When I found myself planning into the future, for a pregnancy that I wasn’t sure would ever become real, I decided I needed to clean up my act.

I cut out alcohol completely, coffee too.  I looked at my diet, which was already pretty clean and cut everything that I could think might impact my chances of getting pregnant.  There’s a lot of ‘cutting’ going on here, right?  Not a whole lot of fun.

When the realisation struck that there was no fixed timeline for this journey I was on, that I had no idea how long I would have to stick with this pure, no-fun living, I threw in the towel and made myself a big creamy latté.  Boy, was it good, then the guilt kicked in. It’s relatively easy to cut out those foods deemed ‘unhealthy’ for a period of say, 3 months. 3 years is a whole other matter.

So, what do you do?

My advice is to be gentle with yourself.  Maybe alcohol offered an outlet in the past.  Perhaps meeting friends for a decadent latté has been your opportunity to exhale, to breathe a sigh of relief that you’re not alone.  Rather than beating yourself with the whip of discipline, try gentleness.  Say to yourself “You are doing the best you can and that is enough”

Give yourself permission to have fun, to let loose.  It is possible to do this without reliance on our old crutches of alcohol, caffeine or sugar. Before throwing all of your crutches out though, consider what might replace them.  I get immense joy and energy from getting on my bike and heading into the hills, so for me cleaning up my bike and spending time outdoors is my top priority at the moment.  Maybe for you it’s dancing, singing or running.  Think outside the box and find ways to be gentle with yourself as you walk this path of fertility treatment. If you break your own ‘rules’ of what is or is not allowed, start again tomorrow. Be assured that is good enough.

Ruth biking

Tell me what works for you! Share your challenges here in the comments and get the conversation going. I’d love to hear your thoughts…