About a year ago I was contacted by author/speaker Pamela Sonennmoser. She and I have some mutual friends in the CNBC (childless not by choice) community, and we had also become friends via Facebook. Pamela has a real heart for ministry . I’ve heard her speak through video, but I hope to meet and hear her live and in person one day. She and I have VERY similar CNBC stories, so when she contacted me about submitting content for her upcoming book I jumped at the chance. I went back through my blog and picked some of the pearls, and in some cases the hard-core laments, and sent them to her.
The book is now officially released. I have to say that it is one of the very few books on infertility that has spoken to me on a deep level and actually gave me hope for my future. Until recent years almost every book (especially from a Christian perspective) written on infertility was written from the perspective of a woman/couple who somehow found their happy ending through biological birth or adoption.
I stop here to say again that I’ve become very upset with the church’s perspective that adoption is the magic cure-all for infertility and the logical next step for all couples who find themselves in that situation. That is definitely not the case. It wasn’t for Pamela and her husband, and it wasn’t for Eddie and I. I’ve gotten on my soapbox many a time on this blog and in conversations about how adoption is a calling not the cure for infertility. It’s my core conviction that adoption should be done with a child’s best interests at heart and not entered into simply to fill an empty nest. Adoption is a very long, expensive, and emotionally draining process. When a couple has faced years of infertility many (like us) are left with drained bank accounts and emotional reserves. We realize that we do not have the resources left nor the call to pursue adoption.
With that said Beside the Empty Cradle is written for the couple…or the family and friends of a couple…who is facing life-long childlessness. Pamela does an excellent job of telling her story as well as others’ stories, and conveying the experience of life-long childlessness. She even addresses the collateral damage on extended families which leads to grandchildlessness-not-by-choice by some of our parents and the ending of branches of family trees all of which I’ve experienced. She also gives great ideas on creating legacies and becoming the “family expert” meaning we take the lead in ensuring that our families’ stories are kept alive. We can undertake the responsibility of making sure precious photos and memorabilia are passed on through other members of our families (nieces, nephews, cousins etc.) even if our particular branch of the family tree stops with us.
The book is written from a Christian perspective and gives good insight into dealing with permanent childlessness in a faith/culture where family and children are highly valued. Even if you are not from a Christian background the book will speak into the experience universally shared by childless couples.
So, pick up a copy for yourself or someone you love who may be going through this experience. You’ll be glad you did!
****I’m also doing a giveaway of one copy of Beside the Empty Cradle. If you would like to be in the drawing in the comment section below tell me the hardest thing you’ve experienced because of infertility and childlessness, and you will automatically be entered. Please be sure to include an e-mail address so I can contact you if you win. I will do a random drawing on or about June 10, 2011 and reveal the winner via the blog!