Tuesday, December 10, 2013

The elevator speech

Kevin and I went out to dinner on Sunday night. As expected, the server started by asking us what we wanted to drink. Kevin selected a beer from the restaurants extensive list of on-tap beers. And of course, I asked for water with lemon. I told our server I had a gluten intolerance and asked a few questions about the menu. The server returned with our drinks and then said to me "Did you order water only because you can't drink beer due to the gluten in it? Because we have gluten free beer if you'd like that." And my response was "Actually, I'm pregnant."

Whoa. Did those words actually come out of my mouth? It felt really foreign (yet oh-so-good) to say! The server's face lit up with a smile and she beamed "Congratulations!"

She began asking questions like "When are you due?" I answered "August."

She asked "Are you scared?" and of course my first reaction was "Yup, I'm terrified."

Then it dawned on me that she was likely asking if I'm scared to be a mother - NOT if I'm scared if this baby will actually die before being born as my first two had. Cue the reality of infertile brain.

After the brief conversation, Kevin and I reflected about what a surreal moment we just had with this stranger. I really am pregnant. And to this server, I was probably just a regular ol' pregnant woman who has a baby growing inside of her because of a roll in the hay with her husband. Does it matter to me if she knows the miraculous additional details of how this pregnancy came to be or not? Not really. But it did get me thinking about it since I imagine I'll be having similar conversations with others as my pregnancy (God-willingly) progresses.

I always told myself that I would be an advocate for embryo adoption. It is an incredible but widely unknown path that I wish was more known and accepted in our society. I always strive to live by the motto of "Be the change you wish to be in this world." So with that being said, I need to make sure I'm not afraid to talk about it or share. This is one of the reasons I blog. It's one of the reasons I started our EA/ED Facebook group. But it's a whole new territory broaching this topic with strangers as we discuss my seemingly "ordinary" pregnancy. Who exactly should I share our story with? With servers at restaurants? When exactly is appropriate? I feel I need to be delicate so that I don't over-share, BUT I feel called to share. Because if the story of our experience with embryo adoption ultimately gets back to a suffering infertile couple who then begins to research it and they ultimately find success with it themselves, it will all be worth it to me. I would also love for couples with leftover remaining embryos to know an amazing option exists for them as well.

There's a concept used in the business world called an 'elevator speech.' An elevator speech is when someone explains an idea in a quick yet powerful 30-60 second speech as they might stand next to a stranger in an elevator. It's the chance to make a strong first impression on any particular topic. I feel like I need to come up with my 'elevator speech' for our story of embryo adoption. I need to condense it into a nutshell, ensure I share only the right amount of details, and have it ready if the right moment presents itself. I know I wont use this speech with everyone I meet, but if I feel the moment is right, I want to be ready.

For those of you who have been through embryo adoption, do you have your 'elevator speech' prepared? What do you say? What questions prompt you to bring up your experience with embryo adoption? Who do you find yourself sharing your story with and why?

15 comments:

  1. That's awesome that you got to share your wonderful news. It feels so good to say it out loud, doesn't it? I feel quite confident that your baby/ies will be with you in August as you deliver them into this world. I blog because I want to be an advocate for God and share my story of miscarriage with others who have suffered. I think this is a great place to do it! And I love that you share your story of embryo adoption because I know it will help others who are at a crossroads in their life and not sure of the next step. You are such an encouragement! XO

    Mel @ thereisahigherhope.blogspot.com

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    1. It did feel good to say! I'm glad that you feel called to share your story of miscarriage to help others as well. There is comfort in knowing you're not alone. Thanks for the kind words.

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  2. Great post! I'm excited to see what you come up with and the ideas/responses you get from others. :)

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    1. Thanks! Many of the ladies responded on my secret facebook group. If you want to join, just send me an email at wishingonasnowflake@gmail.com. We have something like 125 members now! You'd love it and would fit right in!

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  3. It's definitely a hard conversation to explain. With HC, we were in the adoption process for a long time before I got pregnant, and I constantly felt like I had to explain the whole situation to anyone who asked, which can get very long and complicated. I had to learn to let them ask the questions before I gave me whole big long spiel. It really just boiled down to me saying "This baby is a miracle. We were in the adoption process a while before I got pregnant." And of course everyone loves that happy ending story. :)

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    1. That's a great way to start..."This baby is a miracle." I appreciate you sharing your experience. And yes, I'm so glad you had a happy ending to your story.

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  4. I almost always make reference to the fact that we have been waiting for our baby for the last four years and he is a miracle. If people ask specific questions, I don't ever lie. So I ended up telling two ladies I work with because one asked me outright what fertility treatments we did (we are close, so it wasn't an intrusion) and the other lady's daughter has been struggling with infertility for years so I wanted to give her hope and tell her about embryo adoption in case it's ever an option for her daughter. I also told another young woman I work with when I found out she and her husband have been trying for several years...I am very aware of other women who are struggling with infertility, especially when they have to be around me and my big pregnant belly because I know how difficult that can be...I want them to know I've been in their shoes and that there is hope. Although I am not ashamed of our story of EA at all, I am in awe of how God has worked in our lives to bring our son to us in such a unique way...sometimes you just feel like you want to be a "regular" pregnant woman. To talk about baby things and not bring up such a heaviness to a conversation. I don't think you need to tell every stranger on the street...I feel like God will lead you the right way to share when it's needed or when you just feel you want to. After you are pregnant for a while (I feel like I've been pregnant forever since my due date is 6 days away!) honestly....sometimes you really don't think about IF and EA...you just love your baby and don't think of them as your "adopted child"...just as your child. I'm still praying for your u/s on the 16th! Praising God for your miracle! -Kelly

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    1. Everything you said makes sense. I already think of these babies as my children, it just is miraculous how they became that way. :) Thanks for sharing and I appreciate the prayers!

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  5. You are amazing! I'm sure you will find the perfect way to spread the good word - this blog is certainly an excellent start! How wonderful that you got to say those wonderful words to the waitress... I hope the magic never wears off and you enjoy it for all nine H&H months <3

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  6. Once I heard it phrased as "We thought for a long time that we wouldn't be able to have kids, so this really feels special to us." Then because there's already a happy ending, the other person might feel more courageous to ask questions, and you can just say something like "Another couple donated an embryo to us, so you could say we adopted our baby when it was just a few cells." I'm sure whatever you come up with will be good!

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    1. This is a great suggestion! Thanks for responding!

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  7. I love that you got to share with your server and I love that you want to share and spread word on embryo adoption. I think you will feel it when its the right people to share with. I love your story, in fact I shared your story with our in laws last night when we mentioned that we will never destroy our embryos. So happy for you!

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    1. Yeah, it was surreal! Aww, I'm so touched you shared our story! And I'm even more touched that you've decided to never destroy your embryos! It takes a special person to recognize how precious they are and can make such a difference in the life of another struggling couple. Thanks for the sweet words!

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  8. I have said all different things but usually it is something like - you know adoption right? Well we adopted but he was only a few cells big and I got to be pregnant with him! (A little longer than that but that sums it up!) I talk to EVERYONE about it who says things. So far everyone has been interested and supportive!

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