Beyond the Egg Timer

An insider's guide to having children in your thirties and forties.

Surrender & Welcome

A mental shift helped one woman feel at peace with waiting to conceive

For our book in progress, we are interviewing women about their experiences trying to conceive. Here's one story we love because it exemplifies managing emotions and thoughts and shifting perception while trying to conceive. We are absolutely, positively not saying “just relax and it will happen.” Conception is a wildly complicated process.  We just wanted to share one woman's coping strategy with you. 

That sounds kind of new age-y, but I just sort of surrendered. I said, “I’m surrendering. What is the plan for me?” And just sort of leaving it open. I told myself, “I am going to give myself to the end of 2011, and if that doesn’t happen, I’m going to fill my life with other things.”

I was trying to make peace with it by learning to accept the unknown. Practicing daily mindfulness meditation helped me to be less reactive and more at peace in my mind. I felt all kinds of emotions: anticipation, sadness, hopefulness alternating with frustration, anxiety, and ultimately feeling worried that time was running out for our chances of trying to conceive.  It’s funny because people would say, “As soon as you let go, you know, thinking about things too much, that’s when things happen.”

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During one of the last treatments the acupuncturist did for me, she said, “Have you spoken to the spirit, this baby, and invited it in? Had a little dialogue with this baby spirit, like, would you like to come live in my womb? Why don’t you try to connect with this spirit that’s entering? Because it’s there.”

I was doing regular meditation, and I had this meditation one evening, and I said, “Hi baby spirit, my womb is nice and cozy, I’m inviting you to come in, little being of light.” Doing that meditation helped me let go of all the over-thinking and worry inside my head.

Two or three months later, I was pregnant. I found out December 19th. Before that, I had been feeling sad because it was so close to the deadline I had set.

Does this resonnate with you? Or is too much like a variation on "relax and let things happen" that you've already heard a million times from well-meaning relatives? Leave us a comment or send an email to let us know. 

Sharon I. Praissman is an adult (medical) and psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner. Emma Williams is a public health researcher and writer.

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