How one woman found the courage to approach IVF through coachingJan 12, 2023
People often don’t understand the true benefits and life-changing impact that hiring a certified mindset coach can have during your infertility journey. That’s why I’m starting a new series on the blog to share before and after stories about the women I work with. Today’s story is about Tara.*
Tara first contacted me in June of 2022 after being on Clomid for 10 months. Clomid had worked for her in the past (she is already the mom of two amazing kids), but this time around it wasn’t working. Having three kids was always the plan, and Tara felt her family was incomplete as she waited for that 5th member. Triggered by each toy and clothing item she’d store away for future hand-me-downs, she felt like she wasn’t the mom or wife she wanted to be. She’d live her life in two-week increments, tracking every symptom, waiting for that positive pregnancy test, crying after every appointment, not making any plans or decisions, and riding the rollercoaster of it not working and then finding the hope to try again.
“My house was as unorganized as the thoughts in my head. I’d postpone family photos, matching Easter baskets and vacations, just waiting for my family to be ‘complete.’”
Tara’s husband was incredibly supportive and doing the best he could to help, but he reached a point where he just didn’t know how to help her. She was consumed by baby-making and losing sight of the goodness that they had in their marriage, family and life.
The Coaching Process
Before Tara even considered IVF as an option, she found me on social media. She was already in a place where she knew she needed an extra level of support, and when we first spoke, I listened to what her journey had been. Tara was hard on herself, judging every thought and feeling she had, something all too common for women in her shoes. Having been there myself, I could relate to what she shared, so I let her know that every thought spinning in her head made complete sense considering what she was going through.
The next step was to redirect her thoughts and guide her to view life from a different lens—a lens where she could see the beauty in what she already had (which was so much). This is the first step to live life in a way where she could enjoy it while working toward her goal of having another baby. I wanted her to see that it wasn’t one or the other; she could spend the time on her infertility journey, have a third child, and she could be the mom and wife she wanted to be in the meantime.
When the option of IVF started to surface, Tara felt hopeless. She only saw the negative aspects of the entire process and struggled to wrap her head around gaining the strength to go down that road. On top of it all, she was terrified of the needles. She felt anxious and lost.
Along the course of our coaching journey, we had our weekly sessions where I’d teach her the tools to have confidence, conviction, and belief in herself as she approached the path of IVF. We worked on her advocating for herself as she approached the fear and supporting herself through those triggering moments, all leading back to the ultimate goal—enjoying life while waiting. I checked in on Tara and cheered her on on her journey through each step and each appointment. Most importantly, Tara learned the tools to manage her thoughts and triggers so she could find that confidence and belief all on her own.
What happened next…
Tara recently had her first embryo transfer. She went through the IVF process like an absolute pro, and would probably laugh at the thought of once fearing the needles. Her mindset and outlook are unrecognizable from who she was when we first met. Through coaching, she has new more positive ways of thinking, self-appreciation, confidence, and patience to handle the stress of her two week wait. She even found new hobbies along the way so that she can find moments of fun and appreciation throughout the most stressful times and redirect her energy into things other than endless pregnancy tests or Google rabbit holes. Even if this transfer doesn’t work, Tara knows what she wants, that she can handle anything and that she’s not doing this alone as I’ll be there supporting her through it all.
“Pregnant or not, I actually feel grateful that infertility has been a part of my journey. I am a better person having gone through this.”
Before working together, Tara felt consumed by her trying to conceive experience, not feeling a part of the fertile club, but also not fitting in with those who have infertility and are waiting for their first baby. She also didn’t want to make any plans until the third baby arrived. Feelings of being stuck, like her life was on hold and like she was alone in what she was going through, took over all of her time and energy. As a result, she forgot who she was, she didn’t know how to communicate her needs, she wasn’t asking for or receiving help and she wasn’t appreciating all the good in her life. Now, her relationship with her husband is better than ever, she’s present with her 2 kids, AND she knows she’s doing all she can to try to conceive her third.
Our journey together is not over, and I can’t wait to continue to watch her grow even more into the wife, mom and most importantly, woman that she always wanted to be.
“I’m excited to live the rest of my life with more grace toward myself, with patience to enjoy the ride taking things one step at a time, and the firm belief that I can do anything I want to do, especially the hard things.”
* Name changed to protect identity
Ready to get the support you need so you can stop putting your life on hold during your IVF journey?
Learn about my More Than My Infertility program!