Success Story: Overcoming InfertilityEmanuela Nardella September 1, 2015
How My Intuition Guided Me Through the Maze of Infertility Treatment Choices to Conceive Two Children
I once navigated my way through the complex maze of infertility guided by my ‘intuition’ – a process that has produced a psychosynthesis for which I am most grateful. My purpose in sharing this account is to provide an inner look at how this intuition has served me. My hope is that you will be further inspired with your own intuitive urges.
My journey first began in 1980. Coming to the completion of our graduate studies, my husband and I decided to start a family. My intuition spoke to me three months into our family vision. The gentle inner voice informed me of a long struggle ahead. These words, though disconcerting, felt oddly comforting.
Journaling, imagery, and mindfulness helped my intuition come forward. I was guided toward both having children and significant learning. It can be difficult to hold true to this inner knowing when the linear brain and the objectified outer world speak in opposition. Still, I remained purposeful and action driven.
Speaking from the intuition to the social mass is like speaking in tongues. So, I tuned in and gravitated to like-spirited souls. I created a vision board. I remember drawing women with halos and bright auras in yoga poses of serenity. I visualized a beautiful smiling baby. I didn’t have a clue what vision boards, yoga, or auras were at the time, but I did it anyway.
By the time one year had passed, medical investigation had pronounced us infertile due to male factor.
Treatments such as hormones, laparoscopies, and uterine biopsies were recommended prior to artificial inseminations in order to enhance the ‘female factor’. Instead I was guided to do the inseminations without this intrusive bodily assault.
After the first three months of inseminations, I grieved. As a child, I had lost my homeland, my language, and my biological parents. As an adult, I had lost control over my fertility. An ultimate sadness was the loss of a complete intimacy with my husband in making a child together. I shivered at the coldness of the doctor, speculum, and a stranger’s sperm inside. After the third insemination, my body ached for balance.
First Baby Conceived
For my fourth try at artificial insemination, I had my friend accompany me. Irene proved to be my strong safe haven and an excellent co-conceptor. By cycle number four, I was ready to welcome the conception.
Abruptly ejected from the examining table post-insemination, I went to lie on my back beside a serene beach – hands palm up, pelvis bolstered with a lavender-scented pillow, and knees outstretched with the soles of my feet together.
Deep abdominal breathing and keagles felt good. I imagined the pathways from cervix to uterus to fallopian tubes opening. I imagined a road sweeper efficiently clearing psychic and physical debris.
The sperm followed, swimming along the responsive mucous ocean. I pictured the same laughing baby I had drawn in my baby-making journal, waiting at the end of the path.
A flash of purple light. Time stood still. It was sacred. Nine months later, Eva Christina was born.
Second Baby Conceived
Nine years later, the tragic death of a friend’s newborn precipitated our decision to try for a second child. Science wanted me to jump right into the hormonal pool of donor egg and IVF. I had passed the 40-year mark with a diagnosis of age-related infertility. The odds were slim of conceiving again. I wrote, I drew, I posed, and I sat in mindful silence. I visualized the street sweeper that worked so well before. I underwent hysteroscopy and laparoscopic procedures to clear a polyp and endometrial lesions.
My intuition and I devised a plan of action. I interviewed doctors from four clinics before I found Dr. Librach, a pioneer and a gentle, skillful specialist. My grandmothers smiled from the heavens, both of whom were 44 when they had their last of many children.
Cycle four of insemination approached. I switched donors. The first donor had features matching my husband; the second less so, but matched my paintings of our baby-to-be. Ready now for a conception that was celebratory, I marched into the insemination room in a brightly coloured outfit. Smock be gone!
Dr. Librach had obliged my request for 20 minutes of uninterrupted quiet time post-insemination. After a few relaxing breaths, I turned on my Walkman to hear Cirque du Soleil’s Alegria (joy). This was a performance that Eva and I had previously enjoyed (where she had first disclosed to me her longing for a sibling).
I assumed the butterfly pose with a Juniper hand mudra – the feminine pose of ‘energy drawn inward’ that I’d assumed only once before when Eva was conceived. Again, I did a pelvis tilt – this time with arms outstretched, hands clasped together, and fingers interlaced (except for pointed index fingers) to symbolize the sharpness and goal-oriented focus of sperm. Ying yang – a pose of union.
I visualized the Alegria production. To the lyrics “the love in me is raging, in pure joy” I imagined the performers (symbolizing acrobatic sperm as beautiful, graceful, and speedily precise). The cast were all those who contributed to the conception. What joy; what fun! I walked out of the clinic with such a grin. You guessed it…nine months later, Tonya Marie Alegria was born – a laughing child with the brown hair and olive complexion I had intuited.
I continue to be fascinated, humbled, and rewarded by my intuition, which often precedes any kind of cognitive understanding. Infertility, as one of life’s biggest challenges, can rob us of power and inner wisdom. Intuition is the gift that can reclaim this power.
Alegria and namaste.
• Dumais, S. Yoga for Fertility, Trafford Publishing, 2009
• Ferrucci, P. What We May Be: Techniques for Psychological and Spiritual Growth through Psychosynthesis, J. P. Tarcher, Inc. 1982
• Kaminoff, L.K. Yoga Anatomy, The Breathe Trust, 2007
• Segal, Z., Williams, J.M.G. & Teasdale, J.D. Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy for Depression, The Guilford Press, 2002
• Tolle, E. A New Earth: Awakening to your life’s purpose, Penguin Group, 2005
• Zoldbrod, Aline P.; Men, Women & Infertility: Intervention and Treatment Strategies; Lexington Books, 1992
Emanuela (Emma) Nardella is a Registered Psychotherapist with the College of Registered Psychotherapists in Ontario. She has a private practice in Guildwood Village in Toronto. She works with individuals, couples, families, trainees and psychotherapy groups. She employs a variety of intuition, humanistic-based therapies. She lives with her husband and occasional houseguests including her 2 adult daughters and 2 grandsons; the gifts of intuition. She can be reached at <a href="mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org">email@example.com</a>.