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Archive for the ‘Tracey Minella’ tag

Remembering 9/11 Thirteen Years Later

By Tracey Minella

September 11th, 2014 at 1:40 pm

You will always remember where you were that fateful day. And so will I.

I was working as a medical assistant for Long Island IVF. I was also a patient there…and about 9 weeks pregnant with my son. Could life be any happier on a blindingly clear, crisp September morning?

It started out as a typical day, with the usual morning rush. Lots of busy women…many trying to get their blood and sono done so they cold hurry off to work. A few rushing to catch a train to the city. Men dropping off specimens on their way to the office. Some trying to catch a train to the city.

A train to the city.

By the time news of the second plane crash hit, most of the morning’s patients had already been seen and were gone. Disbelief was quickly followed by panic as we and the rest of the nation scrambled to figure out if our friends and family who worked in NYC were ok.  And what about our patients?

Doesn’t “So-and-So” work downtown? Isn’t “Mr. X” a trader on Wall Street? We spent the morning pouring over the employer info in the patients’ charts, making calls on jammed phone lines, and accounting for everyone’s whereabouts.  We went through the motions of the day on auto-pilot, glued to a 13” black and white TV in the nurse’s station, watching the horror unfold. What kind of world was I bringing this baby into?

But just as there were stories of heroism, good deeds, and miracles amid the atrocity of the attacks, there was something positive that day in the IVF office.

A patient learned that, despite the chaos unfolding around her, it was indeed going to be her insemination day. When it’s your day, it’s your day. Not even an act of war will intervene. And 9/11 was to be her only day. One insemination. That afternoon. Amid the sadness and silence and muffled sobs of the patient and everyone in the office.

And we came to learn a couple weeks later, that on the day the Twin Towers and the lives of so many innocent people were lost, we had participated in one ironically beautiful beginning. That patient got pregnant and had…twins.

Usually, it’s the patient who is thankful to the doctor and staff. But I will always be grateful to that patient for giving us one little happy something…well, actually two…to remember from that fateful day. And for being a sign to me that the world would go on, that we’d keep making babies, and that maybe it was going to be alright.

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Where were you?

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Infertility and the Back-to-School Blues

By Tracey Minella

September 2nd, 2014 at 10:51 am

 

credit: vectorolie/freedigitalphotos.net


 

It’s right up there with Christmas morning and Mother’s Day. The first day of school.

Today, many area school children go back to school. They’re out there in droves on the street corners, decked out in the latest trendy clothes, complete with cool backpacks. Suddenly, navigating the neighborhood can feel like some twisted horror movie for many infertile folks longing for a child of their own.

If you’ve ever gotten stuck behind a big yellow bus, you know the special pain of driving about 3 miles per hour and stopping at every other corner to allow yet another pack of 15 kids on board.

Am I really the only one in the neighborhood without a kid on that bus?

And what’s the etiquette on waving back? When following the bus, do you avoid eye contact and pretend you don’t notice the 4 little monsters waving their arms at you madly from the back seat? Or do you muster the courage and quickly wave or smile…only to find your acknowledgement has fueled their relentless and continued arm-flailing! Have you ever *gasp* made an ugly face back at them in a weak moment?

And you’re not off the hook once you get off the road. Beware the Facebook assault as every fertile person you’ve ever known floods your newsfeed with pictures of their children and grandchildren getting on the bus this morning. And just to twist that knife, they’ll throw in a complaint about having to wake up early.

The first day of school is a lousy day for infertiles. Alter your routine… if you can… to minimize the exposure. Tweak your travel time or route. Stay off social media. And treat yourself well today.

If you have room in the budget, consider something many moms burdened with back-to-school expenses may not indulge in often…like a nice massage, a romantic dinner, or buying that new bag you’ve wanted. Or commit to something new that could impact your fertility plan…like exercise, healthy eating, acupuncture, or a mind-body program. For info on Long Island IVF’s recommended acupuncture and mind-body counseling programs click here: http://bit.ly/16Kn5go

And remember, next year you may be looking at things differently. That long ride behind the bus isn’t so bad when there’s a sleeping newborn in your car seat. You may even find yourself smiling and flailing…

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What do/did you do to get through the first day of school?

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Confessions of an IVF Mom: I’m Jealous of Your Infertility

By Tracey Minella

July 16th, 2014 at 6:14 pm

 

image courtesy of arztsamui/freedigitalphotos.net


I am an IVF mom. When I was a younger infertile woman, I was jealous of pregnant women and mothers. They were in my face, everywhere I turned (or at least it felt that way). I didn’t begrudge them what they had. I just wanted a baby, too. More than air. Just like you do now.

Today, it’s worse. You still encounter the usual public displays of parenthood like people breastfeeding, playing in the park, or crowds at the school bus stop. But now there is the assault from social media, too. You can’t even hide in your own home. Newsfeeds stream with pregnancy sonogram photos, gender-revealing parties, birth announcements, and daily kiddie updates on Facebook ad nauseam.

Infertile people are sick of waiting for their turn. Sick of having to endure treatments. Sick of having their happiness and their lives put on hold. Infertile people are tired of being poked and prodded, of getting their hopes up and getting let down, of setbacks outnumbering wins, of months turning into years.

How could I be jealous of your infertility, you wonder? Surely I couldn’t possibly remember how it felt to have to hope every month that this would finally be the month I’d find out I was pregnant?

Ah, yes. That’s exactly what I remember. And that is where the twinge of jealousy lies… in the hope each month of conceiving. A hope that is long gone from my life, but that still exists in yours.

I spent many years in your agony, hoping. Hoping each month to become pregnant, to have a baby, to be a class mom. Hoping for a sonogram photo that measured a baby instead of an empty uterine lining. Hoping for a chance to scan a baby registry and set up the nursery I dared to dream of.

I imagined taxiing kids to activities all afternoon, running the PTA, hosting sleepovers, being a scout leader, a team coach, sending out those cute photo holiday cards. I dreamed that Disney would actually become the happiest place on Earth.

Years of that hope and sacrifice eventually turned into two dreams come true. And I am thankful for every single minute of what has surprisingly gone by far too fast. I wouldn’t change a thing except slow it down if I could.

An incident yesterday ignited this jealousy I now have of you.  I dropped my firstborn IVF miracle off at a two-week college residential program in NYC and a part of my heart broke on the spot. She will be home in two weeks and I vow to savor every minute of the next two years before she graduates high school and moves on. But where did the time go? I remember the day she was transferred. I remember all the details of getting my IVF pregnancy test results like it was yesterday.

I started to think back on what I went through to have her…on what you are possibly going through now. The injections and ultrasounds. The auto-pilot nature of the experience. The significance of a pregnancy test. The feeling of hope about creating a baby and all the promise of raising that new life. All the awesome, indescribable moments and years of joy, love, and absolute wonder ahead of those still on the journey.

And I kind of miss it. Part of me wants to go back to the beginning and live it all again. To go back to when all I had was that hope. Right before the dream came true. I don’t expect you to understand this now, but you may someday.

So, be thankful for the hope that burns in your heart that this… yes, this… could be the month you conceive your baby and the life you’ve dreamed of begins. Believe it or not, that’s an enviable place to be.

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For those on their journey: Did you ever think someone would envy your position? What is the most frustrating part of the waiting?

For those who are parents after infertility: Do you ever feel like this or think you may in the future?

 

Photo credit: freedigital photos.net

 

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7 Tips to Help Your Guy Survive Father’s Day When You’re Infertile

By Tracey Minella

June 14th, 2014 at 7:18 am

 

Credit: david castillo dominici/freedigitalphotos.net

 

Just as Mother’s Day is the hardest day of the year for infertile women, Father’s Day is roughest on the infertile men.  And society’s expectations of men make it even harder.

Men are “supposed” to be so many things. Tough guys. Knights in shining armor. Passionate lovers. Good providers.

And daddies.

But the harsh reality of infertility flies in the face of all that. Real men cry. Timed sex is no fun. (Ditto for specimen cups.) Ten thousand dollar bills don’t grow on trees. You can’t “just look at her” and get her pregnant. And this Sunday is yet another day…and another year… without a crayon-colored card and painted rock paperweight present.

Our guys are there to pick us up each month as we face another disappointment and to hold us after yet another a failed cycle. Some hold back their tears so we can let ours flow freely while others join in.  (Either way, they hurt, too.) They lose sleep worrying about how to finance the next fertility treatment. And if the cause is male factor, they often shoulder unbearable guilt as well, no matter how much we reassure them.

Face it. Society isn’t even sympathetic to us on Mother’s Day even though the depth of the maternal instinct is universally accepted. So the support, empathy, and understanding our men need needs to come from somewhere else.

It needs to come from us. So what can we do to help our partners this Sunday?

Here are 7 tips to help get him through Father’s Day:

Cater to him: Get inside his head and go for the best diversion for him. Do whatever it is he likes…preferably where there won’t be children (if being around them is hard). In fact, set up a whole day of his favorite things, starting with breakfast in bed.

 

Surprise him: Has he been begging you to share a new experience with him, like fishing or hiking…or any other positively mortifying thing? Has he hinted about a concert or sporting event that you would rather die than attend? Well…surprise him with those tickets or grab the tackle box and go for it with a smile on your face. That simple gesture will speak volumes. (Tomorrow you can tell him it was a one-day only thing!)

 

Solo time with Dad: Instead of having to endure a barbeque with the whole family…including the wise-cracking fertile siblings and the 22 grandchildren they’ve already provided…plan to spend solo time with Dad. Consider breakfast on Sunday morning or dinner on Saturday night instead.

 

 

Daddy-in-Waiting card: He’s already a father in his heart. He’s just waiting. Don’t make him wait to get a card (or a gift for that matter). Write him a heartfelt note telling him how much he means to you and how he’s helped you on this journey. Tell him what wonderful traits he has that you hope your children will one day have and why he’d make a great dad. (Then get the tissues ready.)

 

Adopt a kid: If you can handle it emotionally and you’re close to someone with a child who no longer has a father in the picture, consider doing something with that child on Sunday. Toss a ball in a park, see a movie, get an ice-cream. It may be an awkward or difficult day for the child and his mom, but you could make a difference… and do your heart some good, too.

 

Get physical: Relieve some of the stress of infertility with physical activity. Take a walk or run on the beach. Take a trip to the gym. Have a roll in the hay. Or not.

 

Sow your seed: There’s something cathartic about getting your hands dirty with nature. About sowing seed or planting a tree that will live for generations. About fertility and making something grow. So while you are waiting for that baby, consider planting a Father’s Day tree or garden…something to watch grow over the coming years. A tree next to which you might take annual photos with your future child every Father’s Day as they both grow.

 

Remind him that this journey will end someday and that IVF success rates and technology continue to improve daily so there’s no better time to be trying to conceive.

Hopefully, the reality of that painted rock paperweight is only a stone’s throw away.

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What are you planning to do on Father’s Day this year?

 

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Infertile Women Never Forget

By Tracey Minella

June 4th, 2014 at 3:55 pm

 

credit: idea go/freedigitalphotos.net


When it comes to remembering, elephants have nothing on infertile women.

Date of last menstrual period? Pshhh! Without even a glance at a calendar or app, we can tell you the date… plus the time it started, where we were, what we were wearing, who we were with, and how many pee sticks we went through thinking we were pregnant in the 5 days before it began.

And that’s just getting warmed up.

We know how many vacation days we’ve used and how many precious few remain because they’ve been mentally earmarked for upcoming cycles. We can recite the months, years, series numbers, and assigned nurses’ names of all our IVF cycles. We know how many embryos we transferred back and what grades they were. And we can tell you the number and grade of any frozen embryos faster than we can give you the current time.

We know the number of follicles we had on each ovary from our last sonogram and the sizes of the dominant ones. We may not know how much gas is in the car, but we know how thick our uterine lining measured. We know our last Day 3 FSH level and how many vials of medication are still in the fridge. And we definitely know what vein still works.

We know the dates of our retrievals, our transfers, and our pregnancy test dates. Some of us carry the painful details of unspeakable losses as well. And we know what we wore to each and what music was playing on the radio. We can detail how we fell apart, how we pulled it back together, and how we recalculated when we’d be trying again…and what the new due date might be. We’re always aware of the date we need to conceive by in order for a baby to be born before the year ends, or before our next birthday.

These incredible memory skills build up gradually along the course of the infertility journey, starting with the innocent basal body temperature charts used for tracking ovulation patterns. As the journey progresses, more tests and procedures follow. Results come in and a treatment plan is made. The brain absorbs all this additional information… because there is simply nothing else on our minds as important as our goal of getting pregnant.

And in the end, all these dates…these often-frustrating dates…become your history. They make up the story of your journey to parenthood. And you will never forget them.

I know this because today I celebrate the 17th anniversary of the day of my first positive pregnancy test from my 6th fresh IVF cycle which resulted in the birth of my first IVF baby. It was also coincidentally the first day I started working at LIIVF as a medical assistant and I was wearing scrubs when Dr. Kreiner called me into his office to tell me the good news at the end of that nerve-wracking first day. After so many result calls that began with “I’m so sorry…” it was a moment that will live forever.

Your moment will, too.

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What has been your most memorable moment of the journey? What details do you remember that others would be impressed or amazed by?

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Mother’s Day: 5 Tips on Surviving The Hardest Day of the Year

By Tracey Minella

May 10th, 2014 at 8:00 pm

 

credit: david castillo/freedigitalphotos.net


Infertile women face plenty of rough days each year… Halloween, New Year’s Day, baby showers, and our birthdays. But, without question Mother’s Day is, well, the mother of them all.

It is the day the whole world dotes on moms…and assumes that any woman of a certain age is one. That assumption, when verbalized, can make you feel like crawling away and crying. And it is even worse for those who have lost babies along the journey. Everyone from store clerks to the whole congregation will unwittingly wish you a Happy Mother’s Day. So, what can you do?

Here are five tips for managing on Mother’s Day:

·         Focus on your own mom. It doesn’t help completely, but it can be a good distraction. You don’t have a child yet, but you do have a mom. If it’s too hard to be with her for a dinner that includes your pregnant siblings and their 37 kids, then make separate plans to see her for brunch instead. If she’s far away, schedule a nice, long call. If your mom is gone, consider visiting the cemetery with a note or flowers, or doing something that reminds you of good times with her. Yes, it may make you cry, but it’s a great place to vent. (Can you tell I’ve done this?) You will cry on this day anyway. Go for happier tears.

 

·         Call your church or temple in advance. If you’re dreading how all the mothers are asked to stand up and be recognized at your place of worship… something that would be particularly hard for those who have suffered miscarriages or lost babies or infants…why not call ahead and ask the priests or rabbis to recognize and include those who’ve lost children in that definition. Or ask when that moment of recognition will happen and plan to arrive before or after that point in the services.

 

 

·         Make yourself a Mother-in-Waiting’s Day Card. You are a mother. A mother-in-waiting. Believe your day will come. But why should your card wait? You should sit down and list all the reasons you are going to be a great mom. Things like, When I’m a mom, I’m going to let my kid have ice cream for dinner sometimes. While you’re at it, buy yourself a gift, too.

 

·         Make a garden. It’s a great way to connect with nature and spend some quiet, reflective time alone or with your partner on Mother’s Day and for many days to come. Plant pretty flowers or maybe some healthy, fertility-enhancing vegetables. Populate it with little gnomes, wind chimes, or cherub statues. It could become your sanctuary.

 

·         Get a dog. Or a cat. If you’ve been seriously thinking about getting a pet, this may be the time to act on it. “Furbabies” love unconditionally and fill a special spot in the infertile heart. Is there room in your life for one?

These are just a few tips to manage the day, not to enjoy it. The fact is that it won’t really be enjoyable until you are a mom. So, do whatever you want or need to do to get through this day. Treat yourself well. Spend time with your partner. Hiberate. And stay far, far away from Chuck E. Cheese.

As a mother-in-waiting, it’s your day, too. Take it one hour at a time.

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What are your Mother’s Day plans? Any tips to help others get through it?

 

 

 

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Resolve to Know More About The War of Infertility: Surviving and Thriving

By Tracey Minella

April 25th, 2014 at 12:08 pm

 

credit: Ambro/freedigitalphotos.net


Okay. I lied. It’s just about surviving. The thriving only comes when the baby arrives. If the baby arrives.

And the reality of that “if” makes infertility a war. It’s what throws us into survival mode. We battle infertility. We suffer infertility. And every month when we lose another battle, we bleed. Literally and emotionally and financially. We question if we can recover from yet another blow. And like a wounded soldier trembling alone in a trench at night, we look up at the stars and make our secret bargains with the universe. And we worry if we’ll ever win this war and go back to a normal life. To the life others continue living during our physical or emotional absence. To the life we left on hold.

There are no rainbows and unicorns in infertility. No time for fun or relaxation during a war. For parties or thrills or belly laughter. For “thriving”. Sure, you can sometimes kick back momentarily, but your mind rarely disengages from the war at hand. And there is nothing wrong with that, so don’t feel guilty when you don’t want to participate in something others think is fun. When in doubt, sit it out. Like “friendly-fire”, well-meaning allies can unintentionally cause you great pain. Baby shower invites are grenades thrown by friends.

Let’s first acknowledge that the only people qualified to give advice to infertile people are other infertile people. Not your mom or your best friend. Not even your doctor, beyond the medical part. And certainly not your hairdresser’s second cousin’s babysitter. No one else knows what you’re going through…no matter how much they love you.

credit: Resolve

Even those who suffered their own fertility challenges and emerged triumphant can’t fully understand the pain felt by those still waiting for their day. Yes, they walked a mile…maybe ten… in your stirrups. But the filling of previously empty arms changes you. Becoming a parent changes you, even if you still want more children. Your advice may not be as welcome as before.

So here is my not-as-welcome-as before advice: I can tell you to treat yourself well, not because you will enjoy it so much as because it’s one of the few things about infertility that is in your control. Eat well, sleep enough, and exercise because doing so can improve your chances of conceiving. Occasionally, do your favorite pampering-type things if you have the time and money to help with stress relief and feelings of deprivation. If you’re not feeling the romantic walk on the beach thing, do it anyway. Or do something that feels right to reconnect with your partner if the battle is taking its toll on you as a couple. He or she is the only person who is worth that herculean effort.

Control what you can. Ask for help if you need it. Believe it will happen.

Because winning this war isn’t everything. It’s the only thing.

For more information about how you can resolve to learn more about infertility, please go to:

http://www.resolve.org/infertility101  (Basic understanding of the disease of infertility.)

http://www.resolve.org/national-infertility-awareness-week/about.html (About NIAW)

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Does infertility sometimes feel like your own private war? Do you have any tips to share that have helped you?

 

Photo credit: Ambro http://bit.ly/1ffg5MV

 

 

 

 

 

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(Another) New Year’s…and Tips to Survive It

By Tracey Minella

December 29th, 2013 at 11:47 pm

 

image courtesy of danillo rizutti/free digital photos.net


And so we move on toward yet another new year. Another supposed-to-be Happy New Year.

But holidays aren’t happy when you’re trying to conceive. They just aren’t. And sticking the word “happy” on them only adds to the stress. Isn’t it enough to have to face another year without a baby? Now you have to be “happy” too?

Father Time’s clock on New Year’s Eve is not welcome to many infertiles. How many of us have morphed into hermit couples over time? There is actually a pattern to it.

One year, you’re typical party-goers hoisting champagne at some big, loud gathering and confidently proclaiming to all within earshot “This year is the year we’re having a baby!”

Time passes. It’s New Year’s again. The crowd you’re celebrating with dwindles to a few close friends or family and the scene is more low-key. You trade in the bubbly for an alcohol-free toast because you’re doing everything you can to make that baby wish come true. You no longer say out loud that “This is the year”. You are still hopeful, but uneasiness dampens your party spirit.

More time passes. It’s just the two of you now. You don’t want to be out with others. Maybe you’ve suffered losses or are frustrated by financial roadblocks to necessary fertility treatment. You’re depressed and are simply too exhausted to pretend you’re happy…especially when surrounded by people who don’t understand your totally understandable depression. You’re tired of saying “This will be the year” only to find another year goes by and you’re making the same wish over and over. You’re hope is dangerously depleted and you officially loathe New Year’s with all its shallow celebratory nonsense. Prolonged infertility has stolen your happiness.

It’s okay. It really is okay not to be happy on New Year’s.

But it is not okay to lose hope. You need to keep hope alive. Nourish whatever bit is left. Breathe life back into it. Even if there is only a glimmer remaining.  Find a way. Because your dream needs hope…and more…in order to come true. Depending on your circumstances, it may also need some combination of action, money and/or a miracle to come true.

So, from someone who ushered in about a decade of consecutive frustrating infertile New Year’s here’s some advice on how to make the best of a tough night.

·         Don’t think of yourselves as alone.  Remind yourself of why you chose and love this person and reconnect. Realize the power couple you are. You’ve been blessed with each other to get through this journey and, hard as it is, it’s making you stronger. When you finally do have a child, you will be ready for anything life throws your way. Take the night to make a written plan for 2014. What is the next step going to be? What do you need to get there? And how will you get it? Real steps. In writing. Make the plan.

 

·         Acknowledge the elephant in the room…the baby that is not here yet. Instead of focusing on what’s missing, why not play a game? Similar to the movie “The Odd Life of Timothy Green”, you and your partner can brainstorm on the character traits you imagine your future baby will have. Boy or girl? Good at soccer or music? Quiet or loud? And so on. Positive visualization can do wonders.

 

·         Offer to babysit. For those up to it emotionally (and it’s okay not to be), consider offering to babysit for a friend’s baby overnight. You get a real taste of parenting and you get to help out a friend who may want to go out. When you have your own baby, maybe they’ll return the favor!

 

·         Have a Plan. If you are venturing out into the fertile, celebratory world you need a plan. If you’re with people who know you are trying, tell them up front that the topic is off limits tonight. If not, try to have a planned response ready for any possible nosy comments so you are not caught off guard. Have a secret “signal” with your partner that means “It’s time to leave…NOW!” Preparation is the best defense.

Wherever you are, kiss at the stroke of midnight. It’s the best way to enter the New Year. And it’s bound to fill your heart with hope.

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What are your plans and tips for New Year’s Eve?

 

 

Photo credit: Danilo Rizzuti

 

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6 Helpful Resources for Pregnancy and Infant Loss

By Tracey Minella

October 16th, 2013 at 12:10 pm

 

image courtesy of small bird studio

Infertility is hell. Everyone on this journey knows that. And we all know that unless you are experiencing infertility yourself, you can’t possibly understand our pain. No matter how much your heart breaks for us. You have to live it to relate to it.

Unfortunately, the journey is longer and harder for some of us. And sometimes, just as you think you can finally glimpse the sun peeking through the darkest forest, you lose your footing and tumble into the blackest hole. To a special section of hell so awful that it forces you to redefine the term.

Ectopic pregnancy. Miscarriage. Stillbirth. SIDS or other infancy loss. Whatever the cause…your baby is gone. How do you go on?

October is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month and since many infertility patients suffer these unimaginable losses along their journeys, it’s important to acknowledge the pain and provide some resources to help cope. Like infertility itself, unless you’ve lived it, you can’t relate to baby loss.

Here are some places where those who have suffered a loss, and those who love them, can start:

Project Healhttp://carlymarieprojectheal.com/ I cannot say enough about this Baby Loss Community support group, available online and through Facebook. The moderator, Carlymarie, suffered the loss of her son, Christian. She helps people cope (and they help her in return) through photography, writing, beach art, short films, and many other therapeutic ways. She is hosting a month-long “Capture Your Grief” photography event in honor of National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. Her site, which provides all the details, is a “must visit” for anyone who knows someone or who has themselves suffered a loss.

In addition, please visit Small Bird Studio on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/  where another artist and bereaved mother, Franchesca Cox, offers support and beautiful artwork. She and Carlymarie teamed up to create the “Lost for Words” 2014 calendar from heartbreakingly poignant quotes contributed by grieving moms.

Still Standing Magazine  http://stillstandingmag.com/2013/10/sharing-story/ This online magazine is exclusively related to “Surviving Child Loss and Infertility”. You can navigate your way through subjects like:  Grief, Infertility, Parenting after Loss, Faith, Siblings’ Grief, Pregnancy after Loss, and more. Everything is written by someone who has somehow survived and is “still standing”.

A Heart to Holdhttp://ahearttohold.com/  This website and Facebook community’s mission is to “offer comfort to families who have experienced pregnancy and infant loss by creating and sharing the gift of a weighted handmade heart.” Recipients of these hand-sewn keepsakes may find some measure of comfort in having something soft to hold which are made to order at the weight of the infant that was “born sleeping” or who passed shortly after birth. Loved ones who are looking to do something for a grieving couple to acknowledge their loss and pain can inquire about a hand-sewn heart. This non-profit charitable organization was started by a woman who was given a hand-sewn heart by her midwife after her son was stillborn at full-term. Mamas who receive these hearts often want to pay it forward by volunteering to make one for another mom. For more information on volunteering, donating, or ordering see the site above.

Infertility/Infant Loss Jewelry*: There are several sites that offer  handmade and/or customized jewelry especially for those who are suffering infertility or from pregnancy or infant loss. Some people who have suffered a loss may find comfort in wearing a piece of jewelry that commemorates or acknowledges that lost life. Here is a sampling of such sites:

http://www.etsy.com/shop/bugaboojewelry

http://hopingbelievingwaiting.weebly.com/

http://www.myforeverchild.com/

http://www.rememberingourbabies.net/

 

Professional Counseling   http://www.longislandivf.com/mind_body.cfm Sometimes, a professional therapist is the best option to help you after such an unbearable loss. Long Island IVF offers several professional counselors uniquely-qualified to handle supporting you through infertility and pregnancy and infant loss.

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If you have suffered from pregnancy or infant loss, do you have any advice to share or any resources to recommend to help others?

* Long Island IVF has no affiliation with any of these jewelry or other merchandise sites and offers them for informational purposes only. Use your own discretion when considering making any purchase.

 

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Granny’s Got Game: When Love Brings a Uterus Out of Retirement

By Tracey Minella

August 18th, 2013 at 10:59 pm

 

image courtesy of david castillo dominici/free digital photos.net


Mothers are the most special people on the planet. In fact, they are angels on earth. So are grandmothers. Their devotion to their children’s safety and happiness is mind-blowing. They will stop at nothing when it comes to their children.

That’s why most of us are driven to be mothers ourselves. We’ve likely watched our own moms take care of us and their example feeds our own maternal longing.

So what happens when a woman who desperately wants a baby that’s biologically hers meets a brick wall on her infertility path? A wall with hurtful graffiti that says “Not Gonna Happen in Your Uterus”.

What happens when she relays this news as she sobs in her own mother’s arms?

Sometimes… her mom steps up to the stirrups.

Fueled by the powerful combination of two complementary forces…her child’s happiness and her own desire for grandchildren…and assisted by in vitro fertilization (“IVF”) technology, moms sometimes become gestational carriers for their children.

That means that embryos created through IVF from the eggs and sperm of the grown child and their spouse are transferred instead into the uterus of the grown child’s mother, in the hope that implantation will occur and a healthy pregnancy and baby will result. It is a grandmother giving birth to her grandchild.

Think about it.

Advances in reproductive medicine have made it possible for an older woman to deliver a baby grandchild from the same uterus that hosted one of its parents decades earlier.

This blog was inspired by the news this week of a 53-year-old woman who, wanting to help her daughter and son-in-law build their family, carried and gave birth to her own twin grandchildren. And this is after she already gave birth to another grandchild for them a couple of years earlier. Now that’s a mother’s love.*

* * * * * * * * * * *

If you were unable to carry a baby for medical reasons, would you ask your mom to carry for you? Would you ask another family member? Would you seek out a stranger? Or would you do something else entirely?

* Source:http://www.scienceworldreport.com/articles/8847/20130815/53-year-old-gives-birth-daughters-twin-babies.htm

Photo credit: http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/agree-terms.php David Castillo Dominici

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