Infertility Basics - November's Stripped Down Fall Beauty
Struggling to See Fall Beauty During Fertility Treatment
It’s sometimes difficult to see the beauty in the month of November in New England. The flaming trees of fall have released their leaves, the white covering of snow has yet to arrive and the green of the summer has faded into memory.
November is stark, stripped down and bare. Even desolate.
The skeletons of the trees are apparent in their nakedness. Without the adornment of their leaves, they seem more vulnerable and yet sturdier.
In the last year of my struggles with fertility treatment, had I drawn a self portrait, I would have drawn a maple tree in November. No leaves, trunk and branches transparent and obvious to all. It was a year that balance felt most accessible. My roots went deep into the earth; my relationships were steady, reliable and loving.
And without apology or excess explanation, I lived within my own life, even as I expanded. I neither shouted from the rooftops about my fertility treatment nor did I spend many moments finding ways to hide it, apologize for it or explain it.
Infertility: Part of My Life But Not All Of It
Infertility became part of my life and ceased to become my entire life. I went to concerts. I played racquetball. I ran 5K’s. I made plans and visited friends and family across the country. I addressed my food challenges and made changes that benefitted me. I laughed more and cried less.
Sometimes it’s harder to look outside in November and see the beauty of the day. It’s more subtle than other times of year. Looking closely though, you will be rewarded with the tiny bits of intense blues, reds, oranges and yellows. Of berries. Of grasses. Or trunk and branch colors. Nothing hides at this time of year.
You see the curvature of the earth, with the different angles and slopes, the rocks jutting out, the dips down to ponds and other bodies of water.
Everything down to its bare bones.
Living with Infertilty and Recognizing Choices
What I learned in my sixth year of living with infertility was that I had a life. It was my choice how fully I lived into it. It was my choice to take breaks or not. It was my choice to go on or stop.
Down to basics.
When to stop treatment.
I didn’t always like my choices. Sometimes it was one detestable choice or another. Still I had a choice. I always have a choice. My choices lie in how I see things.
I chose to look outside and glory in the starkness of November. I choose to see the beauty in everything stripped down to its basics; its skeleton.
It’s my choice in seeing beauty. Or not.
I choose to see the beauty.
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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.