So I never fully believed in the correlation between stress and infertility, though I do understand that being stressed out isn't going to help anything. People in war zones get pregnant, people on crack get pregnant--people in all kinds of life situations get pregnant (well, some people). There hasn't been much evidence based research to convince me that stress is directly related to fertility issues. But I read this little article in the NY Times the other day, and wanted to scream, "AHHHHHHH!!!!"
The article states that after testing the saliva of about 400 women who were trying to get pregnant, they found, "There was no association of cortisol with fertility. But those whose alpha-amylase levels were in the highest third, a sign of longstanding stress, had more than double the risk of infertility."
That's not exactly proof, but it does make some of us on the higher strung side get REALLY STRESSED OUT!
It's really hard to help feeling stressed out. It's really hard to have a civilized response to a person who tells us to "just relax." It's hard to even know how to relax. "Longstanding stress" can be part of some people's genetic make-up, or past experiences, or current living/work environment. It also comes with years of living with infertility. But what also comes with years of living with infertility is an opportunity to change habits of how we think about stressful things, and how we respond. It's a work in process. It takes effort to consciously make lifestyle and dietary changes, and to alter the way we think about stressful situations and the way we can learn to be less reactive.
With each cycle, each month, each procedure there is, no doubt, a lot on the line. Always. A lot of money. A lot of physical and emotional investment. A lot of hope. After all, it's a human life we are all trying to create, and that's huge. But we also have to pay attention to the human life that we are most responsible for. Our own. We have to take the time to do whatever we can to honor ourselves and take care of ourselves and treat ourselves!
That's about all I can do right now, as I wait to begin my next process. Gearing up for another cycle is stressful. There's so much anticipation anxiety and fear and curiosity and hope. It's the perfect time for me to really work on my stress-management tools. Ugh. I hope I'm not being too redundant here, talking about trying to stay grounded and calm. It's a good reminder I suppose. Have a good weekend everyone! If you can rent a kayak and get off the Island for a few hours or even a few days do so! Maybe it will help you JUST RELAX! ;)