Friday, January 04, 2008

Look! Another New Year!

We're back from our holiday in West Virginia and I must say, we had a great time visiting with my sister and her husband, and his whole family. Christmas was fantastic and my sis and I did the turkey for everyone (there were nine of us around the dinner table). The drive to and from WV from Canada's capital took about 12-13 hours each way, with extra time on the return trip to stop in Columbus, Ohio to visit a gaming friend of mine who I've been chatting with for more than two years now. It was lovely to meet him and his wife in person for the first time, rather than just hear his voice over my headset!

I am so glad that we went to see everyone. Now I have a good frame of reference when my sis talks about driving to this or that place, or how her house is laid out, how far it is to her MIL's house... stuff like that. And I am told that my sis and her husband really enjoyed having us there as well. That's good; I hate to be a burden to people when I stay in their home.

Upon return to Ottawa, we launched ourselves back to some sort of regular routine. Okay, I'm not back at the gym just YET. But I'm getting there. Besides, it's the first week of January; this is the week that all the "New Year's Resolutions" people come out of the woodwork and invade the gym! Etiquette people! Jeez, wipe down the machines when you're done willya!? *shudder* Ugh. Just icky. *wince*

Early January... the time for New Year's Resolutions. Yes, it is that time of the year isn't it? You know something? I have one resolution this year. Sure, I want to lose weight. Sure I want to get out more. Sure, I want to spend more time with family and friends. But the resolution I have?

Do whatever it takes to make me happy.

It's as simple as that. It CAN be as simple as that.

If that means more gym, so be it.
If it means changing jobs (something I'm sort of considering now that I've tasted being a manager), so be it.
If it means travel, so be it.
If it means trying IVF, so be it.
If it means letting go of the dream... so be it.

Scary as it sounds, but I have to live my life right? I have to get through each day, and be happy at the end of the day; otherwise, what's the point? Why put myself through months, years of agony and put my marriage at risk, put my mental health at risk, put my social life on hold... for something that may never be? I want to be a mom, of course. But at the risk of losing myself, of changing who I am? Of losing my husband and putting my sanity at risk? My happiness never to be found again because I put myself through hell with treatments? Is it worth that? Many of you who have had success can answer that I guess. I'd like to hear your take on it. But for me, and others who haven't yet had success, and may NEVER have success (let's face facts shall we?), I'm reaching that crossroads.

A friend e-mailed me yesterday and said that I have sounded more upbeat and more like my old, positive, happy self in the last few months. She's right. I have. Why? Because I am letting go. I am not putting my eggs (ha ha!) in the 'fertility' basket anymore. I can't. I can't have that unfailing hope. I have hope, but it isn't going to come at the cost of losing myself. I won't let that happen.

Inuit Adoptions
I read an article in the paper a couple of days ago, about people from my home province (Newfoundland) looking north to the Inuit population for adoption. In "Couples Look North to Adopt Children," the details are laid out: Nunavut has the highest birth rate in Canada (more than double the national average); the Atlantic region has the lowest birth rate in Canada; and the Atlantic region has the highest wait for newborns (14 years in some places). Best of all, in the Inuit culture, there is no stigma made about 'giving away' a baby, rather you 'make a gift' to both the child and the new parents. Sounds like a win-win situation for those couples who are seeking to adopt and who are willing to promise that the child's heritage is not lost. I thought the article was well done. Very sensitive and outlined some of the process. I thought I'd mention it for those interested.

There is good news in the blogging world though; a couple of you have attained the finish line!
Decemberbaby (aka Sara) had a girl on New Year's Eve. Go congratulate her! And Nina over at Stella and/or Ben has a baby girl, born on December 30. What a cutie!

Christmas Meme

I've been tagged for a Christmas Meme by Pam over at Baby Wanted: Apply Within. It's late in coming Pam, but better late than never right?

1. Egg nog or Hot Chocolate?
Egg nog is good, but I prefer Hot Chocolate.

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree?
All wrapped! And marked "To Gil, From Santa."

3. Coloured lights on tree/house or white?
I love the look of all white lights. It looks very classy, but I prefer the traditional look of coloured lights. Oh, all blue lights looks lovely too!

4. Do you hang mistletoe?
Real mistletoe? Nope. Fake stuff? Sometimes. Not always.

5. When do you put your decorations up?
The decorations are up and ready to go for December 1. They do not come down before January 6, which is Old Christmas Day, per tradition.

6. What is your favorite holiday dish?
Christmas dinner, turkey and the trimmings, is a must at holiday time.

7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child.
I was about 6 or 7 years old and my sister is a year younger than me. We were visiting my aunt and uncle on Christmas Eve and we were about to leave for home with Mom and Dad. There, on the cement porch, my sister and I looked up to the night sky and we SWORE up and down that we saw Santa flying overhead. I believed, with all my heart, that I had seen Santa Claus and we were never so anxious to get home and get to bed!

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa?
I don't know that I "learned" the truth per se. Somewhere around the age of 10 or 11 I guess I figured it out. But to this day, I believe in Santa, as in I believe in the goodness of all people, the joy in your heart, the giving nature and the abundance of happiness that I experience when I give something I know the recipient will enjoy. The essence of Christmas is giving; and if Santa embodies that, then I embrace it wholeheartedly. Yes Gil, there really IS a Santa Claus.

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas eve?
I used to as a child, now I don't. Christmas Eve is more enjoyable for me than Christmas Day and it was always that way. I could prolong Christmas Eve for a week and be thrilled!

10. How do you decorate your Christmas tree?
A total of 850 coloured lights, with a lighted angel at the top. Homemade ornaments that my mother did years ago, old ornaments from my grandmother's and grandfather's tree, and from my Dad's home when he was a boy, a few "mass-produced" ornaments that you can get pretty much anywhere, but most are unique. My mom started giving us an ornament per year when we were kids. When we moved out, we got all our ornaments to take with us. So I have brass ornaments with my name engraved and the year; I have ornaments collected from family vacations at Christmas (1997 in Disney for example), and an ornament that my grandmother made before she passed away. Those are dear to me. I don't know what I would do if I lost them or they were damaged. No tinsel on my tree though; we have cats!

11. Snow! Love it or dread it?
I LOVE SNOW! Hate shovelling it though. :(

12. Can you ice skate?
No. I used to but broke my ankle when I was 10. It's too weak to skate on anymore.

13. Do you remember your favorite gift?
Not particularly. I remember a few gifts, some of which I've tried to track down on the Internet but other than that, no. I do remember the year my sister got a guitar though!

14. What is the most important thing about the Holidays for you?
Being surrounded by family and friends.

15. What is your favorite Holiday dessert?
The rum cake that my aunt makes!

16. What is your favorite Holiday tradition?
Delivering gifts on Christmas eve and then having wine while we stuff the stockings.

17. What tops your tree?
A lighted angel.

18. Which do you prefer giving or receiving?
Giving. Always giving.

19. What is your favorite Christmas song?
There are too many to name but here are a few:
Little Drummer Boy by The Harry Simeone Chorale
Do They Know it's Christmas by Band-Aid
The Angel Gabriel by Sting
A Spaceman Came Travelling by Chris deBurgh
The Holly and the Ivy by Rita MacNeil

20. Candy Canes! Yuck or Yum?
Love em, but in moderation. I prefer chocolate!

Thank you...
... for the prayers and good wishes for my friend and her daughter that I mentioned in my last entry. They're still working through this and trying to make sense of it all. I guess we all are in our own way.


Anonymous said...

Hi Gil,
I really appreciated this post and have come to many similar conclusions -- though have not been quite as eloquent as do 'sound' more positive, more settled...i know this journey is full of peaks and valleys and i hope there are more peaks than valleys for you, my friend...
happy new year!

ultimatejourney said...

You sound very much at peace. I think it's wonderful that you're making happiness a priority. Best wishes for a happy 2008!

Aurelia said...

Welcome back, and I'm glad you are feeling more positive about things. It can't hurt, right?