Family reunion

Sorry for being a bad bloggy friend this last week. I just got back from my family reunion in Colorado. My dad’s side of the family has a reunion in the mountains of Colorado every 3 years. This year, 65 of us – all direct descendants of my 90-year-old grandmother – made it to the YMCA of the Rockies in Estes Park.

This was my first post-infertility reunion. And it was hard. Our crew of 65 included 22 kids. And not just any kids, but freakin’ adorable, sweet, funny kids. The kind of kids that I want to have. The weekend also included a large amount of marveling at genetic parenthood – how virtually everybody there owed their life (or their spouse’s life) to this one woman – my grandma. Now don’t get me wrong, my grandma is awesome! But it still stings to think that I likely won’t have any genetic children…or grandchildren…or great grandchildren…

But enough of this pity party. There was a lot to be thankful for. For one thing, not one single person asked when we would have kids, or why we didn’t have any yet.

(I suspect this has something to do with a little incident last summer… After getting my positive pregnancy test, I texted my parents a photo…which my dad immediately posted on Facebook! I called him and made him take it down right away, but several relatives had already seen – and ‘liked’ or commented on – it. Seeing as there is now no baby, I can only assume they figured out what happened and had the decency not to comment on it. Either that, or everybody thinks I’m still in my twenties and have plenty of time – neither of which is true, but who can keep track when there are so damn many of us?!)

Another plus of the weekend: my adorable husband. A few weeks ago, I casually mentioned that wheatgrass juice is allegedly supposed to help with egg quality. The next week, I got home from church to find this in my kitchen:

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A couple weeks later, C decided that blending and straining the wheatgrass wasn’t good enough, and ordered a mechanical wheatgrass juicer.

This sweet man couldn’t imagine me going for almost a week without any wheatgrass, so he packed the juicer and a bag of wheatgrass in a little cooler, brought it along, and made me wheatgrass juice each day that we were there, cleaning the juicer in our room sink after each serving. 😉

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He also offered to “live like a monk” with me, giving up alcohol and unhealthy food for the next three months. (Okay, so part of the reason is that he wants to lose weight, but I still found it adorable.)

And on our last night there, after an abrupt and heavy downpour, the sun came out to reveal the most amazing double rainbow I’ve seen in years! (I would say ever, but I grew up in Hawaii, so I’ve seen some pretty amazing rainbows…)

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I’m not sure when or how, but in moments like this, I know that everything really is going to be alright!

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31 Comments

  1. I gave up having my own genetic children a couple years ago but sometimes it still stings a little; like when I see a child who resembles the parent so much there is no doubt where they came from.

    Your husband is pretty awesome in my opinion.

    Reply
  2. What a man! How sweet to bring the juicer -I bet it’s better than Jamba Juice-and how dedicated to ‘live like a monk’ with you. During the five minutes of my pregnancy, my Husband vowed solidarity and wouldn’t drink in front of me, but I suspected he would if he was out with friends and I wasn’t around. For what it’s worth, as my grandmother is my aunt’s step mother (her biological mother died when my aunt was 3 and she had my father are technically half-siblings, but they only identify each other as “big sister” and “baby brother”) my grandmother is not genetically related to my aunt’s two daugthers. It never occured to me until last year (when my cousin announced her pregnancy at age 41, I commented that she must have inherited our grandmother’s ovarian legacy -she had my dad at age 44) I realised that they’re not biologically related. My whole life my cousin has only thought of our late grandmother as “Nana” and I’m sure my grandmother never had a fleeting thought about the fact that her first two grandchildren are technically related to her. It just never really registered. We were simply an extended family.

    Reply
    • Thank you, Jane. You’re so right! My brother (who is a new father) is adopted, which everybody in the family knows. Yet when my dad’s baby picture popped up on the screen during a slideshow last weekend, my aunt kept asking “does it look like J [my brothers son]?”

      Reply
  3. Getting the kids question is the biggest worry I have about my upcoming “vacation” to see my dad’s side of the family in a few weeks. Most of them I haven’t seen in a few years, and when I called them the day after our wedding, my uncle told me to make him a great uncle soon and that obviously still hasn’t happened. I know my aunt had some infertility problems which resulted in my twin cousins so perhaps they’ll think twice before speaking.

    I agree with Evelyn, your husband rocks! How’s the wheatgrass thing going? I’m a big fan of the green smoothies that have become popular lately, but I don’t know if I could stomach wheatgrass. Do you drink just that or do you mix it with other juices?

    I’m glad you had fun with your family!

    Reply
    • Thanks Aislinn! Yes, I hate that question, which is why I’ve come out to a lot of people just to avoid it. Strangely, I didn’t come out to the extended family on this trip. One issue is that as donor eggs becomes more of a possibility, I don’t know that I want everybody to know about that…

      Wheatgrass juice is pretty disgusting in my opinion. But as long as my hubby wants to make it for me, I’ll drink it. (It’s only one 1 oz shot per day…) I drink it straight – as quickly as I can – and chase it with some water or another beverage. 😉

      Reply
  4. Glad you had a nice time. Your husband sounds so sweet! I was big on the wheat grass for a while there too. It has a lot of health benefits aside from fertility related ones as well!

    And that is a beautiful rainbow… how cool that you grew up in Hawaii!

    Reply
  5. Sounds like your hubby is taking good care of you. That’s great! Glad you had a good time! 🙂

    Reply
  6. I adored this post. I feel like you are something of a kindred spirit, trying to find gratitude amongst the whirling disappointment of being a DOR girl. I too am so bloody lucky to have a great husband, money for IVF, money for egg donation. I’m still adjusting to the fact that I may never have a child who is related to me. That news is still raw. Posts like yours keep me on track emotionally. I much prefer this to some of the bitterness I see expressed (which I also understand of course!! I feel bitter too). Your husband sounds absolutely gorgeous. What a sweetheart. Hey do you know any bloggers going through the egg donor route? I’d love to follow.

    Reply
    • Thanks. You’re so sweet! I feel like we should meet in real life…if only you didn’t live literally on the other side of the globe! 😉

      I was going to suggest No Good Eggs, but Jane beat me to it!. I’ll keep you posted if I find any others. (And I’d love it if you’d do the same!)

      Reply
      • I didn’t see a post by Jane? Maybe my WordPress app is glitchy? Yeah I would love to meet up, wish you were nearby 🙂

      • Weird WordPress! Here’s Jane’s comment to you:
        “IVFfervescent gal – If you’re not following already, Kimberly at No Good Eggs is going through egg donation and Liz at Wishing on a Snowflake is pursuing embryo adoption.”

  7. IVFfervescent gal – If you’re not following already, Kimberly at No Good Eggs is going through egg donation and Liz at Wishing on a Snowflake is pursuing embryo adoption.

    Reply
  8. Your husband is awesome. That’s all.

    Reply
    • Thanks Fertility Doll! He IS awesome. But in the interest of full disclosure, I should tell you that I didn’t take him up on the offer to “live like a monk”. (Mainly because I don’t actually want to “live like a monk”!) Hence, last night he went out for beers with his buddies. 😉

      Reply
  9. You do have an amazing hubby. And yes, everything is going to be alright. A wise friend once said to me that everything will be alright in the end- if it’s not alright, it’s not the end. So glad you had a good reunion, and that there were no awkward family building questions.

    Love the rainbow shot- I’ve only ever seen one like that. In Sedona on my honeymoon. So beautiful!

    Reply
    • I love that quote! A local Resolve group member shared that one with me and I latched on to it. 🙂

      Since leaving Hawaii, I haven’t seen many either. I went to high school and college in the Pacific Northwest, where there’s plenty of rain but no sun. Now I live in Southern California, where there’s plenty of sun but little rain!

      Reply
  10. That’s a lotta wheatgrass. Never tried it, probably not going to. It looks like the cat grass they sell at pet stores! Your hubby sounds like a keeper. 😉

    Reply
    • It probably tastes like the cat grass! I’m actually skeptical of the virtues of wheatgrass. According to Wikipedia, it contains roughly the same ingredients in the same proportions as broccoli, which tastes a heck of a lot better in my opinion! But if making it for me helps C feel more involved in all this, then I’ll keep drinking it! 😉

      Reply
  11. Beautiful! The rainbow shot just immensly lifted my mood and I only saw the picture!

    Reply
  12. Your friend IRL : )

     /  July 17, 2013

    I love your posts and found myself checking your page daily during your break. “You know, you CAN text her”, says Q. I told him to shush.
    I look forward to watching your hubby “live like a monk” and all of the humor that will come along with it. ; ). Glad you all had a (somewhat) nice trip. I know it probably wasn’t easy but I am certain your own (genetic!) lil love bug(s) will be attending the next reunion.
    Bring on the wheatgrass and tiger balm! ❤

    Reply
    • Ha! You know C too well to believe that he would actually follow through on that! Nah, I spared him the trouble. _I_ don’t want to live like a monk. I’ll settle for being thoughtful about what I put in my body (and how much). 😉

      Reply
  13. Hey BTW, my hubby wanted to know if you grow your wheatgrass or buy it… and how you juice it. Could you share what you do??

    Reply
    • Happy to!

      We buy the wheatgrass. The guy at our farmer’s market insists that the flat will regrow if we water it enough, but after no noticeable growth after two weeks, we gave up and decided it was easier to just keep buying flats…(or bags of pre-cut grass, which they also sell at the farmer’s market). Hubby uses scissors to cut it, an inch or so from the soil line. (Not sure if it has to be this length. I think he’s assuming the ‘greenest’ part will be the tastiest/most healthful!) Whole Foods also sells wheatgrass, but theirs comes in small, EXPENSIVE plastic packages. There’s also a Mexican restaurant near my work that sells smaller flats if we miss the farmer’s market…

      After some internet searching, hubby decided on this juicer:
      http://www.amazon.com/Lexen-Products-Healthy-Juicer-GP27/dp/B0002LY8PA
      It’s manual (no cords or power requirements), easy to assemble and disassemble, and rinses clean. There’s a little video on the amazon page if you want to see it in action! 😉

      Hope that helps!

      Reply
      • Yay thanks! How long does one flat last you? I found a place that sells it not too far away from work. It’s $10 for a 16×16 flat. 10×20 is $8. Seems reasonable???

    • Oh, the juice comes out in a little plastic receptacle, and hubby pours this into a shot glass for me. I typically drink 1 or 1.5 oz per day. Not sure I could handle any more of the stuff!

      Reply
      • Nevermind. That website I found is no longer working. Onward I search. May have to go visit the farmer’s market this weekend.

  1. Family planning with Dr. Y | the infertile chemist

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