Identity Theft

Big "L" for Lame Blog Friend

Since I’ve been blogging a lot recently, I’ve been trying to make an effort to “socialize” more. I admit that I am decent at writing posts, but not so great about commenting on other reader’s posts or comments in regards to my posts.

If it makes anybody feel better … I’m pretty much consistent with responding on Facebook and Twitter!

Anyhoo … I’ve been trying to read and comment on those blogs of people who I’ve been following since the beginning and who have followed me through those difficult years. There are three gals that I wish we could all get together in the same room and just shoot the sh*t; two I’ve met IRL and one … well, she has always been such a bright spot in my day.

Don’t get me wrong. I’ve met and have gotten pretty close to those other bloggers out there; it’s just that these three gals … well, I think there’s just something about them that seem to tie us all together (had to get one last February NaBloPoMo theme in … even though it’s March). And even though our shared bond was/is infertility, this friendship seems to have gone beyond it. So even though I had “disappeared” there for a bit (I blame no one but myself), I’m trying to make sure I keep these friendships up.


I’m also branching out and trying to “socialize” with new bloggers. In the midst of writing daily, I’ve noticed that I had morefollowersandlurkers” than I thought I did. (Thank you WordPress Blog Stats!) So yes, I’ve been trying to follow these bloggers and comment on their posts as well.

One of those new bloggie friends wrote a post about stigma and “spoiled identity” as it relates to her life and her struggles with infertility. And as I read her post, I realized that I had never quite described that feeling of social isolation and exclusion as being stigmatized. Or that feeling of not being able to contribute to conversations about child-rearing or pregnancy as being “socially discredited.” But that’s exactly what had happened in my IF journey.

It’s funny how I can learn new things, new perspectives from others going through what I had already gone through. Which, when going through my journey, I would have probably found any new point of view either comforting … or annoying.

Comforting, only if the person shared my same point of view or emotions. And annoying, if the person brought up something that hit a little too close to my soul … and sometimes (quite honestly) below the belt.

But reading these new perspectives now, after coming to terms with my own journey, they’re … well, refreshing. And, given what I learned today about my identity during that journey, I’d like to think I’m still learning about my IF journey, even if I’m no longer on that path.


These three “original” IF friends … we’re all on different journeys now than when we first “met” via our own separate blogs. One of us is currently pregnant and two of us are currently off that crazy train called infertility. And one … well, one is at a point in her IF journey where I was at for so long. But despite the fact that we’re no longer on that shared path of IF, we’re still in a shared journey together. We’re still trying to provide support to one another.

All of us have been stigmatized by infertility. All of us have been robbed of the “identity” that we thought we’d have by now. All of us have experienced the feeling of being excluded (whether purposefully or not) from certain baby-related conversations or events. Yet all of us have managed to find comfort from one another. All of us have managed to forge a NEW identity amongst ourselves … outside of our infertility.

Because even though we may have had / still have a “spoiled identity” amongst other people in our own real lives, we’ve found that amongst us … our opinions matter. And our voices are allowed to be heard.


My version of "The Grudge"

Daily Random Act of Kindness:  Let’s see; today my “good deed” for today was more of an exercise of patience. Let me set up the scene:

When I left work on Friday, it just happened that one of my team members was not very happy with the outcome of a conversation I had with her and the rest of my team earlier in the afternoon. Now, historically … this particular team member is known to hold grudges; and before I could approach her about the issue again last Friday, she had left for the day.

Needless to say, I dreaded going in to work today; knowing full well that I’d feel the wrath of The Grudge. And sure enough, when I made my “morning rounds” to say good morning to my team, all I got from this team member was a grunt.

It took a few tries, but I finally got her to say more than five words to me by mid-morning. And by the afternoon, she was finally back to her normal self.

A "Robert Smith" version of me in HS

While I know I needed to resolve the issue with this team member (seeing as I had to continue working with her and, well … supervising her), I think — or rather, I feel that I went above and beyond (and definitely out of my way) to get her to come around.

So yeah. I consider the patience I had with this team member my good deed of the day.

Daily Gratitude: Today I am grateful for bloggie friends; both old and new. If it wasn’t for you … I think I would have totally lost my identity. But you guys … well, you guys have kept me grounded.


On a completely (un)related note, today marks the first day of NaBloPoMo March. For those of you that aren’t familiar with what NaBloPoMo is, click here to read more.

The theme for March is Strange(r). So my posts can be about strange (or stranger) tidbits of information or situations or stories. Or it can be about strangers; as in, “Strangers in the night.” Yet again, it’s a vague theme which I’m not necessarily held to writing about. However, seeing that today’s post talked about complete strangers that have become close bloggie friends, and about new strangers that I’ve just met … it looks as if it fits into this month’s theme.

Much more to come in the following month …

Not Gold, but …

Goalie Miller, after the OT Gold-winning goal by Team Canada

Whew. I can breathe again.

What. A. Hockey Game!! Of course, it wasn’t the outcome that I wanted … but it was sooo exciting! AND, at least I got to practice singing the Canadian National Anthem. And I’m sure that Loribeth & Mrs. Spit are more than happy to see their National Team win. AND that the entire nation of Canada can now breathe a sigh of relief.

But still … would have been nice to see the US, the underdogs in the tourney, win. Would have been nice to see the MVP, Ryan Miller (and someone with Michigan ties, to boot) get the gold.

Well, at least Canada’s team was built and coached by all those Detroit Red Wing staff! 😉

At least Canada can, once again, continue claim that that Hockey is still *THE* Canadian sport. Next to Lacrosse, anyway. But just like hockey, that sport has historically been more popular in Canada than in the US (although it’s gained much more popularity since Hubby played back in high school).

Yami doesn't want the Olympics to end, either ...

I guess … well, I guess it’s the Red Wing fan in me that just reaallly doesn’t like Cindy — oops, I mean Sidney Crosby. Don’t get me wrong, he’s talented and incredible. BUT … this goes back to the whole “this is a team sport and not a Superstar-plus-Team sport.” And Crosby? Well, in the NHL, he’s that “Superstar” that the league seems to be banking on; placing all their proverbial eggs in the basket. I know that it’s not necessarily his fault that the media places him in such a huge spotlight, but yet I’ve never seen him redirect the emphasis back on the team and teamwork. Who knows? Maybe he has … and I just have never seen it.


With that out of my system, tonight is officially the last night of the Olympics. But more importantly, tonight is the last night for February’s NaBloPoMo.

Which means that I’ve officially posted a blog entry a day for the past 28 days. While it’s not an Olympic Medal, at least I can put this “medal of honor” on my blog.

And well, hey; since I still am going to be posting daily until Easter, which is April 5th this year, I might as well just sign myself up for March’s NaBloPoMo. But before I do, let’s at least finish up on this entry:

Good Deed O’The Day. This one is a “good deed” (if I can call it that) for myself; which, and follow me here, will ultimately be a good deed for those that I work with. And that good deed is this: I did NOT do any work today, or any day this weekend. In fact, I mostly relaxed this weekend (with the exception of grocery shopping, of course).

While it seems like a rather “selfish” good deed, I know that this is a deed that needed to be done. Quite frankly, I’ve been running myself ragged since the end of December and working pretty much 7 days a week. And even though I’m not quite working the whole 8 hours on the weekend, the fact that I am doing anything work-related on those days I should be relaxing is a sign that I’m overworking. SO … by doing nothing but things I liked to do these two days allows me to unwind a bit so that I’m charged up and ready for the next week.

I think Rain looks better in a tiara than Julia Mancuso

Gratitude and Thanks: As I mentioned before, things have been pretty tight with our monthly expenses. Having both a monthly rent and mortgage payment has been killing us. And seeing as the housing market in Detroit ain’t turning around any time soon, we don’t see any resolution with this issue in the near future. SO … what I’m grateful for right now is that: #1, I have a job during these difficult economic times; and #2, I have family that love and support us. Because if it wasn’t for all that they provide, Hubby & I wouldn’t be able to pick ourselves up and forge forward during this difficult period.

So there it is. Last post of February. Look out, March! Here I come!

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The End is Nigh

Never saw a sign like this until Cannon Beach, OR

Wow … I’m writing on the eve of my last daily entry for the month. The end is actually near! Can’t believe I survived yet another month of posting every day … actually, I can’t believe that I signed up to write for another 36 days until Easter Monday.

Eesh. I’m wondering if I have enough “Good Deeds” in me to last that long … As it is, I’m thinking that some of the good deeds I do are rather … lame or trivial. But I suppose doing something is better than nothing.

Today, Hubby & I slept in. Good G*D, it felt good to sleep in. And although I know that this is a luxury that most other people aren’t able to do (read: those with kids), I figure that this is something that I can at least add to the (very short) list of positive things that infertility has given me.

But that was last night‘s item of gratitude. Let’s see … what other thing about infertility can I be grateful for? Well, seeing that Hubby & I spent the afternoon at the grocery store … I guess I can say that I’m grateful that Hubby & I only have to worry about buying groceries for ourselves. Because somedays I’m just amazed how much two weeks of groceries can cost for just two people. Imagine if we had more than our two mouths to feed? As it is … our dollar is stretched tightly these days. Or as one of my co-workers said, “There’s still too much month at the end of our money.”** So yeah … that’s what I’m grateful for today.

Surfing the web tonight regarding the latest catastrophes

Good Deed? That one’s a toughy today. Probably mostly because I’m (if you can’t tell by now) not exactly in the most “giving” mood today. And I suppose if I had to name a “good deed” today, it would be that I withstood listening to a rather awful poetry reading group while at Borders tonight. (Boy, am I snarky today!) Don’t get me wrong, me love me some good cultural and creative vibe … and, if I was being honest, I’d say that a few were pretty good. But … well, yeah. I’ll just leave it at that.

One of the “readings” had to do with the whole “2010 End of the World” deal. Which, given the fact that I just mentioned above that *I* had another “ending” in site, is rather funny. (Babbling, I know. But I’m talking about NaBloPoMo for February.) But as this guy talked about wars and earthquakes, I couldn’t help but think of the most recent events of late.

Like today … the earthquake in Chile. And the Tsunami warnings for Hawaii and all the other Pacific Islands (including the Philippines).  Or even the recent iceberg collision that caused one of them to break off a huge piece into the ocean; which may cause, what some scientists believe, a disruption in the ocean’s circulation and therefore disrupting marine life.

Original 1900's shot of Crowfoot Glacier

Just over five years ago was the major tsunami in India. In 2007, there was the glacial lake (in Chile, of all places) that completely disappeared. Even when we went to the Canadian Rockies two years ago, we saw with our own eyes, how much the Crowfoot Glacier had melted.

Then there was last month’s devastating earthquake in Haiti; of which a team member of mine lost family in that tragedy. And just two weeks ago, an earthquake here. In Chicago.

I’m not a firm believer in the whole 2012 theory that the end of the world will be on December 21st of that year. However … I do think that something will happen that will cause the world’s population to change in some way. Whatever that “thing” is … it will probably require a major paradigm shift in the way that the world operates today.

A shot of the same Glacier (by yours truly) in 2008. Notice the bottom "claw" has melted away?

Because seriously … at the rate that these devastating events are coming***, I just might have to expect swarms of locusts followed by the Four Horsemen.

Okay, depressing post done with for the day. Let’s hope for a better one tomorrow.


** Sadly, it’s the end of the month (a short one, at that) and POOF! All that money’s gone. <sigh>

*** Anybody else notice how more and more frequently these “natural” disasters are coming at us?!


I am so dedicated to completing the month of posting daily (although I started to lose the whole “Ties” theme midway through), that I’m currently writing this with my eyes half-closed.

I’m so looking forward to this weekend, just so I can catch some Zzzz’s. Not only have I stayed up late pretty much every night since the Olympics, but it feels as if I’ve been running non-stop at work this past week. Needless to say, I am exhausted.

So before I literally fall asleep with my head on the laptop keyboard, let’s get down to business:

Today’s “Good Deed” for the day involved speaking with one of those interesting homeless guys on the streets of Chicago. Because Hubby had a conference until 4:30 downtown, we made plans to meet at the local Borders Bookstore after I got off work. And since I had enough of work today, I left my office a half hour earlier (with the blessing of Big Boss, of course) And as I stood outside the store patiently waiting for Hubby, this completely harmless Homeless Guy (HG) came up to me and started talking with me.

Now, normally I would give any stranger that came up to me (let alone one that appeared to have bathed in liquor) a rather disparaging look and dismiss him or her. But since it was Friday, and HG appeared friendly enough, I decided to humor him.  After about 10 minutes of bantering back and forth about me being “full of it” (he didn’t believe I was married) and about trying his best to do what he thinks is right … Hubby finally showed up; probably much to this guy’s chagrin. And after a brief three-way conversation, HG reluctantly let Hubby & I go on our merry way.

Of course, Hubby had to tease me about how he couldn’t leave me alone for a minute; that I always seem to attract the opposite sex … of which I immediately corrected him by saying that I always seemed to attract the “best” of the bunch. Hah!

At the very least, I hope I provided HG a little bright spot in his day. I’m sure that most people either ignore him as they walk on by. Or they do what I normally do on any given day. Sometimes I think that people just want to be heard, so I’d like to think I indulged him with that opportunity.

As for what I’m thankful for today? Since I’m so frickin’ exhausted, I’m just quite happy that one thing I get to “indulge” in every weekend is the ability to sleep in or wake up on my own time. If there’s any bright spot about living child-free after infertility, this is definitely one of them!

Okay, that’s it. I’m done for the night. Hope you all have a wonderful Friday night … and may you all have the opportunity to sleep in. Even if it’s just for a bit!!

More Cowbell!

Living in Hockeytown (aka Detroit), I’ve been to enough hockey games to know at least the first verse of the the Canadian National Anthem. It also helps that Windsor is literally across the river (and south) from Detroit.

But after being addicted to watching the 2010 Winter Olympics these past few weeks, I think I’m getting to know the whole she-bang.

What exactly am I going to do after this weekend?! And, more importantly … what am I going to do with my new iPhone “Cowbell” app? After all, I did download it specifically for the ski and bobsleigh and snowboard events. And I know d*mn well I’ll be using it tomorrow and this weekend when watching the men’s hockey event … But still!

A little more cowbell!

Ah … but according to my team, I was told I could use it to “herd” everyone together for our team meetings. Or use it to call order in the room. Or simply use it to disrupt a tense situation. In any case, it will be fun using them in other sporting events … like, oh say … Michigan Football?

Let’s see, want to hear the most girl-scouty good deed I’ve done thus far in my Lenten “Good Deed” journey? Get this … I actually helped a blind man cross the street. Not. Kidding. You. What can I say, the opportunity presented itself as I came up to the intersection right by the El station close to my home. I saw him standing at the corner looking unsure as to which direction he wanted to turn, so I simply asked him. And even though I didn’t physically walk him across the street, I at least pointed him (or, rather lead him) in the right direction.

As I sit here tonight watching … duh, the Olympics, I’m actually rooting for 16-year old Mirai Nagasu from the US to medal … I just love her personality! But somehow, I think she won’t. And I really hope that Joannie Rochette gets to medal tonite. I think that despite the fact that her mother passed away, she had an incredible short program. Oh well, I’m just hoping for a good program tonite.

Wouldn’t it be great if Joannie won? Then I’d get to practice my singing of the Canadian National Anthem. Ha!

Anyway, with the focus on Joannie and the loss of her mother … well, it makes me think of my own Mom, and how I’d feel if I lost her suddenly. As it is, we’re coming up on the year anniversary of my Grandma Rose’s passing … which I’m sure is probably weighing heavily on my Mom’s mind as well. I think it’s events like this, whether it’s my Grandma’s passing or Joannie’s heavy loss, that reminds me how lucky I am that my Mom is still here with me.

I love this picture of Mom & Me

So that’s what I’m grateful for tonite: I’m grateful for my own Mom. I’m grateful for all the gifts she’s given me, including my love of reading and my love of constantly learning. I’m grateful for the fact that she raised me to be compassionate and — probably much to her chagrin — independent. Mostly, I am grateful that she’s still here with me in this world … because, despite what she probably thinks … her love and support mean the world to me.

Okay … time for me to buckle down and watch Women’s Figure Skating. And maybe … just maybe … I’ll break out that cowbell!


Well. There goes my chance to belt out “Oh Canada” … but hey, at least Joannie medalled! I’m very happy for her!!