My theme this year is IVF/ICSI, a process we’re starting at the moment and today it’s V for Visualisations.
I don’t remember how it was that I came to hear about the visualisation and relaxation CD that I ultimately bought for my first cycle of IVF treatment. I probably saw it mentioned on someone’s blog or in a forum and decided to give it a go. I can’t say with any certainty that it helped, but I can’t say it didn’t.
You’ve probably seen those hypnotherapy-type CDs advertised for quitting smoking and losing weight. Well, they make them for people going through IVF treatment. The idea is you listen to a specific track, depending on your stage in your treatment, a couple of times a day. The CD I used was IVF Belief and it walked you through a number of visualisation exercises to help you deal with side effects of the drugs and to prepare your body for what you’re going through.
I only listened to two out of three tracks because our cycle was cancelled before we got that far but I have to say, I think it helped. If nothing else, it certainly helped to put me to sleep at night and considering how uncomfortable, sore and wound up I was at times, this was definitely a good thing. The voice on the CD was very soothing and I’d plug myself in and find myself drifting off. I’m quite looking forward to getting started on this next cycle because I can crack out the CD again and give it another go.
There is one thing I might do slightly differently this time though. One of the visualisation exercises has you picturing a room with dials which control aspects of your egg production, the idea being you turn the dial to the right position for producing your eggs. In this visualisation exercise I always turned it right up to the max; considering that we had to cancel the cycle for my overenthusiastic follicles I suspect that on the next go around I’ll maybe leave it somewhere around the middle.
I don’t think it’s necessary to run out and buy a CD to help with visualisations though. If you’ve got a quiet moment during treatment, just sit back, close your eyes and focus on feeling happy and well (even if you don’t at the moment). Think about places that make you feel good about yourself and think about the follicles developing in your belly. Think about what you want the outcome of treatment to be and focus on being positive, even if you’re trying not to get your hopes up too high. I like to think a little positive thinking can go a long way.
For people who know others who are going through treatment, it’ll really depend on the sort of person your friend or family member is whether or not they feel comfortable with these sorts of exercises (they’ll either fall into the category of ‘I’ll try anything’ or ‘that sounds ridiculous’). Don’t pressure them to do things they don’t feel comfortable with, but by the same token, if they start telling you about the hypnotherapy CD they’re using to try and help the treatment along, don’t scoff. Everyone deals with infertility differently.