Thursday, January 29, 2009


There's this ongoing joke amongst some of us IF girl's Facebook profiles that we've forgotten how to breathe or at least, don't have the time to. It's a leftover tribute to our increasingly annoying and insane mind/body instructor (who I've yet to pay real 'tribute' to, but will soon) after so many stomach turning sessions of her forcing us to meditate on our breath. Sadly, though, it's becoming less and less of a joke for me.

I am so stressed out, I am literally forgetting to breathe. I'm one of those people who keeps audibly sighing throughout the day as an involuntary attempt at getting enough oxygen to my sorely depleted brain. In the middle of stalking my UPS guy who should arrive any minute with the meds I need to begin NOW, I have been shuffling my schedule to acommodate my new part time job (yes, I got it), my multiple appointments for IVF, and the many other obligations I can't imagine having enough daylight for. Jury duty, food poisoning, in-laws staying over, multiple daily meetings, headaches, out-of-town conventions, friends coming in from out-of-state, birthday parties, dinner parties...can I just get a break, world? Will I ever learn how to say no? And worst yet, is all of this stress a possible BFN sentence for my upcoming IVF?

As you can see, there's only so much I can handle on my plate. It's all hunky dory until that last piece gets added and tips the scales. It seemed everything was manageable until a few weeks ago, right around the time I said goodbye to my dog, started my BCPs, and interviewed for the job all in the span of five days. I applied for that job in November and only heard from them mid-January. Great. It was as if the universe knew this was the one and only time I didn't want all of this and then heaped a big helping onto my plate.

I think the worst part of this is the people who keep expecting more and more, whether it be work or otherwise, requiring split second reactions and all of my energy devoted to them when I'm barely keeping my own head above water. I deeply resent it. I need to focus on my own priorities and as most women in this society are custom tailored to do, I automatically feel guilty for letting even a whisper of obligation slip. Well, for the sake of my dreams, for the sake of myself, I think I might be selfish this one time. I think I might say no or not return a phone call at the snap of a finger. There are plenty who won't like it and for that I say, too bad. It's time to finally take a breath.


Lorraine said...

I am so impressed with people (esp. women) who can say no to so many of those extra commitments. Especially if someone seems to have a really firm grasp on their own priorities, so that they can say no easily and without surrounding it by too many apologies and excuses. So, go for it! If you learn any secrets to making it easier, let me know!

Do what you need to make this cycle as calm as possible. Although I don't think stress has much to do with getting pregnant it has a lot to do with second-guessing yourself if it doesn't work.

And definitely breathe!

banditgirl said...

I like the last paragraph. I am glad you got there. It is crucial for you to say now and focus on your priorities right now. Now or never, I say. It's really important. You have to be able, at the very least, breathe. Please do not forget that last paragraph when you receive yet another request of any kind. It's just the way it is right now, and it is too important to ignore it.
I am psyched you got the job, and I feel like you can handle it as everything, but remember that concept we learned? It's called breathing.

Cassandra said...

Yes! During IVF maybe more than any other time, you deserve to set boundaries and start saying no.

I would start by saying no to food poisoning! LOL

Hope you find the air you need.

Jendeis said...

My mother once told me that there are two important things for women to learn in this world:

1) How to care for yourself.
2) How to love your hair.

I'm so proud of you for taking steps with the first. How you doin' on the second?

Shelby said...

Jendeis, I love your Mother's lessons. :) I think I give my hair more love than anything else in my life, so #2-check!

Tara said...

Breathe, sweetie. You can do it. Its OK to say NO. That is a hard one to learn, but you just have to and then let the guilt go. Your friends will understand. Hugs and keep breathing.

Nikki said...

I agree with Banditgirl - your last paragraph is the key. Remember that it's ok to say no. It's ok to focus on yourself, specially as you get into your IVF cycle.

Take care!

Sarang said...

Good for you for taking care of yourself and standing up for yourself. You don't need to concentrate on anyone but you right now...and know we are all backing you 100%.

Greg and Heather said...

Oh honey! you do have so much TOO much on your plate! I wihs you stress free days and time to just do you for a change! Take care of yourself you are #1!

Anonymous said...

Take lots of time to breathe. You can say no to anything you want. Infertility has taught me to stand up for myself in more ways than one. I have learned to stand up and say no if there is something that I just don't want to do.

Try it, you might just find it liberating.

Anonymous said...

I totally understand what you mean. I run around all day like a maniac, constantly thinking, talking, emailing, organizing, planning, making it happen. Good for you for recognizing that you need to make a change.

I've found that white lies really help me say "no". I tell my work friends I have to have dinner with my in-laws, and the in-laws I have a work event. That way I don't really have to say NO, but I can have some down time.

Do what you can to reduce your stress level, and I'm going to try and follow my own advice too :)