Work is supposed to be a place where I can forget about my struggles at home. Wrong!! I'm constantly in contact with families traveling with young children or coworkers who just had a baby.
When I hear the stories of sleepless nights, sickness, or how you need a sitter to drink, I'm reminded of what I want so badly and is yet so far away.
Work is the one place that I once didn't feel like a failure, but that has since left me feeling like one. I know I am great at my job as I know every guest by name and they actually care about me and how I'm doing. I am constantly wondering, "why me?" and if I can ever find my own sanctuary.
Main topics presented: Memoir, coming to terms with unresolved, unexplained infertility, living childfree
What is the book's format?
This is a memoir, written chronologically
How is the book organized?
Chronological organization, loosely interwoven with themes of stages of grief
Factual, but emotional, with dark humor where she can place it.
What is the author’s experience on the subject?
As an infertile patient
Does the author have a certain point of view or opinion?
She is not trying to get you to buy anything, but voices something that has been given VERY little attention – not everyone ends up with a child
What is the book's conclusion/closing statement?
She concludes without concluding, she has lived without children, and has slowly, come to terms with it, knowing that she will never be able to fully come to terms with it.
Who would you suggest this book to?
It was so engaging, I’d recommend it to a broad audience – I might steer away from recommending it to those newly pursuing treatment, for they need the happy ending stories. This is for someone who is considering moving beyond treatment – and for the families (siblings, parents, friends) of people moving away from treatment
How did the book affect you?
Well, I read it the day before my dang period, so I was in tears! My husband had to ask me to put it down, but I snuck back in bed with a box of tissues and finished it. It was so moving – and while we are on different journeys, my infertility is secondary, she spoke to me in a way I needed – We have given up on treatment, we are ‘moving on’ and accepting that we will be a family of 3… I had thought that I could get over it, and cursed myself for still crying when friends announced their ‘good news’… This book, for me, served as a reminder that I (we!) have been wounded, and the pain will always be a part of who we are.
Is there anything you wish the author(s) had elaborated on?
While I’d love to know more about her story, they way the memoir was written was perfect, leaving out what was unnecessary. I got a little bored with the blog comments she included, but they did serve a point.
Rate this book on a scale of 1-5 stars. Why do you think it deserves this rating?
4 stars – the book was moving, real and on an important, little discussed outcome of infertility.
I have apparently re-cycled on mailing lists, and the database gods think I should be on child #2. Gone are the postcards for photography with the headlines of "your child turning 1!" (or 2! or 3!). A lull in those types of mailings made me think I have cycled off the lists. How wrong I was.
Yesterday, when I opened my mailbox, this box -- a feeding kit for nourishing newborns.
For 30 seconds, as I was pulling this mystery box out of my mailbox, I was wondering what I ordered and had forgot about, or perhaps a late birthday present, or maybe even just a surprise present. All exciting options to think about. And then, I saw the baby on the side of the box, the return address from Similac on the label.
Another painful reminder of what should be so easy, what my body was supposed to be able to do, but can't.
"There are 13 children that live within 100 yards of my front door and as soon as the sun sets, the sounds of baths, bedtime play and stories can be heard. These are the sounds that haunt me the most."
Read and reviewed by: Elizabeth M. (www.davidandelizabethadopt.blogspot.com)
Title of Book: Conquering Infertility”
Author: __Dr. Alice Domar, PhD, & Alice Lesch Kelly
Publisher: Penguin Books
Year of Publication: 2002
Number of pages: 280
Main topics presented: depression, infertility, mind/body techniques, stress, relationships
Conquering Infertility has been the most helpful book I’ve read so far on the topic of infertility. Even though the book does not offer advice on how to help you actually get pregnant, it is full of ways to help you cope and live as happily as possible while dealing with infertility. Dr. Alice Domar, PhD, is the Executive Director of the Domar Center for Mind/Body Health and the director of Mind/Body Services at Boston IVF, so her perspective comes from her years of working with clients going through infertility and fertility procedures. The book is co-authored by Alice Lesch Kelly. It is written in a very factual tone with the personal stories of many of her clients woven throughout.
If nothing else, Conquering Infertility was extremely helping in confirming that everything I’ve been thinking and feeling through this process is completely normal! She covers just about every frustrating facet, from the stress of hearing about and living with pregnant/fertile women, the difficulties it brings to a marriage, friends and family relationships, spiritual questioning and even the financial pressure it brings. The most helpful chapter of all for me was Chapter 2, “A Toolbox Full of Coping Skills,” where she describes numerous ways to use mind/body techniques to deal the pressure, depression and anxiety that often accompany infertility. I immediately began implementing tools such as mini-relaxations, mindfulness and cognitive restructuring techniques with much personal success. My only complaint would be the author’s discouragement of pursuing alternative healing routes and emphasis on traditional fertility treatments as the main pathway to overcoming infertility. However, this was a minimal problem for me since, again, her focus in on the mental and emotional aspects of infertility.
I would recommend this book to anyone dealing with any part of the infertility process, but especially for those currently going through treatment. I would give it 5 stars because of the great deal of advice and practical tips that can help make living with infertility much more manageable.
After 9 years of infertility, I finally became pregnant via IVF. With triplets. While shocked, my husband and I could not have been any happier. We were finally going to have our family after almost a decade of waiting. We thought "getting pregnant" was the hard part. Until we started losing our babies one at a time.
We lost our daughter, Eve, early in the second trimester.
We lost our son, Caleb, late in the second trimester - nearly into the third.
At our perinatologist's office there is a sign in every exam room. I've gazed at it dozens of times while I've waited to hear more bad news. "It's worse." "It's bigger." "She's going to die." "He's going to die." "Shunt." "Non communicating." "Brain surgery." "It's over."
I have one living baby in my body and still carry the bodies of my two unborn and still babies. And when I go to the doctor I see the same sign. I can't help but think...
Many people think that solutions for infertility come easy and as expected. Can't get pregnant? Adopt! Do IVF! Little do they know how many thousands of dollars, how many failed adoptions, how many empty syringes, how many lost babies, how many failed treatments resolving infertility might take. And resolving one's infertility can take a form that you never imagined when you first began. Infertility is neither easy nor does it end as expected.