Cross Wind

A long with picking myself up and dusting myself off, I’m going to try some new things. First here’s my update.

I went to acupuncture yesterday, and today I am sore from the adjustments. All the needles were really tender, everywhere and still are today. Dr. P said some of my stagnation has returned. Probably from me being inconsistent with the acupuncture lately, and the fact that I ate bread and refined sugar for the first time in 4 or 5 months last week.

Eating bread after none for 4 months was like pouring flour and water in my stomach. It made my stomach hurt and feel really bloated. I also had my favorite candy, Skittles. Which after 4 months with none, taste very similar to how Pledge smells. Which is a pretty good smell I guess, but taste, not so much.

As a followup to my embryo status, I called today, on day 9, to find out what happened since I was supposed to hear from the clinic on day 7. I was told it was discarded on day 7 due to fragmentation but no one ever called me to let me know. Part of me is angry, because at the very least my clinic should be delivering the news. Good or bad.

I’m coming to realize that being angry at the clinic is really me angry at myself. Angry that my body has betrayed me and angry that I feel like I’ve failed. Again.

I’ve covered how much of a perfectionist I am. I’ve covered how I’m a bit OCD about, well everything. My acupuncturist says “I carry a lot of burdens” I asked him where do I let them go? Where do I put them? He said ” See? You’re looking for somewhere to put them down, you need to stop that and just be.” Which puzzles me because I’m not sure what that means. When someone says “just let it go” I never have any idea what the heck that’s supposed to mean. Go where? And how? Instructions? Anyone?

People have told me that I need to “let it go” my whole life. I get the idea. Kind of. I mean, I want to, I just don’t know how. And its one of those trite expressions that has always irritated me more than it resonated with any kind of real meaning.

After my meltdown earlier this week, Louisa, recommend and article on “self compassion” which I read, and loved, but I’m not sure how to get there. It’s another one of those things that doesn’t really make sense with me. I’m not sure what the difference is between self compassion and self-pity, so again I ask for an instruction manual. Something in English please. Don’t give me those Danish IKEA instructions  because unless there are pictures, I can’t read or comprehend it.

Which brings me to the new things I’m going to try. I’m going to try some visualization techniques. I got a visualization CD specifically for IVF, from Circle and Bloom. They have a host of other programs for fertility, and while I can’t tell you if it works or not, especially since I have only had it for 2 days, I can tell you, its relaxing, and for me now, that’s enough. There is also 35% discount for National Infertility Awareness Week, April 22, through 28th so have a look! They also have a blog, which you can find here:

In an email conversation with Joanne, the founder of Circle and Bloom, she said, “Can I make one suggestion while you listen to the programs?  Try to really let go of the past problems you have encountered.  Think of your body as a clean slate for this cycle and procedure. Put yourself completely into the visualizations and let go. And I do not mean fake positive psychology, I mean honoring your body and knowing that pregnancy is possible.”

Which started to click things into place. I’m not sure I’ve got it completely, but even I recognize that there is a theme here. If I’m not mistaken it’s letting things go. There is no magical solution to everything that has happened in the past, the bad cycles, the mistakes I’ve made, the regrets.

In my mind’s eye, I see it as releasing all those pent-up feelings of anger, frustration hurt and fear into the ether. Imagine black molecules that pollute nothing but you, your body, your life and hinder your ability to have room for anything good or positive. They weigh you down, teach you to be cynical, and not to trust that anything good can happen. I can not begin to tell you how much, I do not want to be that person.

I see it in terms of air propulsion, velocity, gaining enough forward movement that the negative washes off you like a cross wind through a jet-wash. Oh fine. Just toss my overcomplicated analogy and say “water off a duck”.

No matter the outcome of this journey, that’s not who I want to be. So I’m going to try to do some visualizations, positive thinking, learning more about this “self compassion” business and work on forgiving myself. Because ultimately, I think it’s really me I’m mad at.

I want that clean slate so much.


21 comments on “Cross Wind

  1. Daryl says:

    One visualization that has helped me in the past is imagining putting whatever nagging thought or feeling has been bugging me into a helium balloon and physically letting it go. Watching it float away. Admittedly, it’s a temporary feeling, but it’s a lightness I don’t get to experience often, and it feels freakin’ amazing. I like your analogy, too, especially the forward momentum part. Moving forward is way more freeing than looking backward!

    • Jeanette says:

      I like this idea! But what happens when I float away like the house from “UP”? Do you really do this? Where do you release them?

      I had a hard time with the forward movement analogy, it didn’t come together as cleanly or as smoothly as Id have liked. I know what I mean in my head, I know what it looks like to me but “water off a duck” is such a cliche and it doesnt really work for me.

      May we ALL move forward!

    • Deborah says:

      I used to do something similar, but visualized putting my negative thoughts and feelings into a trash bag and watching the garbage truck crush the bags as it took them away.

  2. Theresa says:

    Maybe you could do something physical to let go of the mental past. Like write something on a rock and throw it over a cliff. Or write something on a piece of paper and then burn it – sort of a physical sign of the emotional burden you are letting go.

    • Jeanette says:

      I knew I could count on you to suggest something physical. 🙂 I Like both the ideas! I’m just afraid Id burn my house down, and with my luck Id throw a boulder off a cliff and kill someone with it.

      I will consider them both, but in ways that ensure I dont require bail money later. 🙂 Thank you!

      When I exercise, I focus on my breathing, I try to visualize my outline, colored in completely black, a little at a time I try to visualize my outline going from black to a healthier vibrant pink all new and clean.

  3. Jeanette says:

    I LOVE these suggestions and hearing how you guys are dealing with your burdens! Love it!!

  4. What I used to do:
    During my creative writing masters, every story I wrote basically was about a pregnant lady. I was obsessed. There I was in a room full of 25 year olds, babies were the last thing on their mind, and I wrote stories about smart women fooling themselves pregnant, a talking uterus. It was a tattoo on my forehead. Eventually my (male) writing prof had to delicately suggest ‘the writer clearly has a topice on her mind that needs to be addressed’. I ended up going to see a counsellor (I NEVER go to therapists). I hated the sessions, I felt like such a cliche, but I said to her that I had to keep coming because I couldn’t keep obsessing. Nothing magic happened, she asked some questions, I did some angry humiliating crying. But it worked. I had no expectations of her, she wasn’t expected to fix me, but in hindsight it did me a world of good.

    Now I do yoga. Not because of meditation or visualization, but because I get to think about my body in a different way than as a (screwed up) baby maker. I get to measure it by another yardstick. And because the class I do is tough, it distracts me. Maybe i’m easily distracted, but sometimes that’s just what I need.

    When I worked, I used to get worked up about a lot of things. My mentor told me to pick a date in the future where I would decide or revisit all the angst and until then, stick it all in a box and don’t worry about it. Sounds silly, but it works for me. So I say, I’m not going to think about the IVF thing for two weeks, or one month- usually a point where I can decide or make a choice of some sort. And then like a piece of work, I file it away. Because I can’t do anything in between. It helps my type A personality too- it gives me a sense I’ve managed it somehow.

    But of course, it is hard. So hard. And in the short time i’ve come to know your story I have felt such empathy for your situation and admired your spirit and determination (and I do not gush easily).

    all the best.

    • Jeanette says:

      First, thank you for the incredible compliment!
      I dont know you, of course, but I perceive you as intelligent, private and somewhat reserved, so I really appreciate your kind words! Of course I could be completely wrong, (about the private and reserved part) but I also admire you for what I perceive as your quiet strength and dignity. I aspire to be more like that.

      What kind of yoga and how often? Ive done it in the past but its a habit Ive gotten out of. Ive been looking at classes, I guess I just need to pull the trigger.

      I really enjoy the dialogue with you. Your wisdom is so appreciated.

      Thank you again

      • I’ve been going to vinyasa and ashtanga, which are more demanding classes. you sweat a lot and build power and flexibility. Not very zen, in a way (at least not until after). If your not actually doing IVF it’s something to look at. But now that I’m doing IVF, I’ve had to stop and do Hatha or Yin yoga, the slower stuff where you stretch more, sweat less. I went twice a week, but even weekly is a start. I like yoga also because I’m can be competitive and type A and it forces me to recognize and accept limitations and makes me feel stupid when I try to compete. It’s a good counter balance.

        I read this thing the other day and I thought of you: they suggested scheduling IVF freak out time- 15 minutes a day. And in that time you obsess all you want about what’s going on. and then after the time is up, you’re done for the day until tomorrow. Sounds odd, but thought I’d pass it on. I guess I sort of do that every day between 2 and 3- it probably should be shorter, but whatever.

        We at mothersugar are happy that you’ve joined us! I love that we have someone who works in the gaming world.

  5. Louisa says:

    I think self compassion is about not “shoulding” on yourself—I should have started IVF sooner, my body should make more eggs, I shouldn’t obsess over wanting to have a baby. You can’t change these things. The mantra I used when I found myself doing that is: it is what it is. I know it sounds overly simple but it worked for me. Plus yoga plus planning some fun non IF related stuff.

    • Jeanette says:

      Thank you for the clarity. I do a lot of “shoulding” In fact I looked into not just the article you sent me but some of the Kristen Neff stuff online and apparently I have a lot to learn.

      I’m looking for some yoga classes, what kind do you like and why?

      I need to plan more stuff outside the IF. I feel like its become my hobby and that really bothers me.

      • Louisa says:

        I would start with Hatha yoga (not sure if I spelled that right) because it’s gentle and teaches you how to breath—focused breathing is a really great stress reliever. It’s very easy to get totally wraped up in IF and also very isolating. Glad you liked Kristen’s stuff, I think she is a great writer although her main topic (baby loss) is very sad.

  6. Just curious if you guys are considering working with a surrogate. My apologies if this has already been covered. I did try the search feature first but got no results.

  7. MC says:

    If having your baby’s picture on the hand will let you happy and positive feeling, let me know I am glad to email you.

  8. babysocks2008 says:

    I agree with Theresa. When I need to let stuff go, I imagine taking all the issues in my head, putting them in a paper bag and then lighting it on fire. She has taken what I imagine and suggested doing it physically. I love the idea of writing your worries on pieces of paper and then watching it burn. Doesn’t hurt to try it…Do you have a fireplace? 😉

    • Jeanette says:

      I do.. and I will definitely consider it.

      Im so glad youre back and that you stepped away and feel better. Im really proud of you for being wise enough to do it.

  9. Belle says:

    Oh does this ever resonate with me. I could have written this post myself. I wrote about living in the present ( and on intentions ( on my other blog some time ago. It is so hard to find that sweet spot in life where you are not harboring things, but are still enjoying the moment. I still struggle with it but know that just being aware of this fault is progress.

    Since I got sick, I have tried to take my worries to yoga and leave them behind when I roll up my mat to go home. It is almost like they are exorcised out sometime between down dog and Savasana. You have taken the first and hardest leap to making changes – admitting what might be broken. I am excited to see where your journey takes you and how you grow in the weeks and months ahead.

  10. […] friend Carlton and I had a long discussion about the “Cross Winds” post. His conclusion was that while I have mastered the poker face, what I haven’t figured out […]

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