Other prizes honour only a small handful of blogs. Fuck that! We've expanded the idea of presenting "the best" to include a post from every blog in the infertility and pregnancy loss world. Listed below are the best posts of 2006. If you have a blog that chronicles your experience with infertility or pregnancy loss and you're not on this list, send a link of your best post from 2006 to firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll add your blog*. In the meantime, happy reading!
- Hope on the Edge of the Map (from This is NOT What I Ordered): a woman turning 41 realizes that she is about to enter the final age category in most REs' success rate statistics. Screw that--she's refusing to give up hope of having a child with her own eggs, even if statistics (and conventional wisdom) say that it's time to start thinking seriously about Plan B. A must-read rallying cry for hope.
- 2007 (from Perpetually Waiting): technically published in January, this post sums up the final cycle of 2006. And it is a small microcosm for the entire infertile experience. The suckiness of treatments, the highs of a positive, and the lows of a loss. It is a literal roller coaster where Meg wonders how she can step off and return to the person she was before she ever got on the ride.
- Last Night=Bad (from It Could Take 3 Months): when infertility changes how you view yourself. Or, as the author eloquently said, this post "represents the first time I was truly struck by the shittiness of IF, how it was affecting every aspect of my life, and how difficult this journey is emotionally."
- My B'shert (from Our Forever Family): living the life she was meant to have, a woman goes from childless to adopting three children and also pregnant--her forever family.
- Dark Little Storm Cloud (from Carrying On): getting it out of her system--a post about loss and wishing for things that can't be.
- Walking and Talking (from Certainly Not Cool Enough to Blog): an entry that comes after the death of her son, Thomas. It's clear to the world that women with strollers have children. But she is now a secret mother, Thomas's ambassador on earth, and that burden sometimes keeps her from starting those easy conversations that occur between mothers.
- Ah Well (from Welcome to the Dollhouse): a wise, aching, gorgeous entry reminding us to celebrate the good moments even when the possibility of heartache is around the corner. A must-read for anyone pregnant after infertility or loss.
- Craft Therapy (from The Mama, The Papa, and Baby Bear): a woman creates a tangible reminder to honour the child she lost during an ectopic pregnancy.
- How I'm Feeling (from When's It Gonna Be My Turn?): when infertility literally brings us to our knees. Jules says it best with the last line: "See. This makes a strong, totally sane women, go completely bonkers." A moving, anguished post.
- You Think You Know Me (from My Many Blessings): a woman can hide a lot behind a calm exterior. This amazing post shows a woman who is also stronger than she can ever imagine. A wise woman also takes care of herself. This is a rest stop on the road of healing.
- A Clothes-on Consult (from Things get IF'fy): more informative than your own freakin' RE--a consult post IVZero yields information presented in a question and answer format (complete with resources at the end!). Excellent writing places you right in a third chair within the consult room.
- Buy Some Waterproof Mascara (from Waiting for a Miracle): if you think it's hard to admit to infertility in a crowd of 7, trying coming out to a crowd of 7000. During a baby dedication ceremony at her church, her pastor asks all people experiencing infertility or pregnancy loss to stand for a special prayer. A piece of advice: make sure you're wearing waterproof mascara.
- A Day of Remembrance (from Baby Proof): an incredibly moving post springing from the question: why can't she simply forget the painful memory of her first unfulfilled due date? A litany of all the painful memories of infertility and loss that she would like to forget, yet can't.
- One Small Step (from Still Waiting): a short, sweet post about the happiness she feels for a fellow stirrup queen as she passes over the loss threshold and takes her current pregnancy farther than any other. Without one shred of "why not me!" mixed into her happiness.
- A Couple of Things I'd Like You to Know (from The Oneliner): a list of all the things she wants to tell her future child about life prior to his or her conception or arrival. A entry to read on a night when you're really searching for something proactive you can do with your hope, especially for the end lines: "that you had a name months before we knew you were coming. That the thought of you not coming was more than either of your parents would accept. That even though it looked like it wasn't going to happen...that you weren't going to happen…. we held out hope."
- Sixteen Fits and Conniptions (from What Am I?): religion returns to the family after many non-religious generations as the author finds comfort in singing a hymn to the Virgin Mary after a loss.
- A Letter That Goes Unread (from The Woman Who Cried Pregnant): another gorgeous list of things the author will teach her son or daughter--once they are finally conceived or arrive. Again, a wonderful idea for a night when you have so much hope and need a place to lay it down in words.
- Yep, I'll Be Violent If It Happens Again (from Cheese and Whine): fantastic post as J puts in her vote for most offensive question of the year: whenever J and her wife are discussing their quest to have a baby, someone inevitably asks, "Why don't you just, you know, find a guy at a bar one night and close your eyes for a few minutes and just...you know, get it done that way?"
- Welcome to the Dream Factory (from Of Course You'll Get Pregnant!): a post eloquently expressing the frustration she feels when people tell her that "of course you'll get pregnant" despite the fact that she ovulated three times in 2006...
- Here Ye, Here Ye (from Baby Wanted: Apply Within): birthdays never made her feel old until she was trying to conceive. When she was younger, she imagined her life would look very different at 46, but she found the love of her life at 38. A moving post on the reality of something we all realize when experiencing infertility--when you can't conceive the one gift you truly want, all other material objects cannot fill that void.
- How Do You Know? (from Postcards From the Mothership): after struggling with infertility and pregnancy loss to create her two children, the author asks how one knows when they're finished building their family. Especially when one takes into account the scars left by infertility and loss. A moving post without a clear answer.
- Is it Possible? (from Hopeful Mother): musings about her RE--how is it possible to spend this much time with a person and not wonder what happens after he leaves the office?
- Frustration and Undirected Anger (from Relaxing Doesn't Make Babies): a bad mood brings to the surface many of the author's fears and frustrations concerning fertility treatments--especially the fact that a positive beta will never be celebrated in the same way as it would have been before they started down this road.
- 2 Years, 1 Month, 2 Weeks, 1 Day (from The Problem With Hope): reflecting on who she was two years ago when they started trying to conceive, before IUIs and IVF didn't work. The hope at the beginning and the understanding at the end.
- Looking at Day-3 Embryos (from Getting Pregnant the High-Tech Way): the silver lining of IVF--you get to see the blueprints to your future child when you look at the embryos. A beautiful post about the complex system that needs to fall into place in order to gain the coveted positive beta.
- Length (from Surviving My Loss): without her daughter to hold and measure, she depends on an autopsy report when that overwhelming mothering urge hits--that burning need to know your child. And in light of all that she has lost, a wry ending to the post that makes you smile through the tears.
- Wreck Womb (from Inhospitable): can finding a uterine septum really be humourous? Yes, if you're reading it on Inhospitable.
- A Cervical Cap Is Just Odd...Isn't It? (from You're Still Young!): could her husband ever imagine on their first date that one day they would be hanging out in an insemination room? A very funny post from the wacky and wonderful Shlomit.
- Training Bras and Easter Dresses (from Oh Well...): a heartbreaking post about the loss of her daughter and how those tangible items--the training bras and Easter dresses--stop her in her tracks while she is shopping and make her remember Hope.
- In Their Honor (from In Their Honor): an extensive list of public figures who have experienced pregnancy loss.
- Walkin' Up a Tightrope (from Once More, With Feeling): a brown bag that once held treats for her as a child becomes a modern day hope chest for her baby-someday. It's a virtual life raft as she floats through infertility.
- Matthew I and Matthew II (from No Matter How Small): two posts that tell the heartbreaking story of a medical termination after discovering her child had Trisomy 18 (originally posted in July, removed, and now reposted).
- A Baby Story? No Thanks (from Fertility Blogs): TLC's A Baby Story went from being a cute distraction to the bane of her existence.
- Adoption Story (from Baggage That Goes With Mine): running commentary from Bug, Baggage's extremely funny and adorable daughter, during Discovery Channel's Adoption Story. For what it's worth, I would watch Bug's Adoption Show.
- My Problem with Empiric (from Oscar Wants a Playmate): the author questions the trend to treat first and ask questions later--wondering if she had just played the game and taken the Clomid when first offered, would she currently be pregnant or is she better off ruling out problems before beginning treatments. A well-thought-out post from the mind of a scientist.
- What's a Defect, Mom? (from How to Make a Family): one side examining the infamous controversial article that appeared in the New York Times by Darshak M. Sanghavi on PGD.
- Hold My Hope (from The Waiting Womb): perhaps we can't hold our own hope anymore, but we can hold the hope of another person. This entry will send chills down your arms--it is so beautiful and poignant.
- Slow and Painful Way Back (from Bullet Proof Eggs): an extremely moving post detailing the mother she will be based out of the way that she was raised. A wonderful post for anyone who needs a moment to dream about how they will mother.
Off-topic Posts from Infertility or Loss Blogs
Blogs that Closed in 2006
We're so sorry to see these blogs missing from the Blogosphere. Every piece of writing changes a person's perspective of their own journey. The world was changed by their words.
A Barren Island
Tales of a Wessel
Laughter and Forgetting
One of Our Own
Life is Sweet, Baby
*Our philosophy is once an infertile, always an infertile. We like reading the whole spectrum--from newly diagnosed to veterans of treatments; those still filling out paperwork and those with completed adoptions; those who are trying to choose a donor and those parenting DI or DE kids; those who are completely confused on what to do and those who are peacefully--or not peacefully--living child-free. Infertility can become a new lens with which one views the world, and viewing the world includes parenting. I love to read blogs after the children have come--from the newborns to four-year-olds. And all of this is a long-winded way to say that if you have ever experienced infertility or pregnancy loss, we would love to keep adding your posts to this list year after year. Please don't disappear because you don't think you're part of the infertility community anymore. If your heart feels like it belongs here, you belong here.