meeting elizabeth banks and a simple "thank you"

Me with my new BFF Elizabeth Banks.
A few weeks ago I went to a San Diego Magazine "Taste of Hollywood" event at Ben Bridge Jewelers in UTC. Imagine my surprise upon arrival to see that the guest of honor on hand was none other than Elizabeth Banks.

While most of you know her from 30 Rock, Scrubs, and Zack and Miri Make a Porno, I admire her for one of her lesser known roles: a real-life, new mom who unapologetically used a surrogate to have her beautiful baby boy, Felix.

On her blog she writes, "I have been very fortunate in life both professionally and personally."

Speaking about infertility, she goes on to say, "The one true hurdle I've faced in life is that I have a broken belly. After years of trying to get pregnant, exploring the range of fertility treatments, all unsuccessful, our journey led us to gestational surrogacy: we make a "baby cake" and bake it in another woman's 'oven.'"

Banks chatting with reporters at the event.
Her framing and straightforward directness are a welcome, stark contrast to many women of a certain age and celebrity who aren't open about their fertility issues...which I discussed when Celine Dion spoke about her struggles.

I took this unexpected, happy opportunity to thank her in person. I told her how much I appreciated her openness about her surrogate and conceiving her child, and how much it meant to me.

She said, "Everybody's got their own journey to having a kid, and there's no wrong one."
I shared the short version of our story, and she immediately asked if I was okay now. I told her I was, and she said, "That's the most important thing."

Bonus silly pic, pre-iPhone steadiness.
As we begin National Infertility Awareness Week, I'm grateful for this platform to talk about these issues and raise awareness in my own community of friends and family. While there are 7.3 million women dealing with infertility, at times it's easy to feel alone.

With each kick ass woman like Elizabeth Banks who comes forward and shares their stories publicly, it makes the world of IVF, fertility, and infertility feels a little less small.

Now, on to the most pressing question: do you give paper or wood as a gift during this week? I always get confused on anniversary and celebratory gifts.

All photos mine.


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