Anders Tengström, Clinical psychologist and Associate Professor in psychology
Trying to get pregnant is a journey, it is a journey for everyone who goes through it. For some, the trip is short and may not even be planned. For others, the journey is much longer and it can feel like there is not even a road to travel towards pregnancy. Still, it is a journey in time and space, mentally and physically.
One should probably ask oneself why trying to get pregnant should be seen as a journey, and not just as a biological process over which we have no real control. The answer is simple; if we see the process of getting pregnant as a journey, we are better equipped to take on the challenges that the process entails.
If you are on the journey to becoming pregnant, and things are not going as you planned or thought you can try think about it something like this;
Imagine that you have decided to travel the world and a journey like that always involves a certain amount unknowns. Of course, you have planned the trip in time and space, but there are no absolute guarantees that it will turn out as you intended. There are many unknown factors that can impact your well-planned trip and, in real life, this often how it turns out in the end. Things rarely goes exactly how we plan.
Deciding to go an adventure means that I must accept that I do not know everything, and I can´t control everything. There is a direct relationship between the degree of control and the degree of acceptance. The less control I have, the more acceptance must be used to handle the situation. Of course, the reverse is also true.
There are several occasions such as baby showers, kids’ parties or holiday celebrations with the family that is extra difficult to manage as we must spend time with people most of whom have no idea what you are going through. These festivities and celebrations are mainly for the children, and it becomes practically impossible not to end up in your own longing for children, and all the thoughts and feelings associated with that.
These occasions can be very hard and not at all bring the joy we want too, but just feel like a burden. But again, you can choose to see the process towards pregnancy in the same way as you see a journey that heads towards an unknown destination in the world. If you do, it can be a bit easier to carry.
Here are some tips for Your journey;
Make the choice
– Make the choice to see your attempt to get pregnant as a journey, this is a good way to view it all year round regardless of the season.
– Trying to create control over what can not be controlled only makes you exhausted and invites a feeling of hopelessness. You can use your energy for better things. Accept that you do not really know where the journey is taking you. It’s okay not to know what’s going to happen and how it’s going right now, just as it is with all travel. To accept is not to give up – make it a conscious choice in order to save your energy for things you can actually do something about.
Trying to get pregnant can easily feel like a struggle, a battle to be won. However, you need to realize that you are only fighting yourself, there is no enemy. If you choose to see the process as a journey, you can be here and now in every moment of the journey and also try to enjoy what you experience. The trip will be memorable because you participated no matter where it took you. You can choose to leave the fight and instead enjoy life right at this moment.
Rejoice in others
During the holidays or special occasions, it can be difficult to rejoice with your relatives and friends with children. It makes your own absence of children so much more obvious and painful. Here too you can make the choice and step into the here and now and choose to take part and rejoice together, regardless of the occasion. You do not have to be with your army on a gray and muddy battlefield far, far away. You can choose. Finding the strength to rejoice in others doesn´t make your own longing less valuable, both can exist at the same time and have the same value.
Try to find peace and feel the joy in the occasion at hand, even though everything is as it is. You are on a journey and there is no set course, and you can´t change that. Create control through acceptance and you may find it easier to embrace the here and now.