Tuesday, March 25, 2008


I’m sorry it’s been so long – there are so many reasons for that; so many good reasons for that.

First of all, I’m doing really well – emotionally. Berilac and I have been really setting our relationship with the Lord as a priority and we’re making time for prayer and devotions and it’s been encouraging and uplifting. Berilac and I have also re-dedicated ourselves to working on our relationship. In the past it’s been scary for me to really work on our relationship because it brings up so many deep, dark, scary topics – but these days I’m really feeling up to facing those. As I’ve mentioned before I’ve been going to a support group on a regular basis and I’m starting one at my church – these types of relationships are so supportive! I’ve had women who go to my church, (whom I’ve never met!) read my blog and reach out to me. In general, I’ve had women to come in contact with about our stuggles. I’ve been going to counseling and I’ve had a homework assignment that is challenging my anxiety roots. I’ve been learning (and practicing) the many stress reduction techniques that the one support group has taught me. I’ve been walking regularly, enjoying the beautiful weather, and eating healthfully. All these things have stolen time away from me being on the computer – so really life’s can’t be that bad, right?

Secondly, I’ve just been really busy. For the past nine months I’ve been a coordinator for a community wide Easter event – The HUNT.

Our church partnered with two other churches, the city, the police department, & the fire department to bring the community a FREE Easter egg hunt the Saturday before Easter (Saturday, March 22 2008). My involvement in that event is represented in hundreds of hours of meetings, documentation, planning, budgeting, supply shopping, marketing, volunteer gathering and training, media correspondence, sign creation, and general errand running over a nine month period; the closer the event got, the more busy I became - I went to bed at 2AM the entire week leading up to the event (and usually I’m an old lady when it comes to bed time, 9-10P). Above is a picture of the 7-9 year old kids racing towards the egg scoop (rather than an egg hunt!)

We supplied:

  • 4 age specific hunt zones
  • 2 Easter bunnies
  • 21,000 (that's not a misprint) candy stuffed Easter eggs
  • 6,000 ground prizes
  • 25 raffle prizes
  • 1,500 consolation prizes
  • 100 volunteers
  • 21 corporate sponsors
  • 225 dozen cookies
  • 20 jugs of fruit punch
  • 4 face painting stations
  • 4 Easter craft stations
  • 2 tatoo stations
  • 1 local children’s music celebrity
  • 1 Easter Bunny Pic booth
  • and 1 gigantic bouncy house

For over 3000 local community members

… and all for “free” (well we had a budget – but to the participants it was free!) That day I was supposed to go to an all day infertility retreat with Berilac, but instead I decided to stick with my commitment and lead the teams at the HUNT event. I spent more than 12 hours on my feet, running around, with one of those cool walkie-talkies on, to support a 2 ½ hour event! I was SURROUNDED by infants, toddlers, and older children during the entire duration of the event. I can easily say that there was not a single moment that I had a thought about my losses and my struggles and the twinge of sadness that sometimes come when I’m surrounded by what I do not have.

By the end of the day my feet were THROBBING, I was exhausted, and my heart was blessed. I’m ready to sign up for next year! I thought it was a sacrifice missing my infertility support group – but really it was a blessing getting to serve at the community egg hunt. There were so many people there who couldn’t afford to give Easter to their children – the city that we did this in is a struggling bay area town – and I got to be a part of tangibly loving these community members with love in the form of a gift for their entire family. I had a very hard time communicating with many of the people I was welcoming – as I don’t speak Spanish – but I’m hoping the smile was loving enough.

Not only was The HUNT stealing my blog time – but my work has really picked up since March 3. We are doing a major software application upgrade and I’m a testing lead – so we are responsible for running nearly 200 tests to make sure the application is up to par come the August go-live timeframe.

Lastly, Berilac and I have made decisions about what’s next for us in our family building efforts. We have had a couple of pretty bad test results come back to us in the last couple of weeks – but our future plans lead towards the best steps we can take to combat our test results – so what more can we do? Nothing. So in my next post (which really should come soon) I'll tell you all about our plans.

Grateful that I even had these few minutes to give an update,

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Attending a real-life infertility support group (so cool)

So I just got back from my 7th infertility support group meeting ... I can't believe how quickly the weeks have flown by since my last miscarriage.

I'm really in two separate support groups - one is a set number of weeks in duration and is focused on dealing with the stress of infertility and going through fertility cycles, the other is an ongoing group for those that have suffered with recurrent miscarriage. I've spent a majority of those weeks meeting with the group focusing on stress reduction ... and I'm loving it.

We have learned techniques like: meditation and qi-gong and have discussed the destressing nature of doing yoga, exercise, and healthy eating. Typically we start the meetings off by going around the room and sharing how our weeks have been and sometimes our leader suggests a topic to include like "how has communicating this with friends/family worked out for you". Once we're done circling the group we usually move into the second part of the night where we learn a new technique (usually presented by an outsider, an expert in the topic).

Tonight it was so great to hear almost half of us share this evening that this group has been so healing - having a place to go share our fears, burdens, anxieties, and heartbreak - and to get the support that we need to get through it. Even though we all don't get to talk and share for hours on end about how difficult our week was ... we do get to share for a few minutes. I don't think the advantage is in being the center of attention, getting endless support ... but we do get to go to a place where others understand us. And you don't have to say a lot to "get" that you understand each other. Just knowing that you're not totally crazy and that there are others out there (real people you can touch!) that are struggling in the ways that you are - the isolation starts to melt away.

I'd call it: Community. Something that we as American's struggle with, something that those of us who know the Lord have been called to be apart of. I can't wait to do my next post ... where I talk about starting a community like this at my church. The ball is rolling on that front too ... and I can't wait to extend this community experience into the church as something that it offers for those who are suffering with infertility.

This week at church we were encouraged to respond to the message about the good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37), indicating how we were becoming part of the remedy to the problem that we are not "loving our neighbors" as God has called us - we need to be the Samaritan who helped up the one who was beaten, robbed, and left for dead on the road to Jericho. And in filling out my sermon response card ... it was so confirming to know that God is using me in this infertility group to show His love to others and He will use me in the infertility group that we pray will get started at our church soon. I am so excited to be part of the solution. It's my way of fulfilling Jesus' request that we: "Go and do likewise."

For anyone who is reading this, that is currently struggling with infertility and is feeling overwhelmingly heartbroken - I highly encourage you to find an infertility support group - you can find them at your local churches, hospitals, and sometimes at fertility clinics. Being a part of a community will really support your emotional health during this painful, isolating process. And if you are that person (whether or not you can get to a support group) - big hugs to you ... I'm so sorry you're going through this.