It was so fun seeing so many people at Bonefish Grill Wednesday night. We served folks and helped raise money for the Boys and Girls Club of Dane County! CEO Michael Johnson thought we may have helped raise $15,000 during dinner!
You have likely dealt with infertility or know someone very close to you who has.
Even though my husband and I have somewhat openly struggled with infertility, we have yet to really start worrying. I mean, don't get me wrong, I've worried. I've cried. I've been jealous of people for having babies. I've also forgotten about the jealousy when I see their beautiful little baby. But that's the honest truth.
Not being able to have a baby seems like a really cruel twist of fate to me because I was adopted. For what it's worth, I've really loved being adopted... and at times envision us adopting children. I just kind of wanted the biological connection that I missed growing up. I was so insecure about not looking like my parents, especially during certain school assignments... or just listening to friends talk about sharing clothes with their moms or sharing certain features with their loved ones. At the same time, I was so afraid to meet Asian people because I felt like an inferior Asian for not knowing anything about my perceived culture.
Everything I know about Korea is because I've spent a lifetime learning. Sometimes that is tedious and painful.
November is National Adoption Month
So, when I did a story about Mel and TC Boyd, I cried with them. I prayed for them. I felt heartbroken with them. I mean, you don't have to be going through infertility treatments to feel bad for someone when they're in a dark place. Leah Linscheid was working with me when they got the news that their final IVF cycle didn't take and we both left feeling heavy and drained... and then we had to come back to the newsroom and finish out our shifts.
DONATE: Adopting Baby Boyd GoFundMe
What has been a light is hearing from so many of you. Even the sad stories have given me so much hope. I think the truth is powerful. Even when we share those dark moments.
RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association
It also reiterates how many of us struggle with infertility. Nearly 1 in 10 people deal with infertility. Some might even call that an epidemic. Experts on reproductive health ask - how is it that some insurance companies cover Viagra, birth control or abortions... but won't even consider infertility as a real diagnosis? For the record, I'm not picking on Viagra, birth control or abortions - a growing number of people just wonder why infertility can't be added to the list.
Dr. Elizabeth Pritts from the Wisconsin Fertility Institute says 8 states are mandated to cover infertility, including Illinois. In a Google search, it looks like 15 states may offer some sort of coverage.
Last year I was a mess taking the hormones. I had hot flashes and had a real "super ragey" attitude. I broke out with some fairly large zits, which is a great look for television. I gained weight. I remember giving myself a shot in the bathroom at work (because you have to give them at a specific time), trying to hide the needle and thinking... this is the month it's going to happen. And then, of course, when I wasn't pregnant, I just felt sad, angry and depressed. Because I wanted people to know why I was being so different, I told everyone what I was going through... but I came to loathe telling people I had once again tested negative. It felt like a failure.
For some people, it can be so easy to have children. And that's wonderful. But when I read some of the nasty comments on our station FB page -- like one guy who said infertility is like nature's way of weeding us out -- I lose a little faith in humanity. I actually kind of rolled my eyes and moved on, but someone today messaged me and said how hurtful that was to read because they were struggling with infertility.
A friend of mine wrote a book called 'Inconceivable' - it just released this week and is a novel about a young couple who... you guessed it... can't conceive. She's donating half of her profits to BabyQuest, an organization that helped Mel and TC and several others pay for some of their procedures.
People who don't have children are looked at like they're selfish... or that their lives and issues are trivial. I got this once... from a person not in the news department... but someone who kept asking me to come in early for a shoot.
It went something like this -
"Hey, can you come in early tomorrow?"
"What about the next day?"
"Doesn't work for me."
"You don't have kids, right?"
"Right... but I have two dogs...?"
It was so awkward for me and I wish I hadn't said that. But I was so caught off-guard. I actually don't mind working long hours but it just didn't work for me then.
The point I'm trying to make is that we are all human. We all have issues, challenges and struggles. Some of us have several to get through! Some of us live with them in silence and along comes someone like the Boyds to help us get through them.
If you're an apple user, you may love this app. It's seriously one of the funniest things going around on the internet right. Just search for acapella app videos on YouTube and you'll be entertained!
Thank you so much for all your well wishes for our night at the EMMYs in Chicago.
We are such a team at News 3 and we were fortunate to take home EMMYs for evening newscast, interactivity and two craft awards - writing and editing. These were team efforts led by our 6 p.m. producer Krystal Webb and veteran journalist Dave Delozier. I really admire our news staff and love how we can all come together when news really matters.
If you were watching the live show on TV, you didn't see me... my category was on the livestream only and hit around 5:47:14. Krystal's speech won't appear on the YouTube link because it was actually being televised... but I caught it with my phone (below.)
It really is an honor to be invited to the party. We are so thankful we get to do the work we do.
I find myself in a pickle at these things because it feels so good to be recognized by your peers and win for your station, but we often win for the way we covered an awful event (not always... there are feature categories and such.) However, entire newscasts that win tend to be very hard newsy and often cover life changing situations. When you're in the moment of the awards night, you just want to cheer for your station and your colleagues who put so much heart into the coverage... but when you think about the real story, no one wins. Krystal mentioned that in her acceptance speech.
We are so thankful to our viewers. It means so much that people trust us with their stories and allow us into their homes. I always tell people that I live and breathe in this community and care about it as much as the next person. It is a privilege to work at the legacy station in Madison and try to make a difference. So thank you for all of your support! And thanks for the nice notes.
A few years ago I was introduced to a ring light thanks to Jeff Janowski. He's a wonderfully talented photographer and friend of ours (and I love his wife Vicky so much.)
A ring light does wonders for your face. It helps you pop and a lot of portrait photographers like it.
If you're going to buy a ring light, they can be very expensive. Even the "diva ring light" online is $200. Gurl, I ain't got $200 for a light right now!
So, I scoured the internet for DIYs and I found one that I really liked -- one that was cheap, simple and effective.
The pictures below were just quick pics I took with my phone (a Samsung S6) -- but I think they're pretty good for being phone pics!
Anyway, on to the lights. If you want to bypass everything I write and watch the video that inspired me, check out Ashlynn B's YouTube channel.
I slightly diverted from her tutorial. Here's what I used (with Amazon links) -
- 14" wide floral craft ring (wreath) ($7)
- 14" wood hoop for embroidery ($7)
- gorilla glue (had it in the house)
- white spray paint (had it in the house)
- 12v DC adapter ($9)
- LED light strips (cool white) ($10)
(***Ashlynn also uses a hot shoe and wood cube but I haven't done that part yet. I may... or I may not.***)
I also put this together bit-by-bit over the course of several days because it's easiest with my work schedule. In reality, you could finish it as soon as the glue or paint dries.
1. Glue the hoop to the craft ring.
2. Spray paint the hoop/ring. You could use a reflective silver or gold... but I used a white appliance color leftover from a previous project.
3. Add the LED lights. In the YouTube video mentioned above, Ashlynn B lines the inside of her hoop twice. For whatever reason, I did not have the space to do that. So, I did two strips of lights on the outside, one on the inside.
It is really as simple as that. I am thinking of a way to either build a PVC pipe tripod for the light or I am going to try the hot shoe idea in the video mentioned above. I'm not sure yet because I need to find a wood cube and I also have never really farted around with a drill, though I'm sure it's easy. However, it's also easy to use your hands to hold up the light, too.
I think this is a good start to creating a pretty inexpensive light -- I do not claim to be a professional but I do really like the difference it created in my pictures.