Dear Fellow Infertility Warrior,
The spread of Covid-19 has quickly crippled our nation. What was happening in China, South Korea, and Italy felt so distant weeks ago until it became our reality. Those of us in California, New York, and Washington state (where the virus seems most concentrated at the writing of this post) are adjusting to a new normal where the grocery store shelves are bare, we’re isolated in our homes, and toilet paper feels like budding currency.
Amid this national chaos, we are dealing with additional challenges as a result of the virus. IVF cycles, months and years in the making, have been canceled or postponed. Long-awaited transfers have been too. For some, that translates into thousands of dollars and months and years of hopes crushed and cast into limbo.
The impact of the virus on pregnancy is still unknown, leading to another layer of uncertainty and worry for those of you already pregnant.
Living through a medical crisis, while our nation is undergoing a larger health one, further compounds the emotional trauma that comes along with our journey. Constant change and uncertainty only heighten the emotional chaos you may feel when you are doing your best to stay grounded.
While there is no easy way to get through this, remember that we have endured hardships before, and we can do so again.
Initially, you may need to retreat, reprocess, and regroup. It may look like a variation of what I have outlined below which I found helpful in the past:
- Honor your feelings – Anger, sadness, frustration, etc. Give them a voice. If your feelings had words, what would they say?
- Journal – Use it as much as you can to capture your thoughts and feelings.
- Needs – Ask yourself what you need most right now – words of comfort, affirmation, a hug, or something else? Identifying what feels most helpful is important.
- Reconnect with yourself – You’ve just gone through yet another disappointment in a string of disappointments. Be tender with yourself. Get lost in a book, mindless television, or listen to music that you find uplifting.
- Control – Focus on what you have control over vs. what you don’t. Stay in the present as much as you can.
- Strength – Lean into the strength that got you to this point. Faith, community, connection – any or all of it is fair game. Get support wherever you find it.
Lastly, I know you have heard this before, but I will say it again – WE ARE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER!
Sending love and light to all,
~ Dr. Loree
- Originally published in Thrive Global March 22, 2020