Sunday, July 26, 2009


I've been spending the weeks since my canceled transfer reading and thinking and changing. After all, don't they say that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result?

My RE has his plans for change (estrogen priming protocol), but I have spent the last seven weeks changing things in my life all in an effort to improve my egg quality and change my IVF results.

Diet: I have been slowly moving toward eating more organic foods. My attitude toward organic food is similar to my attitude toward recycling. I think it's a good thing, but I don't go too far out of my way to do it. I have also been eating more whole grains. I've eliminated all caffeine and I avoid alcohol. I was doing these things to some extent before, but now my diet has gotten more focus.

Exercise: I'm more dedicated to working out each day. I've even started using the gym at work and have found it to be a great mid-day stress reliever. I'd like to start doing yoga geared toward improving fertility. I've never done much yoga before and I haven't done any for years. Does anyone have any DVD suggestions?

Acupuncture: I go once a week. I think I will start going twice a week once I start stims.

Supplements: I have started taking wheatgrass and l-arginine at the suggestion of my acupuncturist. I've been taking the wheatgrass pills for the last seven weeks. Now that I have started my IVF prep and I am also drinking two cubes of frozen wheatgrass each day. I take a multi-vitamin as well as some extra folic acid.

Meditation: I've not done a lot of meditation before. OK, I've not done any except for once in a college course about Hinduism with a very strange professor. I purchased this guided meditation CD. It's OK. I've only done it a few times and I usually fall asleep. I think this CD will become invaluable when I get into the stressful part of the cycle.

My RE is not terribly supportive of these efforts. He doesn't disagree with any of these changes, but he also doesn't believe that they will improve my results. I don't know if I totally believe in all of this either, but I don't think that Western medicine has all the answers. If they did, I would have a child by now.

I do feel different...healthier. I have more energy. I sleep better. I am more..ahem...digestively regular.

I've read blogs about women making these types of changes to improve their fertility in the past. Then I was at a point in my journey where it all sounded a little desperate. Now making these changes in my life seems like the next logical step. I guess I have learned that lesson once again that you should not judge others until you have been in their shoes. (I wonder if that lesson will ever fully sink in.)
I'm hoping for some beautiful butterfly eggs in September.


Mo said...


Just catching up after our trip. Your metamorphasis sounds amazing. I've tried some of these things - going organic (with food and detergents/soaps/cleansers) and acupuncture. But never a comprehensive plan like you're doing. You go, girl! My RE has never been supportive of these things either. I wish they would take a more holistic approach. I look forward to reading how all your changes impact things - it can't do anything but help!


Michelle said...

I think it can't hurt and if you feel healthier and more energetic then that is a good thing!

ME! said...

I definately think that what you are doing are good positive changes...even if it is just for the energy and regularity. :) How could it be bad for you!?!?!? I have some serious fingers crossed here!!

Jendeis said...

Congrats on all the positive changes and hard work you've done! I'm sure that what you're doing is helping because you are feeling better in lots of different ways.

(Bookmarking this post for inspiration in my own journey!)

Monica said...

Those sound like positive changes for everything - not just baby-making matters. Sounds grreat! You've inspired me to go eat half a grapefruit (not organic, but there's no way those pesticides can penetrate a thick grapefruit skin, right?? ;-)

Diana said...

I've been doing yoga DVDs for years, but not specifically for fertility--for exercise and also b/c doing it saves my sanity! I have loads but my favourites, the ones I go back to again and again (and again and again!) are:
1. Ali McGraw- Yoga Mind & Body
2. Tracey Rich & Ganga White- Total Yoga Earth (and this one is nice and short too)
3. Bryan Kest Power Yoga 1 -- more of a workout -- you'll actually be sore the first few times you do it.
All are great for beginners, but watching them all the way through once before you do them is helpful.
As for all the changes, whether or not your RE is supportive, or whether or not they "work", it's better to do them than not do them b/c if you don't, you'll always wonder if you had done them it would have helped.

areyoukiddingme said...

It's wonderful that you're doing all of these things. I hope that they give you the desired result. I will say, though, that I would rather see you making these very positive changes just for yourself, so you can maintain this very healthy attitude for the rest of your life. Because, God knows, once you have a baby, what goes into your body is all about fuel and convenience!

Mad Hatter said...

I totally believe in all the changes you are making - I am doing the same, actually, and have noticed a difference in my energy and my sleep and even my AF (a HUGE sign that a big difference is being made). Sure, there are plenty of women out there who've gotten pregnant even though they eat lots of processed, pesticide- and hormone-ridden food, and who've abused alcohol or drugs even. If someone did a study, I would guess that not a lot of them are in their thirties or forties. I think that these chemicals and hormones and stresses build up over time and making these healthy choices (out of desperation or not) will only help to improve egg quality and the flow of blood and energy in the body. Good for you!

aimeemax said...

Well done you - because if you feel better then it's working. And I do so hope you get your little butterfly eggs soon.


Liz said...

I'm at a similar stage.

And can totally relate how a few years ago it all seemed a bit desperate, people who get drunk and are over weight get pregnant all the time. But we aren't 'people' we have to do something, anything that works for us.

Except wheatgrass, your last post put me off wheatgrass!

Shinejil said...

I'm with Mad Hatter--I think that the acupuncture, Chinese herbs, diet and exercise and relaxation did make a difference for me. But I also got a bit carried away and nuts about it all, which made the process at some stages more stressful than it needed to be. So I guess I'd say keeping a balance between enjoying your life and cultivating your physical and mental well-being needs to be struck.

At the very, very least, you'll know you've done everything in your power. And, uh, you'll enjoy regularity.

Melissa Griffin said...

THe only piece of advice I can give is I did all you are doing except hte organic. I went to acupuncture 2x a week and I did herbs but the doc told me acup was great but that they didnt agree with the herbs because they dont know what is in them exactly and that you are not allowed to be taking herbs when you go under....Not sure if wheatgrass is included just thought I would tell you that my doc said the same thing!

olive said...

I congratulate you for the changes and I truly believe they make a difference. I quit acupuncture in April due to costs but I don't know if it helped with my pregnancy last month (I miscarried last week). I've just bought a Yoga dvd:

BUT I can't recommend it yet, since I'm still taking it easy (meaning I barely can't get out of bed). I'll possibly start this week though and I'll let you know.
Best of luck to you, and again, thanks for your posts:)

Suzanne said...

I think that what you're doing will help! I believe in taking a holistic approach.

One Who Understands said...

I have tried the Yoga 4 Fertility DVD with the pregnant woman sitting in a black spandex thing. I really enjoy it. It explains before you start the exercise how you can help your fertility with yoga. I do see that now it is a discontinued item and is much more than I paid for it 4 years ago. Too bad we have MFI and it didn't help me "magically" get pregnant.

Good luck to you with your next cycle. I hope all the effort you are putting in pays off.

Chelsea Lietz said...

Your Chrysalis will be worth all of this extra effort!

Anonymous said...

i just started reading your blog, and wanted i appreciate your willingness to share this experience. it's really hard, and kind of lonely in the real world to go through this, so it's nice to have a little refuge online.


Anonymous said...

You make such a valid point about the necessity of change. I think your changes are wonderful and you are feeling better. That is the point right? I often feel guilty b/c i haven't made any changes in diet and exercise. But I also don't do ART anymore. But I do wonder how much changes like these could affect my fertility.

Anonymous said...

it doesn't matter what the RE thinks (unless he thinks it's harmful!!) matters what you think and how you feel. going into a cycle with positive feelings and physically feeling good is really important! seriously!

sounds like you have an awesome plan. i'm impressed!! xoxo

Erica said...

I think that the changes you've made are terrific! Of course your RE doesn't think they'll matter much - he's trained to believe that medication alone solves infertility. I guess sometimes it does, but I truly, truly, truly believe my acupuncturist had a HUGE impact on my pregnant cycle. I know my egg quality was better and my uterine lining was 3 mm thicker than it had ever been before!!! And let me tell you, the Lupron used to dry out my lining like nobody's business. I'm a believer in what you're doing, Megan. And you know what else? No one knows what outcome we're going to get but at least you've taken charge of things you CAN control and you're doing EVERYTHING you can to give this cycle your best shot. It's better than just sitting around and wallowing or bitching - and I've done both, believe me!

I've got everything crossed for you and will continue to keep you in my thoughts.

the misfit said...

I might have trouble listing all the things I was too principled and independent to do to improve fertility that sound perfectly reasonable to me now (the current obstacle is just laziness). I hope your new efforts make a big difference and you soon feel healthy and wonderful - and pregnant.

Anonymous said...

You've got me sold on acupuncture. Whether or not your RE thinks they work, I think there is more to all of this than just what they have tested and charted. I am hoping for beautiful eggs come September for you.

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