My own IVF journey yielded many surprises, shocks, and lessons -some painful, some beautiful as their rich rewards revealed themselves over time. But having been fortunate to share the experience of many other fertility-challenged women as well as my own, I notice that most IVF adventures have 3 main aspects in common.
- Loss of Control.
Many of the women choosing IVF are slightly older than the average age of first childbirth in the Western world. In the United States, the average age for IVF patients is approximately 35, whereas the average age of first time mothers is 26.
This age difference is important for social and psychological reasons, not just the biological. One of the major reasons women wait to get pregnant is to pursue a more advanced career, or to take the time to find a more suitable parent-partner. In other words, these are women who are ambitious, intentional, and conscientious. I am not making the argument that younger mothers are not these things. Rather that many IVF candidates are women who have worked hard to create a certain kind of life, who have learned and practiced a certain kind of discipline that has given them an experience of creative control (women are often demeaned for being “controlling,” but this is the good kind of control I’m talking about).
Now, here we are, these women, confronting an aspect of life that has huge importance, just as meaningful, perhaps even more meaningful to some of us, as our choices in partnership or career. And now we are thrust in a dynamic where it seems like we have little control, perhaps even no control at all. As we surrender our bodies to the various procedures IVF requires, such as frequent blood draws, shots in our abdomens and buttocks, and scopes inside our uterus, we must surrender to this intersection of biology and technology in the hopes that we can get our seemingly reluctant wombs to produce a result that we can’t see to manage the old fashioned way.
As so many IVF patients remark, “It seems amazing that I spent so much of my teens, twenties, even thirties working hard not to get pregnant, and now I have to work and pay for the chance to get what I dreaded before.”
- Hyper-Focus on the “Shoulds”
You won’t have to go far to find a forum, blog, Instagram page, Facebook Group, or webinar full of IVF candidates trying to find the perfect formula to fertility. Whether it’s following a particular kind of diet, doing certain home remedies, or requesting specific tests to be done, you’ll quickly find plenty of people who are both passionate advocates before and against. It can get pretty confusing pretty quickly.
What I noticed was that it was easy to find membership in social groups where people were worried, concerned, and focused on the negatives of IVF – and that’s not surprising considering that it can be a very tough, tiring, and lengthy process. But if you know anything about energy, if you are interested in what some might call Law of Attraction, and others might call Creative Intention, you know that while group support for a mutual challenge can be a wonderful tool, it can also be debilitating to get sucked too deep in a constant conversation about why something isn’t happening.
My advice is to choose your IVF groups with care -whether you are focused more on biological questions around nutrition, exercise, medication, etc., or more interested in exploring the psychological/spiritual aspects of this process (and its potentially heartbreaking ups and downs!), you want to make sure that your IVF sisters are focused, for the most part, on positive outcomes, on the small wins that will hopefully add up to the big win of a new member of your family.
A good place to look for support is the IVF: Manifesting a Miracle page on Instagram. Here you will find inspiration, uplifting posts and personal reflections of my own journey through IVF to motherhood.
- Professional Help for the Body, Rather Than the Heart/Mind/Soul
I’ve been an Occupational Therapist for 18 years, and I am a proud professional member of so much of what we accomplish in Western Medicine. Truly, IVF is a miracle. After having a front row seat watching a zoom lens focus on our embryo (the size of a dot), to being moved from a petri dish then sucked up through a needle and transferred into my uterus, I’ll never be the same. How an embryologist can assist in creating a new life is astonishing.
All that said, however, once you’ve put together a great IVF team to take care of your body (doctor, acupuncturist, nutritionist, etc. ), it’s a good idea to leave your body to the doctors and return to an area where you DO have tremendous creative control, your thoughts, your feelings, your mindset. This is the focus of my Manifesting a Miracle personal coaching program. Someone once said that an “incurable” condition means “curable only from within.” And I think that’s a good quote to keep in mind as you start your IVF journey. Not going to lie to you: this can be a tough haul and you’re going to need new skills and tools to navigate this challenging path.
Manifesting a Miracle: My Miracle, Your Miracle.
Because of my experience as both an occupational therapist and a lifelong practitioner of creative intention, I was fortunate enough to know, right from the start, not just that I needed to create my own IVF team and tool box, I also had some idea how about how to begin to create my own miracle mindset program. I knew that while I had good medical help to deal with my gynecological questions, I would need just as much help in designing a supportive mindset that would keep me resilient in the face of so much unknown, so much beyond my control.
Through one on one coaching we explore what challenges you may be experiencing and begin to create a plan of empowerment. We’ll look at some pretty important things such as intention, your personal feelings and beliefs around your desires and understanding of energy. We’ll dive into some of your daily habits and routines, look at your life as a whole and piece together where you may be out of alignment. There are so many components to this program that it’s not easy to articulate. One thing I know is you will find tremendous value, and it will be customized to your own personal needs.
Now, I am so incredibly pleased to share this opportunity with you. The program we devise for you will truly be for you, it is your unique IVF Miracle Manifestation pathway.
Packages for personal one-on-one support are available. These coaching sessions are individually customized based on your needs. The investment cost for a standard support package starts at $1500 and includes approximately 10 sessions with myself as your IVF mentor.