Thoughts on Tending to Your Inner Wellbeing & Finding Healing After Miscarriage

Monday greetings to you! It’s new day and new week, and tomorrow the vibrant full moon will grace us with her luminous feminine beauty. Are you finding ways to keep breathing and to nurture yourself as you put one foot in front of the other, one day at a time? I hope so.

There are a few new blogposts that explore different paths to integrating mindfulness, energy/womb healing, relaxation practices and self-care rituals into your fertility journey coming to this space soon. I’ll be posting this new content over the next few weeks. In the meantime, I  wanted to take a moment to share two articles that I had published on Fertility Road Magazine and Harness Magazine recently:

3 Ways to Tend to Your Inner Wellbeing: One key lesson that my personal experience of fertility challenges has taught me is that tending to your inner self is just as important as nurturing your body’s health and wellbeing when it comes your fertility journey. With this in mind, I recently wrote an article for Fertility Road Magazine offering three ways in which you can work on taking care of your inner world and supporting your emotional wellbeing when the going gets tough…Click to Read the Full Article.

Finding Healing in Unexpected Places: Finding balance and healing beyond miscarriage is not an easy thing to do. In my most recent article for Harness Magazine, I wrote a piece about my personal experience of Finding Healing in Unexpected Places:

“Yet, I hadn’t realized just how much I’d been holding in until we’d arrived there—the heaviness, the stress and tension in my body, and the deep sadness that seemed to permeate everything. I was exhausted. I felt broken and emotionally depleted. Between grieving a miscarriage, getting to grips with the challenges of infertility, taking on too many new projects to avoid my reality and working myself to the point of burnout, it had been a grueling year. However, within hours of arriving at the coast, I felt the layers of built-up tension stripping away from my body and soul…” Read Full Article Here…

Happy reading ❤

 

Advertisements

Self-Care Rituals for Cycle Day 1

The arrival of your period is often the last thing that you want when you’re trying to conceive and hoping for your ‘big fat pink’. So, it goes without saying that ‘cycle day 1’ can end up feeling like a dreaded guest who shows up at the worst time simply to shatter your hopes. It’s difficult not agonise over the profound sense of loss or failure that my surface, and it’s the kind of thing that makes you feel like your body is working against you. This is something I struggled with tremendously in the initial years of my personal fertility journey. It took a long while to recognise the need to reframe my thinking around my period, to see things differently in order to help keep a balanced perspective and ease the emotional distress I experienced from month to month.

下腹部を押さえる女性

In her book “The Optimised Woman – Using your menstrual cycle to achieve success and fulfilment”, author, Miranda Gray, suggests that the menstrual phase of a women’s cycle is a time to slow down, let go of outer stresses or concerns and to focus your attention on nurturing your inner self and practicing self-care instead. Adding to this,  fertility and women’s health expert, Emma Cannon, in her book ‘The Baby-Making Bible’, wrote that “It [your period] is the symbol of a new beginning…Day One heralds the beginning of the next cycle.” Cannon encourages women to “Think of it as a fresh start: another month in which to get healthy.”

Drawing inspiration from guiding words such as these, with time and practice I’ve allowed myself to see it as a time to shed the old and as an opportunity to start anew. I’ve come to understand that my moontime (menses) is a valuable barometer of my health and fertility. Along with this, developing self-cares practices have been the greatest source of medicine for my soul, making it a sacred time to debrief, breathe and reset for a few days, something that I actually look forward to. If there is one key lesson that keeps being reinforced on this journey, it’s that one the path to becoming a mother I’ve learnt how to be a mother to and nurture myself. The more I tend to wellbeing, my health and incorporate energy/womb healing, mindfulness and relaxation practices into my daily life, the easier, more regular and balance my periods become. I make a point of constantly asking myself – what is the most healing thing I can do for me? The answers are always simple – it’s more healing to surrender and express gratitude when my moontime arrives (esp. bearing in mind that it’s a healthy indicator of my ability to conceive and carry a child) than it is to fight against it. And it’s more healing to nurture myself in calming ways than to get stressed out and spiral down into negative emotions or self-hate.

Woman relaxing in bath with foam and petals

Three Self-Care Rituals for Cycle Day 1

Magnesium Baths: After hearing many good things about the benefits of magnesium and how it can help with menstrual pain, I decided to experiment with adding magnesium to my baths during my moontime. Six cycles later, I’m glad that I did, because this has proven to be a beautifully relaxing away to release body tension and ease menstrual cramps. I also add a few drops of clary sage and lavender oils to help balance and ground me. I light some candles and just take my time soaking in bathtub and reading poetry or prose to soothe my soul. It’s a beautifully calming way to create space of me-time. It’s worth checking out the article – Healing Baths for Each Phase of Your Cylce – by Bri Braggs, found of Fertile Alchemy. She has some wonderful bath soak recipes and suggestions on how to support your body during your moontime.

Yoga: Yoga is credited with many benefits to general wellbeing and for fertility as well. For me, it’s been a really great way to connect with my root and sacral chakra energy centres, loosen stiff and tight hips, release lower back pain. It helps with stagnant flow and to ease my blood clots (although since working with my Fertility Naturopath over the last year I struggle less with this sort clots and pain). Overall, leaves me feeling light, grounded and emotionally balanced. A couple of my favourite go-to yoga videos for this phase of my cycle are Brett Larkin’s ‘Yoga for Pain & Period Cramps’ and ‘Yoga for Fertility’.  

Womb Healing Meditations: Since the uterus is shedding what it no longer needs it seems the perfect time do some womb healing and clear the energy in my womb space. There are various ways in which you can approach womb healing exercises. I tend in use visual meditations, reiki healing to clear my sacral and energetic womb space, crystal healing and colour therapy and self-fertility massage. I’ve also incorporated the mantra given to me when I received the Munay Ki womb rites training a few years back, which is : “The womb is not a place to store pain and fear. The womb is a place to create and give birth to new life.” Working with this mantra has been helpful in allowing me to release pain, fear and negative emotions that I project onto my feminine self. So it’s worth taking some time explore what you feel drawn to and experiment with what works for you.

お腹をおさえる女性

If you like, here is a ‘3-Minute Womb Breathing Meditation’ try out: 

Sit or lie down in a comfortable position and allow yourself to relax. Take a few deep breaths, in and out. Place your hands on you lower abdomen/pelvic area beneath your belly button. Now, breathing deeply, draw your breath into your womb space and visualize loving light and healing energy flowing in as you do. Release any tension stored in this space on the exhale. Spend a few moments practising this visualization, breathing into your womb space, sending love to your ovaries, your uterus, your pelvic bowl and releasing any tension from this space.

 

Three Soulful Ways to Nurture Your Relationship While TTC

Do you ever crave groundings moment to just pause, to start over and to breathe fresh energy into your life and into your relationship with your spouse?

The various levels of stress and emotional turmoil that come with trying to conceive are likely to put strain on your relationship at one point or another. At such times, nurturing your connection could be the furthest thing from your mind, especially when feel that you’re doing your best to hold yourself together with not much energy to offer anyone else. However, it’s important to find a middle ground. Difficult though it may be to establish a healthy balance, I’ve learnt that it’s necessary to work at creating a supportive environment in which your love and marriage can continue to thrive despite the testing travails that you may be living through together. Keeping the doors to connection and communication open is vital part of that.

Couple relaxing with glass of warm wine on winter evening

What I’ve come to understand through my own journey is that both the state of my wellbeing and the stability of my marriage form the foundation of the family that my husband and I are trying to create. I constantly ask myself – What kind of foundation do I want my future babies to have? What kind of relationship model with we provide for our children? What steps do we both need to take in order to cultivate that? Approaching this sort of inquiry together allows you to understand how to keep cultivating a sense of wholeness and balance both within yourself and within your relationship as a couple.

Creating opportunities to reconnect with your partner and nurture your bond with one another is different for everyone. What does it look like for you? Simple ways to have care-free fun together, quiet moments for a gentle heart-to-heart, romantic dates or outings that you can both enjoy, a weekend trip to somewhere relaxing so that you and your partner can refuel your souls. Perhaps it’s an opportunity to be spontaneous, and remind yourselves what it’s like to let your hair down a little. It needn’t be a matter of grand gestures, and intimacy doesn’t always have to be sexual, it can be gentle, soulful and sensual. So, do whatever feels simple, authentic and meaningful for you. Whatever makes you both feel cared for, heard and supported. Investigate what reignites passion and will allow you to keep strengthening you bond.

The following are three ideas you can draw inspiration from:

Candlelight Breakfasts: Candlelight breakfasts are a beautiful morning ritual that brings a touch of romance to the ordinary and offers you the opportunity to be present, connect, communicate and nurture your relationship.

Processed with VSCO with s3 preset

The idea is to light candles at your little dining table and sit down to breakfast together for a slow and soulful start to your day. Set your intentions for the day or the week. Discuss what you’re grateful for, as well as your core desires, goals and visions. And then ask one another – How can I support you? Express how you are feeling, what you need to feel more supported and listen to what kind of support your partner needs from you.

This simple morning ritual can become a foundation that fosters togetherness so that you move through the rest of the day feeling more connected to one another and grounded in love.

Bedtime Poetry Sessions: Get a collection of love poetry. Choose one or two evenings that work best for you. When you go to bed on those nights, take turns to each read one of your favourite love poems to one another.

bedroom with bed and christmas garland at home

Share what you love about the poem. Discuss the themes, the lines that move you and emotions their words stir in you. Explore new poems together each week and remember to keep it light and love-filled. Not everyone is able to express what they feel, so poetry is a great way to share the things that you may be unable to say.

If poetry is not your thing, then substitute it with beautiful love songs that will help you connect deeper with one another. 

Sensual Massage: Massage can be a soothing and pleasurable sensual experience. It’s a great way to encourage intimacy. Set aside some quiet time to be together. Play gentle music. Light some candles. If you have an aromatherapy diffuser or oil burner, then scents like ylang ylang and rose are said to be aphrodisiac aromas that stimulate a seductive air. Have some warming sensual oils on hand, get comfortable and then take turns giving and receiving massages to one another. Take deep breaths, release your tension, enjoy the sensual touch and the chance to nurture a physical connection with your partner.

Therapist pouring massage oil at spa