Fertility acupuncture

I wrote a few months ago about my first experience with acupuncture. I had a great groupon deal and overall I really enjoyed the experience.

Since then, I’ve had to find a new acupuncturist that’s closer to home along my commute. I had my first appointment with her yesterday and it was amazing!

I started by filling out a bunch of paperwork. There was a three page checklist of a variety of symptoms, some of them being really strange things. For example, cold toes, sweats easily, feelings of dread, etc. We sat in her office and went over all of my health background. I told her how long we’ve been trying to get pregnant, our miscarriage, medicated cycles, and now moving on to IUIs.

She asked a lot of strange questions about my cycle. At first I was caught off guard, but then I felt like it was important to know. Even my RE hadn’t asked about this stuff before! After going over all of the health information she took my pulse. I had to rest my hands on a pillow and she gently pressed on my wrists at different angles and pressures. Then came the fun part – the tongue!

As part of the Eastern Medicine tradition she examined my tongue. Initially I just stuck it out of my mouth like a child. She instructed me to open my mouth wide and stick the whole thing out! Then…. she drew a picture of my tongue! Next to it she wrote RED underlined three times. I guess I have a really red tongue… As soon as I got in the car to go home I pulled down the mirror to look at my tongue!

After all of this she finally started to piece things together. She said she felt like my energy was stagnant. I’m putting all of this energy in, but it’s stuck. And I’m stuck. When she said this I almost teared up. The day before I was just talking to my husband and how I feel stuck in this horrible process and all I want to do is move forward with my life. She said she could tell that emotions are playing a large part in my overall health and right now I’m not balanced. So we’re going to work on supporting the IUI process through acupuncture and more importantly, stress relief.

I know most of us hate hearing about not stressing out about this process. Because how can we not?! But when she was talking about stress with me, she wasn’t saying, “just relax, it will happen.” She was reminding me that I’m a whole person, not just a woman going through fertility treatments. I need to be conscious of my whole body and take care of myself physically, emotionally, and spiritually. I feel like I have another person on my team now. She even circled on her personal calendar when I might ovulate and do the IUI so she could help keep track too. I feel understood and supported.

The rest of the appointment went smoothly. She inserted needles into various calming points to help me relax. Then she put a few in my stomach and over my ovaries since I’m currently taking letrozole to help stimulate egg production. I relaxed with the needles in for twenty minutes with aromatherapy and felt the weight of the world melting from my body. I really can’t express how wonderful acupuncture feels.

So I went ahead a set up another appointment next week, hopefully a day or so before the IUI. She mentioned that I should try to come in the same day at the IUI, but reminded me to not stress about it if it doesn’t work out! Ha! She already knows me too well!

If you are ever considering acupuncture, I say go ahead and try it! Even if it doesn’t help the physical symptoms it will definitely help with the emotional ones. I really look forward to my appointments as a piece of time each week to take care of myself.

Sitting, waiting, wishing 

Friday was my last day with students. It was a glorious moment where I awarded each of my preschoolers with their certificates for kindergarten. Of course, it wouldn’t be complete without parents cussing me out for starting our ceremony promptly at 10, when they arrived at 10:45. It just perfectly summed up my year teaching in a very challenging school in a tough neighborhood. I let out a huge sigh of relief at the end of the day on Friday. 

My husband and I are spending this weekend relaxing. We reminisced about the past school year and how many times I’ve come home crying. We talked about the two rounds of Clomid combined with the two toughest months in my classroom when I literally lost my mind. We laugh now but I really struggled this past school year. 

So as we walked down a trail with our pup yesterday, we naturally started talking about this summer and trying to have a child. Our plan was to try on our own until I could up our insurance coverage in October. 

I told him that I could patiently wait until this fall like we planned but something about this summer feels right. We both are in good places in our careers, we’ve been diligently saving money, and we bought our first home. I have the summer off from teaching and time to really focus on taking care of myself. 

We decided to go ahead and pay out of pocket for one IUI this summer! I wanted to make sure we were both on the same page and I wasn’t pressuring my husband into making a very unwise financial decision. But we both felt like this summer is the right time for us, with or without insurance coverage. 

If it works, it will be the best anniversary present to ourselves. If it doesn’t, at least I’ll know what to expect in the fall when we continue with insurance coverage. 

We also decided to not tell our families or friends. We’ve told them we were taking a break from medicated cycles. It feels really nice not having the added pressure of people around us asking if it worked or not. So it’s going to be a secret between just us (oh, and my blog friends!) 

So I’m really excited and nervous of course! In about two weeks I’ll start femara and we’ll go from there! 

Any tips for IUIs?