A grand adventure?

It occurred to me the other day, as I contemplated the passing of another unsuccessful cycle, and the beginning of a new assisted one, that maybe I am approaching this whole infertility thing all wrong.

What if, rather than seeing it as an abysmal “plague on both your houses”; a terrible tragedy to be endured, we could somehow find a way to see it as a grand adventure? An epic in the great literary sense? By that I mean of a sort of Potter-esque variety, where courage, magic, knowledge and love can defeat darkness – let’s leave Frodo trudging through the fearsome wasteland of Mordor aside, ok?

Could that be possible? The idea that life can continue fairly much as normal day to day, and when occasionally there are battles to be fought there are always friends at hand and magic to guide us? And through it all we are learning and growing (while occasionally making and taking potions).

As someone who values science, creativity and feats of human endeavour, there is indeed a certain amount to marvel at when you think of all that’s possible with assisted reproductive technologies today. Of course, we haven’t yet truly mastered the art of conceiving healthy babies 100% of the time, but when I think back to all the women through time who, like me, had no answers as to why they couldn’t become pregnant, but unlike me also had no further options or assistance available to them, I’m immensely grateful for the chances and options we do have. I am lucky to live in a time and place where am am able to make choices about my body, and just enough financial freedom to act upon them. There’s one miracle right there, if we’re counting. 

It may not be possible to think of this as a grand adventure for very long – I doubt Harry thought of his lot that way while he was living through it – but, like anything, I can only take it a day at a time. Just call me Ginny.


Winter under cultivation

Winter under cultivation

Winter under cultivation
Is as arable as Spring
– Emily Dickinson

Winter has really bared its teeth this week. Howling winds, lashing rains, bitter cold. I’ve never really enjoyed the winter months. Dull skies. Biting air. My nose always running, my hands always cold; the knuckles becoming inflamed and itchy with chilblains… I’ve always felt better, happier and more energetic in the light and the warmth.

But in the past few years I’ve found more and more things to love about the winter months. I’ve started to feel a strange sort of joy in being rugged up to my eyeballs, making (and consuming) thick vegetable soups, and pouring endless cups of tea. All the lovely, soft, nourishing things that warm the body.

But what about the mind? The creativity? How to warm them? I think it’s these things (among others) that begin to wither in the winter months, when everything is cold and dull – and it’s this that makes us feel so flat. So, we must cultivate!

This week I discovered the music of Danish singer songwriter Agnes Obel, and it’s certainly cracked open a little pot of internal gold that’s brightening my week.