Relax? Yeah, Right
The two most annoying words you could ever say to those of us knee deep and battle scarred from trying to conceive are: just relax. Seriously? Just relax? After years of tests, procedures, and thousands of dollars shoveled out the window at break neck speed, that's the answer? Every time someone would say that to me I wanted to shriek back, "you have no f'ing idea what you are talking about, do you?"
That is until last year...
No one would ever accuse me of being mellow. My Type A lunacy is legendary. At one time, I believed that the more stress I bathed myself in, the closer I would get to my goals. This punishing formula seemed to work beautifully in my career as a lawyer. Without a single thought to the contrary, I applied this laughably counterproductive mindset to getting pregnant.
Obsession = Hellish Way To Live
My journey to "achieving" pregnancy, had been the classic roller coaster tale of misery. I had peed on innumerable ovulation predictor sticks . I had tracked my basal body temperature as if my life depended on it. I had made my way to two different fertility clinics. (Here's how to pick the right one the first time!) I had even hired an army of alternative healers, whom I let prod and cajole me into:
- Boiling "black chickens,"
- Incense rituals,
- Hugs from "healing saints,"
- Strict obstacle course-like diets,
- Endless acupuncture treatments,
- "Healing" baths,
- Abdominal massages, and
- Vaginal steaming!
I hung on my doctor's every word. I took each and every healer's sometimes conflicting advice as law. I even agonized over whether my choice to use a particular lipstick was robbing me of the pregnancy I longed for. Long story short, my obsession with getting pregnant imprisoned me in a hell of soul crushing fear and despair.
The "Paris Effect"
Then, last year, I did something that changed my fertility journey forever. I booked a trip to Paris. I didn't book the trip to go and see some exclusive French baby-making guru. In buying those tickets, I made the decision to regain control of my life. I was sick and tired of putting our lives on hold for "what if." As fate would have it, after booking the trip, we were advised by our doctor that our last frozen embryo transfer would be done just two weeks prior to our departure. This meant that we would find out if we were pregnant on the heels of leaving for the City of Light. I was tempting fate and it was glorious.
For the first time on my journey I kicked "freak out" to the curb and just let go. Instead of being hypersensitive over every change in my body, hoping it was a clue that I was actually pregnant this time, I let my thoughts gracefully flow to finding a Paris apartment to rent, planning activities, and day dreaming about walks around Paris with my husband. I said to hell with weird rituals and being ruled by a ludicrous list of no-nos. Was I reckless and stupid? No. I simply chose to live my life. I treated the day of our transfer like any other day, which was nothing short of blasphemy under my old "worry and wait" dogma. I even allowed myself to think, "what a bummer it would be if I was pregnant, because I really want to go on this trip!"
Two days before we were set to leave for Paris, I found out I was pregnant.
Before you go and book a trip to Paris, let me be clear about a couple things. Did the mere act of booking a trip to Paris get me pregnant? No way. Was it just that after years of trying that the numbers were on my side this time? Maybe. What I do know for certain is that this time, I was different.
In giving myself permission to experience joy again and live outside of the tyranny of "what if," the tight fist in my chest opened up. This experience taught me that:
No amount of obsessing ever brought me closer to having my baby.
Giving myself permission to live did.
You don't need to plan a trip to Paris to make this happen in your life. You just need to decide.
This particular chapter in my story did not end in the happy way that I had hoped. The universe had other plans for me. Despite my heartbreak, kicking my obsession's ass allowed me to be grateful and revel in the fact that I had finally had a breakthrough!
What I call, The Paris Effect, was a game changer for me. Let it inspire you. You have a life to live. Start by asking yourself some simple questions:
- When was the last time I did something I really love?
- How much time have I spent today listening to that negative voice in my head torturing me for not being pregnant?
- What plans have I put off, because "it" could happen this month??
Write your Answers Down.
If your heart sinks when you read your answers, it's time for a change.
On the fertility journey, there are no guarantees. You must have a plan AND a set of perfect tools for what lies ahead. That's what From Maybe To Baby is all about.
Are you ready to stop obsessing and live again?
Pick 1 of your answers from the 3 questions above and share it in the comments below!
With Love and Respect,
© 2014 From Maybe To Baby