For the first time ever in a post I’m about to share our ACTUAL faces. No weird crops to avoid exposing our identity, and no avoidance with cutesy clip art. It’s taken us awhile to become comfortable with sharing our story without hiding behind a keyboard in a shroud of anonymity. So what’s changed?
For starters, we are tired of feeling like infertility should be something people don’t talk about. Ever since we’ve started opening up, we are absolutely shocked by how many people who have come out of the woodwork to tell us their struggles and grievances with fertility issues and conception. Some people don’t understand why we are being so open about what they view as a very private matter. Those people can worry as much as they want about my life, but not only does it not affect them, it actually hurts others. If we stay silent simply to make others comfortable, friends of ours who are struggling will continue to feel alone and isolated, just like we did for such a long time.
Another thing that changed is we had our miracle IVF baby almost a year ago. We got over that huge mountain we thought we may never climb, and we gained confidence. Now we don’t feel like we are sharing raw emotions as they take place, but we are looking at them in the rear view mirror. It makes our experience a lot easier to talk about. We don’t know what the future holds with our family building, but I can tell you one thing, it’s going to be approached with a lot more transparency.
About three months ago I decided to compete for the title of Mrs. California. I told Chris my goal was to lose the baby weight and promote one of the greatest causes of all: infertility awareness. So with the platform of “Infertility Support and Advocacy” I set off to try to shed some light on our community of warriors. I was completely transparent when speaking with the judges in interview, and they were lovely to talk to. And you you’ll never believe it…they picked me to represent California for 2017!
So now I have this new shiny hat, and I have set out to do great things with it. First, I attended the American Fertility Expo and got to catch a screening of “Vegas Baby.” Holy moly, the tears were rolling. Has anyone else seen it? It hit really close to home.
Next, I had the opportunity to attend Resolve’s Advocacy Day in Washington D.C. last week. I’ve never done anything more empowering in my entire life. Meeting with members of Congress and sharing our story was life-changing. I felt like I was educating our nation’s leaders on the emotional side of infertility. They were more receptive and empathic than I anticipated they’d be. The experience was one I will never forget, and it gave me such an emotional high that I’ll go back again and again until infertility coverage in this country is so good there’s no need for lobbying on Capitol Hill. 💙