I honestly thought, until I saw this movie, that my feelings about infertility were resolved.
I was sitting next to my 10 year old miracle child, oblivious to the possibility that the movie had anything to do with anything except for a kid with leaves on his legs.
The first ten minutes transported me back to a time I thought I had forgotten.
So much so that I found myself compelled to glance every few minutes at Elliana to make sure she was really there.
Joel Edgerton and Jennifer Garner provide one of most convincing portrayals of an infertile couple that I have EVER seen in a movie.
From the scene in the fertility doctor’s office, to the agonized look on Edgerton’s face as Garner cries in the still unused baby room, to the desperate burial of their hopes for a child in their garden, I was fighting back tears of recollection that brought me back to those desperately lonely moments Lisa and I experienced when it felt like our souls were being ripped apart by sadness.
Even when Timothy shows up, the way Garner’s sister shows up and diminishes his arrival–in the same way many people diminished the validity of our pregnancy with Elliana after so many years of miscarriages– resonates with an honesty that truly shows the complex emotional minefield that couples who go through infertility constantly tread.
There is so much imperfection in the movie, which is surprising to me given it is a Disney production. Even the most jaded infertility veteran can find humor in just how screwed up your master plan can get when infertility knocks you on your butt and onto another path altogether.
It is a tearjerker, and may not be a good choice if emotions are too raw after a recent infertility loss.
And even if you’ve resolved your infertility multiple times over, this movie undoubtedly will have some scene that will put you on a mini-time machine trip back to some nuance of those days when parenthood seemed so completely out of reach.
There is also a beautiful hopefulness to the movie, and it serves up the perfect balance of resigned sadness, and bizarre happiness that is required for couples to keep their sanity during the infertility experience.
I rate this as a 10 for integrity to the infertility experience, with the caveat that it will generate a fair amount of tears of both happiness, and empathy.