Yesterday my mother took me to a doctor who specializes in Eastern medicine.
After the precursory examination of my eyes, hands, nails, and taking my pulse for a long, long time, the doctor asked me, “Why are you so stressed out?”
She went on to say that everything seems physically fine…it is just my mental state that is in trouble.
“Your pulse sounds so tired. Were you this stressed out when you were pregnant?”
Um, let’s see. Unemployment? Check. Health insurance woes? Check. Additional stress from family matters? Check. Catching the flu which left me bed-ridden for 5 days, 3 of which were marked with a high fever? Check and check.
However, these were just superficial sources of stress. I have always been a super-sensitive person who is perpetually weighed down by the worries of the world. I have struggled with depression and anxiety throughout my adult years — so much so that sometimes I have trouble imagining my life without it.
“You are physically well; there is no reason for you to have lost the baby. I’m guessing that your mental state was a big contributing factor in your miscarriage.”
My mind immediate flashed back to last summer, when I suffered partial facial paralysis (i, ii, iii). The Asian holistic doctor who treated me with acupuncture had warned me that unless my stress levels subside, I will not be able to have children (or at least have very difficult pregnancies).
Was my inquietude the source of the miscarriage?
“You need to find ways to relax yourself. Pursue hobbies. Go exercise. Think for yourself and act for your happiness.”
The doctor then recommended that I come in for a few sessions of acupuncture, where she will insert needles into my abdomen in addition to (sorry if TMI) blowing smoke up my vagina. Seriously. According to her, a D&C procedure can only clean the uterus so much. The needles, in addition to the smoke from the burning of a special mixture of herbs, will help clean and purify my uterus in preparation for another child.
She also said that we shouldn’t try to get pregnant for at least another 5-6 months.
“Otherwise, there is a good chance that you will miscarry again.”
J and I had been talking about trying again very soon, especially now that our financial situation has taken a positive turn. And after having had the baby take away from us at 3 months, all I want now is to get knocked up again and have a healthy baby.
But 5-6 months? Really? I had already gotten the go-ahead from my OB.
“A woman’s uterus has memories. We have to treat miscarriages as if you’ve just given birth. You need treatment to cleanse. You need time to heal and recover fully.”
What do you think of this doctor’s opinions? Would you wait the minimum of 5-6 months to try to conceive again, or would you take the advice of my OB who informed me that we can start trying again as soon as we feel ready?
I am still torn on this point. J says it is 100% up to me. On one hand, I want to minimize the risk of another miscarriage as much as we can. On the other, I became a mother as soon as I saw the ‘+’ sign on the pregnancy test. I want a child as soon as possible, dammit!
I will not lie and say that I know how you feel… I’ve never been pregnant. But I do know about having something that you love and losing it, and I can relate to the feeling of wanting it back so badly. From this experience I do think you should wait a little bit, enough for you to rest, to settle down, enough to pay all the bills, enough to save a little bit again… enough so you can feel really safe and sure that there will be nothing, absolutely nothing stressing you out during your next pregnancy.
But again, that’s just me. And I wish you really good luck with any decision you make! 🙂
Go for it and then just leave it up to God to decide. He certainly knows best, right? 😉 My husband and I never expected to conceive when we did and it absolutely all worked out beautifully. You’ve been in bedtime prayers that I say with my daughter! Many blessings with all of your conception endeavors!
I don’t know.. On the one hand, I can understand why you would want to try again as soon as possible. But I’ve had some experience with accupuncture and I really think that kind of medicine is onto something. It’s much more in tune with your overall wellness as opposed to certain body parts being functioning/non-functioning. Maybe you could split the time difference and only wait 2-3 months?
I’m going to be a nay-sayer and say listen to the Asian holistic doctor.
I think it would be best if you focus on lowering your stress levels and on yourself.
Maybe start taking a figure drawing class or yoga.
My mother (who is Korean), had a miscarriage before she had my older sister. She always told me it was best to wait and not be so impatient. She said after a miscarriage a baby will come quickly after a year but it was best to not worry before than. (Mind you, she was giving me miscarriage advice when I was eleven.) Even so, I think their is something relative about it.
Thank you for your input, ladies! We still have some more research to do, in addition to thinking, praying, and deciding. I’ll definitely keep you posted!
First: "You are physically well; there is no reason for you to have lost the baby."
We don’t always know why miscarriages happen (like many other things in medecine). Stress probably contributed, but the whole reasoing here sounds too simplified to me.
"A woman’s uterus has memories". My Mom’s a doctor and said that this is a bit true – if you concieve immediatly after a miscarriage, it’s probable that another one will occur. But there are other factors too: you’re not getting any younger, for instance. If your OB said it’s okay, I’d trust him or see another one for comfirmation.
"Just leave it up to God to decide. " – I strongly disagree with that point of view. God gave us brains to use, science, knowledge, freedom, responsibility and He wants us to make use of it, not act irresponsibly and call it "letting God decide".
And, besides my total lack of faith in alternative medecine, I don’t like that "doctor’s" "relax already or you’ll miscarry!" attitude.
My point is: trust your OB or see another one, and best of luck with everything.
Hey sister, I’m so sorry to hear about the miscarriage. I’m giving you a big hug from Maryland. I am an avid believer in Eastern/holistic medicine so I think you should wait the 6 months so you can heal physically and mentally. Have you ever tried Reiki? I mean, not at an american spa (I don’t trust them) but with a real reiki healer? It helps to get your blocked energy moving, clears out your mind, etc etc. You should ask the acupuncturist if she knows of anyone. Also have you tried meditation? Chakra cleansing? I have this book and I love it: A Handbook of Chakra Healing: Spiritual Practice for Health, Harmony and Inner Peace by Kalashatra Govinda. I am one of those chronic stressed out people who feels unfulfilled when I’m not stressed and have had a lot of physical symptoms like digestive disorders especially, so I have tried a lot of things to force myself to be calm and it has helped tremendously. I think a lot of Western doctors only think about science when our bodies do certain things, but your mind has a powerful effect on your body as well.
I also used an acupuncturist before and after both of my m/cs..She never gave me advice on when to start and stop trying..She told me i should listen to my Ob for that advice which i belive is good advice.
I LOVED acupuncture! It helped me feel less stressed and also improved my menstral flow but it didn’t "cure" everything…i think their is a place for both alternative and present medicine but you need a good mix of both..i wouldn’t rely too heavily on either one..
STRESS DOES NOT CAUSE A M/C!!!! Honestly, i am offended that anyone would say this to a women that just experienced one..It took us a year to get pg after our first m/c and that pg STILL ended in another m/c so tiiming had nothing to do with it! i have had many friends get pg the month after a m/c and go on to have healthy babies..
and OF COURSE you are stress you just experienced a great loss!!!!! You have every right to feel that way even the most positive person during a pregnancy wolud be stressed/sad at this point..
When we were faced with decisons we were just not sure about we would pray about it till we found an answer..We relied heavily on our faith through everything and still do but i also understand that God has given us both Eastern and Western medicine to use..
GL with whatever you decide…Do what is best for the TWO of you and not a stranger you just met!
I’ve decided to take up massage and reiki treatments to try and relax my body to see if I can get pregnant that way. I’ve thought about acupuncture, but haven’t gone that route yet. For now, I’m planning on charting my BBT and getting massages to try and relax myself, because I’ve always been anxious person too, especially lately.
I’m having to learn to be patient, so I completely understand your desire to start trying as soon as you can. Maybe give yourself a month or two with the acupuncture and see how you’re feeling overall? It certainly couldn’t hurt. I agree with some of the other ladies’ responses – don’t rely heavily on one over the other, use them both.
I think you should go with whatever your brain is telling you. You and your husband are really smart people, think about what the smartest solution might be for you. You have the go-ahead from your OB, which you might consider a green light, but if your other doctor is saying that getting your stress levels down first will help you obtain a healthy pregnancy, and you truly believe in Eastern Medicine, waiting might only help. In the end, though, it’s completely your call.
If it were me, I would listen to my OB, but I haven’t had any history with Eastern Medicine, and it seems like you have had some really good past success with it.
On a lighter note, the part about blowing smoke up your vagina caused a ton of inappropriate and not-so-funny jokes to pop into my head 😛
Just from a financial standpoint, perhaps waiting another 6 months is more prudent. I know that Mr. GeekinHeels started his new gig, but you guys need to save up more of an emergency fund first, just in case you end up in a stressful financial position again (who knows, he could end up with the nightmare boss). Separate from the physical and mental issues, make sure you’ve got sound financial footing first, because you’ve got to expect the unexpected.
I’ve been pregnant twice; one ended in abortion and the other ended up in me having a beautiful child. I would take the advice and wait 5-6 months. Not only does your body go through the healing and cleansing process, you also should go through the healing process. I, myself, suffer from depression and sometimes feel weird when I’m NOT depressed. I do withdraw too. I see that we have some similarities while reading through your blog. If it was me, I would go through the stages of grief; denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance. I went through that when I had an abortion since I thought of myself as a murderer. I am not going to talk politicly about whether or not I’m against or for abortion but in the situation I was in, I had no choice. Anyways, it is your choice and no one elses. But remember that if you want you and your baby to be healthy, you should be healthy and make the right choices. I now a person who got pregnant even when they used a condomn AND birth control. She had the baby but the baby seems to be going through a lot and is always sick. I would be heart-broken if I thought I was to blame for my sick baby. 힘내세요! ^^*
Stress is not all bad. When managed properly, a little stress can provide us with the drive to meet new challenges.
But certain types of severe or long-lasting stress may pose a risk in pregnancy. Some studies suggest that women who experience negative life events, such as divorce, death in the family, serious illness or loss of a job, may be at increased risk of having a premature (born before 37 completed weeks of pregnancy) and/or low birthweight (less than 5½ pounds) baby. However, most women who experience negative life events do not have adverse pregnancy outcomes.
Click on this link to read more about stress and pregnancy: http://www.marchofdimes.com/professionals/14332_60525.asp