Sunday, December 28, 2014

End of the Year

Nearing the end of the year, my mood has gone up and down. My Christmas mood wasn't spoiled, but I did roll my eyes a few times during the end of the year as lots of movie plots (or TV series) tend to be so predictable when it came to fertility. I was a bit hopeful of the infertility theme in NCIS and was sad as the couple's attempt to adopt was dashed. However, the typical thing happened next. Ugh. And then we started watching "Extant". Another eye roll

I think for a long time I've been consciously searching for a representation of my kind of story, the kind that doesn't have the miracle that society expects. Alas, I suppose our kind of story doesn't sell. Oh's probably daft of me to search for something like this. I should know better! :-)

This month we decided to go on a mini break (something we had never done before nearing Christmas) and it was an awesome thing to do in the middle of the hustle and bustle of Christmas. In the studio apartment that we rented, we watched "A Christmas Carol" together and outside it was Winter Wonderland. So peaceful. :-)

And then I was lucky enough to enjoy these lovely views on Christmas Day. Lucky enough because I was ready to go out for a walk when this happened because it only lasted for about half an hour. The temperature that day was -25'C. Enjoy the photos and the videos! The sky was totally ablaze all around me and it was one of the moments when you just forget about everything else...mmm...

Here's one of the restaurants we went to on our mini break. I made an e-card out of it. 

Last but not least, here are the links to the two videos I made:

Xmas #1 2014
Xmas #2 2014

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The Two Diverged Roads

The other day I joined an international family Christmas event in which I was surrounded by mostly mothers with their kids. Some of the much older women naturally didn't bring any children, but the younger ones did. There were only three men amongst us. Among the younger women, only my friend and I didn't bring any kids (my friend has kids).

It was a nice event, though during that time I was reminded again about the two diverged roads that we've taken: those of the parents and those that the childless-not-by-choice. There were several occasions during the evening where I was reminded of how much society seemed to expect us to be enthusiastic over children/grandchildren and over child-related events/performances. And it made me wonder if one would be punished by society if one claimed not to be interested at all in all child-related stuff.

Another thing that came up during the evening was the fact that a friend had been meeting another friend for a playdate and naturally I wasn't invited. Mind you, I have no hard feelings at all, but that just brought the gap between us to the surface again. And it reminded me of the kiddos' birthday party photos in FB along the years (including the more recent ones from last week) with my friends in it where I didn't get invited. Again, I want to stress that I have no hard feelings about it anymore (in the past when I still wanted to join the mommy club, I did feel sad about this), but the image of the gap continued resurfacing and it makes me feel a bit disconnected. Last year there was no such an event like this, so I didn't really feel anything much about the disconnection

After spending quite some time in my healing journey feeling like we were connected beings regardless of the fact that we had kids or not, the Christmas event and my subsequent reflection on it made me aware of our two different worlds. This is not something I can change, but something I just need to accept. 

I feel that I have done enough to spread my wings and get more friends (international, local, online women with or without children) and I'm really thankful that I have some friends who also like spending time with me who are genuinely interested in my life, but this whole thing makes me realize even more just how much I need my own tribe, as well. So to those of you who are childless-not-by-choice in particular who have been there for me, I'm sincerely grateful for your existence. THANK YOU for being here, being there, being you!!!!!

I shall be telling this with a sigh

Somewhere ages and ages hence:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Healing and Community

I've been lately occupied with so many things in my life that I have been neglecting my blogs in a way, but here I am again! :-) 

I've been thinking a lot lately about my healing journey in particular. You see, when infertility first knocked on my door, I felt like a bird with broken wings (and naturally it led me to have a broken heart/spirit). After all, all the other birds out there seem to be able to spread their wings and fly, but I couldn't anymore. I was desperate to join them in their community, but I just couldn't seem to do it no matter how much I tried. Then slowly but surely my healing journey started and as my wings started to heal bit by bit, I started thinking more about what I wanted from life. Then I met other birds like myself in online communities and they were like the wind beneath my wings. I literally started floating and flying again. And boy, the view from up here is great! No wonder people with problems may need support groups. In a working support group, the broken bird with the broken wings and spirit can fly again!

I've been thinking about how infertility has also helped me feel more connection with the world in general and today as I was browsing through some writings and quotes from Jean Vanier, I almost yelled "Eureka" because it felt uncanny to read something that had been brewing in your mind for a while.

“The longer we journey on the road to inner healing and wholeness, the more the sense of belonging grows and deepens. The sense is not just one of belonging to others and to a community. It is a sense of belonging to the universe, to the earth, to the air, to the water, to everything that lives, to all humanity.”

Source: here.

Anyway, I'd also like to report that after more or less 10 months, I've finally got the hang of the new dynamics in my friendship with my friends (the closest friends that I had to downgrade - our mutual solution as I was the only one who had problems with my own expectations). The more I gave them, the more they felt bad about receiving as they knew they couldn't give more. It feels great to finally be able to adjust to this new setting, though it did take quite some time. :-D

Here's another quote from Jean Vanier:

Those who enter marriage believing that it will slake their thirst for communion and heal their wound will not find happiness. In the same way, those who enter community hoping that it will totally fulfill and heal them, will be disappointed. We will only find the true meaning of marriage or community when we have understood and accepted our wound. It is only when we stand up, with all our failings and sufferings, and try to support others rather than withdraw into ourselves, that we can fully live the life of marriage or community. It is only when we stop seeing others as a refuge that we will become, despite our wound, a source of life and comfort. It is only then that we will discover peace.” 
- Jean Vanier (Community and Growth)

Source: here.