I bought this CD (or rather mp3) when I was still going to acupuncture weekly. I had a hard time sitting still for 45 minutes with little needles in my skin. Some folks find it easy to relax, but often I would be chilly or just plain fussy. Being still can be difficult for me.
So my acupuncturist suggested that I find some audio that I could listen to during my treatment sessions. Since my goal was to conceive, I decided to purchase Help with Fertility by Belleruth Naparstek, produced by Health Journeys. This CD (or mp3) is a series of five tracks.
The first track is an introduction that describes what each of the other four tracks will help you with. Immediately, I felt I had made an excellent purchase because I was drawn to Naparstek’s voice. I felt as though I was listening to a yoga teacher. If you’ve ever taken a yoga class you know what I mean. It’s a calm, namaste type of voice that doesn’t jar your sensibilities. The background music behind Naparstek’s voice is calming and ambient.
In the introduction, you are told that these tracks are meant to “relax the mind and body, reinforce your self-esteem and to help bring about feelings of protection and support.” I have to agree with that assessment. When I listen to these tracks, I feel better. I forgive my body its supposed shortcomings. This guided imagery has helped me on my path to the “It Will Happen” experiment.
Track two is meant to help with successful fertilization. I really like to listen to this during the two week wait (the two weeks between ovulation and when you can do an at-home pregnancy test.) Though there are a million old wives tales about what you can do to increase your chances of getting pregnant, ultimately it will either happen or it won’t. And there you are, twiddling your thumbs, hoping you are pregnant but not able to help or hinder the process. At least with this track, I feel like I’m doing something. I’m spending sixteen minutes and ten seconds visualizing fertilization and implantation in my uterus while relaxing and reaffirming my belief in myself. If nothing else, it makes me feel more positive about the process.
Track three is dedicated to positive affirmations. Yes, I do sort of feel like Stuart Smalley when I listen to this track. However, I usually find this track to be the most helpful after a failed cycle. On cycle day one, you’re likely to catch me listening to these affirmations. I have a tendency to heap a lot of abuse on myself on day one. Once I wipe away my tears, pour myself a glass of wine and bust into my stereotypical stash of therapy chocolate, I will pop on some headphones to listen to track three.
“I am strong, and calm and well.”
“I affirm my intention to support and care for this body of mine, despite its alleged imperfections.”
“I salute the inborn power of my body’s beauty and intelligence as I acknowledge its past service to me.”
“More and more, I am coming to understand that my body is my ally, my oldest friend and my steadiest companion.”
I know it feels a bit hokey at first, but once the wine is in your system and the chocolate begins working, the ambient music and Naparstek’s voice make you feel much better about yourself. I use it for cycle day one especially, but it’s perfect for any time you are feeling a little less than stellar.
Now track four is something I would want to listen to if we decide to go the IUI (intrauterine insemination) route. It is meant to help you relax anytime, but also to listen to during potentially uncomfortable procedures. Naparstek suggests multiple different environments in which to imagine yourself. The mountains, the sea side, etc. The point is to let yourself feel relaxed, but also safe. Especially when you might be in pain or at least discomfort during a medical procedure. This is the track I most often used when going through my acupuncture treatments.
The final track is dedicated to dealing with grief, finding resolution or if you’re ready to take a a break from TTC. This was the track I listened to back in December/early January when my husband and I decided to stop fertility treatments for a while. In the intro, Naparstek informs you that you may never even want or need to listen to this track. But it’s there for you just in case.
If I had a criticism (though for me it’s not a negative) it would be that not all folks may be interested in her imagery involving your ancestors guiding you, lifting you up and protecting you. But that’s as far into the spirituality realm as she gets. So to sum up, I most definitely recommend Help with Fertility by Belleruth Naparstek to folks who are struggling with infertility. The price is right, the quality it good, and you can download it immediately if you choose to go the mp3 route. It is uplifting, soothing and helps you feel like your struggle is not in vain.