Identity Who am I ?
Who am I? (Part 1)
This is the first of three articles about Identity facing and struggling with infertlity.
Going through IVF and making the journey towards having a baby in your arms, does something to you. Both physically and emotional.
Over the years I have met a lot of women and couples in therapy and counselling where they all ask themselves; “Who am I?..”. Maybe sometimes you see yourself as the childless person, she who cannot get pregnant, or she who cannot give birth to a baby, or he who isn´t a father.
During these times; getting pregnant and having a baby, this is a common issue. You want so hard to become a mother, a father, a parent and to have this child to love and taking care of, but nothing happens. Or a lot happens, but not as you expected it to be.
The time goes, your due date may have been many, your pregnancy-tests also. The rollercoaster of your emotions has its own ride, and it takes you to places you never known before.
All these emotions make you feel a certain way. It´s common to experience feelings of lack of control, that can make you feel lost or confused.
Both on the road you are at, and about yourself.
Some emotions can be so strong and the feelings so real that it becomes a truth.
When you struggle in life the feelings can be overwhelming, and it can put a negative sound on many thoughts about yourself. Like “I can never do anything right”, “I am a failure”, “This happens because I am a bad person”, “I am not worthy to become a mother” and so on.
Maybe you have focused all of your time, your thoughts, feelings and dreams planning this baby, and because of that you have waited to go on a vacation, meet friends and family, travel, or changing your job.
When life gets fulfilled with focus on a goal or a dream, we often put aside everything else knowing it will take us there faster.
But this time it doesn´t work that way, and we must reconstruct the way and our engagement, sometimes more than one time.
So, Who are you? Really? together with all your life-experiences? What is the bigger picture of you? Even if you right now are struggling with infertility, or struggling to become a mother or a father? Or even if you aren´t pregnant yet, or not yet is having a child of your own.
Do you want to try this little exercise out?
First take a deep breath in and then exhale. Well, make it three times. It is always good to do, especially when you go from one thing to another.
This is an exercise that will help your mind to shift focus, and we involve your body and soul too, great isn´t it!? Are you ready?
-So put on some great funky music that makes you want to dance.
-Do yourself proud by your best dance moves! Come on! Have a little fun time, no one is watching!
-Then, take a break (whenever you want) and look at yourself in the mirror.
Imagine that nobody would know anything about what you been going through or are going through right now.
-Smile at the beautiful woman you see in the mirror (that also have fun moments) and keep that state in mind, while you think of:
How would you introduce yourself to a new person you really want to get to know and make a good impression on?
Maybe you will tell them about:
your passions in life
things that makes you happy
what makes you have a good laugh
what and who inspires you
what makes you feel awe in life
your strengths & your life-lessons
things you are thankful for
You know, your identity is not your feelings or struggles to have a child or become a parent, you have feelings and struggles.
You are so much more than that, you are special and unique, beautiful, and strong just the way you are.
Remember emotions are just emotions. And feelings are just feelings
On this journey you need to be in charge of your thoughts about yourself.
Because otherwise your thoughts are in charge, together with your emotions and feelings. And they can give you a false picture of who you are and what you are becoming.
When you take control of how you react on the inside about what´s happening on the outside, you will experience less stress, feeling more confident and calmer because you, yourself are in charge of your emotions. It will help your brain to focus more on the positive strengths you have and the good things about you.
You don´t have to lose yourself even if it´s common to feel a bit lost during this time. You are right where you should be, on your journey to the destination where you want to meet your baby. You have your map, but you don´t know when you will reach your destination.
I am here to support you and guide you whenever you need it.
Tina Thomasine Börjesson
Therapist-Pediatric and Infertility nurse-LifeCoach