August news: announcing our competition winner? Plus news from our community!

 

We ran a competition to win a copy of Lesley Pyne’s fantastic book, Finding Joy Beyond Childlessness. This book is an inspiring read and an essential resource on our bookshelves, written by a key figure in our community. Lesley speaks about childlessness not by choice in the media, at Fertility Fest and shares her powerful and uplifting wisdom on More To Life’s webinars.

We’re delighted to announce that Kate F is the winner of Lesley’s book and we’ll be in touch with Kate via email. Thank you to everyone who entered and to Lesley for her support.

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Sharing my story: Sarah Lawrence

I remember when I set After the Storm up, all I had was a vague notion that I wanted to help people in this community get through the emotions and trauma. Granted as business plans go, it’s far from good... but little did I realise the profound impact it would have on me, my grief and my life.

I’m actually a fully trained life coach, but as time has gone on and I’ve started to work my way through my own grief, I’ve realised it’s not enough to support people. It’s not enough to ‘coach’ or ‘mentor’. I have to walk the walk. It’s scary, but it means needing to effectively communicate how it feels, really bloody feels, to be childless-not-by-choice. Because this is a life changing, body blow that changes you irrevocably.

Up to the point of this realisation I was very shut down. Struck dumb by the feelings of shame, helplessness and down right unworthiness around my infertility. It was so bad that I didn’t even have the guts to tell my family and only a very select number of people knew. So, it was a big bloody deal when I started blogging and videoing myself talking about this stuff. It unlocked my feelings, my emotions and my ability to describe what’s been going on behind my mask of everything’s ‘fine’.

Now I’m a trainee counsellor (qualifying next year and can’t wait), I realise that come that time I’ll be the most ready I’ve ever been to hold people’s pain, their fears and despair, because I know how it feels to be there. But, I’ve also learned to deal with my own, and while I still am in the mire of grief, I am able to live a life rather than just exist.

And in the meantime, I’ll continue talking, effing and jeffing (really had to work hard to self-edit this article) and sharing my story so that other people see that they don’t have to feel quite so alone when they join this incredibly supportive community.


Podcast news

Men and Childlessness is our next episode, produced by Michael Hughes. It’s been our aim to give a voice to men, so we were delighted to spend last Sunday morning chatting to Dr Robin Hadley and actor Rod Silvers. They are good friends and we covered a lot of ground in a very honest conversation. We also have a new voice to share with you. We’re honoured to share Andy’s words in a powerful interview with Michael and Sarah.

We’ve launched a Kofi page which means you can support the podcast. It works securely via Paypal. Any amount you donate goes directly towards funding Podbean which is a paid for service. We are very happy to give you a shout out on air and on the website if you’d like to make a dedication or a mention for your project. We’d like to thank Tessa Broad for her contribution as a guest and supporter! Thank you Tessa!

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News from our community

Annie Kirby featured in Episode 2. Annie teaches at The Circle of Misse. She has a place available on her short story course at the fabulous Circle of Misse in the Loire Valley, 14-21 Sep 2019. Annie will guide you from idea to first draft in a week. If you have stories already drafted and prefer a retreat/mentoring week to work on them, she will have a spot available for that too. Pop over to the website to find out more or book.

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There’s a new book by Kate Kaufman, Do You Have Kids? Life When the Answer is No? Kate published in April in the USA and it’s just been released in the UK. We haven’t read it yet but we’ve seen great reviews. Find out more at Kate’s website here.

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Full Stop podcast presenter, Berenice Smith took part in Plastic Free July, a world wide campaign to save plastic use in our homes. She shared her thoughts on plan B choices and the environment on Walk In Our Shoes. You can read about this here.

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It’s almost time for World Childless Week! This annual event runs from 16th to 22nd September 2019 and welcome your words, videos and art. We’ll be talking exclusively to some of the Champions in Episode 5. Pop over to the World Childless Week website to see how you can get involved.

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Vicky Page is a World Childless Week champion and loyal Full Stop Podcast listener. She’s also a member of our R&D group who have been invaluable to us. She has launched a new Facebook page called Disabled American Not Moms. Support her by joining her here.


If you would like to be on the podcast…

…have a topic you’d like us to cover, or like Lesley, you’d like to run a competition please contact us, we would love to hear from you. You can get social with us on Insta, Twitter and Facebook or drop us an email. It’s your podcast and we’re guided by you! Check out our future episodes over here.