Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The High Priestess

As I mentioned in my last post, my friend Jill got married last weekend. It was the most perfect day in every way -- the weather was perfect, the bride looked beautiful. Rewind several months back, Jill and I were getting pedicures and talking over what she had left to do for the wedding. Someone to marry them and flowers were all that was left.

The father of a friend was who there were hoping to do the ceremony. That morning, she found out he was unavailable. I could see this was stressing her out. She didn't want to just hire a justice of the peace, she wanted someone they knew. She wanted it to be special.

"Do you want me to go online an get ordained? I can go all Joey Tribiani and marry you guys!" We laughed about it and the subject was dropped. 

Several hours later, she called me in tears. "I just talked to Geoff. Were you serious? Will you really marry us?"

"Of course I will." And that is how I became the "high priestess."

I researched readings and vows and ceremonies, pulling a little of this and a little of that. Jill and I met and made changes. I did more research. The document went back and forth between us, and then finally it was in a place where she and Geoff could add their own personal touches to it.

I practiced reading it out loud. I timed myself. I made sure I didn't stumble or laugh over any words. (We both agreed that the word "lover" didn't belong in any verse, but it always made me giggle.)

And last Sunday, the big day arrived. I went from event planner mode as I signaled the musician and the parents to begin the procession, to "high priestess" mode as I stood with Geoff and waited for Jill to join us in the gazebo.

I read with a loud, clear voice. I looked up at them, and at their friends and families as I went through the ceremony. I didn't drop the rings when the best man handed them to me. I didn't drop my note cards. My voice didn't crack or falter.

Back story: Jill and I have been friends for five-plus years. She drove me 40 miles south, to several of my IUI appointments. She drove me 65 miles north for nearly every IVF appointment. She was with me when I saw my baby's heartbeat. And she was with me a week later when the doctor had to perform a D&C. There is nothing I wouldn't do for her.

So I was proud and thrilled to be entrusted with such a huge job. And then, as I was about to utter the very last words of my script, I started to cry. I closed my eyes. I grabbed Jill's hand. And the photographer got that very moment. I took a deep breath and through tears, was able to say...

"And in accordance with the trust you have both placed in me...It is my honor and delight to declare you husband and wife."

Saturday, September 17, 2011


I have some updates from the attorney, which I will try to do in the next few days. No wallowing in self-pity this weekend -- my friend Jill is getting married tomorrow!

And on other fronts, I got nothin'...other than 16 months on the Ethiopia wait list. A mere 6 to 12 to go.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

When is Too Soon? Dating & Adoption Talk

I purposely did not date while I was undergoing fertility treatment. I just thought it would freak a guy out that I was actively trying to get pregnant. And I also didn't want to hear the bragging about how all I needed was one night with him and he'd get the job done. I heard that enough from guys I had no intention of sleeping with.

Fertility treatment is over. Most of the baby weight is off. And so I've stuck my toe back in the water.

I've met two men in recent weeks that I've had thee conversation with. I wasn't planning on having either conversation, but was completely unprepared and just blurted it out.

Situation #1

After talking a lot over the course of a week using Google chat and Skype, we finally met for lunch. I felt like we'd gotten to know each other quite well, so when he mentioned that a friend had recently adopted, I thought it was a good opening. He took it well, seemed excited for me, asked appropriate questions. A few days later, over the course of several conversations, I discovered that he was annoyed that women wouldn't date him because he has a daughter (I knew this from conversation #1) and also mentioned that he won't date women with kids. (Yea, I know...nice double standard.) After some prodding from me, he said he could not think of anything long-term with me because of the "baby" thing. OK...moving on.

Situation #2

There was very little conversation before we met for drinks. The only thing I really knew was that he was a Red Sox fan. We had a great time at the bar, playing darts. A few hours later, while watching the Yankees game, he played my necklace and asked about my St. Thomas More medal. When he asked who he was the patron saint of, I froze trying to think of a lie, but couldn't think of anything better to say than the truth. So I said, "adoption." He asked if I was adopted. Again I froze as I said no. He asked if I had or was adopting. I said yes. "Does that scare you?" (This was a mere three hours after the conversation with boy #1.) He was a trooper and took it in stride. "I just met you. You can't scare me yet."

So how soon is too soon? I know it depends on the conversations, the situation, the people involved. I'm just afraid of not mentioning it early and then suddenly it's feels like I should have had this conversation months ago. Or mentioning it too early and getting a deer in the headlights look, like "I just met you...why are you telling me this?"

Dating is hard enough. Add the fact that I've not thought about dating for the past four years, and haven't really dated anyone since I lived in Baltimore.

Oh the joys of dating. This will be quite the little adventure.

Wish me luck.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Here's Hoping that Karma is Truly a Bitch

I received an email to my "adoption" account the other day. I got excited, as you would expect me to. Clearly this woman went to my website or saw my Facebook ad, read about me, and wanted to know more about me to see if I would be the one to raise her baby.

And then, after a quick read through and a deep breath, I read it again. And it just didn't sound genuine. It sounded like those emails you get from the middle eastern princess who has billions of dollars but no access to it until you help them.

She said she was from Mexico and that her English wasn't very good.

She clarified that this was not a donation or sale of any kind. And then in the next sentence, listed what she would need from me in order to make this work. "We would require: Support with a place to stay near the interested couple so they are aware of any situation, psychological help for this important transition, payment of doctor’s appointments, hospital and all related to heath care and; finally, food and clothing."

I forwarded it to my attorney who promptly replied. "She writes in English better than I do. It's a scam. Do not reply."

And while my gut told me this was a scam, it was still disappointing. There was that moment when I saw the email, that moment even after I read it and knew it wasn't real, that my heart was still hopeful.

I know there are evil people in the world, people who take advantage of other people. Who scam people out of life's savings. This is not my savings, but this is my life. This is my dream, and how dare these people fuck with my dream.

I truly hope Karma is a bitch, and a smart bitch at that, and really sticks it to them.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

More in the College Theme

Just because I feel bad for neglecting you all, and because I'm pretty proud of this recent free-lance assignment I had, here is a speech I wrote for a former colleague to give as his convocation address. He made changes to it to make it his own, but this is the version I sent him.

Feel free to share with anyone in your life going off to college:

You are about to embark on an amazing journey. And it’s easy for me to stand up here and tell you that because I’ve been where you are now. But I’m asking you to trust me. To listen to me. If you only listen to one thing I say over the next four years, listen to this.

Simply put – this is what you should aspire to be and to do over the next four years.

Be yourself. And reinvent yourself. 

Inspire. And be inspired. 

Learn. And teach.



How will you do this? Right here, right now, you have no idea what to expect of the next four years. And the great thing about that is you can control what the next four years are for you. They are a blank canvas. A canvas in which only you can fill.

This is your chance to write your own story. You can sit back and watch your college years fly by, being a casual observer. Or you can take charge. How do you want to look back on these four years?

Be yourself. Be the person your family raised you to be. Make them proud. Listen to and trust your instincts. Make yourself proud. Judy Garland once said, “it’s always better to be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.”

That being said, it is okay to reinvent yourself. Be the person you want to be. If you were shy in high school, you can be outgoing here. If you were labeled or stereotyped within one clique or another, no one here knows that. You can take risks...and break myths.

Inspire. By Christmas, there will be seven billion people on our planet. Each of you has a responsibility to make this world a better place. How will you do that?

That may seem like a daunting task. But it’s not. You can make a difference. Get involved with something that interests you, with something that matters to you.

Do you want to work with children? Or the elderly? Do you want to clean up the environment? Or do you want to fight poverty and homelessness?

You can find a community organization or a student organization. And if one doesn’t exist, you can create your own.

Be inspired. Associate yourselves with classmates who are different and smarter than you. You will be amazed by what you learn from them. You can expand your view on the world by surrounding yourself with people who are different from you, by surrounding yourself with people who you are not used to knowing.

Learn. Reach out to your faculty and get to know them. They will become great allies as you navigate through life in your next four years. Discover their backgrounds, learn what inspires them. Get to know them as people, not just professors, and you will learn so much more than just their classroom expertise. It will give you a greater insight into the world.

Teach. Being life-long learners also means sharing what you know with others. Your faculty and classmates will learn from you just as you will learn from them. You have a unique perspective on the world that only you can share. We’re all learners here. That’s why your professors became professors, and that’s why you came to college.

Appreciate. Appreciate what it took to get you here. And I don’t mean just the financial aspect. Think about your high school teacher who worked with you after school, or your guidance counselor who helped you choose a major. Your parents or family member who helped you with your college application. Appreciate everyone you come in contact with and the smallest way they affect your life.

Laugh. Don’t take things too seriously. Have balance in your life. Studying is important, but it’s not the only thing you should do in college. Go out. Socialize. And yes, even party. Make sure you have fun.

I hope you have listened to what I’ve said. I hope you have not only listened but that you will act on my words. I promise you…you won't regret it.

Friday, September 2, 2011

My Latest Baby

I've been MIA from here because we've been working on a huge project for work. Wednesday night, we launched a rebrand, a new website, and a new logo. No small feat.

Here's a look at what our website looked like:

And what it looks like now:

I am so in love with our new logo. And now that the late nights, the weekends on the computer, and the Saturdays in the office are pretty much done....back to focusing on the adoption. Hopefully I'll have updates on that soon.