Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Coming Out: Infertility-Style

It has been much too long since we have posted an update on here. And it won't really happen in this post. Someday soon, though. We've had so many adventures since either of us last wrote, but there is really only one that I'm going to mention today.


You big stinkin' butt head.

(Anyone who knows me well knows that the word "butt" was totally against the rules in our house. Sooooo....don't tell Mom, but I sort of take a guilty pleasure in using it when I really mean it. And, oh, how I mean it.)

We've been battling this beast for a while now. It doesn't really matter how long. Longer than some and shorter than many, many others. But long enough for me to be able to say out loud that this is the most painful, traumatic, heart-wrenching, and exhausting thing I've ever done in my life. I hate it. Almost every second of it.

Except those couple seconds in every million where something strikes us as ridiculously funny and we can actually find humor in the process. Or when James and I realize suddenly that WE - together - are still going strong despite everything. Or most especially when one of you gets it - really gets it. Not necessarily because of experience, but because of an amazing pure love for us that goes way deeper than words or actions.

And I've had so many spontaneous encounters (in person, via phone/email, even through old-fashioned mail) with people in the last month who really "got it", that I have found myself slowly, unconsciously, involuntarily opening up. I can't live any more in the isolation that has owned me for a while now. So here I go, taking a huge big-girl step here: I'm going to ask for help. Not financial, so don't panic. Not really even tangible or physical.

I'm going to ask you to walk this journey with us. Listen to us. Pray for us. Let us lean on your hopes for us when ours are crushed yet again. Be a shoulder to cry on when we need it and an escape to happier places when our tears are all exhausted and all that's left to do is laugh. Be sensitive but don't back away - never back away. Basically, I am asking you to love us no matter what. Because love is the only thing that makes it kind of ok.

We are going to be open about it. Maybe more open than some of you ever wished we would be, but that's one reason why I'm taking this journey to a different blog. That way, those of you not comfortable with our fertility crap (ha! that's another taboo word!) can be spared the details while still keeping up with us. Also, I'd prefer not to be defined by infertility, so it feels important to me to keep it (maybe only symbolically) a little distanced from the rest of life, even if it is only a delusion.

So you can read about this special (note the sarcasm) journey soon at TheLeftOveries.blogspot.com. And yes, I know that ovary is spelled with an 'a' :)

See you there.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Oxford Recap

I (Emily) was lucky enough to spend a week in Oxford over spring break to attend a seminar on international human rights and humanitarian aid. What a week! I learned/saw/ate so much and would go back in a heartbeat given the chance...with James this time though. Pretty sure he was the only thing missing from making the week absolutely perfect. That said, I still had an amazing trip. Below is a quick recap in photos:

This was where I spent most of my time - in the classroom...
...or at tea time. What a great tradition. Pretty sure American should adopt the European tea time and the South American siesta. We would be much happier people :)

The weather and vegetation is actually very similar to Eugene...just way more beautiful because they actually make space for nature there.

I felt like I was walking around in a movie or a fairy tale or one of Jane Austen's books the whole time.

We studied in Merton college - which happens to be about 750 years old and the old stomping grounds of C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and I believe Lewis Carroll, author of Alice in Wonderland. 

The Bodleian Library

The entrance to the Ministry of Magic.
Dobby! There were a ton of scenes from Harry Potter that were filmed in the area. 
An old pub where C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien used to be a part of a literary group called The Inklings.
Chicken and mushroom pie. Yum.

Awesome hot chocolate.

Pretty sure I need one of these - a map of the earth and sky all at the same time. Called "The World in your Pocket."

From the Ashmolean museum before my camera tragically died there. I could have spent the entire week in this museum and still not seen everything there was to see.

So grateful to those that made this trip possible - this will be something that stays with me for a very long time to come.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Love Month

Life lately for us...including all of the strange weather Oregon likes to throw at us.

Valentine's Day came early for us and James totally surprised me with a trip to the coast, where we stayed at a beautiful bed & breakfast and did some fun shopping and enjoyed the beach - the only sunny place in Oregon...sometimes :)

Then, a few days later, we had a CRAZY snow storm and school/work was cancelled for days! The snow was followed by an ice storm and there was tree carnage all over the place. The University of Oregon sent out email alerts warning people not to walk under trees (kinda tricky in Oregon...) because branches and whole trees were falling down all over the place!

Despite the craziness, we kept celebrating Valentine's Day pretty much the entire month. Yes, those are pink heart-shaped pancakes. So festive.

Then a couple weeks later, the weather was so warm that we got out for an impromptu bike ride along the river. More sunshine - yay!

Ok, I took waaaay more pictures of my bike than I did of us. But look how cute it is!!! Can you blame me?

I thought this was so funny - this sign was half covered in water. I feel like it is a sign...I mean like a sign-from-the-universe-kind-of-sign...telling us to throw caution to the wind. Or drown it in the water. Something like that.