Monday, March 22, 2010

Outed at the Chocolate Party

Okay, so I totally wasn't kidding about the stuffing myself with chocolate yesterday. A friend of mine had invited me to a chocolate tasting shindig where the hostess was going to have us try different types of chocolate bars she had created and film our reactions and thoughts about them.

It was a ton of fun, and I found out quickly that pretty much everything goes with dark chocolate: sriracha, jalapeno salt, candied ginger, wasabi peas...not altogether, of course. Or maybe altogether...hmm... I was told that I am a "chocolate masochist" who likes a little darkness and spice and burn and bitterness in her chocolate - I wonder if this is a metaphor for what I've been attracting in my life...

Anyway, one of the tasters brought her new 3-month-old baby to the party, and there was the usual oohing and ahhing. (He was pretty cute - a redhead!) Of course, talk turns to "When are you going to have a baby?" and "How long have you been married?"

I demurred on the baby thing as best I could ("Yeah, we want kids." and "Boy, my in-laws ask me that all the time!"). I'm okay talking about IF to friends and family, but not a party full of cheerful strangers eating chocolate.

But I must have set someone's IF-radar off, because the next thing I know, the hostess is sitting next to me, and she says quietly, "Yeah, I've been married 5 years, and we have had trouble having a child."

And before you know it, we are sharing our stories in low and hushed voices while everyone else is bustling about trying chocolate and cooing over the baby. I talk about Clomid, she talks about ectopic pregnancies, we exchange impressions and thoughts about adoption.

Except for blogging, this is the first time I have ever actually talked to someone about IF who was going through the same thing and knew what it was all about. None of the asinine advice or awkward sympathy, just a mutual sharing and condoling. I had no idea how cathartic that would feel.

One of the hardest things about IF is the isolation. I am by most measures an introvert, someone who craves time alone and enjoys solitude. I have often prided myself on my ability to be alone without feeling lonely, but IF has completely changed that for me. The pain of the experience has humbled me, taught me to reach out, to share my feelings, and to seek solace in a community of peers.

So ladies, thank you for being there. Really. (Here comes the tearing up. It's the Clomid...really...)

It's just the start of ICLW and already your comments have gone such a long way to easing that loneliness that was starting to take root. It's bad enough having that hole in your life where a baby should be - I feel blessed to have people around me making sure that hole doesn't get any bigger.

And now for something completely different...

I swear I am not making these up, but yesterday before I went to bed, I said to myself, "If you're going to have a whacked out dream, make sure it's a good one so I can entertain the blog readers." And what did I get?

I am in college, and I have a mad crush on my male roommate. We are good friends and go watersliding together. (I mean, how cool is it to have waterslides at my imaginary college?) Just when I think things might finally heat up between us, he pulls me aside and tells me he has to leave town to complete a mission involving the Cold War and asks me to stay safe. Who is my roommate? Why, Jason Bourne, of course!


  1. YES YES YES! The isolation! Thank GOD for blogging. Last week, I spoke with someone in person for the first time since beginning our IF journey more than 2 years ago, and it felt amazing -- like a weight was lifted. I'm so thankful for the blogosphere! I would hate to weather this storm alone!

  2. Oh my gosh, I'm so jealous of the chocolate tasting. Sounds amazing. I also love the dream! And what a gift to have that woman reach out to you and admit her own IF. That challenges me to do that more often, because I have suspected others of dealing with IF but am always afraid to bring it up.

  3. Wow, you are so lucky to have found that woman at the party. Sometimes I think I can tell when someone is going through this shit too, but I've never had the nerve to say anything. I would love to have a real-life IF friend.

    But I am sooooo happy for my bloggy-buddies, which in some ways, are better than real friends because of the anonymity, which lends itself to honesty so well.

    p.s. I dreamed last night that I was trying to draw a picture of a naked woman with saggy boobs, but I couldn't get her facial features to look right. In the dream, I was in an old dairy in England and was rendering this picture in charcoal on parchment paper. Odd.

    Maybe I have a fascination with breast feeding??? Not that I am conscious of! :)

  4. I thank God every day for blogging. I don't know what I would do without this community and their support.

    What a great dream!! Watersliding and Jason Bourne? Sounds hot! :)


  5. chocolate party?!?!? where do I signup?! Oh, and my husband LOVES sriracha but I just look at it and my lips start burning!

    So since I start my clomid tonight should I expect these dreams? I'm pretty sure there is no way I will ever live up to yours...

  6. Isolation..... yes it can be so lonely. Sometimes I find myself people watching and wondering if some of these women are dealing with the same problems. I make up stories in my head when I see a couple pass by about my age with no children. I love the blogging it doesn't seem so lonely.

    P.S. I love the dream.

    ICLW #89

  7. Chocolate tasting and Jason Bourne? Your blog kicks butt Stickles! I've got to admit, I'm getting a little nervous to start the clomid next month. I wonder what kind of side effects I'm going to be blessed with.

    The blogging community is a great way to not feel so isolated in this. I guess in a way I am lucky to have my SIL going through this as well, though I'd take it away from her in a second if I could. It's nice to have a friend who I can call and just hash things out with.

  8. For the love of all things holy, how happy am I that you stopped by my blog - because now I can follow yours!

    As I just finish another round in period-ville the thought of a chocolate tasting party has me almost licking my laptop screen. (Almost - I swear I didn't actually lick it.)

    IF can be totally isolating - I'm grateful to the blog world to help me feel less alone.

    Wishing you lots of luck - and keep those dreams coming!!


  9. The chocolate party sounds like a blast! I would LOVE to be invited to something like that. You have awesome friends.

    I was like you when we started IF. I didn't know anyone else who was going through it. I started a blog as a joke (not about IF), but then realized I could use it to help educate non-IFers on IF. Long story short, I found a huge support system through blogging and realized I wasn't alone. I think the best thing that could happen to an infertile (aside from getting pg), is to find this support group. I am glad you did. :)

    I hope you have dreams about delicious chocolate tonight!

  10. Welcome to ICLW, hope you're enjoying your first one?

    It's a fantastic feeling when you encounter and find support and a fellow IFer in a place you'd never expect, just having ONE fellow IFer around you can make you feel less alone.

    And as for the chocolate party...don't get me started LOL


  11. Okay, first...chocolate party! Genius!! Second, welcome to ICLW! And finally, I'm so glad that you found someone IRL that you can talk with. This entire ALI community is amazing, but nothing beats having someone to sit down, face-to-face with and just talk. Best of luck to you on achieving your BFP!

  12. I agree about the isolation. I too felt like that especially when my twin sister (who I shared EVERYTHING with and am super close to) didn't have any problems conceiving her 2 kids. That's great that you reached out to someone and now have a "real life" IF buddy! Thanks for stopping by my blog (Stress Free Infertility)! I added your link and I'm now following! Happy ICLW!

  13. Thank you for commenting on my blog :) I do have a very close friend who has also been dealing with IF. She and her husband are now pg, but I'm really happy for them.

    I know exactly what you mean by being outed at a party and setting off someone's IF-radar. Its just such a shame that convo has to be in hushed tones.

    I only just started blogging, but IF has been with me far longer. Happy ICLW!