The Reality of Stress: Part 2
A couple months ago, I posted this scan→
And I told you that this was mine, only 12 days apart from each other. I also told you how it got so bad, as well as how it so quickly got so good.
But I really only told you half of the story.
And if you don't want to hear details about my personal health, please don't continue reading (that's OK, I won't be offended!).
So here we go:
In February of this year, Jake and I started working on adding another new little member to the CFC Tribe. And I fell into that same trap that so many first-time-try-ers fall into: you know, the one where you expect that it will happen for you the FIRST month you try? Maybe a little unrealistic considering I never timed my cycle or tracked if/when ovulation was happening. But, you know, optimism for the win, right?
February and March came and went, and no positive pregnancy test graced me with its presence. And then April is when everything hit the fan with the stress of the event I was planning for. While I didn't scan myself at the time, I'm confident that this is when my little stress dot on the scan started to plummet deeper and deeper into the bottom left corner (the danger zone).
But that's not the end of the story.
My cycle has been pretty regular for many years. Until now. In the middle of May, I had my normal menstrual cycle. Actually, that's a lie. My periods in March, April, and May got lighter and lighter and were only lasting 2-3 days (instead of my normal 5-6). Which I was kind of OK with at the time (I mean...fewer days and less cramping/bleeding? What's there to complain about?). But then June came...and so did July... and NO visit from my Aunt Flo. So at this point, I'm wondering, "...why is this test not coming out positive? I've never gone this long without a cycle."
...And then I scanned myself. And it ALL made sense.
The state of function that my scan showed I was in was a state of STRESS. And quite frankly, in retrospect, I'm glad I didn't get pregnant! If I had, my baby's early development of his or her nervous system would have been hard-wired for a stress response simply because that's what I was expressing!
So fast forward a bit. August 5th was my big event. Once I saw my scan, I knew I had to make a change. It was survival mode through the event, but as soon as that thing was over, I was focused on ME and my own health. 5 days after the event, I got the first period I had had in months, and 5 days after that is when I rescanned myself to find a near-perfect scan (perhaps not perfect, but pretty amazing compared to 12 days earlier!).
And almost exactly one month later, I got this fun surprise!→
After 2 missed cycles, I fully expected my system to need a few more months to "reset" before actually getting pregnant!
Somehow, with zero intention of doing so, I became my own case study.
Oh my goodness, guys, seriously check out the scans! I always knew that the bottom left of the scan was bad, and the center was good, but to see such an IMMEDIATE change in my reproductive health, directly reflected in the scans...it was just such great proof of what I already knew to be true (it's just different to talk to a patient about it than it is to actually experience it yourself).
So this brings me to the ACTUAL reason I'm writing this blog. Because, while I love sharing my life story with you, I really write these blogs to help YOU, not just to get my story in writing.
"Let's stop focusing on getting pregnant, and start focusing on getting HEALTHY, first."
So I'm not really here today to give you an answer to your infertility. Frustrating, I know. Because I know that if you're a woman who has ever had any sort of difficulty getting pregnant, or being able to keep a healthy pregnancy, you want all the answers- I don't blame you. These are the answers that are supposed to result in a sweet little baby wrapped in your arms in 9 months. Instead, I want you to ask yourself a few questions first. We spend so much time stressing on simply whether we are getting pregnant or not, that we forget about the environment that we have created for our little one. Before we even begin trying to get pregnant, we need to ask ourselves these questions:
Am I giving my body, which is literally my baby's home for 9 months, everything it needs? Is my body (relatively) free of stress? Am I giving it the appropriate nutrition? Am I giving it the right movement and exercise it needs? Are the gaps in my diet being filled with quality supplements? Is my nervous system, the root of ALL of my body's processes, functioning at 100%, or is IT also stressed and worn down?
So how is your score card looking? Do you feel you have pretty good answers to these? Or would you be a little embarrassed to share them with someone? It's OK to be honest, if it's the latter. Knowing this, you can now feel empowered, knowing that these are the things you need to improve upon!