Oh my days! I am laughing so hard right now, as I pen this. A lot of drama from my TTC days just came to mind, and even though they are all funny now in retrospect, there was nothing funny about them back then. I can be a bit of a melancholy sometimes and when I was trying to conceive, I just could not figure out why I wasn’t getting pregnant. One particular incident comes to mind, when I got news about a college classmate putting to bed. Now, I try not to be envious of anyone’s good fortune, but news of Cynthia’s childbirth got me like ”Why do bad things happen to good people?”. I went to bed that night in tears, wondering why a good girl like me would have to beg for a baby, while retired aristo like Cynthia would get a baby effortlessly. I queried God and asked a thousand questions until I was on border-line blasphemy and had to call myself to order.
I pouted for days and even messed up my cooking, so much so that hubby finally decided I needed to go on a break from TTC. He lamented that my craving for a baby was driving me crazy, and I needed to breathe and realize that life is bigger than parenthood. I looked at him like he was the one who was insane. How could he say life is bigger than parenthood? What is life if species did not procreate? And how could he suggest that I take a break from TTC? That was only going to delay my having a baby even more! I only saw reason with him one night when I was randomly perusing the Bible and stumbled on a scripture (Matthew 11: 28) that said Come to me, all you that labour and are heavy ladened, and I shall give you rest. Suddenly, resting looked so appealing and I realized that I had worked myself to weariness. I needed to rest. The worrying wasnât making the two pink lines show anyways…so I did what I thought was impossible. I took a break from TTC. The plan was to start assisted reproduction after putting my body and mind in a good state, but somehow I got pregnant while on my rest, and had my baby without needing IVF.
So, when should you take a break?
1. When you are overwhelmed mentally
Conception is as much a physical act, as it is mental. The human body is a mystery that scientists are still trying to solve, but one thing all researchers agree on is that; women in a relaxed state of mind get pregnant faster and more easily than those who are mentally-drained. Whether it is TTC-related or not, if your mind has been pushed to the limit, then baby making should not be something to add to the list. Take your mind off the baby cravings, and focus on clearing your mind. If it’s a target at work; face it, hit it and then get back to the drawing board.
2. After a couple of failed cycles
Even your Gynaecologist is going to recommend that you take a break if you have recently endured a couple of failed cycles. Your body needs to recover from all those shots and your hormones also need to balance up before you try again. Sometimes, it can be tempting to just go on to the next one, but it is important to let go for a bit. Taking a break in this case can help you realize what contributed to the failed cycles; whether you didn’t respond well, if you didn’t like the nurses, if you had work or family pressure while you were cycling, if your egg quality was bad, if there was a problem with the transfer, if you were too anxious…Knowing what did not work puts you one step closer to what works.
3. If your marriage is suffering
It is so easy to get carried away by TTC activities that we neglect the men we want to have babies for. In my case, I thought he didn’t want a baby as much as I did, so I shut him out a lot and even gave him the silent treatment on some days when I was pretty much a drama queen. If your every waking and sleeping thoughts center around the baby you want so much to hold, forgetting that you have a bigger baby that also wants just as much cuddle and hugs, then you need to take a break. Release the reins on the childbearing thingy and remind your husband that you are still the hoochie mama he married.
4. If you can’t recognized yourself anymore
I am not even talking about the frown lines that are starting to appear on your forehead, or the eye bags that you try to cover up with excess foundation and concealer, because of all the sleep you have been losing. I am talking about this new envious, never-happy-for-anybody, cringe-at-the-news-of-a-childbirth, avoiding-family-gatherings person that you have become. You have to come out of this challenge a better person. You have to have learnt a thing or two about the virtues of long suffering and patience from this journey, not wearing the cloak of jealousy like a fur coat that is going out of season. Search your heart my sister, if you have forgotten how to rejoice with others…leave baby and fix your heart!
Good luck, everyone! God speed to us all!
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