I think, when we were young girls laughing and dating and our hair was flying behind us, we couldn't have known the struggles that were to come. And that is for the best.
It took me almost a year to get pregnant the first time, which is on the scale of "normal" but felt anything but as the months ticked by. Just weeks before we were about to take the next medical step I conceived naturally. Those months are nothing compared to what my girlfriends have gone through.
I was in my early twenties when a dear friend first miscarried, her message on my answering machine didn't say it, but said it all. In the last ten years, so many friends' eyes have welled with tears, so many have called with that catch in their voice. So many. So many.
Often theirs went on to be a happy ending. Loss, multiple losses, but eventually a little thing brought home from the hospital or the foreign land. The story goes on. I have two friends whose hearts are breaking this very week.
I have wanted to address this topic here, but haven't been sure how. I know there are resources, forums for those women who are going through the pain and confusion of infertility. I didn't walk this road myself, but it's the most common thing I know that people aren't talking about. Every time I've wanted to write about it, I can't think of anything to say except I See You, I Love You, I'm Sorry You're Going Through This.
So I'm not the right person to lead this conversation, but thankfully there are people who are willing to share their journey.
Noah and Maya have been walking this road for years now. I met Noah a gazillion lifetimes ago when we were both working on a show starring Snoop Dogg for MTV. Back then we were both starting out, both angsty about what was to come of our lives in LA. Noah stayed in entertainment, and life got busy, and a few years slipped by when we were out of touch. When we checked back in, Noah told me what had been going on in their quest to start a family, and he shared that he had been documenting it all in the best way he knows how: video. His wife had been processing her thoughts by putting them into words. Together, they've recently created Don't Count Your Eggs.
The words, the video, there is something really amazing here. As much as I thought I knew about various treatments and emotions, seeing it on screen makes it that much more real. I know their story will be useful to another couple going through this. I know that making themselves vulnerable in this way will have a great purpose. Check out what they're doing, share it if you're so inclined. I believe in the power of this, both for Noah and Maya and also for others who will benefit from seeing the story go down in real time.
Yesterday I met two women - friends for 20 years - who who were working on a different sort of documentary. Sybil Azur & Linda Cevallos-French are talking about the pros and cons of pushing motherhood to later in life, when a generation of women who has been told they can "have it all" wait to have children and were never fully informed of what they might mean for their fertility.
They explore how celebrity culture plays into this and how our culture can't deny our biology. Of course, often there are no easy answers.
I know that many of you are all too familiar with infertility.
I see you. I love you. I'm sorry you're going through this.