I know it’s causing people worry about what it will mean financially and in terms of your chances of conceiving.
And I completely understand the emotional impact it is having in terms of having to delay treatment even longer.
It's ok to feel sad, angry, cheated and helpless about the situation. It’s understandable and normal, it makes us feel out of control and it just doesn’t seem fair that there is something else affecting our chances of having a baby.
It can be like grieving – for your IVF cycle, for your chances of conceiving this month, for your fertility…….
Coping with the Uncertainty
I wanted to share some things you can do to help with the feelings of anxiousness that uncertainty brings, to help you cope and feel calmer:
If your treatment is delayed (and if we end up in enforced lockdown!) there are lots of things you can use the time for. Below are some tips and advice on taking control in this tricky time:
Keep to some sort of schedule so you have a plan for the day. I always feel better when I’ve got up, showered and dressed, and sitting in your PJs can often make us feel a bit down – so get up and get ready as you would if going to work, set times for doing different things (work time, lunch, have a walk, read, meditate) and ensure you make time for self care.
Rest! We are all so busy all of the time, this virus and the enforced lockdowns/ social distancing will force us all to slow down and rest more, so take the opportunity to recharge your batteries, reduce stresses where possible (I know this situation brings new ones too) and slow down.
Spend time doing the things that help you relax and recharge your batteries (If you can’t go out at the minute you can do things like reading, meditating, watching Netflix, and when we can go out freely you can organise things with friends/family that you love to do and make you feel good).
Get some time out in the fresh air where you can - walks in nice open spaces where you can get fresh air and some exercise. You can appreciate your surroundings, get some space to clear your head and it gets you out of the house for a bit.
Spend time as a couple away from treatment to recapture the romance and emotions. The pressures of work, social commitments and treatment can put a lot of pressure on relationships and mean you don’t have much quality time together. See this as a gift of quality time together to have nice meals at the table, film night, games night, talking to each other. I understand it can also feel a bit overwhelming if you are locked down and having ALL your time together, so keep in touch with friends, plan in solo time for things like reading, walks, exercise and its ok if you get frustrated with each other, we’ll all be the same :)
Think about how you can help others - At times like this we need to support each other, that could be emotionally supporting others through this time, offering to do shopping for an elderly neighbour or helping out in your community however you can. It will give you another focus and make you feel good for helping out,
Think about other things you would like to do and achieve - if you are locked in your house, it’s a perfect time to start a new hobby, learn something new, make changes that you’ve been thinking of making. Make a list of some things you have wanted to do for a while but always feel like you don’t have time to do:
Use the time to make sure you are in your optimum state for conceiving – it’s really hard being told that there is a delay to your treatment, it can feel like time is slipping away, so try to think of this time as extra time to get make sure you ready for treatment by looking after your physical health (eating healthily, getting enough rest, drinking enough water) and your emotional health (getting enough support, taking time for self-care, recharging your batteries).
Start a journal – Journaling has been found to improve your emotional and physical health, by reducing stress, boosting your mood and improving memory function. Writing down your feelings is a great way of releasing those emotions in a safe way, whilst also giving you some calm time for yourself, especially if you are isolated from your usual support network.
If you would like more help and support through this worrying and uncertain time, my IVF Positivity Planner can help you focus on looking after yourself emotionally, setting goals to make changes and it gives you lots of advice and support on coping when TTC.
And as always, I’m always here if you need support, please message me and you’re welcome to join my free support group xx