Monday, 7 March 2011

Girl's Weekend- Fun, Food, and Surprising Opinions

I got back yesterday from an amazing weekend in Brussels. It was ladies only and the seven of us had an absolute blast. It was so nice to get away. Nice to get out of London, get away from my daily routine, and take a weekend off from my grief. When you're out with seven lively ladies, there's not much time to think about grief and dead babies, and that's just what I needed.

We stayed at a great hotel right in the middle of town. We ate at some amazing restaurants. We slept late. We drank a LOT. We laughed and shopped. We talked about our families and husbands. We even ran into a bunch of people who work at the US embassy at a bar. Talk about surreal, we're in a bar in Brussels and we run into a bunch of diplomats and embassy personnel. They were a fun group and seemed quite happy to hear another American accent so far from home.

There was one interesting moment at dinner. In my last post here on Friday I was asking for advice about how much of my egg donation journey I should share with people. Most of you wisely advised me to keep things private for now as I can always tell more later but can't "untell" people. So I took this advice and didn't over share,,,, even after several glasses of wine/beer/champagne.

Somehow at dinner the topic of Kelly Preston and John Travolta came up. The talk was of the fact that she recently had a baby even though she's almost 50. One of the ladies in our group said, "I'm sure she used an egg donor." My heart dropped and I tried to keep a straight face. Another friend disagreed and said that women can get pregnant even in their late 40's. I am now listening intently to this line of conversation, trying to will myself not to say anything. In this group of seven, only myself and my two close friends know about my journey. The other four women at the table have no idea.

After a bit of back and forth about what types of fertility assistance the Travoltas may or may not have had, one of my friends says, "I think it's wrong to mess around with nature too much."

Wow, I think to myself, did she really just say that??? It never would have occurred to me that she would have such a surprisingly strong opinion on the topic of assisted reproduction. I don't know her that well, but considering she's the mother of three children I think it's safe to say that she has not had to deal with infertility. So where in the world does that kind of judgement come from?

For me it was a good reminder that people out there do have opinions. Even very nice people that we see and interact with on a daily basis. So for now I think I will keep things just between my family, my close friends, and of course all of you!

Other than that one conversation, it was a great weekend. I'm so glad I went!


  1. It's a good question isn't it. There are many people who think they have a right to judge others when they will most likely never be faced with that situation.

    CJ xx

  2. Sounds to me like "I think it's wrong" is mostly a convenient way to avoid having to really think about the issue at all. I think your decision to keep your plans to yourself right now is a smart one and I would do the same. I will say, though, that people who make broad sweeping statements like that probably don't know anyone in real life who has dealt with those kind of decisions. It's NOT your job to educate her, but remember that YOU are not the one who should feel weird or ashamed. If you decide to share later, or if word gets through the grapevine or whatever, and she remembers making that comment, then SHE is the one who should feel awkward and apologetic. Not you. (Hopefully you already realize this, but as I imagined myself in your shoes, I felt like that might be my initial response.) I'm glad you had a fun weekend. I like to imagine this same lady oohing and ahhing over your new baby and saying how much he or she looks just like you. Then you can smile and decide at that moment whether or not to share part of your story.

  3. I agree with everyone on keeping your posts to a minimum and telling us as you want to reveal things. It is YOUR life, and you can talk about it as much or as little as you want. I'm know that no matter how much/little you allow us to read, we'll always be here to read it. You're right, people do have their own opinions. I too am facing times where I can't believe some people say the things that they do, but then I have to remember that they're only human and they have the right to their opinions. If only they knew they were hurting us, I think it wouldn't be so bad.

  4. I think keeping your decision to yourself was a smart move. So glad you enjoyed your weekend, except for that one conversation.

  5. None of us really knows what we'd do unless we are faced with the situation ourselves. You did well to keep your mouth closed, not sure I would have been that good!

    Sounded like a great weekend.


  6. What a lovely place to have a w/end :)) You definitely did well to keep so composed after that comment.. one day she might end up realising that sometimes ART is the only option to have a happy family xo

  7. That sounds like a fantastic weekend away. I agree with Brooke (and your other commenters!) - "I think it's wrong" or any such sweeping statement really shows ignorance more than anything. Fact is, they wouldn't know what they would do if they didn't have their children (or their fertility, at the very least). I think it's a good example for everyone - in any social circumstance, not just those surrounding infertility - how we are so flippant in our judgement of another. The mere fact that they were discussing the details of another couple (albeit a famous one in this case) and their choices, regardless of whether they know the couple or not, is really very disrespectful.

  8. Hi! I'm a new follower from the Monday hop! I'd love for you to come visit me at! Have a great evening and hope to see you soon!


  9. Agh... I really don't like people give their uninformed, ignorant, and potentially offensive opinions. Of course she doesn't think you should mess with nature too much- nature has let her have three babies... Nature "likes" her.

    I think the decision you've made to keep the egg thing a secret is a good one for right now. I would hate for you to have to defend your positions to people without a vested interest in it, you know?