You see them everywhere, on billboards, in magazines, and on television commercials peddling some totally unrelated medication; Perfectly fit women bent into impossible poses with apparent ease, all with an eerie sense of calm or even enjoyment plastered onto their self-satisfied faces.
If you’re like me, you’ve cursed these flexible, goddess-like specimens for their idyllic bodies. You’ve assumed their perfectly functioning ovaries have gifted them 3 beautiful children to go along with that unattainably perfect physique. You’ve scowled at the unfairness of it all, as you grip the substantial spare tire around your waist, usually reserved for the mom you hope to be someday, before falling to your knees and weeping at the heavens. WHY ME…WHY?!?
When you have completed your silent malediction towards this woman that (1) you know nothing about and (2) has done absolutely nothing to you, you hang your head with a bit of shame, quietly wondering if maybe you should give this yoga thing a try. After all, you’ve heard it is low impact, good for your “whole body” (whatever that means), and your doctor did tell you to keep active through the fertility treatment process.
I know what you’re thinking, “Yoga…really? YOGA? I’m dealing with whacked out hormones!… Stress levels through the roof!… Emotional breakdowns for days…weeks…months…years… AND…you want me to drag my exhausted self up and keep active? With YOGA? Get the F$%! Out of here with your crunchy granola nonsense. My body needs rest! Or a drink!”
I hear you, trust me, I do. I’ve been there. Heck I’m still there, but I do yoga…meh…sometimes. The thing is, that when I do, I feel incredible, even if just for a short while. This crap really does help the WHOLE BODY.
So…Do I think you should do it, too?
INDEED! Keeping physically active throughout the fertility process may be one of the last things on your mind as you struggle to even lift yourself out of bed somedays, be it from the crippling hormone induced depression or the looming fear of failure with each haunting cycle. But, REALITY CHECK, successfully dragging yourself to that yoga mat is one the healthiest things you can do for your mind, body, & soul. Well, at least one of the most productive things that you have control over, and for me that was what sold me on it. I have felt so out of control of my own life and my own destiny over the past 14 years, particularly in the motherhood sphere. Therefore, taking hold of this one little thing, that I could do in my own home, to lift my spirits and shake off the weight (physically and mentally), has really made a difference.
Let me specify, I don’t do yoga classes. Some people love them, but they most certainly are NOT for me. Because, ya know, other people will see my spare tire and judge my terrible yoga form. They won’t, I’m sure, but all the same I prefer to Yoga solo. Luckily, there are dozens of excellent YouTube routines, and most of them take less than 20 minutes. Whether you are looking for something to just set a positive mood for the day or assist with a restful night, you can find the right routine from the comfort and privacy of your own home. All the while, never straying too far from that bed you just dragged yourself out of. Good job, by the way! I am proud of you!
Anyway. This one from Vikki Taylor is one of my favorites because there is no one talking at me. I simply learned the routine over time, and now I can just peacefully enjoy my moves and the calming musical accompaniment without verbal interruption. Also, as an added bonus, I can actually perform most of the moves fairly comfortably without feeling utterly ridiculous. If guided instruction, or a little pumping up, works better for you try this from Kristina of KriskaYoga or this from Lauren of YogaTX.
Take care of your mind, body, and soul the best you can throughout your journey, setting reasonable goals and expectations for yourself. Make sure to note how you feel on the days, and how you sleep through the nights, when you complete a yoga routine. I hope you benefit from it, as much as I have.
Wishing you all PEACE, LOVE, & BABY DUST.