Thanks & (no gift) Giving

So, I’ll start my post with a bit of a funny/irony.  My RE sent a mass email to all patient contacts, lauding the growing families and ability to grow families, you know a “aren’t you glad I helped/can help you have a baby? thanksgiving wish” and “don’t forget about our upcoming baby reunion” email  Since this same RE pretty much told me I had slim-to-none chance of having a baby without a surrogate, well, the email seemed a bit off to me.  I get the point, really I do, but I also think that a RE might have been a bit more sensitive to the idea that not all of the patients CAN make babies.

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This time last year, one of my favorite professors reminded the class that while we may be celebrating that this time of year might be one of mourning for Native Americans (she is a very sensitive person), and since then I’ve felt a bit weird about running about saying “Happy Thanksgiving.”  I try to remember that we can celebrate this holiday for our own reasons, without being insensitive.

For me, Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday for two reasons:

1.  It’s supposed to be about being thankful, and I appreciate having a time of year that reminds me that being thankful is an important part of life.  I have so much to be thankful for. I saw a picture of a woman in the news this week.  She had felon tattooed on her neck (in the front, under her chin) in addition to other equally awful tattoos and had been arrested for kidnapping 3 women and stabbing one of them.  I wondered how she could have ended up like that. I’ve also been reading J.K. Rowling’s Casual Vacancy (beautiful book. I have no idea why it’s getting bad reviews), which is a stark presentation of just how awful life can be for some folks.  That picture, that news story, and that book, among other things, makes me feel so thankful for a life that has been filled, just FILLED, with love, laughter, and stability.  I wish all of us a moment of thankfulness and all of us a way to find something to be thankful for, and for the ability to see the way forward…

2. No gift giving. No, I’m not a stingy miser. I really like to buy things for people.  But Christmas is often so filled with pressures to get and give gifts that I’m overwhelmed by it. I think of that scene where the Grinch (in Jim Carrey’s The Grinch Who Stole Christmas) explains that all the presents end up in the trash going to him.  I know I’ve certainly thrown a few gifts away and currently have two, very well-intentioned and sweet presents that feel like a weight — I have to find a place to put and display two not-my-style pieces for fear of hurting feelings. So, a holiday, like Thanksgiving, is a wonderful way to see and be with family without all of that immense pressure to GIVE SOMETHING! 

To all of you out there writing and reading, thank you.  Sometimes, reading your stories and getting a glimpse into your lives is the only way I can wrap my mind around some of the awful feelings that come from IF.

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In other news, our DHEC visit is scheduled for… sometime in FEBRUARY!  2013!  It’s taking them 90 days to get to folks right now.  Wha!  Oh, well, that gives me plenty of time to child-proof the house and paint everything that might have a trace of lead paint on it.

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5 thoughts on “Thanks & (no gift) Giving

  1. lovely post!!! makes me reflect and think that i shouldnt be such a thanksgiving grump (think ellen the wife from ntl lampoons xmas vacation, “it’s the holidays, we’re all in misery”). you are right though, it’s a very good holiday with no gift-burden and less decorating and drama than xmas and it should be reflective.

    so excited about your inspection visit!!! that’s really soon actually. how old’s your place? we have radiators that i’m pretty sure have lead paint under there somewhere… not the walls though… those just had like 5 layers of wall paper when we moved in. no paint anywhere (who doesn’t paint?). good luck!!!!!!!!!!!!! and take pictures, as i hear one’s house will never be that clean again, especially after their family grows and gets busier via the adoption:))))))

  2. I can’t believe your RE sent out that letter! It does seem insensitive!

    I love your post about what the holidays should be about. Even though every single plan (and there were several) I had for Thanksgiving fell through…I am thankful to be spending the day with my little family!

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