Infertility and Self Care
Updated: Dec 9, 2018
Month after month you and your partner track your ovulation, time everything perfectly. You try all of the gimmicky tricks you have heard of from your friends... or the things the girls in your facebook group swear by. Mucinex, pineapple, pre-seed, positions, sex every other day. You have tried it all.
Getting pregnant becomes your obsession. It has to be, really. You are determined to find the root cause of why this is taking so long. Is it me? Or is it him? Arguments over who should go to the doctor first. Fighting about alcohol consumption, hot tubbing and cell phones in pockets.
Your heart races with excitement and anxiety at the end of your two week wait. Peeing on the stick becomes so commonplace, you already have prepared yourself for what it will be. You know the feeling. Negative. Again. You think maybe the egg hasn't burrowed in enough to send off the HCG signal. So you test again at noon, 6pm when you get home from work and again before you go to bed. Good thing you buy Amazon Cheapies.
So this is your life story. For months and months, maybe years now. What is your saving grace? What do you do so you don't lose yourself in this process?
Here are my 7 favorite self care tips!
1. Put the phone down...
There's a difference between self care and self indulgence. Sitting on your phone for 3 hours might feel good in the moment. But the reality is after you get off, you are only riddled with guilt over what you didn't get done and in fight or flight over what Pam said about your dog. Not to mention your circadian rhythms... Ok, I'll save that for another post. But what I will say is sleep is VITAL for your hormone functions and blue light does your sleep cycles no help.
2. Think of ONE Task you can get off your to do list that will Relieve some Mental Burden.
Forgetting to send that card? Pay a bill? Clean your closet? Purge your dresser? Think of how amazing it will feel to get that item crossed off your mile long to do list. You've been planning on doing it for a month. But never kept your appointment with yourself. Set a timer. Do it now.
3. Buy a Fancy Water Bottle and Drink your Water!
I have realized recently that dehydration is a major source of anxiety for me. If my body's basic demands for life aren't being met, I get SOS signals sent clear as day in the form of anxiety! Turn your bathroom breaks in to mini deep breathing sessions. Sure, peeing a lot is annoying. But your mind will thank you for treating them as self care moments.
4. Get your Hair Done.
I'm not trying to cross the line between indulgence and self care. A new hairstyle can make you feel so fresh and beautiful. Bonus points if your salon uses safe, natural products too!
5. Treat yourself to Coffee or Tea and a good Book.
Or people watching... Whatever suits you better. Just be though. Don't drown out the background. You might be surprised at what will spark joy or what connection you might make. It could be just the blessing you were waiting for.
6. Reach out to a Friend
If you're introverted like me, sometimes reaching out is the last thing you think could refresh you. If this describes you, put a time limit on it. Set aside 1 hour to meet a friend somewhere. Catch up, then take your leave. Spill your heart to them or let them spill their heart to you, keep it light or just make small talk. You might be surprised at how much better you feel when you leave.
7. Skip that Indulgent Dessert
Sugar and mental health DO NOT, I repeat, do not, go hand in hand. Your brain wants nutrition. It wants real fats and real nutrients. Make some Fat Bombs instead. Do your health a favor and you will truly notice a difference.
I know I talk a lot about self indulgence vs self care. I'll write further on this. I cannot get behind a habit or practice that will leave you feeling used and guilty. As a suggestion, sit down and make a list of your common self care practices and really reflect on if they're servicing you or holding you back. If you need to clean up your habits, stay tuned for my article about how to do this.
Thanks for reading! If you have any questions, comments, concerns, I'm all ears!