This week I had the opportunity to talk about my fertility journey with the insightful online publication, Our Healing House. This online space is dedicated to sharing and inspiring holistic healing stories and modalities, knowing that each path to health and happiness is different. I hope my story offers a glimpse behind the scenes, inspiring personal advocacy and unyielding hope for whatever you desire.
Breanna Rose, the founder of OHH cleverly pairs each healing story with an expert in one of the modalities mentioned within the story. My article is paired with the work of, Janine Kreft, holistic psychologist specializing in the ability to help aid in transforming your limiting beliefs.
I’ve shared snippets from each question and answer below. Please hop on over to Our Healing House to read the rest of the interview.
What was your childhood like? How were you brought up?
I grew up in a small-ish midwestern town where things felt very even keel. My mother and father appeared to be happily married and when my younger brother joined us, I don’t remember it causing any kind of ripple within our family dynamic. Our lives were very structured with not a lot of unexpected things happening… keep reading →
Can you tell us about your journey with fertility?
If I had to pinpoint the start of my fertility journey to one specific moment in time, I’d say it was during my late teen years when my menstrual cycle never quite found a steady rhythm, resulting in irregularity from day one. Jump ahead a few years and a low-hormone contraceptive pill was introduced (in an effort to bring regularity) and stuck around for the next decade. This will be one of my biggest “health” related regrets that I’ll carry with me to my grave.
May of 2014 was when my fertility journey consciously began. My soon to be husband and I decided that I would come off the pill and allow my body to regulate itself before the pressure of adding children to our family. Given my history with irregular cycles, I should have had level-headed expectations, but I assumed my body would quickly find its own rhythm and we’d be off to the baby-making races in no time. In retrospect, it was silly to expect predictability, rhythm, and “normal” when my body had never achieved status-quo before. I was expecting something my body didn’t know how to do OR that my body couldn’t do at this time.
The following two years, my body’s automatic systems struggled to sort themselves out. The saying “shock to the system” never was more relevant.
My hormones (and my emotions) were all over the place and my chronic migraines had reached their peak annoyance level. I was losing trust in my body’s ability to do what it was built to do … thrive! As the desperation grew… keep reading →
The next year was to date one of the most challenging and transformative years of my life. From the moment I miscarried, I was on a personal mission to help heal my body and fill the void of a lost identity (as quickly as possible). There was so much desperation in my process and the controlling behaviors lead to a slower transformation. My body was operating on its own timeline and I was at its mercy.
I cut sugar and caffeine out of my diet completely, cold turkey. I drowned myself in herbal infusions that would help build up the lining of my uterus and support my reproductive organs. I jumped heavily into a yoga practice, opting for more gentle Yin practices that would calm my nervous system and help stimulate blood flow. I took up meditation as a form of spiritual practice, desperately hoping to connect with the soul of our lost child and to find stillness in breath. I performed deep tissue, Maya Abdominal massage on myself a few times a month to reawaken the trauma cells in my body. I begrudgingly sat… keep reading →
What holistic healing modalities / tools were the most helpful for you preconception? How so?
As mentioned above, I tried ALL the things. I believe four of them had the highest impact with the quickest results. When you are trying to heal your body, you want quick!
Anti-inflammatory/Anti-stimulant Foods – For me, this meant cutting out all gluten, sugar, and caffeinated beverages and opting for nourishing herbal tonics.
Consistent Acupuncture Treatment – For me, this looked like 1-2 visits a week with an acupuncturist who specializes in women’s fertility.
Work on reprogramming limiting beliefs – For me, this meant hiring help to guide me through my subconscious blocks.
Establish a connection to your inner wisdom and then listen to it!
Why have you chosen a more holistic path in healing and well-being?
I stumbled upon the holistic path to healing out of desperation. I didn’t grow up believing my body could heal itself, so I had a lot of exploring and self discovery to do. Once I saw the drastic effects of removing gluten from my diet, I was hooked. I ran down that rabbit hole as quickly as I could. With each new discovery, I was building trust in my body’s abilities… keep reading →
You’ve created a community of women called Our Seva, encouraging deeper dialogue around the unspoken spaces of motherhood. Can you tell us more about what led to this creation? And what it’s about?
The idea behind Our Seva started brewing the moment I miscarried our first child. I didn’t quite know it yet, but the kindling had been lit to the fire within me. Through the process of miscarriage, I realized that there was so much information and stigma around women’s health that was “unspoken” and seemingly hidden from the public eye. It wasn’t until you were in the depths of some personal struggling and desperate for guidance that the truth was revealed to you. For example, with the miscarriage, I quickly realized that I was 1 in 4 women who had went through this type of rite of passage and quickly found my support community just by speaking up. Instant solidarity.
As I moved through my pregnancy, I noticed many more “unspoken spaces,” tucking them away for when I was ready to speak publicly about them.
The most earth shattering to me at the time was the impending loss of my current identity. No one was talking about this!
The birth of my daughter brought with it a whole new collection of unspoken spaces — birth trauma, cultural stigma around c-sections, full mind & body re-birth … just to name a few. More of the same during the sacred window postpartum period. Disconnection, fear mongering, anxieties that seem too small to be labeled by health professionals, establishing autonomy … just to name a few more.
I knew I had to do something to change the way we inform our women and mothers of the reality of deep personal transformation… keep reading →
What advice would you give to those who are looking to support someone they love who is working through their own healing journey?
Ask them. “How can I support you today?” I’m always amazed with the answers I receive when I ask this simple question. Women need to know they are being seen and heard, especially by other women. If she asks for your advice, opinion or support in any way, do everything in your power to respond without conditions. Hold back the “me too” until you sense it’s needed. Simply hold space for her. Most women just need a sounding board.
How are you feeling these days?
Almost 2 years postpartum, I’m starting to feel really good. My body started to feel good 1 year postpartum, but my mental health has taken a little longer to transform… keep reading →
Do you have any healer recommendations or resources you’d like to share?
Podcasts & Books for Women on Fertility Journey & Mothers:
Happy Mama Movement Podcast, hosted by Amy Taylor-Kabbaz
Under The Hood Podcast, Hosted by Aleks Evanguelidi & Patti Quintero
The Fourth Trimester, by Kimberly Ann Johnson
The First 40 Days, by Heng Ou
Thanks for having me, Bre (@ourhealinghouse)! It was such a great opportunity to reflect on such a transformative journey <3
The Our Seva Motherhood Circle
Join Bre and I in the Our Seva Motherhood Circle private Facebook group where we frequently explore the winding path of fertility for all stages of motherhood – preconception, pregnancy, postpartum and forever postpartum. Together, we are shifting the paradigm around what it means to own our healing journey, build self advocacy, and inspire unyielding hope for all of your desires. It’s with connection and vulnerability that we will make great strides. Join us for weekly themed discussions around identity, maternal mental health, cultural expectations and our sacred service to motherhood.