky one.

If you haven't read the book - I recommend it. If you want my copy, I could mail it to you. Just let me know if you'd like it.

12 comments:

Ms. Planner said...

"His family produce such gorgeous brown-eyed babies, i've always been able to imagine them. It hurts that those babies may well stay in my head."

Oh, I have SO been there, sister. I was completely resigned and ready to go the adoption route and then I would think about my husband's blue eyes and get all melancholy about it.

I read some of your blog as I was intrigued (we are contemporaries) and just wanted to let you know that do not give up. Especially with the DHEA. My fellow blogger Erin at Vicious Cycle of Cycles just got pg with twins after using DHEA for 3 months before IVF#2. She was previously diagnosed with premature ovarian failure. I don't think docs quite understand HOW it works, but there is sufficient evidence - both anecdotal and scientific - that it does. Don't let your doc discourage you at this point! Wishing you all the luck in the world.

Mommy Someday said...

Blogging is my coping hobby, too! I am so happy to have found this source of support! Nice to meet you and thanks for sharing!

The Town Criers said...

"Where Elinor was hiding from life with her laundry, i've immersed myself in one aspect of my life."

Ooooh, I like this comparison--the idea of dropping out vs. focusing in.

The Dunn Family said...

I found this whole blogging community too late, too late at least to get support through my cycle. but I've completely immersed myself in it now. Even if we never do another cycle, I want to be here to support others out there going through the journey that I've been through. I think it's wonderful the family that we've all created online.

Thanks for sharing. I hope your journey is a short and fruitful one!

Malky B. said...

Yes, I'll take the book if your willing to mail it to the US. E-mail me at: malky@benedictfamily.org.

I'll give you my address if your willing. Thanks.

Bea said...

Well, glad you took up blogging.

Liked your musings on having a diagnosis. Sometimes it's such a double-edged sword. So is unexplained, or any other diagnosis with a low chance of natural conception. When do you turn to treatment?

Bea

Samantha said...

I understood what you meant about feeling betrayed when Elinor got pregnant unassisted. At first it really seemed like a typical flip infertility plot device ("love each other gracefully under an oak tree and it too can work out for you"). Then as the symbology of Warren the tree became more clear, and as the plot developed, I realized that that wasn't it at all. It made it feel more like something that could happen.

One of the most frustrating things about IF, is that, for many of us, there is always a minute possibility of conceiving "naturally." There's so little doctors know about how to really make us pregnant--they know how to make us ovulate, they know how to make embryos, they know how to optimize conditions--but in the end the end they don't really know how to make us pregnant. That's why a lot of cycles fail and yet some people can still get pregnant without assistance. No one knows why.

andi said...

Hello my dear - start the new job next Monday - and have found a flat with a view of the sea at Bronte. Stephen is coming out in December for two weeks - then for two month in jan/feb - sooo I am staying. Do let me know if you do come for a visit.
Andi
x

Lori said...

As I'm reading your answers, I keep going "ditto, ditto, ditto" in my head.

Except my husband's eyes are blue.

I'd love to know more about the Mind Body group. I'll have to snoop around your blog some more.

Deb said...

Thanks for sharing!

andi said...

I just read my earlier post - sorry it was so ME focussed. I hope you are doing okay. And agree with ms. planner - don't let the docs discourage you. Keep pushing - keep at em.
xx

Drowned Girl said...

You answered my question, the last one.

I was a bit surprised when Elinor turned up pregnant, as I was thinking the book was working towards them accepting their infertility... and I was just as shocked by the miscarriage.