I am getting ready for my second IVF sometime in the near future. I have decided to approach this one with a full arsenal of supports. Not that I half-assed our last attempt at pregnancy, but there are things that I can do now that I didn't do, or didn't do as well, then. Here is my battle plan...
1. I can vow to really relax and lower my stress levels during this attempt. My stims phase was during summer school last time and our house was under construction for the bed/bath renovation we did upstairs, so up until a few days into stimming we were sleeping on a futon (or in my case, not sleeping). It was not comfortable. I was not well rested. Once we were into the stims phase I was back in my (new) bedroom, but there were still workers in the house and outside it working on stuff involving pressure spray and chipping out fieldstones in the patio. Again, not restful. This time hopefully those kinds of things won't be going on and I can truly relax. (Side note: This is not to vindicate those who would say "Just relax! Then you'll get pregnant!" This is more of a "I need to relax in spite of all the insane things I'm doing to my body just for a chance to get pregnant, so that my body is not teeming with cortisol on top of all the other hormones that are artificially introduced" kind of thing. Super relaxation on its own merits will still fail to get me pregnant...)
2. I can really and truly vegetate after transfer. Last time our wonderful greyhound, Kayak, arrived on the same day as transfer. I went anyway to pick him up and while I spent most of the time there on a bench or sitting in the car, I still feel like I didn't do as good a job as I could have resting and staying put so those embryos could settle in. My rational self knows that going to pick up the dog isn't what caused my IVF to NOT result in a pregnancy, but my more front-of-mind irrational self thinks somehow that may have contributed to our failure. Therefore, after transfer I am going home and I am going to spend the rest of the day in bed with trashy reads and movies. And the next two days will be either in bed or on couch. No chances this time! I foresee takeout in our future...
3. I can better prepare my body. I have acupuncture appointments already lined up. I have been doing Yoga for Fertility for months and hopefully that is having a cumulative effect on my body and soul. I am not as fit as I could probably be (thank you, IVF #1) but I feel good. I know what to expect this time, so I know what to do to make myself more comfortable. I am also doing Maya Massage, more on that in #5. It's important for my body to be primed because this time they are increasing my meds quite a bit--they want me to have many more follicles in hopes that this will produce more mature eggs and more viable embryos. So my stimming experience will be different but hopefully the acupuncture, specialized yoga, Maya Massage, and the special tea in #5 will prepare my body for the stimming onslaught!
4. I can better prepare my mental well-being. This helps not only me but Bryce, too. If I can stay a little more calm and centered maybe things will work out better this time. Not that I was basketcase previously, but there was a lot of nervousness and anxiety and depression and crying and feeling sorry for myself and Bryce. I'm trying very hard to approach this time with a more meditative mind. I am opening up my mental state for possibilities and trying not to even entertain the thought that it won't work. (I'm not stupid, I know it's still at best 50% likely to work, but I am going to focus on the GOOD 50%.) I am going to attempt to not drive myself crazy with every little thought of what could go wrong. I am going to invite good things to happen to me and Bryce. I am going to meditate more frequently and set intentions for my day, every day. You never know, it might work! :) In the meantime, it will at least make me slightly more stable during this process and therefore less unpleasant to live with.
|Look! Magical fertility vapors!|
5. I can do some really freaky holistic stuff. Since my mind is open to possibility, I am willing to try anything within reason. Like for instance, going for a massage specifically for your abdomen to externally stimulate, increase blood flow, and realign internal reproductive parts (sounds fairly creepy, but it was felt amazingly relaxing and healing). And then purchasing a beautiful packet of whole leaf herbs that looks like a really awesome fertility tea. Smells like a delicious Tazo tea you might get at Starbucks. But this tea is not meant for consumption. Oh, no... this tea is meant for steaming your uterus and her friends. I have a picture of the crazy witches' brew looking stuff boiling on my stove. Basically, I soft-boiled it, steeped it, placed it on a trivet on the floor, and then positioned my birthday-suited self directly over it while wrapped in a blanket so no cold air could interfere with the hoo-hoo steaming. Or, as it's more endearingly called by the folks at the holistic healing center/fertility clinic where I got it, a "Vag Bath." Clearly, I am very serious about wanting to get pregnant. These activities are very relaxing, albeit a little weird, and if they help me get pregnant I am 100% behind them. Although not behind them enough openly to steam in front of Bryce (who just about fell over laughing when I explained why the house smelled overwhelmingly like a soothing herbal tea when he got home yesterday).
I am giving it all I've got this second time around the IVF merry-go-round. I think our chances are good. Oh wait, I forgot, I'm changing my mindset. I KNOW our chances are good.