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Let's Panic: The Book!

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How to Endure and Possibly Triumph Over the Adorable Tyrant
who Will Ruin Your Body, Destroy Your Life, Liquefy Your Brain,
and Finally Turn You
into a Worthwhile
Human Being.

Written by Alice Bradley and Eden Kennedy

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At LET'S PANIC ABOUT BABIES, Eden Kennedy and I share our hard-won wisdom and tell you exactly what to think and feel and do, whether you're about to have a baby or already did and don't know what to do with it.

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Sunday
Nov072010

It's Saturday night and I'm writing a post. This is sad. 

Thanks, Babble, for including me in your top 50 mom blogs. I've got some excellent company in there. And hello to any new readers, who I imagine are already impatient with me. "She's the funniest? She hasn't made me laugh even once so far. I'm going to go to her house and punch her right in her stupid hair." Why are you so angry, new readers? When I only want to love and be loved? Fine, come to my house. It's an apartment building, anyway. I dare you to find which unit is mine. And then like I'm going to buzz you in? Dream on, weirdly driven angry readers I just invented! Yeah, good luck scaling the side of the building to get to me! What's that you say? Fire escape? Oh, hell and damnation! Where's my jet pack?!

As proof of how funny I am, I've added a new essay to the writing section: Eighteen Attempts at Writing about a Miscarriage. Okay, maybe not the most amusing piece, but I must tell you--in case you read it and grow concerned over my mental health--it was the most satisfying thing I've ever written. It was so cathartic to write I was sure it was junk. (Catharsis-inducing writing is rarely any good. Usually it's like scrawling I HATE YOU I HATE YOU in your diary and then throwing your diary at your mom right while she's on the phone with your Grandma, smoking her stupid cigarette like she's so fancy.) But hey, it was published, and nominated for a Pushcart Prize, not that I'm bragging but of course I am because I still can't get over it. It didn't win, though. Because the Pushcart Prize judges hate babies. I think that's clear.



References (2)

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  • Response
    Miscarriage is grossly underreported in our society and continues to be a taboo topic of conversation. The vast majority of women go on to have healthy pregnancies, but many women would have more peace of mind if they knew how common miscarriage is and the tools we can all use to ...
  • Response
    “… a reasoned, well- written response”???? I wouldn’ t call themiddle rightwing, rather the post is cliff notes for the Jewish Federations’ (among others) talking points for countering what they call the“ delegitimization of Israel,” and, as ordered, it was not vituperative, name- calling, etc. Besides the fact that one can ...

Reader Comments (52)

Well, it's Saturday night and I'm READING your blog post. I think that qualifies as even more pathetic. Not a new reader, not impatient, not creepily stalking you. Yet. (So put down the jet pack - for now.)

So, goodnight, funny lady. And nice new site, by the way.

November 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterVarda (SquashedMom)

You are brilliant. But then again, I think I've said this before...you just keep proving it is all, and I thought I'd point that out.

November 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterShannon

You let me know when those angry readers arrive because I've got your back, yo.

November 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKelly

I read your essay. The overwhelming response I had to it was a really loud (in my head) "yes"
Oh, and a few sobs I had to hold back because the sleepover kids are still here and that just wouldn't do.

November 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSillyMe

dude, you failed to mention you're not just included in the list, YOU'RE NUMBER TWO! YOU BEAT DOOCE! ok, I know you're friends with dooce, but still. rock on.

November 7, 2010 | Unregistered Commentercee

I'm a new reader, and while I sat down to read this blog with my brass knuckles on (just in case you failed to entertain, y'know), I can say that I am not on my way to punch you in your hair. Not this time, at least. Anyway, just thought I'd offer you that little peace of mind. You're welcome. ;-)

November 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTamara

I think all imaginary angry readers have vanished by the power of your Eighteen Attempts at Writing About a Miscarriage essay. Wow.

November 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGreta

You made me cry a little and laugh. Damned good writing - it carries your voice. Thanks for letting me see it.

November 7, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermosprott

Would-be dads who miscarry (stated so as not to blame the woman) ought to read the miscarriage post in order to understand what his partner has gone through. She sure as heck won't explain it to him very well. Thanks for sharing.

November 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterErol

Oh heck, I hope I'm not one of the angry new readers. I'm not angry, usually, unless I'm sleep deprived and hormonal and forgot for five days to take my thyroid replacement pill. I sound like a menopausal hag. I'm a hag, sometimes, but not menopausal, yet, at least, I don't think so, oh shit.

Love the new site. Fix mine up, please.

I had a miscarriage once, and I haven't yet been able to bring myself to write about it, and it was 18 years ago. So, good on you. You did it just right.

November 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMegan

I've been reading your writing for a long time, Alice. There is never a time where you fail to make me laugh. But I didn't even realize I was holding my breath while reading that article until I got to the end. Took my breath away. Literally.

November 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBonnie B.

I have never commented before but check in occassionaly and am a big fan of your blog. I just read your piece on miscarraige. On Oct 27, I went in for my 11 week appointment. Everything was perfect with my pregnancy so far and we had seen a perfect little baby at our eight week appt. We completely had the wind knocked out of us when the ultrasound showed no baby. It had died a week or so before. You put into words what I am feeling. I am sorry you for what you had to go through but glad that time does heal. I also have a son and having another healthy child has made all the difference in the world!

Congrats on the blog recognition and being a top 50 blog :)

November 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterWiz

Oh, I'm so sorry, Wiz.

November 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAlice

I knew you had had a miscarriage. But...I guess because it's the internet, and everything is kind of impersonal now, I never fully got it. And I do now. And I am so sorry. And that was incredibly real, and honest, and angry, and thank you.

November 8, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterbekah

Congrats on top rankings at Babble. I was referred to the site by 'Her Awesomeness' and I found you. Yes you, in the number one spot. That's gotta feel pretty good. I've been poking around your blog (hope you don't mind) reading this and that and I must say I've been enjoying myself. And when I say 'myself' I mean your writing.
Now I feel a bit guilty for not following you on twitter all the times that you were recommended. Poor judgment on my part, obviously. Of course that oversight will be rectified immediately. My only hope is that 'Her Awesomeness' isn't the spiteful jealous type about divided loyalties. You know how stabby she gets and I kind of like my face. You won't tell her, will you. We'll just keep this one to our selves.
Looking forward to stalking you on twitter. 09thehippy

November 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCraig

Thanks for the link to your essay, Alice. I used to read your blog daily when I started my blog back in 2005 and there weren't a hundred million other bloggers out there -- in fact, I was the only blogger I knew IRL for a while. Anyway, this is a lame-ass sort of apology for drifting away and not seeing any of your posts about your loss, and about all the other really awesome booky stuff you've been up to.

I've had three miscarriages, and the last one I was 16 wks and went in for a routine appointment and there was no heartbeat. The baby had died the week before. So much of what you wrote brought me back to that breathless, surreal moment in time, when I thought that there was a problem with the ultrasound machine and was actually joking with the technician because she went to go get the doctor and I totally didn't see the hell that was about four seconds away from unfolding. It is such a universal experience, that grief, that shock, that crushing disbelief. It was four years ago this month, and I can still taste the horrificness of it, even though I've since added a third noisy and delightful boy to my brood.

Congratulations on the awesomeness, and thank you for your essay. Really.

November 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDaniGirl

Beautiful essay. So sorry for your loss.

November 8, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterwm

I had read the part of the Sun essay that you'd posted before, but I never got to finish it until now. It seems impertinent, somehow, to even characterize it, but I guess I find it perfectly angry. Justifiably angry. And when I realized we were near your lost baby's due date (birthday), I began to tear up. I'm so sorry for your loss. But I'm grateful that you wrote so expressively about an experience that is so common, and tragic, for so many women, and so hard for them to express. Maybe now more people will understand a bit of what it's like. I know I do. A bit.

November 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterReid

Oh, Alice...you nailed it so completely with your essay. Damn those judges. Your miscarriage is just about one year to the date after my own. It was our first pregnancy, and I was just starting to show, so everyone knew. There just aren't words for how to cope with it. I worked in a high school at the time and remembered being faced with pregnant teens and feeling so bitter over it. And the insensitive teacher who sat in the lounge complaining about getting bloodwork done for her 12 week check-up. At least she was pregnant! Mother's day was tough for me too. We were packing to move, and as I packed our closet up I found the stashed-away ultrasounds of our first (uncooked) baby and collapsed into grief all over again.

It was the week before we moved that two things happened; I was driving late at night and had a "talk" with my grandmother who had passed away a few years prior. I asked that she watch over the soul of the child we had yet to meet. It somehow felt at that very moment I would be okay. That I had done the right thing as a mother. Then, I got pregnant with our son. We didn't find out for a few more weeks, but honestly I think my body needed me to let go of my grief before I could let in the joy that he would be. There are days and moments when I feel that loss just as acutely as I did that sunny April morning, but I still have so many blessed moments I cannot remain stuck in the grief forever.

November 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJen

I am strangely proud of the fact that I'm reading this on a Monday, creating the illusion that I was doing something terribly interesting on Saturday night.

November 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMiss Britt

Just read your essay, "Eighteen Attempts at Writing about a Miscarriage." You are, as many people before me have said, a brilliant writer. (But you can never hear that enough, can you?) The essay was beautiful and honest, but most of all heartbreaking. Thank you.

November 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKMS

I'm an old reader.

I remember hearing about this article on the blog and am glad that I've had a chance to read it. I just wanted to say I totally get it. When it happened to me (was around 10 weeks or so and it had stopped right after the appt that we saw it and the heartbeat--so for FOUR WEEKS my body just...didn't do anything.)

And I have to say, that part was hard--the part where I'd been talking and thinking about a baby growing inside me and it wasn't. It felt like some sort of betrayal by my body.

I think I was kind of lucky (HA HA HA HA HA HA) that something else really horrible started happening in my life about 2 months later--so I had something else really bad to be upset over. Somehow that made it a little easier. I know--that sounds weird.

November 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKatie

Congrats on your Babble cred. It is well deserved.
Thank you for adding your essay here....it's spot on and honest. I miscarried a few months before you and was in the midst of coping through therapy and meds (my first dealings with both) when you wrote of your miscarriage. I remember thinking, 'I hope it gets better for both of us'. And I'm so glad it did.

November 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSarah S

Thank you for posting your essay "18 ways" here. I had wanted to read it since you first mentioned it. I often go back and read your post from May 20, 2008. I wish such wonderful words could come more often from happiness and less often from pain.

November 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDarra

Yeah... not the first time I heard about Pushcart Prize judges hating babies...


When you say that Catharsis-inducing writing is rarely any good (Usually it's like scrawling I HATE YOU I HATE YOU in your diary) you meant to say that it's rarely as effective without having ingested at least half a bottle of wine first right?
Right?

November 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJennifer June

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