About three years ago, my husband and I decided it was time to start a family. We took all the “right” steps to lead us down the path of becoming parents and began to prepare for this new phase of our lives. Unfortunately, my body didn’t seem to get the message that this is what we were doing.
I spent the next 7 months doing absolutely everything I could think of to get pregnant. I monitored my temperature, tracked my cycle, ate healthy, drank fertility teas, and so on. My cycles were long and painful, and a pattern appeared that I might not even be ovulating at all. We then went the traditional route of getting checked out. Both my husband and I came back with a bill of clean health. There is no reason we shouldn’t have been able to get pregnant, said Western medicine. But we decided to try a round of Clomid to see if it would strengthen my ovulation. I’d heard of all sorts of crazy side effects that came with this little pill but wanted so badly to get pregnant that I simply did not care. The first round failed.
All of the sudden I saw the mental path that I was starting to head down. Am I infertile? Will I ever be able to have a baby? Am I going to have to go through month after month of painstaking drugs and needles and IVF? Was I ready for all of that? At this point we had only been trying for 7 months but it was the longest 7 months I had ever experienced. Now, I know infertility is defined as trying for more than one year and I certainly do not pretend to know the pain of years of trying but when you are ready for a baby and months pass without success, you begin to fear you might never be able to have children. We were both young and healthy and there was no apparent reason for me not to get pregnant but still it wasn’t happening. Sometimes, not knowing the answer can be scarier than having one and determining a path towards success. I decided that I wasn’t ready to go down the infertility path quite yet.
Then I heard about acupuncture from my cousin. She tried to get pregnant for two years and after 3 months of acupuncture she was pregnant. I must admit, I was a bit skeptical. I knew little about acupuncture besides that you are poked with needles. How could needles help me get pregnant? But I thought to myself, why don’t I just do a little research? A few minutes on the Internet and one after another, I found information about the benefits of acupuncture on fertility. So I thought to myself, still skeptical, why not just go do a consult and see if this is worth pursuing? I mean, I’d already spent 7 months trying to get pregnant and I was willing to do almost anything to avoid the deep hole of sadness that was starting to descend on me from month after month of failure.
I met with Charles Eastern View Integrative Medicine and felt an instant level of comfort. He seemed knowledgeable and optimistic. He answered all of my questions and explained to me what acupuncture really was and how it might help. I had never had a medical professional spend that much time learning about me. He didn’t want to just know my “symptoms” but also about my life and energy level, and he didn’t jump to any immediate solutions. It was a different experience than what I was used to with Western medicine. So I decided to give it a whirl.
The results were astounding. By the end of the first month, there were real tangible changes in my body. My period was lighter, my cramps were nonexistent, and my cycle even shortened by more than 5 days! I felt better. I couldn’t believe it. After just one month of acupuncture my body responded as if that was all it needed in the first place. Another month went by and again, real tangible results with a shorter cycle to show for it. I became a believer. I couldn’t explain all the science behind these acupuncture points that Charles was stimulating but I could see that it worked. The third month, I got pregnant. Unfortunately, I miscarried within days of finding out. But I thought, wow I got pregnant. I can get pregnant. Charles was incredibly supportive through the loss and we talked about how while this feels like a step back, it is a step in the right direction. After all, after just two months, I got pregnant. The next month, and fourth month of acupuncture, I got pregnant again! It was as if my body said, ooh so this is what we want, and it was Charles who helped make it understand that.
Charles worked with me throughout the pregnancy to maintain my health and the health of the baby. In fact, the benefits of acupuncture did not stop when I got pregnant. I had practically no symptoms. No nausea, heartburn, or any of the other beautiful ills of being pregnant. I can’t help but think that this was in part due to acupuncture.
I am thankful to have opened my mind and given acupuncture a chance. There is no other way to put it except that it really works. I tried for 7 months to get pregnant using Western techniques with no success. After a few months of acupuncture I was pregnant. The results could not be any clearer. Sometimes your body needs to come back into balance to work the way it should. Charles’ knowledge of acupuncture and the environment of comfort, optimism, and support he created (and that I desperately needed) helped me get through the experience of struggling with fertility and out of my own head. Acupuncture helped me start my family, and there is no greater gift than that.
[typography font=”Delius Swash Caps” size=”20″ size_format=”px”]Written by Beth Nolan[/typography]
Born and raised in Northern Virginia, I came to Vermont with my husband in 2007 for graduate school. As Vermont usually does, we were sucked into its wonderful way of life, and what began with the two of us has now grown into a family of two crazy English Springer Spaniels and one beautiful little boy. I work full time for a children’s advocacy organization and am passionate about ensuring the welfare of women and children in Vermont. In my free time (what little there is these days!), I enjoy crocheting, spending time with friends, and learning how wonderful it is to be a mom.