I will never know with 100% certainty how I got pregnant. Obviously, 1+1=3, that’s not what I’m talking about–what I mean is that I wasn’t supposed to be able to…
Maybe the universe decided to gift me with a son after all, or maybe getting pregnant was in the cards all along and it had nothing to do with my efforts and lifestyle changes. I guess we will never know. But I want to write this blog post for others out there struggling with fertility issues, who have been told that they can’t get pregnant, or have been trying to, to no avail. Maybe one of the many things I did will work for you too. I genuinely hope it does.
Here’s my backstory.
I was diagnosed with adenomyosis (read about that here) and after many appointments with traditional and non-traditional doctors and the like (gynecologists, iridologists, alternative doctors, herbalists, etc), everyone seemed to come to the same conclusion–I had reproductive issues that would make having a child unlikely. I still remember like it was yesterday when the “amish doctor” I visited in 2015 looked into my eyes and within seconds put his magnifying glass down and said it was probably the most severe case he’d seen (read about that here). I chose not to think about my issues as a death sentence for my fertility, but at the same time I accepted it with realistic expectations.
I also had something else weighing over me, a dark cloud following me around everywhere. PRE-CANCER. Yes, you heard me. I’ve often spoken about my horrible digestive issues being the reason behind why I decided to drastically change my lifestyle, but that was only half of the equation. The other part is that I was also told that I had cervical dysplasia after a routine pap smear showed abnormal results, and it was confirmed to be CIN I after a colposcopy and biopsy. I was totally shocked, and cried over it for months. I was so upset over it, partially because of the stigma associated with it and partially because ummm, well, that six-letter word, CANCER…I don’t care if there’s a “pre” in front of it or not, it’s still scary as hell. It usually goes away on it’s own. It’s only level 1. It will probably take years to develop into full blown cancer. The doctors kept telling me all of this, but the pre-cancer didn’t go away. I had to go in every 3 months to “keep an eye on it”. But my body wasn’t healing itself. It’s obvious to me now why it wasn’t. My body wasn’t healthy, it wasn’t equipped with what it needed to heal itself. I went to appointments for a year, and was starting to feel pressure to move forward with procedures that would remove parts of my cervical tissue, so I switched to a different gynecologist to buy myself some time. It had been well over a year with abnormal pap smears, and I knew what I was ultimately going to have to do, but I just couldn’t bring myself to let any cervical tissue be removed.
Why? Why would I not want to try to remove the precancerous cells? That probably sounds crazy to you. But I was so overwhelmed and didn’t know who to trust, what the “right” decision was to make. It was just all TOO much for me. In a very small window of time, I felt like my body had just deteriorated on me. Digestive issues that kept me from functioning, an unneeded gallbladder surgery that made everything worse, diagnosis of a condition of my uterus that would cause fertility and/or pregnancy issues, and pre-cancer of the cervix. I knew removing any tissue from my cervix would only cause more issues when it came to fertility and pregnancy. And by this point, I had so much distrust of traditonal doctors. I threw my hands in the air in despair.
I said, “There has to be some other way”. I didn’t want any more procedures or drugs or surgeries. There was so much wrong with me. Could I fix some of it, at least?
And so that is what started me on this wellness journey. That is how The Southern Well Nut was born.
(And, by the way, after a couple months of quality supplements from my alternative doctor in TN, the precancerous cells vanished. Happy cervix since 2016 🙂 ).
These are the steps I took to reclaim my health, and ultimately I think these lifestyle changes are why I was able to get pregnant after all:
- I removed my Mirena IUD and gave up all forms of birth control
- I ditched the chemicals! Traded in everything in our cleaning cabinet and laundry room for natural alternatives
- I also ditched the chemicals in the shower, trading shampoo, conditioner, lotions, etc for non-toxic products
- Cleaned out my makeup bag and opted for non-toxic makeup options
(read about some of my “well nut must-haves here)
- Started buying organic food (especially produce!) at the grocery store, or at the very least non-gmo foods
- Started cooking with more fruits and vegetables, eating superfoods, juicing raw fruits and veggies, and drinking smoothies
- Did a TON of detoxing!
- Started using an earthing mat, which grounds your body and helps you release free radicals (read about that here)
- I became an essential oil guru and incorporated quality grade essential oils into every aspect of my life. I applied them topically, ingested them, and diffused them.
- Developed spiritually: started doing yoga, studied crystals, and visited a healer to have my chakras aligned
I think all of these things I listed above contributed to me actually becoming pregnant. All of those general healthy lifestyle changes. But then there were a few new things that I started doing the very month I became pregnant:
- I started incorporating a Maca blend into my daily smoothies. Maca is known to aid in fertility
- I started doing castor oil packs in the evening using organic castor oil and natural, unbleached, wool flannel (bought here and here). In a glass baking dish, I would saturate the piece of cloth with the castor oil, and would then heat it in the oven on low heat (not the death-o-wave!) for several minutes. I would test the cloth on my skin and make sure it was warm, but not so hot that it would burn my skin. I would then layer the saturated cloth on my abdomen, a plastic bag on top of it (to keep the oil from leaking every where), a towel on top of the plastic bag (to help it maintain the heat). This isn’t necessary, but I would then place my heated “rice bag” on top of the towel for added heat. (My rice bag is literally a tall, knee sock filled with rice that I heat to use as a natural heat pad.) I would then just chill on the couch for 30 minutes to an hour, and wash off afterwards. I did this each day for a couple of weeks. Castor oil packs have been documented to help naturally detoxify, support uterine and ovarian health, improve lymphatic circulation, reduce inflammation, as well as many other health benefits. The Amish doctor had suggested I try them several years back for my condition, but when I removed my IUD and switch to a diva cup, my menstrual woes stopped, so I never tried. However my herbalist friend had recently also brought them up to me, which is what spurred me to finally do it.
You may be completely overwhelmed reading this, and think that these healthy lifestyle changes are impossible to do because there appears to be so many things on the list. Rest assured, I didn’t transform my life overnight. It was ONE THING AT A TIME. Here’s a simpler way to go about it: When you go to replace your toiletries or cleaning supplies or food after running out, opt to buy the healthy version of those things instead. Perhaps try one new item on my list each week, and before long you will be doing them all! And don’t underestimate the power of dietary changes alone. I recall stumbling upon a study at one point–couples that were unable to get pregnant. The doctor had them switch to a completely organic/ non-gmo diet, and the results were astonishing. EVERY SINGLE COUPLE WAS ABLE TO CONCEIVE! Amazing!
I reiterate, there’s no way I can ever prove how I became pregnant. But let’s just say I feel certain that it never would have happened if I hadn’t changed my lifestyle. There is light though because your health is almost entirely within your control. These are all things I did that I believe led to my pregnancy. I hope someone out there finds this blog post helpful.
My thoughts are with anyone out there facing fertility difficulties. May your difficult journey soon come to a joyous end. My heart is with you. ❤