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Learning to Surrender

It’s no secret amongst those I love, that I like to be in control. I’m a typical Type A personality or whatever that means. I love to tick off a list and end the day knowing that I’ve achieved something. Need something organised, I’m the girl, need an action plan – give me a call. I am the girl who can make shit happen.

Until I couldn’t make the most important thing in my life happen. Until I struggled for 4 years to conceive a baby. This was the first experience in my life that I just could not make happen. Till that point, pretty much what I set out to achieve in my life came to fruition. I wanted to travel as a 20 something, I moved back home, saved money and made that happen. I wanted to work in travel, I made that happen. I wanted to move interstate - tick, and I knew when I met Mark that I would marry him and 11 years later here we are.

I’m either a fantastic manifestor or once again a girl that makes shit happen.

So after years of trying endless fertility treatments, exercising regularly, taking herbal supplements, going for fortnightly acupuncture, eating organic food and even ridding my home of chemical cleaning products and shampoos, I still couldn’t achieve the goal of becoming pregnant.

Some of you may have experienced this first hand and can relate to the feelings that go with the journey of Fertility. For those that haven’t, you may have a friend or family member going through this and you have seen the intensity of the experience. It has a flow on effect in all areas of your life including your relationship with your partner, your friends who have kids, never mind the emotional, physical and financial burdens. However for me the greatest challenge I experienced was the feeling of failure. For the first time in my life I couldn’t make something happen. Here I am a woman in her 30’s who should be able to conceive a child. After all isn’t that what the female body is designed to do? Yet as each Christmas passed I would feel like there goes another year without a baby, without a grandchild for our parents without a niece or nephew for our siblings. I wasn’t only letting myself down I felt as though I was failing my husband and our extended family.

The reality was this feeling of failure was mine, I made it up. This was my need to set a goal, execute a plan and achieve an outcome. Only I was feeling this sense of failure it certainly wasn’t imposed on me. But it felt real, it was ugly and it became really hard to shake. As we came to the end of 2007 the New Year stretched out in front of me and I had no plan other than pregnancy and no idea of how I was going to achieve it.

This was a dark time and definitely my first experience of depression. Even I admit that we throw that word around too loosely. I had uttered the phrase “I’m depressed” many times before but this was the real deal. I finally reached out for help only to be told that the IVF counsellors were booked out for the next 3 weeks. An angel in the form of a receptionist saved my life that day. She must have heard the despair in my voice and had a counsellor return my call immediately, and the following day I was sitting in front of someone getting the support I needed.

When she asked me to consider the option that I may never have a baby and that it might be time to consider a Plan B it was like a light went on. She wasn’t suggesting that I stop treatment but rather that I get on with living whilst I’m going through the treatment. It didn’t change my desire to have a child but it made me realise that I could stop trying, stop creating, stop planning , stop trying to make it happen and above all else stop failing.

In a sense she was asking me to consider the possibility of Surrender. Give in to what will be and begin to consider another life or direction. Not to give up on the dream of being a mother but to give up on the struggle to get there. She wasn’t telling me to go on a holiday and just relax because that’s what her friend did and it worked. Nor was she telling me to look into adoption and then I would probably get pregnant – yes someone thought this would be useful advice to offer me at a party! Ultimately I had to hand it over to something bigger than myself and trust that everything would evolve even if that meant not having my own child. She was actually the first person who asked me to consider building a life based on me and what I love to do and not on what I could reproduce.

What if you could surrender this to something else and keep moving in the direction of your life? Maybe not the life you thought you would have by the time you thought you would have it, but still your life all the same. To allow the journey of fertility to continue but in the meantime be present and joyful in your life.

I’m big on manifesting and the law of attraction. I strongly believe that you bring into your life experiences based on the principle of setting your vibration and frequency. The plan to have a child had challenged that. My vibration was high, my intention was set and yet still I was not pregnant. And so I listened to her, made a new plan and went back to school to study something I had always been interested in, cooking. I signed up for a Commercial Cookery course at a culinary school with no real plan or intention other than to feel good again. To experience something I had always dreamt about and just for the hell of it.

Funnily enough I walked into that commercial kitchen with students 15-18 years younger than I, the majority International and all of a sudden I took on the role of mother. As the mature age nerd of the group I helped them finish their homework, chop their onions, aced my tests and tutored them for exams and was always the last one left cleaning up. I found a passion and a bliss that I had been missing in my quest to become a mother. Before I signed up to the course my entire focus was on becoming pregnant. This kept perpetuating feelings of loss, sadness and failure and became the aura that surrounded me. I see now that this was the signal I was giving off and it was no wonder that I kept attracting more of the same.

The state of bliss continued for the whole first semester. I loved what I was doing and I was happy every day. I was still undertaking fertility treatment but it wasn’t my sole purpose for living. I had surrendered to the process of it all and more importantly I had surrendered the outcome. I had reclaimed my life and for the first time I stopped trying to deliberately create.

As I walked home from a late class after a tiring but joyous day of making stock…yes making stock can be joyful…I remembered that my pregnancy test was scheduled with the fertility clinic for the next morning. I had forgotten all about it and if you are going through this you know you never forget this date. I decided to take a sneaky test the night before and well you can guess the rest. I was pregnant. 4 years, 22 embryos, 9 transfers, 1 early miscarriage and now finally a result.

That soul had already taught me my first lesson of parenting, the lesson of surrender. Allowing what will be to be, and he wasn’t arriving until I had learned that lesson. As Oprah says, “this I know for sure.”

This is what I else I know for sure.

Surrender what you cannot control – hand it over.

Trust that there is a plan for you and that the universe is working for your highest good.

Ask for help and support. Get a coach or a friend but reach out, don’t do it alone.

Tap into the feeling that you want, find that feeling in other parts of your life and you will attract what you need to attract for your well being.

Live what you love. Bring back the joy and fun in your life and get on with living.

The universe has your back.


Jo x

Are you going through a fertility journey and need some additional support?

Get in touch for a complimentary session to discuss the possibility of Fertility Coaching and how it could support you.


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