22 December 2008

Starting Christmas Vacation with a Bang

I honestly cannot believe that I made it to Christmas vacation alive, but here I am! In my seven years in an elementary classroom I have never been so tired -- mentally and physically. Perhaps it was the five week-long cold plus the weight of my infertility during the Christmas season, or it may have been the 21 six year-olds I've been trying to corral since September. My guess that it's equal parts of all three.

We spent the weekend having early Christmas celebrations with my family. Saturday night was spent with my dad's side of the family who are absolutely awesome. I've written before about how I feel like an alien with my parents and my mom's side of the family. When I'm with my cousins from the other side I feel like I've come home.

I think a big part of my comfort level is the fact that my older cousin and his wife have gone through IF. Their older daughter came after many, many years of IF treatments and their second daughter was adopted this past summer. I also love it that my aunt never, ever asks about when we're going to have children. She learned her lesson I guess when she watched her own child go through the pain IF. At dinner my cousin R and I were joking around about not having kids and he exclaimed, "No we don't have kids and it's because I have a low sperm count!" His wife gave him the nastiest look, but I couldn't stop laughing! My family doesn't know about our struggles, at least explicitly, and I thought that it was so great that he could be so candid.

The only kick in the gut came when my cousin's wife's sister (did you follow that?) announced that she was expecting. I quickly found an excuse to take one of the kiddies to the basement to play because I couldn't take it. Mr. JB says that my exit was inconspicuous, but I really didn't want to be a part of all the hugging and celebrating when I felt like I had my stomach kicked in.

Last night we had my cousins from my mom's side of the family over for our yearly gift exchange. Mr. JB cooked a 30 pound turkey for the festivities, made stuffing from scratch and I made 10 pounds of mashed potatoes. I was secretly happy that my cousin (who is five years younger than I am and who got "accidentally" got his wife pregnant soon after their wedding) left his baby with the in-laws. My 19 year old cousin who got his girlfriend pregnant brought his 1 year old daughter, but I find older babies easier to deal with than infants. I was also too busy entertaining to have the feel-me-sorries -- having 16 people in a little house is a lot of distraction!

I always think that I can handle my envy and jealousy, but it seems like this year that I'm having a harder time stomaching other people's children. I guess after 3 and 1/2 years of being barren and seeing so many of my friend and family get pregnant with ease has taken it's toll (I found out about two more friends last week, one of which who is in a horrible relationship with her partner and she wasn't really trying apparently).


So I have to thank This Cross I Embrace for giving me my first blog award. This award acknowledges the values that every blogger shows in his/her effort to transmit cultural, ethical, literary and personal values every day.

The rules to follow are :
1) Accept the award, post it on your blog together with the name of the person that has granted the award and his or her blog link.
2) Pass the award to other 15 blogs that are worthy of this acknowledgment. Remember to contact each of them to let them know they have been chosen for this award.

Like TCIE I don't know if I know 15 blogs to nominate, but I would like to pass on the award to the following:

1) Charlotte at ...and not by sight
2) Pam at Blood Signs
3) Bec at Crazy lady ramblings...
4) Jeremiah 29:11
5) LifeHopes
6) My Reality at Mixing it Up: Trying to Find My New Reality
7) Aurelia at No Matter How Small
8) Shinejil at Sluggish Butterfly
9) Duck at The Big ol' blog of how to build a nest
10) Mrs. X at The Young and the Infertile

Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful writing and your journeys through this awful world of IF.


And lastly, thanks to all that shared their advice on my last post. I finally told Mr. JB about my blog this morning. I'm meeting up with LifeHopes this afternoon and I couldn't figure out a creative way to get out of the house! Besides it was time to tell him. He wasn't angry or upset that I had kept it from him for the past year. I also told him that I don't want him to read my blog and he seems cool with that. I think that he was worried that I was husband-bashing, but I made it very clear that I wasn't.

So I'm off to finish off my Christmas baking. I've made 12 dozen mini-cupcakes and I need to make a few more. It's also almost 1pm and I'm still in my pyjamas.

I love vacation!


  1. THANKS for the blog award!! Seriously, I never knew this existed until AYWH posted about them. So fun!

    I am sooooo with you in terms of being tired before break. This is my fourth year of teaching and I have to agree - I've never been more tired or worn out. I think for me it's partially because each year I end up doing more and more. Thankfully I really do enjoy it. But it's tiring work.

    I hope this Christmas season is filled with JOY and HOPE for you! Many blessings to you and your family!

  2. Ugh, I hate pg news. Well, when it's not your own, that is.

    I'm so jealous you get to meet LifeHopes IRL! She gets around, huh? Maybe I can convince her to come through NJ on her way back :) Have a great time, and also I'm so happy DH is on board with your blog writing. Let him read your beautiful words sometime!

  3. I can relate to PG annoucements at Christmas time. I whince everytime I open a Christmas card or go to a party around the holidays. I can try to prepare myself but it still always stings. I am so sorry you are having a rough time with kids this Christmas, doesn't it stink how IF robs us of enjoying the kids' joy at Christmas? Praying for you.

  4. Merry Christmas hon - glad to hear you are in the festive mood already. Christmas announcements suck plain and simple. I've been lucky enough to escape all of them so far - touch wood! xxx

  5. Merry Christmas!!! God Bless you and your DH! May God give you your heart desires in the New Year!!

  6. I am jealous your hubby does all the cooking! I do it all! :) Except, I can't make a grilled cheese sandwich like DH! :)

  7. It was SO great to meet you in real life!!!

    We could practically finish each other's sentences when it comes to anything IF related. And I have found that is the case with most of my IF friends, isn't that crazy?

    Anyways, I have a whole new respect for you IFers up north -- handling IF AND the cold at once! Oh my goodness I am so weak! :):) I arrived during a cold snap and left at the tail end of it! Just my luck! But we are back in the Carolinas now where I am enjoying 70 degree weather.

  8. Thanks for the blog award, J! I don't know that I will post on my blog or not, I am just trying to get around to posting.

    I am glad you survived the festivities with the family. I hate the surprise announcements.