Adding Fertility Treatment? Consider What You Are Subtracting
As we begin this new year, do you feel like this?
A lot of us do feel like this, a human doing, not being. And the picture above shows only a woman trying to do household chores. Then add out-of-the house work responsibilities.
Then add in infertility. And infertility treatment. For many of us that means many extra medical appointments, which stretches our day until it threatens to rip right in half.
I, like many people, particularly women, multi-task. My definition is that I do many things at the same time, little pieces at a time. Sort of like juggling balls. How many can I add? Or like the photo-shopped image above, how many hands do I have?
In truth, I still have only two hands. In truth, when I add something, probably I need to subtract something. Especially when the balls in the air start bouncing off my head.
Making Room for Fertility Treatment
And yet, I know perfectly well with infertility that I did not subtract anything. At least not without guilt. I may have gone out less with my friends, but that had more to do with emotional isolation than having to do with fertility treatment. I made very little extra room for fertility treatment. I made very few concessions to the time and space that it needed.
I squeezed it in and expected it to fit.
It created more stress and confusion than was necessary. It is possible to slow down. It is possible to let go of doing and doing and doing. When I'm not sure that this is true, I look around at how others are functioning.
I watch my husband when he does something, almost anything. Whether it's washing the dishes, cleaning out the pellet stove, attending to paperwork or having a conversation, he does one thing at a time. (Yes, I do know that I'm lucky he can wash dishes, etc. I promise, I know it!)
One thing at a time gets his complete attention.
When he cleans the garage, it gets finished: 100%. When I clean the garage, I get about 40% done. 80% on a really good day. 90% on a day that occurs about once a year or so.
It turns out that multi-tasking isn't all that it's cracked up to be. It doesn't get more done. It doesn't make any person involved in the process feel more focused. It doesn't feel satisfying. It's not effective.
Finding Balance in New Year's Resolutions
If you are adding fertility treatment to your day and life, consider what you can take out. Delegate something to someone else, somewhere else in your life. Know that you are adding something that is time consuming; that it demands resources beyond time that you need to make allowances for.
Maybe that's a great new year's resolution.
Focus on one thing at a time. If you need to add something, be sure to see what you are letting go of, to create balance.
Ok, I'm going to try it today. I'll let you know how it goes.
About Lisa Rosenthal
Lisa has over thirty years of experience in the fertility field. After her personal infertility journey, she felt dissatisfied with the lack of comprehensive services available to support her. She was determined to help others undergoing fertility treatment. Lisa has been with RMACT for eleven years and serves as Patient Advocate and the Strategic Content Lead.
Lisa is the teacher and founder of Fertile Yoga, a program designed to support men and women on their quest for their families through gentle movement and meditation.
Lisa’s true passion is supporting patients getting into treatment, being able to stay in treatment and staying whole and complete throughout the process. Lisa is also a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist, which is helpful in her work with fertility patients.
Her experience also includes working with RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association and The American Fertility Association (now Path2Parenthood), where she was Educational Coordinator, Conference Director and Assistant Executive Director.