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Yeehaw! Last night we won the local trivia night! With a little help from our friends and a lot of help from Alisa’s dad who knew things like who wrote the Pink Panther theme song. We beat the other teams by ten points, so as Ed aptly put it, if we’d been missing just one member of our seven person team, we wouldn’t have won.

Slim margins aside, I have to say it felt good to win at something. I often felt like a huge loser at the game of fertility. I still do sometimes feel like a big fat evolutionary failure whose body can’t do the one thing it was biologically put on this earth to do (ie. be fruitful and multiply). Something I thought would be as easy as rolling over in bed.

Trivia night at times felt like a mini version of the struggle. Many of the questions are the sort that are right on the tip of your tongue. They seem so easy. I know this! I should know this! Urgh, why can’t I think of it?

It’s incredibly frustrating when you can’t get it but the answer fills in your brain as soon as you hear it (Damn, I knew that one!) But the release and joy when you find out your answer was right is complete. And the thrill of victory that swept through me as we received our $30 Kazbor’s Bar and Grill gift certificate made me wonder what it will feel like when we finally “win” a bigger prize.

Cowgirl downI am sore. My neck, thighs and back are rigidly trying to pretend I have full range of motion. I have always been wildly attracted to scars and battle wounds. I think they add character, layers to a person. This stiff neck is my souvenir. I didn’t get it from sleeping wrong, no siree. I got it from riding a mechanical bull in the middle of Nowhere, Florida. 

The night was adventure after adventure… We line danced, serenaded the cowfolk with some classic Love is Battlefield in the karaoke room, and were told we had the pimpinest hats in the joint by a seven foot tall cowboy who had a voice that could sing Ol’ Man River in a heartbeat. When we arrived at the bullpen, riders were effortlessly doing their thing. I wanted to go fast, to surpass the 8 seconds, to fly off the bull with such force that my hat would follow my body. Instead, the operator had me bucking at the slowest possible speed. It felt like slow motion. I gripped onto the bull with all the might my hands and thighs could muster and, within five seconds, slid off the side. There was no dramatic dismount. I gave it my all but my body was not in sync with gravity. But back in the saddle I went. Each V-List adventure can’t help but become a metaphor for life, for the journey of nontraditional paths to parenthood. Face down in uncertainty, or the dirty floor of the bullpen, we get up. We get back on. We move in slow motion even though we want to go much faster. But just as I can appreciate scars and stiff muscles, I have grown to value taking it slow. There is freedom in letting go of what I feel should happen and allowing all expectations slide off the side of a bull.