Marriage

Leap of Faith

Darling Hubby,

Fourteen years ago, I gave my heart over to you completely. Which makes no sense, because I’m sure you won my heart over the first moment I climbed into that canoe with you on your sixteenth birthday. Of course, I refused to listen to my heart that day and kept you at arm’s length for two years after that fateful moment.

But once I took that leap of faith (and kissed you first ), I knew that you’d be the person I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. Fourteen years ago today, we sealed our love with our marriage vows … and despite the ups and downs in life we’ve had, I wouldn’t trade any moment of it. I would hold your hand and take every leap of faith with you, over and over again.

Happy Anniversary, Hubby!

Love Moves in Mysterious Ways
(music and lyrics by Julia Fordham)

Who’d have thought
 this is how the pieces fit?
You and I
 shouldn’t even try making sense of it
I forgot how we ever came this far
I believe we had reasons
 but I don’t know what they are
So blame it on my heart, oh

Love moves in mysterious ways
It’s always so surprising
 when love appears over the horizon
I’ll love you for the rest of my days
But still, it’s a mystery 
of how you ever came to me
Which only proves
Love moves in mysterious ways

Heaven knows
 love is just a chance we take
We make plans 
but then love demands a leap of faith
So hold me close
 and never let me go
‘Cause even though we think we know 
which way the river flows
That’s not the way love goes, no

Love moves in mysterious ways
It’s always so surprising
 when love appears over the horizon
I’ll love you for the rest of my days
But still, it’s a mystery 
of how you ever came to me
Which only proves
Love moves in mysterious ways

Like the ticking of the clock
 two hearts beat as one
But I’ll never understand
 the ways it’s done

Love moves in mysterious ways
It’s always so surprising
 when love appears over the horizon
I’ll love you for the rest of my days
But still, it’s a mystery 
of how you ever came to me
Which only proves
Love moves in mysterious ways

As performed by Filipino singer, Nina

 

Like Sands Through The Hourglass …

I can’t believe it’s already the last few days of August. Where has the time gone?

All I know is that Hubby & I have been busy non-stop since returning to the “Flat Fields” of the Midwest.** We returned to Chi-town (via Detroit after Seattle) on Thursday and have pretty much been packing up our apartment since then.

Yes, I know. We should have been packed for our move to our new apartment before leaving for our Alaskan Adventure … but if you recall from this post, exactly where we were going to live was still up in the air right up until just before we left for Alaska.

And then there’s the whole matter of me flying out to North Carolina today … which also happens to be the only day in which we’d be able to pick up the keys to our new place.

Yes … the trip to North Carolina in which I’ll be attending my New Employee orientation for my new job. For an entire week. The same week in which we’d need to hand in the keys to our old apartment by Tuesday night.

So if you haven’t figured it out by now … this means that:

  1. Hubby and I had less than three days to pack up our old place,
  2. Hubby & I only have three days to move all our crap stuff into our new place, and
  3. I wasn’t going to be around to help move all our crap stuff.

Uh-huh. That’s right. I’ve totally bailed on Hubby. And believe me … I feel absolutely horrible about it.***

What’s worse is that Tuesday is our 14th Wedding Anniversary … and we won’t even be in the same state! This will be the first time we’ll have been apart during any type of special day. Boo.

And tomorrow … well, tomorrow I start my new job. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous, but I guess the only thing I can do is go into it with my head held high … and pray for the best.

Despite all the “brick walls” we’ve been encountering lately, I must admit that I’m excited with all these new changes: nicer (yet smaller) and more affordtable apartment, and a new career direction.

I just wish the timing of it all didn’t suck.

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** Ugh … totally sucks not seeing mountains in the background anymore. We so miss Seattle right about now!

*** Thank you (from the bottom of my heart) to my In-Laws, who are currently in Chicago helping Hubby out!!

Feelin’ Lucky

The Happy Newlyweds

Hubby & I have spent the past week in Canada. While the main reason was to celebrate his cousin’s wedding in Toronto last Friday, we spent the past week touring Eastern Ontario and Québec. And actually, as I type this … we’re on a three-hour tour bus drive from Kingston back to Toronto, where we first started this bus tour.

The main purpose of doing these tours is because Hubby’s Uncle and Aunt have flown in from the Philippines to attend the wedding. Since they’ve flown halfway around the world, Hubby’s parents as well as the other family members living in North America have decided to have a “mini”-reunion to show Hubby’s Uncle a small chunk of Canada.

And when I say “mini” … I mean that it’s a smaller portion of Hubby’s entire family. During the actual wedding weekend, the total number of family members (including aunts/uncles, cousins, children of cousins, and all significant others) equaled 37. When we went to Niagara Falls on Monday, about 25 of those family members were still around for an overnight stay. And when we started the three-day bus tour on Wednesday, we whittled down to 17. Regardless, it has been an incredible week with the family … something that we haven’t done since January 2008. And unfortunately, that happened to be in Virginia Beach when Hubby’s grandmother passed away.

Only a handful of the "young" cousins with Hubby

In that two-year time period, four new children were added to the family. One was our niece, Kairi and the subsequent three babies were girls born between 2009 and early 2010. In addition, Hubby has much-younger cousins between the ages of thirteen and eight. The other young kids are children from his sister (Tyler) and his first cousins. This puts the total of “young kids” fourteen years old and younger at twelve.

That’s twelve kids being watched over by parents; twelve kids being beckoned by the various parents and their “Tita” or “Tito”** or “Até” or “Kuya.”*** Twelve kids all calling out “Mom” or “Dad” and approximately seven sets of parents responding to that title.

That’s about eleven of Hubby’s Aunts / Uncles / First Cousins out of the 37 family members that have young kids under the age of eighteen.  If my math is right, this also means that about twelve of those 37 family members are either parents of older kids (eighteen or older).

Partial Group shot in Old Quebec

Then there’s Hubby & me; the childless couple. We’re not counted amongst those who have children at any age. We’re only counted as children of Hubby’s parents. And we only get the title of “Tita/Tito” or “Até/Kuya.”

But we’re definitely not called “Mom” or “Pa” (which is what Hubby’s family calls their Dads).

Now, I know what you’re thinking … here goes Emily, once again, complaining about not being a Mother; of not being able to experience what its’ like to be called “Mom” or “Mommy.” And yes, I do admit that it has been bittersweet this past week when seeing all the babies dressed up for the wedding; when seeing all the other Aunts and Uncles and Cousins passing the new additions to the family around the group, oohing and ahhing and fussing over them. (Although, I do fully admit I took part in such activity … )

But you know what? I actually found the silver lining in all the hullabaloo of the “World of Babies/Children.” And that silver lining is this:

Hubby being silly with our nephew & cousin

I was actually ecstatic that I didn’t have to respond to being called “Mom” … especially when it was in regards to the constant questions from the kids older than four years old about what was going on next.  Or why we had to leave now to go to our next destination. And I certainly didn’t mind that I wasn’t responsible with having to deal with attitudes or behaviors that the kids doled out once they got grumpy.

While I dealt with each instance that came my way or happened during our “watch” over them****, I have to say that I finally appreciate the fact that I’m “just the Auntie” or “just Até Emily” to all the kids.

In fact, I can honestly say without a doubt that Hubby and I are lucky. And I don’t mean “lucky” in the sense that, as a Child-Free couple, we don’t have to deal with the day to day issues of being a parent … because, I still wouldn’t trade the opportunity to raise a child for anything else in the world.

Great "candid" photo of the older kids

No, I mean “lucky” in the sense that we get to be the “Cool Auntie and Uncle” to the children. We get to take the kids around to do fun things (while hopefully giving the parents a bit of a reprieve) when we want to and/or are able to. And we get to “play” with them and joke around with them as much as we want.

But most importantly, we also get to be the ones who they can talk openly to;  feel comfortable around to ask some difficult or sensitive questions. And we’re the ones whose words, at this point in their lives, can make some sort of impact on them; put a different perspective in mind for them … even if they’ve been told the same things twenty times over by their parents. And it feels great.

I can honestly say that the time we spent with Hubby’s youngest family members has been wonderful and truly satisfying. And I hope that during the week we’ve spent with them, we’ve been able to contribute to lasting memories and life lessons that they can take back with them to their own homes.

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Related Posts

Family Fun in Niagara Falls

The Mr. Apron Strings Family Bubble

Welcoming Kairi to the world

Pregnancy New(s) Edition (PWP)

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** Means Aunt or Uncle in Tagalog (the native language of the Philippines)

*** In Tagalog, Até (ah-teh; feminine) or Kuya (koo-yah; masculine) is a title given to show respect to your elder siblings or cousins.

**** And believe me, this week there were lots of times where we voluntarily offered to take responsibility for the kids.

Probably my most fave pic from this trip. We'd go back to Quebec City if we could!

Four Hundred

Wow. Another week has gone by without more than a weekly update. What can I say? It’s been a pretty busy summer.

I admit that I hate taking more than a few days break from writing, because I find that my creative juices start to slow down. Not that I don’t have a lot to say — G*d knows I always got the “Talks Too Much” comment on my grade school report cards — I just find myself struggling to write these thoughts down.

Anyway … what have I been up to?

Well, El Hubs & I were “home” in Detroit early last week. In reality, it’s because we knew we had to travel to Toronto on Thursday for his cousin’s wedding on Friday. And yeah … we coulda done the 9 hr trip in one shot. But why do that when we can break the car ride up in two days? Besides, we figured we’d do some house-cleaning while we were in town for a couple of days.

Thursday afternoon, we pulled into the Greater Toronto Area and swiftly met up with my cousins for some serious catching up. One of these cousins was LJC, whom we haven’t properly spent time with since her wedding in 2008. Her youngest sister was also there and we had the pleasure of finally meeting her Significant Other.

It was an evening full of incredible fun of just sitting and talking … something I sorely miss from the years of spending endless summers with them chatting until late at night.

Friday was obviously Hubby’s cousin’s wedding. And it was an amazing time … perhaps Hot as Hades in mid-July, but so much fun! The best part of the reception … at least in my mind … was getting on the dance floor with all of Hubby’s cousins/significant others and their children (our 14 yo nephew included) to start off the night of dancing with the Black Eyed Peas’ “Tonight’s Gonna Be A Good Night.”

While the wedding reception was an incredible party, I must say that getting together with Hubby’s entire family (well, most of them anyway) on Saturday was also wonderful. Because even though we spent time together the day before at the wedding, Saturday’s get-together was more laid-back and relaxed. I know Hubby & I had a wonderful time … especially teaching them Canadian cousins how to play the very Michigan card game of Euchre. We think we may have created monsters. LOL!

Hubby overlooking Horseshoe Falls

And today? Well … today Hubby & I found ourselves celebrating HIS birthday in Niagara Falls. I must say, I can’t think of any better way to celebrate Hubby’s birthday than with an entire gaggle of family. Just imagine a group of 25 family members (including an Aunt & Uncle who came from the Philippines for the wedding) doing an entire bus tour of attractions. It was completely chaotic … but I know Hubby has been enjoying himself today.

Even if I did forget to wish him a Happy Birthday until another Aunt had said it to him this morning. Bad bad bad wife!! **

Now, I’m laying here in bed at the hotel, finishing up the last minutes of Hubby’s birthday by writing nothing more than a journal entry for the past week.

Hubby, however, is spending the rest of his birthday night out with the “boys.” And by “boys” I mean two of his cousins, two of his uncles, and his Dad. I’m glad Hubby’s getting a chance to spend time with them … especially since we haven’t had many opportunities to get together with family (from all over the U.S and Canada) over the past few years.

Hubby & Me on Maid of the Mist

So Hubby … before the day’s over, I just want to send an incredibly huge birthday hug and kiss to you. You are my world; my sunshine and rainbow. You are my best friend … and I’m incredibly blessed to have you in my life. I can’t wait to continue our journey in life together.

Oh … and one more thing. Not that this is incredibly exciting news (in the grand scheme of this post anyway). But check out the title of this post.

Yep … that’s the number of blog entries I’ve officially written as of today. Wow!

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** In my defense, I must add that I did remember it in the shower this morning. But since we were trying to pack for an overnight stay in Niagara with his family, it slipped my mind by the time I started pack things away! Bad bad wife!!

New Directions

I had a life plan.

Never mind the fact that I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life (at least in regards to a career), but by the time I was 15 years old I had a general sense of how I wanted my life to turn out.

I wanted to get married by the time I was 25 years old and have my first child by the age of 27.

And because I had this notion that thirty years was a ginormous age gap between my last child and myself, my goal was to quit “baby-making” by the time I was 30 years old. This notion came from the first hand experience of a 15 year old who not only dealt with a big generational gap but a cultural gap as well.

But yeah; I’d have all the kids I could bring into this world before I turned 30 years old.

Obviously, this life plan never panned out. I mean … geez. I even pushed “actively trying” for that first child into my mid-30’s. We had already gone through all the infertility treatments we could (financially and emotionally) put ourselves through. We had even seriously considered other options to bring a child into our lives; either through domestic adoption or international adoption.

But in the end, Hubby & I made the decision to move on with our lives without children.

*****

There have been many reasons why Hubby & I decided to close the door on the quest to have children. One of which was to regain some sanity in our lives.

Living in 28-day increments, in which any given moment can produce the tiniest bit of hope, can be exhausting. Especially when the next given moment can quickly turn into a major disappointment. I won’t lie … it has been incredibly nice  to step away from living in four weeks of constantly worrying about whether or not I’ll see two pink lines.

Another reason was obviously to start moving on with our lives; to start planning a “new future” without children.

When that “life plan” I dreamed of at the age of 15 was completely derailed by infertility, I know I spent a lot of time and energy trying get it “back on track” … In other words, I fought tooth and nail not to head down the child-free “railroad track” that my life was already on.

Making the decision to move on with our lives was not an easy decision. But when we finally decided on the child-free path — this “railroad track” (if you will) — it was as if I could finally allow my life to move forward in the direction that my life and our marriage was already on. I could finally stop struggling to get “back on track” and accept that perhaps we were never meant to be on that particular “track” at all.

****

A "chance" photo, shot during our trip to Banff,  Alberta

A "chance" shot taken from the road in Banff, Alberta

****

Today I turn 38 years old. I’m obviously very far from where I thought I’d be by now; in that “life plan” I concocted at the age of fifteen.

If my life turned out as I planned it to be, I would have had at least one child somewhere between the ages of 7 to 10 years old. And I probably would have begun to think of returning to the work force after being a Stay-At-Home mom once the 7 year old started first grade.

But it’s not … and today I can finally say that I’m actually really okay with it. Maybe it has to do with age, but I’m finally to a point where I no longer have focus on the dream or “life plan” I had always had in my mind.

Instead, I can finally accept that this is where Hubby & I are meant to be at this exact moment in time. And we can forge forward in this new uncharted direction in our lives.

Old Souls

Hubby & I have always said that we’re old souls; ones that have lived and loved before … and are currently in our next life together. It’s in the way we work hard in our careers; it’s the weight of responsibility that we feel for ourselves and for our parents and families. It’s been in our desire to have a biological child of our own.

My Favorite Disney Movie

In the same aspect, I like to think that we’re extremely young at heart; love to tease one another and love to be playful. We know (or rather Hubby knows) when we should let loose and relax.

The latter is probably the reason why we love to see movies. And specifically, the reason we absolutely love watching animated movies at an actual movie theater, rather than at home in front of our television. It reminds me of the times when my parents would take me to see movies when I was a kid.

I will never forget the day that the two of us saw Disney’s “Aladdin.” Hubby & I were still dating and in college. We had seen an evening show at a 1940’s theater in downtown Royal Oak; the theater packed with parents and their young charges. In the midst of the movie, when Aladdin backs out of freeing Genie because he feels the need to use his third wish on himself in order to keep Princess Jasmine … one lone child in the theater, in her loudest voice said, “Mommy, why doesn’t Aladdin just tell the truth?”

While the entire audience let out a collective, “Awwww …,” I can recall Future-Hubby squeezing my hand just a little tighter as we smiled at one another. And that was one of the first times I can recall thinking that Future-Hubby would make an excellent father.

Now, flash forward to early 2009. Hubby & I had been married for 13-plus years by this time and we’d been through the ringer with Infertility. We had gone to see a movie one evening and saw the trailer for the movie “Up.” Both of us knew that this was one of those animated films we’d want to see … regardless of whether our nephew (or any of our younger, school-aged cousins) wanted to come with us or not.

What Hubby & I didn’t expect, when “Up” came out last summer, was the infertility aspect of the movie. Well, okay … we did have a bit of a hint from reading other blog posts about the movie. But what I didn’t expect was how much it would affect  us; not just in the beginning scenes of the movie … but throughout the whole film, as Carl interacts with Russell.

It’s seeing that “old soul” in Carl open his heart up to a young boy that broke my heart. It’s knowing that Carl probably closed his heart to children after he saw how it hurt Ellie that they couldn’t have children. It’s seeing how much Carl loved Ellie and their life together; and how he’d do anything for Ellie … even after she passes away. It’s seeing what Carl does throughout the movie to protect Russell and make sure he’s okay.

It’s like seeing how Hubby, and his “old soul” would probably be in years to come, if (or when) I pass before he does. It’s knowing that, just like Ellie, I’d want Hubby to be happy and to know that my greatest adventure in life was with him.

Hubby turned the characters from “Up” into an Asian version of us …
BTW, like my new header?

I cried in the theater that day. And I cry now, even as I write it; because that is a fear that I have, growing old without anyone to take care of us except ourselves. And if, G*d forbid, one of us dies before the other … not knowing exactly how we’d be able to go on without the other.

But I suppose that since Hubby & I have already established that we’re currently on our next life together as a couple … it only makes sense that our next next life together will follow shortly after.

And that’s the only consolation I can even begin to fathom at this time.

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Related Links:

How Aladdin played into the theme of our Wedding

Another Disney-related post

Sock-Her Match

Whew. It’s been a busy few days. Hubby & I drove home to Detroit last Thursday and just arrived back to Chicago tonight. Lots of fun things happened during our trip home; of which I’d like to write in more detail. However, I’m quite tired right now.

Instead, I find myself sitting on our couch watching some World Cup soccer and enjoying it immensely. The only thing I find highly annoying are the darn horns; of which it sounds much like a nonstop remix of “Flight of the Bumblebee.”

Watching the World Cup reminds me of when the tournament was played here in the U.S. back in 1994. And if you asked Hubby about that time period, he would no doubt tell you one of his famous “Emily” tales; one that usually includes adding some embellishments to the actual story.

This tale includes a book bag, an important career-defining test, a Type-A gal (aka me ), and free tickets to see the U.S. play against Switzerland.

Back in 1994, I had just graduated from Nursing School and was studying to take the Nursing Boards (NCLEX) which would provide me licensure to practice as a Registered Nurse. 1994 was also the first year that the NCLEX would be provided to each candidate indivdually on a computer. Prior to this, each candidate took the same standard exam at a set date and time in an incredibly huge room with the rest of the eligible candidates for that date. In addition to taking the exam on the computer, each exam would be unique; meaning that the test questions would vary from person to person and … depending on how you did, you could have a minimum of 75 questions, up to a maximum of 265 questions. Regardless of how many questions you ended up answering, one could fail at 75 questions or pass in 265 questions. So needless to say, I was quite nervous as I had no previous reference to taking these computer adaptive tests.

This also meant that I took my study guide with me everywhere so I could study at a whim. And back in 1994, laptops weren’t common, iPhones weren’t invented with apps to assist in studying for these exams. Oh … and the internet wasn’t readily accessible to the general public; so forget being able to google  for answers on WebMD or nih.gov. Nope; this meant that on top of the study guide I’d take with me, I might just take one of 20 lb textbooks for Pediatrics or Med/Surg … depending on what topic I wanted to study that day. And oh, did I mention that my study guide weighed about 10 lbs all on its own?

Anyway, less than a week before I was to take my exam, my then-fiance called me up and told me that he had two free tickets to a World Cup match at the Pontiac Silverdome, compliments of his employer at that time. Initially, I had told him that I wouldn’t go because I still felt I had so much more studying to do. Except, well … he wouldn’t take no for an answer. “Once in a lifetime chance,” he’d tell me; followed by “you need to take a break from studying so much!” And, truth be told, he was right. I was THAT Type-A that I felt I couldn’t go a moment without studying for the NCLEX.

That’s how I found myself heading to the World Cup.  But because I still couldn’t let go of not studying at all, I also found myself taking my 30 lbs backpack filled with NCLEX studying material. I considered it my “security blanket.”

Because of security reasons and traffic issues, the city of Pontiac required that all ticket-holders be shuttled into the Silverdome from their downtown location. (And yet, I was allowed to take a huge backback in then … Wow, life pre-9/11!) So the day of the game, Then-Fiance and I stood in line with another coworker and his girlfriend waiting to catch a 15-minute shuttle ride to the venue. And once we got there, we were so enthralled with the international atmosphere and into the game which ended up in a 1:1 tie.

Afterward, we found ourselves amidst 70,000-plus people trying to catch a shuttle back to downtown Pontiac. Oh, and did I mention it was 90-some degrees outside that day? It must have taken us more than an hour just to get onto a shuttle and, because of surrounding traffic, an additional half hour to get back downtown. But the kicker of it all was … that entire time, I did not once open up my backpack to study.

Stryker, the 1994 World Cup Mascot

Instead, the wonderful man (that I eventually married) ended up carrying my 30 lb security blanket the entire time … while I “absorbed” all the information by osmosis.

He’s such a good guy, my husband … and even though he’d likely tell his side of this story by adding an additional 50 lbs worth of study material, I am most grateful for all the wonderful things — big or small — that he does for me on a daily basis.

And reflecting back on this tale? Well it just reminds me that even back before our lives were immersed in the world of Infertility … that my wonderful husband was always there to let me know when I needed to come up for air and take a breather.

I guess you can say that I scored big by marrying such a wonderful man. And that we make a perfect match.

Okay, I’ll stop it with the lame soccer terms. More interesting posts coming soon … I promise. But for now, it’s nighty-night!

Infertility Bets On Hold, Part 2

(If you missed Part 1, click here … )

While I’ve pretty much begun to resolve those particular grief issues, there’s still that lack of strength that I feel I need in order to go through the entire adoption process.  Because it takes someone who really has enough strength to climb over the proverbial brick wall getting in the way of having a child. And specifically, I’m talking about all the rules and reg­u­la­tions and inves­ti­ga­tions into your pri­vate lives just to raise a child that is not bio­log­i­cally your own. Quite frankly, I know that I don’t have what it takes to go through that.

Why do I say that? (And Kelly … hopefully, this will help answer the question you posed to me at one time … ) Well first of all, I just know what I’m capable of handling emotionally, and I know that I wouldn’t be able to survive any further disappointment or heartache. Or as my new favorite quote from Pam says:

It got to the point where the potential for more heartbreak was more overwhelming than the glimmer of very small hope.

The second reason I feel as if I have little strength is because I have little confidence that things will come relatively straightforward and simple to us.

Not that I expect adoption to be an easy path. If we did decide to adopt, I have this very strong suspicion that we’d have so many more walls to climb. Give me a chance to explain … and I’d absolutely love to hear what others have to say to contribute to this discussion.

Let’s start off with Domestic Adoption:

  • Hubby & I both Asian American; Filipino American, to be specific.
  • How often do you suppose any Potential Birth Moms (PBM) would look at our dossier and — just by looks alone — think that we’d make great parents when their child will (most likely) not look at all similar to the adoptive couple that they’d hope to raise their child?
  • Or that the PBM might worry that their child would face more barriers having Asian American parents?
  • How often are Asian American babies given up for adoption; especially if the PBM is also Asian or Asian American? Culture dictates that family is important. If the child is not wanted in the immediate family; chances are that there is another family member (aunt, cousin, third uncle twice removed) that is willing to raise the child. Unfortunately, that’s a situation that’s likely never going to happen to us.

Moving onto International Adoption:

  • There are stricter laws and regulations from various countries in effect.
  • Some specific countries, like Russia and Guatemala, have either suspended or have placed holds on any adoptions to the US.
  • Wait time. Even for Filipino adoptions there are certain stipulations on how and when a child can be adopted; when the child can come back to the US with the adopted parents. And quite frankly, I don’t think I can afford the three-year wait in order to adopt a child from my native country.

And finally other, all-encompassing barriers:

  • Age: Let’s face it. Hubby & I are currently pushing 40. And yes, I know that there are couples out there that are raising babies that are much older than us. But there was a reason why Hubby & I started trying to conceive within a year of marriage: I had always seen me as a younger mother; one that wanted to finish having babies before the age of 30. There was a specific reason behind that: my mother and I are exactly 3o years apart in age (sorry Mom!). Growing up (particularly in high school), not only did I deal with a cultural barrier, but I also dealt with a huge generational gap. Both my parents were pre-baby boomer, while I was most definitely a Gen-Xer. Even though after I turned 30, I knew that this was something beyond my control, adopting now — especially as the rules and regs of adoption have gotten more strict — well, it no longer seems prudent for both Hubby & my sake.
  • Energy: Along with age, this is the second biggest concern that I have. And, if I was honest with myself, the flimsiest barrier of all. Because, really this has to do with energy and stamina. It’s one thing to raise a child with the thought in mind that you’ll be young enough to (somewhat) keep up with their needs. It’s quite another thing knowing that I can no longer wake myself up in the morning without hitting the snooze button a dozen times. Would I be able to care for another life if I can barely care for my own? Like I said, flimsy … but I’m just being honest.

I don’t bring up these points to be negative in any way, shape or form. I’m simply stating facts that appear to be the most obvious barriers for our individual case when it comes to adopting a child. And that’s assuming that we would ever go down that route. And, as I said above, I’d love to hear your thoughts on what I perceive as barriers.

*****

As it is, I feel that we’ve already played our game of Infertility Roulette. We’ve already placed all the bets we wanted to at this time in our lives. And we lost that bet. With adoption (or h*ll, even if we ever decided to go through IVF again), I want something I can be sure of … something I can count on.

I hesitate using the word “guarantee” … since nothing in life is ever guaranteed, but after more than ten years of fighting the odds and now facing even greater odds against us (age, finances, etc), Hubby & I opted to get out of the betting pool.

And this is why, at least in my eyes, it’s never as simple to “just adopt.” It’s never easy to go through another round of IVF.

This is why Hubby & I have decided to “cut our loss” … or in this case, “cut the strings” … and live child-free after infertility.

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Related Links:

Cutting The Strings

Infertility Bets On Hold, Part 1

Thoughts on Adoption

Information on Filipino Adoptions

Wiki Info on the Pre-Baby Boom Generation

Wiki Info on Generation X

Infertility Bets On Hold, Part 1

(I guess I need to start off by saying, no … things have definitely not changed in my barren world. And don’t let the title of this post fool you. Apparently I may have “freaked” a couple people out by both the title and the picture below … LOL!)

I’m not a betting person. Which, when you think of the many trips Hubby & I have taken to Vegas, is quite humorous. All those casinos, and the most we played were slots.

I mean, I’ve played poker and blackjack in my college years; but seriously, all bets were based on pennies. Or cigarettes, depending on who you were playing with (<cough> Tim <cough>). But to place actual money that’s more than a dollar (okay, maybe $2 max for a slot machine)? Can’t see myself spending that kind of money.

My odds with these tests were never good

Which, given the odds that Hubby & I were given when we did our one cycle of IVF, makes it ironic. We were given a 51% chance that we’d be successful in our pursuit to become pregnant. We knew the odds were only 1% more on our favor. We had hoped to win this bet — a bet in which we put a boatload of money into the pot — and we lost. And I was devastated.

That’s not to say that I regret ever having done our one cycle of IVF. Because even back then I knew that this was something Hubby & I had to try in order to feel as if we tried everything in our quest to reproduce. I’m just simply saying that the results of that bet, that one IVF cycle, was enough for me to know that I could never place another bet on another IVF cycle ever again.

So yes … the next logical step would be to go for adoption, right?

Except adoption isn’t a simple thing to just “think about.” First, there’s the process of grieving the fact that I can’t have a baby. That alone is nothing simple. That process involves never being able to experience pregnancy. In my case, it involved never being able to see two pink lines in a pregnancy test.  And it involves feeling as if my body’s failed, not only me and my Hubby (especially my husband), but our parents and our siblings. And our siblings children, too.

Then there’s the other part that I needed to grieve; which is outlined in more detail in this recent post. It’s grieving the fact that we will never be able to have our own biological baby.  A child that we could pass our genes to. A child to pass the Filipino traditions we were taught growing up; and finding a way to blend both our American and Filipino sides together. A child to carry on my Hubby’s last name.

And while I’ve pretty much begun to resolve those grief issues, there’s still that lack of strength that I feel I need in order to go through the entire adoption process.  Because it takes someone who really has enough strength to climb over the proverbial brick wall getting in the way of having a child. And specifically, I’m talking about all the rules and reg­u­la­tions and inves­ti­ga­tions into your pri­vate lives just to raise a child that is not bio­log­i­cally your own. Quite frankly, I know that I don’t have what it takes to go through that.

(Part Two continues tomorrow … )

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Related Links:

Thoughts on Adoption

Baby Picture

Split

Like the current Stanley Cup Finals series, the ApronStrings Household is split.

For those that aren’t sports nuts like the two of us, that means that the Chicago Blackhawks and the Philadelphia Flyers are both tied with two wins apiece after Game Four in the seven-game series.

Not that I mean to say that Hubby & I are at odds with one another … well, at least when it comes to our relationship. Rather, we’re at odds when it comes to cheering on which hockey team we think should win the coveted Cup.

I should start off by saying that, first and foremost, I will always cheer for my hometown Detroit Red Wings wherever we live. But since they failed to make it to the finals this year … I had no choice but to choose an “adopted” team.

I should also add here that if I had my druthers … and if the Red Wings weren’t going to make the Finals … I would have absolutely loved to see two different teams vying for the Cup this season. And those two teams would have been the Vancouver Cannucks and the Montreal Canadiens. To me, it only seems fitting that the year Canada won Gold in a Canadian Olympics, then they should also deserve to have Stanley return home … at least for the year.

And yes, Mrs. Spit. I know this would have made you very very happy, also. 🙂

Instead now, Hubby & I find ourselves — for the first time in our married lives — rooting against each other. Him cheering for a team, simply because they’re considered the underdogs of the series. And me cheering for a team, for the mere fact that this team’s town has become my adopted town.

Hubby cheers for his team, simply because his opposing team has long-been rivals of the Detroit Red Wings. While I cheer for my team because it’s been 47 years since this team has won the Stanley Cup.

Either way, it’s been fun watching the series with Hubby. And it’s definitely made watching the NHL’s “second season” much more interesting.

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Meet Al the Octopus; the Detroit Red Wings mascot. For Wing Nuts, like ourselves, throwing octopi onto the ice during Playoff Season is a long-standing tradition for the Red Wings Franchise.

As for how Al got his name … he was named after Al Sobotka, the general building manager for Joe Louis Arena; and the wonderful soul that picks up every thrown octopi and twirls it over his head.

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