A couple of months ago I was involved in an event with Zita West, the UK’s baby-making guru. She said lots of interesting things but one in particular has stuck with me. Apparently whenever she meets a couple for the first time who are having difficulties conceiving she asks them what they think is the reason. The answer, she says, is always revealing. Right now, my answer would be: my age, my immune system and, occasionally, my mind. In that order.
Now park that thought for a moment because I want to tell you something lovely that happened to me about a week ago. Out of the blue I got an email from an embryologist from one of the first fertility clinics we attended. He makes a small cameo appearance in my book and although I don’t mention the name of the clinic itself (and had no idea he still worked there), a patient of his read my book, put two and two together and…he found me.
He asked me if I would send him a signed copy which I tentatively did hoping that he’d like it. Less than a week later, he wrote and said he’d read it cover to cover in a day. He commended my embryology descriptions which he said were pretty much textbook (I puffed with pride). He also said that the book depicted us exactly as he remembered.
As it was over five years since we’d seen him and most fertility clinics eat patients in the way that locusts eat crops, I was quite surprised (and flattered) he remembered us at all. When I wrote back and said so, he replied that there weren’t many couples who wanted to witness every aspect of their treatment (no?) and that he will always remember how calm and positive my partner was and how anxious I was by comparison (yup that would be us then, the same in reality as we are in the book).
So back to Zita – it made me think of her question again. Although I believe that infertility is a complex condition, instinct tells me that back then my anxious mind played a major part in sabotaging my chance to become a mother. Since then I’ve done a lot to shift that and it only occupies a measly third place. But I’m 43 and it may be too late. So don’t let it happen to you, if you think it could be one of the reasons, please do something about it!
So for this week’s question, ask yourself the question.