Monthly Archives: November 2010

Babycenter Strikes Again

Ahh, the holidays. A time for cheer, charity and joy. No? What’s that, email from Babycenter? It’s a time for FEAR? Of course it is. When is any time of the year NOT a time for fear for the holly, jolly folks over at Babycenter?

Here are some actual headlines from my December newsletter from Fearmongercenter:

Beware the most harmful toys
Toxic toys still on store shelves
Product recalls: 7 ways to protect your kids
Children of divorce face higher risk of strokes as adults

Happy Holidays!

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Another Year, A Unique Crossroads

This birthday (my 38th) is presenting me with a unique dilemma. I had a miscarriage in March at eight weeks, which ended my first natural pregnancy ever. My ObGyn said the chances of my getting pregnant at all were extremely low, it took three IVF attempts to get me pregnant with my twins, and yet, somehow I got pregnant on my own. Of course, it was a miscarriage. I have not managed to get pregnant since.

The dilemma is this: how badly do we want a third child? I was very miserable after the miscarriage, and very attached to the little one,
and to the idea of adding to our family. But, how far am I willing to go for a third? We no longer have the insurance funds to do another IVF cycle. Even if we did, it would be very disruptive to our lives, what with the retrieval, drugs, and timed procedures for my husband. I remember needing laserlike focus to get through each cycle, and this was before having toddler twins. I also have reservations about putting my body through all that again.

Time is a ticking, this is pretty much my last chance to get moving on this. I would like do get some resolution as I enter my 38th year. Hopefully this will come to me…soon.

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Ten Useless Facts About me

Blogging 101: Provide the reader with trivia about yourself.

Do you believe in ghosts?

Maybe. When I was 16 and living in my childhood home, I once woke up at 3 AM in the morning to find my cat, who slept on my bed, arched in the typical attack cat pose, with all of his fur standing up on end. This was the first and last time I ever saw him do this in the 14+ years he lived with us. He was hissing like a mad thing in the direction of my closet. And, strange and silly as it sounds, I felt something emanating from there. Something cold and unfriendly. My
family and I tend to believe that our house had paranormal issues, and all of us had unexplained experiences through the years we
lived there. The house was old and people had died in it.

Do you take the shampoos and conditioner bottles from hotels?

Yes. Is this not allowed?

Who was your High School crush?

No name will be revealed. He surfed and rode a hunter green Vespa
(!). He seemed very mysterious, quiet, but maybe in reality he just didn’t have anything to say. I do remember him being good-looking. I’m pretty sure he thought I was a total idiot, if he even thought about me at all (which is doubtful).

Have you ever stolen a street sign before?

Guilty. When my husband and I lived in London, the council must
have been redoing the street signs, because when we came home from work one day, we saw our street sign on the ground leaning against the pole it normally hung from. We made a bet that if we looked out the window at midnight, and it was still there on the ground, my husband would go on a stealth mission to grab it. At midnight, it was still there so my husband retrieved it. Unfortunately, he was spotted by our neighbor, who was the son of a prominent
citizen of the British Empire. To us he was the guy who called our best friend (who lived below us) the c word, because she was talking too loudly one night. We think he was the one who reported us to the council for “improper installation of a satellite disk”, because we got the notice a few weeks later fining us for that offense (I guess he wasn’t able to get them to care about the street sign). The street sign currently hangs proudly in our garage, and each time I see it, I smile.

What movies could you watch over and over and still love?

There are definitely movies that I have watched many times, and still enjoy. Mainly, “When Harry Met Sally”, “Mrs. Miniver”, “It’s a
Wonderful Life”, all the Bond movies except the last two, and lately “In Her Shoes”.

Ever gotten a speeding ticket?

Only once, but it was a doozy. In college, I drove a car common to the senior citizen set. I believe my dad bought it for me because the speedometer only went to sixty five. However, as I painfully learned
one evening, just because the speedometer says you can only go sixty five, does not mean that you physically CAN’T go faster. Like,
say, 85 miles in a 55 mile zone, as clocked by a very angry radar gun wielding highway patrolman who threatened to arrest me for reckless driving. On a karmic note, I really am dreading the day my kids learn how to drive.

Run out of gas?

Why yes! Also in college (what a shocker). I was driving from my job to my boyfriend at the time’s house, and I ran out of gas one block from a gas station. What luck! However, it took a while for me
to figure out how much gas to put in the red can, to then put into my car to make it to the gas station, so I could then fill up and go along my way. Or about 30 minutes. This was in the days of yore before cell phones and my boyfriend thought I wasn’t going to show up. So he called up the girl he was seeing on the side to come over
instead. When I showed up, there she was. Awkward! I’d like to say that was the day I broke up with him for good but alas. That would be a lie.

Favorite kind of sandwich?

I hate sandwiches. Yes, all kinds of sandwiches. Yes, I eat burritos. Yes, I know that’s contradictory. I don’t care. Were I starving to death and a sandwich was offered, I would continue to starve to
death. It’s the smell, the soggy bread, the ingredients (ew, mayonnaise!), the soggy bread, the look, the feel and the soggy
bread. And no, I wouldn’t eat a panini either. The bread would still taste somewhat soggy.

Which are better black or green olives?

Green olives, forever!

Can you knit or crochet?

I did knit for a while, after I got married and decided that I had to become a serious grown-up (no more midnight street sign stealing
raids for me!). I never became proficient in knitting anything but scarves.

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Other Twins Moms Make Me Feel Bad

Many people, once they know you are pregnant with twins, suggest you join a twins support group. I was excited to join my local chapter, and imagined many of the members would be IF survivors. I also thought many would have comforting words of wisdom about getting through my pregnancy with as little anxiety as possible, and provide tips about how to survive the first few years of raising twins. What I got was quite different.

I went to my first meeting when I was 18 weeks pregnant, and suffering through the worst morning sickness imaginable. I barely made it there and gripped my cracker box and water bottle for dear life. I volunteered to go first during “circle time” and introduced myself, blithely stated that my twins were a result of IVF (dead quiet suddenly ensued) and then asked for advice on how to manage the miserable nausea. The horrified silence persisted a moment, then a few of the women said they hadn’t had any morning sickness to speak of. The moderator quickly moved on to the next woman, who pointed out that “twins ran in her family”. None of the other women mentioned anything about IF during their intros. Not even the grey-haired pregnant woman who was pushing 50. Grandma Moses, I’m on to you.

Next I realized that among the women who were with their infant twins, there was much talk about how long they lasted during their pregnancy and whether they had had a natural delivery. “My doctor MADE me get induced at 38 weeks”, “I was determined that I would not have a C-section with MY twins”. Like they really controlled such things!

The other major topic of discussion was whether one mother should have to pay for a first class ticket for her nanny to accompany them on their trip to Paris. Some mothers agreed that the “help” could stay back in cattle class, while others thought that she was entitled to a first class ticket to keep the kids quiet so the parents could enjoy their champagne and individual DVD players.

Finally, a woman who had really come for some support (as opposed to a platform to brag) began talking about her struggles to breastfeed her twins and as she was telling her awful story (which involved many trips to a lactation specialist, double mastitis, a fever of 104, lack of supply, etc), she began to cry. The other women looked at her like she was a homeless person who had just asked them for money.

“Breast is best!”, exclaimed one quickly. The moderator told her sternly how important breastfeeding was to her babies’ health and stated that she should “hang in there”. Chastened, she looked down and I could tell she was trying to suppress more tears.

I could not suppress my own tears when I got home. I wish I had told that mother to screw those women’s advice and start supplementing with formula. I went to a few other meetings once the twins were born and the tone was similar. My night nurse this, my au-pair that, my twins were born at 39 weeks, etc, etc. I finally stopped going.

Today at the playground I ran into another twins mom. Soon she was telling me how her twins spoke earlier than other children, how having twins is “really nothing more than having two children”, and how she hasn’t encountered the terrible twos at all.

The truth is I find raising twins to be incredibly difficult and stressful, and I don’t want to brag about their accomplishments with another twins mom (they definitely do things worth bragging about, but I’ll tell that stuff to their grandparents). I want someone in my position to acknowledge how hard this task is and give some gentle advice about potty training, getting rid of binkies, and the challenges of discipling. And I don’t want to hear about how great your nanny is, because another truth is I can’t afford one.

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Filed under Infertility, Parenting After IF, twins

Stupid Blogging Hiatus!

I really stopped blogging there, didn’t I? Not that I ever really set this spot ablaze.

In the absence of posting, I have been reading a number of the “big” blogs, like Flotsam, Finslippy, Breedemandweep, A Little Pregnant, Nie Nie, and Dooce as well as blogs that should be big. (And maybe they are, and I don’t know. That would be completely in character.) These include Once a Mother, Mrs. Gamgee, Miss Ruby, and Heeere, Storkey Storkey.  All of these gems have provided my soul with feeding and watering in their own ways during these last few ghastly and triumphant months. Humbly, I thank them all as a reader.

Aside: the only other blog I’d really read until this year was Ayelet Waldman’s “Bad Mother”.  Bipolar exhibitionism + great writing + openly expressed obsessive love for her famous husband = Fascinating and understandably short-lived experiment probably not to be attempted by anyone again.

I really am the last to pick up trends. Last night I was watching a rerun (of course) of “How I Met Your Mother”. Barney was touting his blog and the gang was giving him crap about how a blog was “so eight years ago”. So now it’s at least so nine years ago.

I know I should be twittering or tumblring or whatever newish technology is most faddish but I enjoyed my brief foray into blogging, so blogging it will be. And I promise (to myself, since I’m rather sure that no one else will care) that I will try to blog somewhat regularly.

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