If you’re fed up with people DOING things for January – whether it’s Dry January, joining a spin class or taking up tap dancing – you may like to read Lesley Pyne’s latest blog post. I’ve known Lesley for a long time and have witnessed her building up her support network to help other people who are experiencing involuntary childlessness – she offers lots of support and inspiration for anyone living without children, and has helped many people through their own difficult times. You can sign up for regular emails from Lesley which offer tips and advice. What’s more, she’s right about January and people doing things – it can be exhausting to be faced with other people’s bouncy enthusiasm when you’re just trying to get through things yourself.
I didn’t make any new year’s resolutions this year – I’ve come to the conclusion that if you try to give things up, you just feel more focused on them and have a sense of being deprived when you can’t have them. And when you don’t feel you HAVE to go to the gym or go running, it can make exercise seem much more attractive. I know it may be my strange logic, but it works for me…
Happy New Year everyone – and welcome to 2018. I hope it is a successful and happy year for you all, and that you can strike a balance between doing all you can to help yourself with your fertility problems and making life start to be difficult and miserable.
It may sound odd, but anyone trying to conceive is keen to do all that they can to make a difference to the outcome of treatment and there are many things you can do which are entirely sensible and likely to be beneficial – eating healthily, taking exercise, trying to take care of yourself as much as you can. What is not so likely to be beneficial is making strict rules for yourself which are incredibly difficult to follow and leaving yourself feeling constantly guilty if you don’t quite meet the mark – and then blaming yourself for your fertility problems. I’ve seen so many people recently who are following strict dietary rules and other guidance from therapists and complementary practitioners which can make life start to feel like a military exercise – and it really can start to become counterproductive if it is making you stressed. The truth is that being overweight, eating unhealthily and drinking too much alcohol can affect your fertility, but an occasional glass of wine or piece of chocolate is really not going to ruin your chances of fertility treatment working.
So for 2018, be kind to yourself – try to be as healthy as you can, but don’t forget to think about what makes you happy too!
Thank you to everyone who has read the Fertility Matters blog over the past year – it has been great to have so much interest and I wanted to wish you all a very Happy New Year.
I know that when you are trying to conceive the start of a new year can feel tainted with the sadness of another year passing when you haven’t managed to conceive – and another year when the number of friends and family members who don’t have children seems to have dwindled even further after having to deal with endless pregnancy announcements and putting on a cheerful face. It’s better – if not always easy – to try to put that behind you on Dec 31st and to look forward to the year ahead, to see it as a fresh start with new challenges but possibly new happinesses too.
If you are thinking of making new year’s resolutions, don’t set yourself difficult targets that you will struggle to reach – perhaps think more about being kinder to yourself, looking after yourself and focusing on doing more of the things in life which make you happy. They so often disappear when you’re trying to conceive and all you can focus on is that one seemingly unattainable thing – but try to think about the things that you enjoy and make sure you do more of them whatever they may be from walks in the country to going to the cinema. Set yourself some dates to look forward to in your diary – book something you know you’ll enjoy and you can give that some focus. Whatever it is you’re planning, take care of yourself and have fun!
The start of a new year can be difficult when you’re trying to get pregnant as it can feel like a reminder of another year when you haven’t achieved your goal, but it’s important to try to look ahead to the future rather than dwelling on the past.
This is a good time to think of the positives – you may be having trouble getting pregnant, but you may want a baby because you are in a happy relationship, have a successful career, a beautiful home, a loving family and good friends.
Why not look to the year ahead as an opportunity for a fresh start, whether that’s aiming for a healthier lifestyle, taking regular exercise, getting enough sleep and eating well. This can help you to feel better and may also have a positive impact on your fertility. And remember, it’s not just your physical health that matters, but also your emotional health. Fertility problems are rough, and you will need help along the way. You might want to help your emotional wellbeing by resolving to see a counsellor in the new year or to join a support network or local fertility support group so that you can share experiences with others who really understand.
It isn’t easy to be positive in the face of fertility problems, but why not resolve to be kinder to yourself in 2016 – and make it a year when you take care of yourself emotionally and physically and try to find time for the things you enjoy in life.