I assume that most of you remember the story of Snow White. Forgive me if I've paraphrased too much or if some of the details are different from the version you're used to, but the gist remains the same. For those that need a refresher, here's the Cliff Notes version of the original story:
Snow White’s Mother died when she was young, and she gained a Stepmother when her Father remarried. Her Stepmother, the Evil Queen, was beautiful, but vain and possessed supernatural powers. Snow White was treated like a servant in her Stepmother’s castle. But even as she was doing a servant’s chores, Snow White still sang sweetly and remained pleasant. Often, a Handsome Prince would pass by the castle walls and hear Snow White’s beautiful singing. He wanted to talk to her, but she was too shy. Meanwhile, the Evil Queen was jealous of Snow White’s beauty and continually asked her magic mirror “Who’s the fairest of them all?” One day the mirror answered “Snow White” and it enraged the Evil Queen. The Evil Queen told a Huntsman to take Snow White into the forest and kill her. The Huntsman took Snow White into the forest, but couldn’t kill her because Snow White was too nice. So he lied and told the Queen that Snow White was dead, while Snow White roamed the forest looking for a place to live. Finally, Snow White found a little cottage where 7 dwarfs lived – Sleepy, Sneezy, Dopey, Bashful, Doc, Happy, and Grumpy. Snow White and the dwarfs co-existed happily, and all was well. Then, one day, the Evil Queen asked her magic mirror the usual question. She was shocked when the mirror said, “Snow White” because then she knew the girl was still alive. The Evil Queen drank a potion to turn into an old peddler woman, then used another potion to poison an apple. She found the cottage where Snow White was living, and got her to eat the poisoned apple. Snow White fell into a deep sleep, but when the dwarfs discovered her, they thought she was dead. They built her a glass coffin so they could look at her every day because they loved her so much. One day, the Handsome Prince was riding through the forest and saw Snow White. He remembered how much he enjoyed her singing, and how sweet and shy she was. He was enchanted her beauty, so he lifted the coffin and kissed her. This kiss of true love awakened Snow White. Snow White and the Handsome Prince got married and lived happily ever after. The Evil Queen died a particularly nasty death, and everyone celebrated.
What a heartwarming story, eh? For reasons unbeknownst to me, I started imagining a different version of Snow White that was centered around infertility. That's what gave me the inspiration for the title of the Stark White post last week. Anyway, since I didn't feel like working today (despite the fact that they are paying me to do so), I spent some time "tweaking" the story. It's sorta long, but hopefully it at least makes you smile once or twice. Enjoy...
Snow White’s Mother (Queen Easy Fertility) died when she was young. Yes, sadly, Easy Fertility left Snow White when our heroine was in her early 20s. Queen Easy Fertility was replaced by a wicked Stepmother named Evil Queen Infertility. Evil Queen Infertility was mean, nasty, and awful. She was unfair, unpredictable, and downright rude.
Snow White was treated like crap by Evil Queen Infertility. Despite this poor treatment which included basal body thermometers, OPKs, calendars, pineapple, decaf coffee, and contorted sleeping positions, Snow White was determined to remain pleasant and optimistic. All Snow White wanted was to be released from Evil Queen Infertility’s castle, and to go live happily in her own castle with lots of children. Month after month, Evil Infertility would trick Snow White into thinking that her prayers had been answered. But they never were, and each month Snow White would have her hopes and dreams crushed while the Evil Queen sat by, laughing cruelly.
A few times, when Queen Infertility wasn’t paying attention, Snow White managed to get pregnant. But, each time, the Evil Queen would figure it out and ruin everything by raining down a plague called Miscarriage. This went on for years, and it really wore Snow White down. She cried all the time, wondered what she did to upset The Powers That Be, and started to avoid the parties and balls that were held all around the kingdom. Some days, she was just too sad to face people.
What’s worse is that other Princesses in the castles all around her were being released. They were riding off in their horse-drawn minivans, loaded up with babies and toddlers. They were settling into their new castles with swing sets in the back yards and diving boards in the moats. There was nothing Snow White could do except manage a forced smile as she waved to her Princess friends who rode off into the sunset with their growing families. She tried valiantly to remain positive.
Often, a Handsome Prince would pass by the castle walls and hear Snow White’s beautiful singing. He found her enchanting, and loved her very much, but he often had no idea what to say to her to lift her out of her sadness. He longed to beat up Evil Infertility, and release his beloved Snow White from the Queen’s grips, but as hard as he tried, he could never figure out how to do it.
Meanwhile, the Evil Queen Infertility was jealous of Snow White’s determination and optimism and continually asked her magic mirror “Who’s the strongest of them all?” One day the mirror answered “Snow White” and it enraged the Evil Queen as she hissed, “How dare Snow White have a positive attitude, thinking she could finally have children? I’ll make sure that doesn’t happen!”
The Evil Queen told a Huntsman to take Snow White into the forest and ruin her chances. She instructed him to give Snow White some endometriosis, lots of ovarian cysts, a healthy dose of PCOS, elevated FSH, a whacky thyroid, a blood clotting disorder, a bicornuate uterus, scarred fallopian tubes, and crushed spirits. Then Evil Queen Infertility told the Huntsman to track down the Handsome Prince and rough him up too. She insisted on low sperm count, poor morphology, and poor motility for the Prince.
The Huntsman took Snow White into the forest, but couldn’t completely ruin her chances because she was too wonderful to be forever deprived of children. He did manage to inflict a few of the nasty problems on her, but not all of them. Likewise, when he found the Prince, he managed to give him just 1 or 2 of them. Apparently it was just enough to make things really, really difficult but not necessarily impossible. (As it turns out, this was even more cruel since it still allowed them some small margin of hope.)
After her incident with the Huntsman, Snow White roamed the forest looking for a place to live. Finally, she found a little house in a clearing. It had a peculiar sign above the door which read “Reproductive Endocrinologist Cottage.” There were pictures of babies in the windows (lots of twins, she noticed), so she very much wanted to go in. She knocked on the door, and was greeted by someone they called The Receptionist.
It seems that the owner of the cottage (Sir BabyMaker) wanted to help her, but she didn’t have something he kept referring to as “insurance coverage.” So she left to spend her days picking fruits in the forest and selling them at a roadside stand. Once she had saved up enough gold coins, she went back to see Sir BabyMaker.
Sir BabyMaker was very optimistic that he could help Snow White. He quoted lots of encouraging statistics, took lots of notes from their conversation, and gave her something magical called A Protocol. He told her to come back every day for the next month so he could introduce her to his 7 dwarfs: SemenAnalysis, HSG, BloodDraw, InjectedHormones, DildoCam, Hope, and PositiveBeta. He explained that those last 2 dwarfs weren’t always around, but that surely she would get to meet them someday.
Snow White felt better than she had in years! She had A PLAN. She even managed to track down Prince Charming and introduce him to Sir BabyMaker. Snow White and Prince Charming spent lots of time with those first 5 dwarfs. They did everything Sir BabyMaker told them to do, and things were really looking up.
Then, one day, the Evil Queen Infertility asked her magic mirror the usual question, “Who’s the strongest of them all?” She was shocked when the mirror said, “Snow White” because then she knew the Huntsman had not stricken Snow White barren. The Evil Queen drank a potion to turn into an old peddler woman, then used another potion to poison an apple. She found where Snow White was living, and got her to eat the poisoned apple.
Once Snow White ate the apple, everything started going wrong. She had a cycle cancelled for cysts, then she had a cycle cancelled for overstimulation. During another cycle, they had dreadfully low fertilization despite using a fancy new invention called ICSI. Many times they made it to that special place in the little cottage called The Room of Transfer, but each time it ended in sadness.
One day, Snow White finally got to meet the 6th dwarf, Hope. They had a long discussion which made Snow White feel a little better. After hearing Snow White’s story, Hope promised to go find her gang of friends: Lotta Drugs, Surgery and Tons ‘o Prayer. Hope and the gang tracked down Evil Queen Infertility and kicked her ass all over the place. Eventually, they broke the spell that Evil Infertility had cast over Snow White and Prince Charming! Evil Queen Infertility moved out of the kingdom forever, and was forced to live in a desolate cave on the highest mountain as far, far away from other people as possible.
The very next cycle, Snow White and Prince Charming were thrilled to hear that they were finally going to be parents. They had finally met the 7th dwarf, PositiveBeta. That dwarf even brought along his favorite cousin, DoublingBeta. They waited those long months while Snow White grew bigger and more uncomfortable, but it was worth every second. They planned a huge celebration and invited the entire kingdom, there was rejoicing everywhere! Finally the day arrived for the birth and they were shocked to learn that they had been blessed with two babies!!
The overjoyed parents named them Itsamiracle and Wearesohappy. From that day on, they lived happily ever after.