Saturday, 19 January 2013

Dear Newly Diagnosed Self,

There's another little post floating around Facebook that I keep seeing.  It's a post about a childless pregnant person, and what she would tell her pregnant self in hindsight after the baby was born.

It got me thinking.  What would my 5 year veteran IF self tell my newly diagnosed self?  I wouldn't want to scare her with the gory details, but I would want to share a few things. 

Dear Newly Diagnosed Self, 

You won't know how long you'll be at this for, and this will be very hard for you to accept.  I want you to know a few important things about this journey.  

1. This isn't your fault.  

2. You will need to learn how to be extra kind and forgiving to yourself if you can.  You will fall down in this journey.  You are stronger than you know and you will get back up.   

3.  Nurses and receptionists are tremendously important gate keepers of information.  Don't be afraid to communicate with them.  You need them on your team.  Show them some love.  

4.  Connecting online is a wonderful thing.  It's freeing and informative.  When dealing about important stuff, try to find a reliable research based source for your information.  If you can, read a few journal articles.  Even just reading the summaries is better than nothing. 

5.  Don't be scared to share about your IF with your closest friends and family.  While they all won't be supportive in the way that you hope, some of them will.   If you can, tell them what you need.  Because they have no idea.  This is new territory for most of them too. 

6. Get organized.  Keep a copy of your medical file.  Request copies from your practitioner, even if it costs money.  What you learn from reading those reports will be invaluable.  

7.  Don't settle on a doctor because of geography.   Interview doctorS prior to trusting them with your care.  

8.  Research and ask questions.  Make notes of those questions before your appointments.   Why? is a great question to ask your doctor. 

9.  Bring your cell phone to doctor's appointments.  With discretion, record your conversations with your doctors so you can listen to them again at home.  This will reduce your anxiety during the appointment (for fearing that you will forget something they said).  It will allow you to be in the moment and ask better questions.   

10.  Listen to that little voice inside of you.  She knows a thing or two about you. 

11.  Nurture relationships with other IFers, online and in real life.   The people you will meet are the real deal.  Their stories will inspire you and break your heart. 

12.  Be flexible. You might need a plan E, F and G.  Remember your goal is to be a parent.   Don't beat yourself up when you change plans and directions.  Change is a big part of progress. 

13.  Try to be kind and forgiving of your fertile friends.  Think back to what you might be like if you weren't an IFer.   Educate them if you can. 

14. This doesn't mean you should let your fertile friends walk all over you.  Self protection is real and important.  

15. There is a spiritual side of this.  It's confusing as hell. 

16.  This journey will change you, D, and your relationship.   Remember that blessings can come from bad situations. 

17. Therapy is a wonderful luxury.  Use it. 

18.  Remember that there are things you like about being child free and savour them.  Sleeping in on weekends is amazing.    One day you will miss those things. 

What would you tell your newly diagnosed self?


  1. Thanks so much for posting this! I think 12 is the most important for me. Remember my goal is not be a parent. Clearly, it is not going to happen in the way I thought. But if I continue to want it, I will very likely be able to parent someway and somehow. Also, take care of myself and let myself have bad days and pity parties. It is OK to feel bad for myself sometimes

  2. So much great advice in this post...and beautifully written. If you're interested, I'd love to share this with my readers and credit you of course. I think it can benefit a lot of people. Let me know if you're interested.

  3. At the very least, I'm adding you to my blog love page!!! ;)

  4. There are so many things on this list I need to remember. We have actually been working on 18 and are trying to do and enjoy things we couldn't do if I was pregnant or we had kids.
    Thanks for posting this.

  5. These are great! I would personally have told myself to start blogging sooner, as I could really have used the support earlier on. That, and number 2 above. Thanks for posting.

  6. Even many years out from truly being in the infertility trenches, it is valuable to remember these things. Great post.

    ICLW #8 Dragondreamer's Lair

  7. This was so beautiful. <3 Thank you from ICLW!

  8. This is perfectly written. Thank you!!!

  9. Hi from ICLW. Love this blog post. So many things I'd love to tell myself.

  10. Thank you for the love. It comes at a good time. :)

  11. This is something we need to remember daily!! Thank you!!


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