• It Takes a Village to Make a Family

    The word “yoga” means to yolk or make whole. When practicing yoga you are helping your four bodies (physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual) to become whole. Yet, when you are working so hard to create your family this is the last thing you may feel. Many women have shared with me over the years how broken they feel, not whole. I’m afraid some of this brokenness has to do with the expectation that their fertility or adoption professionals will meet all of their needs, but this is rarely the case. The fertility clinics emphasize the physical, which can be very important when you’re trying to conceive, yet it leaves out the three other bodies of a person. The adoption journey isn’t really a physical experience, like fertility is. Adoption agencies do a better job with the emotional body, but most don’t address the mental or spiritual parts of a person’s journey. And even if you’re on an adoption journey your physical body still carries the stress and losses from past fertility attempts. Not addressing all four bodies can leave clients feeling fragmented, lost, and upset, especially when the first IVF doesn’t work or you’ve been waiting forever for an adoption match. You may not even know that your other bodies aren’t getting the support they need. To add insult to injury, your unaddressed mental or emotional pain intensifies the longer your journey takes. That’s why you feel so bad.

    We need fertility and adoption experts to share their gifts in the world and at the same time as patients and clients, we need to recognize that all of our bodies needs are not going to be met there.   In order to feel whole, moving through your path to parenthood, it is beneficial to meet the needs of all four of your bodies.   Don’t expect that you fertility and adoption experts to meet those needs, that is not where they received their training. I recommend that you create a team of experts that can help you address all of your bodies. This may mean that you work with more than one person.

    As a coach I work with all four of your bodies. I believe this is why my success rate is so high. I see and treat the whole woman. I may not be the one performing the IVF or placing a baby with a family, but I recommend experts who do fill those roles. Having worked in the fields of infertility and adoption for over 18 years, I have built quite a network of professionals. Even if you are out of state, I can recommend the type of professional you can look for near your home.  Some women may need a smaller team and may never meet a fertility doctor or adoption expert. Yet, many will and once the reproductive endocrinologist or adoption counselor is working with you, I help to fill in the gaps addressing the other bodies where a client may feel their brokenness.

    Each woman presents differently with her needs and may need different experts to address her specific imbalances. I recall a client sharing with me once what another group member said to her about how many people are involved in one’s creation of a family when one is fertility challenged. She said, It may take a village to raise a child for most, but for us it takes a village to make a family. Although your journey may have started with just you and your partner, suddenly you have a room full of professionals. This can feel overwhelming and irritating on the one hand, as such a personal and intimate experience has become so public. Yet, another way that you can look at this is that possibly in no other time of your life will you have so many experts rooting for you, supporting you, and loving you around your dream of motherhood. After all, you are a multifaceted person with many parts of you and with the right team you will start to feel your sense of self return as you bring all of your bodies into balance. As you find yourself returning to wholeness, you will experience your journey in a different light and the qualities of patience, peace, and gratitude will become the norm as you allow life’s gifts to reveal themselves to you.