I Want to Be a Fertile GPS - Part One
Using a GPS is Like Undergoing Fertility Treatment
The first time I used a GPS (Global Positioning System) was in Boston. My best friend, Pamela, and I were attempting to drive to Boston IVF. We were the Executive Director and Assistant Executive Director of The American Fertility Association at the time. We had taken the train up to Boston for the meeting and then rented a car. At the time, GPS's were very new and uncommon to have in a rental car.
Neither one of us knew the city of Boston from a hole in the wall. We were inexperienced at that time with traveling, but we were not intimidated by new things or new places. And Boston was an American city, so how hard could it be to navigate? We were both very experienced New York City drivers. We were confident. So off we went.
Rented the car. Looked at a traditional map to get a vague idea of where we were going and found the car. If you have a GPS now, consider that the one we had was probably first generation GPS. And I do mean first. This trip was easily 15 years ago. Think big, clunky, not that easy to operate. We laughed ourselves silly figuring out how to enter the address and all other pertinent information. A conservative estimate of time would be twenty minutes to a half hour. Yep, we were laughing. We were also early so didn't feel the pressure of time.
Twenty minutes later, we're pulling away from the curb, confident that the GPS would guide us, which we were very grateful for as we had no real clue as to where we were going. And unlike NYC, Boston is barely on a grid system, with so many exceptions that there were no understandable rules about which way streets went or what to expect next.
First direction from the GPS. Make a right turn. OK, so far, so good. We made a right. Next direction from the GPS. Make a right turn. OK. Made a right turn. End of block, next direction, make a right turn. OK, done. End of that block, next direction, make a right turn. OK. Got it? Yeah, we ended up exactly where we started.
We're going to skip the conversation about why we listened to directions to put us in exactly the same place we started. That's another story, for another day. This was my introduction to using a GPS. Not the most auspicious beginning. An interesting phenomenon for that point in my life. Moving ahead, step by step and ending up right where you started.
Negative Pregnancy Tests Felt Like I Was Driving in Circles
Fertility treatment certainly felt like that. No matter what I did. Negative pregnancy test. After a while I stopped caring about the scenary looked like on the way. I stopped caring about the good news and the bad news. All I noticed was that I kept ending up in the same place. Negative pregnancy test. Or just to mix it up, positive pregnancy test one day, only to have a loss several weeks later. Either way, it was painful and frustrating. Either way, it was ending up exactly in the same place. Negative pregnancy test. At the beginning.
My fertility treatment felt like my first experience with a GPS. Only it wasn't nearly as funny or silly. I was much more attached to the outcome of fertility treatment than getting to a business appointment. Which leads me back to the title of today's blog. I want to be a Fertile GPS. Read tomorrow to find out why. Bet you have an idea or two all ready though.
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.