Wednesday, December 30, 2015


2015 is rapidly coming to a close and the internet is filled with advice and reflections on New Year's resolutions. In addition to looking forward many are looking back on this past year, remembering both the good and the bad and all the lessons in between.

This past year has been a whirlwind of change for the Grey/Cristy household. Starting with hitting a wall, making difficult decisions about career and life-goals (the big one for me was making the decision to work at the Beats' daycare) and ending with a cross-country move that has strained us financially and emotionally (both Grey and I are missing Seattle more than we imagined). All of it taxing and yet filled with hope as we're beginning to see some paths forward.

Over the holidays, a theme of "thankful/grateful" emerged. Sure, there's lots to worry about. We still have a long journey ahead that is filled with so many more obstacles. But honestly, after living through infertility and all that was lost all of this seems very doable.

In 2012, Keiko Zoll published a radical post about being thankful for infertility. The timing of her words was a shock to me, as I was cursing this disease for all the grief and pain it had caused in my life. I remember reading Keiko's words and thinking that I was happy she can see the goodness, but that there was no possible way I ever would.

And yet, over the last 3 years, I've begun to be thankful and grateful too. Realizing that so much self-doubt was shed during that journey. Realizing that I learned what hitting bottom felt like, what being an object of pity meant and what it truly meant to be living as one who was left. That as much as I feared all those things, that the fear was far worse.

I learned that hitting bottom, though scary as all hell, meant a chance to start over, shed all fears and doubts and to start again. I learned that uncertainty opened doors I never knew existed as I was too focused on a certain path. I learned, also, how much stronger I was than I gave myself credit for. That the image I had held in my head for so long of being less and unworthy was not who I really was. I learned the motivational power of anger and the importance of asking "why." But most importantly, I learned that I deserved to love and be loved. All with so much help and guidance from the amazing people I've meant while on this journey.

Looking back, Grey refers to 2012 as the "year of the black." And yet I also remember all the rainbows. Something similar happened in 2015. There were certainly some dark moments, with us wondering how we would even survive (literally). But there are also those insane high points, like the first day I walked onto campus to start my postdoc and hugged my advisor E. And there were also the insane moments like sitting on the plane as a family of (2 cats, 2 kids and 4 suitcases that we would all live out of for the next 7 days) after somehow making it through security with the whole crew.

I guess my point is that 3 years later, I realize I too am grateful. Grateful for infertility and all it taught me. Grateful for all the lessons I continue to learn. Grateful to my family and that we have one another. And grateful to still be a part of this community.


  1. "as much as I feared all those things, that the fear was far worse"
    Love this, and the paragraph that follows.
    This post is well timed for me as I feel like I'm entering another phase of facing fears, though a little different this time around. I am so glad that your year has left you with high points to look back on, as well as challenges, and the gift of a new perspective on the past.

  2. Such a beautiful post. I love the idea of hitting bottom and seeing it as a new start because there was nothing left to be afraid of. I also love the idea of being grateful for the hard parts, because they help make you who you are and stretch you into the wonderful person you are today. Thank you for this gorgeous post on gratitude and facing fears and living through what you thought might break you. I'm glad you have so much to look on with a smile this past year, and hope 2016 is amazing for you and your family.

  3. Surviving IF has given me so much. It has also cost me so much. I'm grateful and yet there is some bitter sweetness to my experiences. I'm so grateful for the people I have met along my journey. I'm sad for those I have lost on this journey as well. I'm most grateful to read posts like this as it helps me remember the good and the light in the sad and the dark. HUGS to you all!!! Here's to an amazing 2016!

  4. Once a person realizes her self-worth, amazing things can happen. And that you closed with gratitude, well, yours is my favorite post of the week.

  5. This gratitude is lovely to see. It is what is behind my Gifts of Infertility series.

  6. Beautiful post. I think I assumed more self-doubt than I removed during my own journey, but this community has made me grateful, too ... because it accepts who I am, without any strings attached. And had I not walked this path, I wouldn't have found it. (Somehow it reminds me of that quote from Dune: “I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.”)


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