A blog about babies: the babies I lost, the babies I never had, the baby who made me a Mama.

Monday, January 25, 2010

What's in a Name?; or, Rewriting the Story

When I started my blog in June, I thought I was acting a little prematurely. After all, who starts blogging about "conception troubles" a mere three months into the process (crazy people, that's who (also, me)). I chose the title "Park Slope Purgatory" because so much of my frustrations at the time stemmed from my neighborhood-- a notoriously child-friendly mecca to attachment parenting in which Lawyer Guy and I purchased a home specifically with the thought of making babies. My single friend who visited from L.A. remarked after wandering the Park Slope streets with me, "I have never seen so many baby strollers in my life." Walking around without one was a kind of Dante-and-Virgil voyage through no-woman's land.

When I got pregnant in October, I considered changing my blog title. Park Slope Paradise had a nice ring to it, and wasn't it heavenly to be pregnant? But something stopped me-- just let me feel a little more secure about this, I thought, before I make any changes. I may have been pregnant but I was, as I described it at the time, provisionally pregnant. It was pregnancy as purgatory, as the perpetual in-between.

Today, this blog is a different place than what I intended it to be. I thought I'd whine here where no one would listen for a few months and then shut it down when I got that BFP. I thought the waiting would end with a positive pregnancy test.

I'm on a different journey than the one I planned. I guess that's the nature of Purgatory--you don't get to decide when it ends. You don't even know what the signposts pointing to the end would look like. You just have to keep walking and hope that eventually--with work and hope and prayers--you'll get to heaven.

So I'm still in Purgatory. I'm caught between motherhood and childlessness, grief and joy. I'm an apparently fertile woman who very likely will hit my TTC anniversary without a healthy pregnancy to show for it. I'm "still young," though also "not as young as I used to be."

But Purgatory is a lot less lonely now that I've found all of you.


  1. I get the same feeling in my neighborhood. We live in an extremely family-centric neighborhood (why we moved here). I often call it the Brooklyn of Chicago. There are days when the stroller parade that lines our apartment building, which is also home to an ice cream shop, can get quite depressing.
    Hopefully you (and I) won't be in "purgatory" for long.

  2. I hope that once you move from Purgatory to Paradise, that you never stop writing, dear friend. :)

  3. I love that idea, we're just on a different journey than the one we originally planned. And although I can't just pick the month I get pregnant again, I can trust my body, and keep the hope that it will happen...for both of us, sooner rather than later would be nice!!

    And welcome back from your vacay, sounds like it was fabulous!!

  4. Glad you're back from vacation and I'm glad I found your blog! Don't ever stop writing! :)

  5. Hi- thanks for the comment on my blog! I know what you mean about Park Slope. I actually used to live there (back when I was a single lady) and the strollers drove me CRAZY! Hopefully it will turn from purgatory back into paradise for you soon!

  6. Is there a like button here? Can I push it? Because I so like this post. ;) And, can I borrow some of your perspective? The whole AFI plane isn't where I want to be either (of course), but I feel so oddly grateful to have stumbled into it because it has connected me with amazing ladies. This is my silver lining.

    I'm along for the Purgatory, and I'm rooting for your Paradise (at which point I'll be along for that, too). Big hug.

  7. Yes, I know how you feel. Part of the reason I started blogging in the first place was the deep secret hope that it would shame my body into ovulating and getting preggo. Ha! But thank goodness I have it today, because I need it now more than I ever could've dreamed I would/did!

    Keep this going, even when you're feet are firmly planted in paradise...I love reading along!

  8. I hope you get to change your blog name to paradise sooner rather than later. :)

  9. I like it. Sucks to be here, but glad we're here together.