I’m a morning person, thus I like to wake up hours before my entire army does, and get some things done before the day gets really busy. It was one of such mornings, and I had my computer open, setting my day up, when my phone went off with the sometimes annoying sound of a new WhatsApp message.
Ordinarily, I would have ignored it because it was too early and I didn’t want to be distracted, but I was anyway and I checked. Lo and behold, it was an old friend, whom I haven’t heard from in a long time. The message was however cryptic but it seemed faintly familiar. I typed out a greeting and asked after her family.
The next thing was, “Can you believe it.” And a lengthy conversation followed, with me trying to gauge exactly what we were talking about. Somewhere along the line, she sensed that I didn’t get the hang of the conversation. She sent that first cryptic message, and this time, I got the message loud and clear. My friend had conceived naturally…for the first time EVER!!!!
OMGGGGG!!!! I was out of my seat and dancing. I can’t even begin to explain how overjoyed I was at her news that day. I literally had a spring in my footsteps throughout the day.
I mean, how can you not be happy about a spontaneous pregnancy, when she had given up hope of ever having a baby naturally? As at the time this pregnancy happened, she was under some pressure from family and friends to give IVF another try, and she was doing all she could to wade off the pressures. Needless to say, God was perfecting all that concerned her. HE was preparing an awesome testimony for her, that everyone who hears it would look up and say, “Thank you, Lord.”
They will dance sef, like I did, and in their hearts they will offer a prayer and use her testimony as a point of contact for other TTC moms, because with this one, it could only have been God.
She has a beautiful testimony now, but as most TTC moms know, the waiting is not for the faint at heart. It is a very stressful and psychologically draining experience but every TTC mom can make it easier on herself.
No need to lose your mind, or life, because of TTC, as baby needs your mind intact when he/she/they get(s) here.
So here are some things, TTC moms should stop doing to themselves.
Stop the self-blame game:
Personally, I feel like TTC moms are their own worst critic, so when people come with their unwanted pressures, blames, opinions and solutions, it just worsens an already bad case.
No, it is not about what you did or didn’t do in the past; infertility is just a medical condition like hypertension or diabetes. It is not everyone that has these conditions, however common they are. And the good news is that there are treatments for these, just as there are for infertility.
Once you are able to stop the blame game, you are able to focus on solutions.
In fact, to survive with infertility with a sound mind, a TTC mom needs to let go of the blame game. And if it is male factor infertility or dual factor, pointing accusing fingers at each other just won’t do anyone any good. It will only rock a marriage.
Stop perceiving yourself based on your fertility:
True, we live in a society that places a premium on a woman’s ability to have children and, worse, how she should have the children. That makes some women develop some form of superiority complex. Unfortunately, it also means some women, especially TTC moms, might suffer from inferiority complex as a result of being in the waiting room.
TTC mom, when God created you, He made you whole, sufficient in yourself. Yes, you will like to have children, then trust Him to give you those children, but please don’t think that the sole reason God created you was just to have children.
Being a mother is a big deal, but it is not the only deal there is.
Momma, you are more than enough, and you need to stop evaluating your self-esteem by whether there is someone who calls you mummy or not.
Stop acting helpless…you are in charge:
It is somewhat saddening the way some doctors present certain treatment options, in a take it or leave it manner. More like, this is the only option. Well, the reality is there is always another option, if you push for it.
A TTC mom recently shared how a fertility doctor had starkly told her that she should consider exploring the option of egg donors, if she wanted to have a baby. She was understandably devastated at the news. There she was, having undergone stims with very few follicles to show and the probability of getting viable oocytes were quite slim, but that option seemed too drastic.
While she was encouraged to take some time to think about it, but not too long so the cycle wouldn’t completely go to waste, she eventually decided against using egg donors.
She sought a second opinion, who concurred with the first doctor’s analysis, but not wanting to touch donor eggs with a mile long pole, she kept moving on and found a doctor who suggested a different approach, which started even before her cycle proper. She, who had under-responded during the previous cycle, almost over stimulated, and she had a good number of oocytes, which grew into great embryos.
The cycle failed as she suffered a case of failed implantation, but she’s got frozen embryos and will try again, as soon as her mind is in a good place.
Long story short, you are never helpless in your TTC journey! What your medical team says is important, but you have the final say.
Be your own advocate.
Stop waiting for a miracle:
I would be a liar if I say miracles don’t happen. I have seen too many miracles happen too many times. Some TTC moms have gotten pregnant while waiting to start their IVF cycles. Some have gotten pregnant naturally even after they have started their IVF cycle, and so many miracles that have happened in between.
One common thing that I have noticed with most of these miracles is that these TTC moms had already taken a step of faith. They had made moves, they weren’t expecting the miracle when it happened to them, but it did and that’s why it’s a miracle.
Rejecting, casting and binding infertility is all good, but please don’t stay too long on that mountain. Time is of essence in a fertility journey.
Stop seeing your sex life as only a means to have babies:
Some weeks back, Nicole and I attended a parents-in-waiting conference, where one of the speakers encouraged TTC couples to enjoy sex while they wait. It was not only eye-opening, it was also one hilarious session, but every word was the truth.
Sex isn’t about having babies, it is about companionship, it’s the glue which holds couples together. It’s a beautiful experience, and definitely not one to be foregone, just because one of the outcomes to sex isn’t manifesting. Build and enjoy your sex life.
TTC is hard enough, don’t inflict more hard on yourself.
Sending loads of baby dust your way mamas.
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