Monday, October 5, 2009

One Track Mind

I have a one track mind, and although it does pertain to s*x, it is not what you think. IF has slowly taken over my whole life, including all of my thoughts, it seems. It is really remarkable how much time and energy I spend thinking about IF. Praying the rosary? My mind is probably wandering to IF, and if I am focusing, I am likely trying to connect each mystery to IF. Focusing on that conference call? Doubtful – I am probably thinking about my most recent doctor’s appointment. Looking super serious and focused in spinning class – not likely because I am pushing myself to my limit. It is probably because I am thinking about my pregnancy losses. Listening to my husband talk about his day at work? It may look like that, but really I am thinking about calling my doctors office to order my most recent medical records, figuring out when I am going to get my next blood draw, and trying to remember if I took all my meds/supplements that day. I honestly think my husband would be shocked if he realized just how much of my thoughts were consumed by this. He is focused on his own challenges, and although IF is one of them, it is more likely that his one-track mind has something to do with his looming dissertation. It doesn’t help that my new hobby is blogging and I spend my leisure time checking everyone’s updates. That just raised the intensity level a few notches higher!

It is fine to spend a certain amount of time focusing on IF. As women, we are naturally connected to IF in ways that our husbands aren’t. Each day is a whole new experience – we are checking our fertility signs and wondering whether we are having pregnancy symptoms or just PMS. We may have to keep track of an ever-changing mix of medications and supplements. We are the ones who have to decide whether to POAS. Then there are the emotions we face when seeing pregnant women, or friends with children, or engaging in certain conversations. And don’t forget about that never ending stack of books and articles there are to read to try to find “the answer.” It can be absolutely exhausting! But letting IF become all-consuming can lead to real problems. Am I not being as productive at work because I am not focusing during meetings, or am I spending too much time consulting Dr. Google instead of working on my tasks? Am I fostering good communication in my relationships if I am tuning people out and focusing inward? Is my faith life suffering because I am not centering myself during prayer? Mind control can be so difficult, especially if, like me, you have let yourself slack for a while now.
One quote has been coming to mind tonight, I think I got this from a retreat. “Be where you are.” It is so easy for me to let my mind take off to IF-land. But I need to really live my life – to live in the moment and enjoy where God has placed me right now. When I am in a social situation, I should be enjoying the company I am surrounded with. When I am at church, I should be practicing the presence of God. And I should actually put in a full day’s work so that I don’t feel like I am always running behind! I need to make the most of all of this “me-time” that I have been blessed with right now. Even though I would much rather be offering myself as a gift to my child, I know that the day will come when I will wish I had a free moment to explore my own interests or spend in quiet reflection.

I have been feeling the need to find something to put my energies into, especially since I am in post-m/c, post-surgery purgatory with no idea when I will emerge with the green light to TTC. I am feeling like plunging myself into some kind of intense exercise regimen – doing something that I wouldn’t want to do when TTC. However, this weekend I just wasn’t feeling 100% over surgery. So I finally decided to start tackling a scrapbook of our trip to Italy…two years ago. I have had the pictures sitting in a box under my bed for close to two years, picked out the album a year ago, and had not touched it. But this weekend I finally started working on it (see the fruits of my first days on the job below). It was so refreshing to have something else to get obsessive over. And I have to admit, this would be hard to do if I had little ones to take care of!

“You shall not have other gods besides me.” Exodus 20:3
“Do not conform yourselves to this age but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and pleasing and perfect.” Romans 12:2
“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8

Reflection Questions
1. How much of my time is spent pursuing things related to infertility?
2. Has this reached an unhealthy or counterproductive level in my life?
3. What are some things other things that I can put my energies into right now? Are there any projects I have been putting off, or would I like to pursue a new hobby?

“Examine yourself often, at least at night and morning, as to whether your soul is ‘in your hand’ or whether it has been wrested thence by any passionate or anxious emotion. See whether your soul is fully under control, or whether it has not in anywise escaped from beneath your hand, to plunge into some unruly love, hate, envy, lust, fear, vexation, or joy. And if it has so strayed, before all else seek it out, and quietly bring it back to the Presence of God, once more placing all your hopes and affections under the direction of His Holy Will.” St. Francis de Sales, Introduction to the Devout Life

Okay, so I just added a title to this page, but the paper was so cool I had to share.

6 Cities in 12 Days
The Daily Agenda with Memories


  1. I love your posts. They are always so thought provoking.

  2. I think my husband would also be shocked if he knew how much I thought about IF and TTC. I would say about 80% of my waking hours. (When I first wrote it, I wrote 90%. That may be closer to the truth, but it looks worse...).
    It is all-consuming, definitely, and something I continue to struggle with.

  3. looks like you went to hubby and I went there on our honeymoon.

    Very good thoughts!