Loving being a parent starts early, and moves from the imagination to the mind to the heart to one’s child.
If you are someone who always wanted children, your interest probably started early. Maybe it was playing with dolls, or imagining yourself as a parent at an early age. Many women feel this interest strongly and by the time they enter young adulthood, they have come to assume that becoming pregnant is something that their body does naturally. Then puberty provides a monthly subliminal message that getting pregnant is what your body can do naturally or at will. Although men do not have these monthly reminders, many men tell me that they have wanted a family for as long as they can remember.
Then life happens. Maybe you are gay and need to figure out how to start a family. Perhaps you have decided to parent alone, or have had difficulties such as an illness or multiple failed attempts at fertility treatment, and your dream is now on hold. The journey to have a child can, as one of my patients once said, “take the stuffing out of you”. Much has been written about the roller coaster of fertility treatment. It is often full of tension and fear. That assumption about having an easy transition to parenthood can easily be replaced by sadness and anxiety. For some who worry about their children, these feelings can continue into parenthood. But wait a minute? What happened to the early fantasies and feelings of love and excitement? Those feelings all too often get gobbled up by the problem that is in front of us.
You may think that Valentine’s Day is a day that is great for Hallmark cards and restaurants, but it can be more. It represents love, and that is where this short newsletter started. It has been said that the antidote to fear is love. When you think about love, really think about it for several minutes (not seconds), fear subsides. Think about people you love, loving memories, warm, and loving experiences you hope to have in the future. Pick a comfortable quiet spot and day-dream away. It’s not exactly meditation, but it can certainly change your mood.
Love is something we all need more of, every day. The more we give ourselves time to feel love, the better we feel and the more likely we will be to communicate that to others as well. So, whether you are struggling with fertility or parenting issues, take a little time to feel the love, literally. It’s the best medicine around. Love is also like a boomerang. Spend a little time each day intentionally feeling loving feelings and you may be surprised to see what comes back to you.
While I am on the subject of family, please save the date: April 19, 2020. That is the day we will be hosting our famous TIP TOP program in NYC. Click here for information and early bird pricing.
Happy Valentine’s Day!