The front runner in the natural fertility race seems to be acupuncture. I read a lot of success stories of women who had used Chinese medicine to heal their bodies, there were claims of it helping women with all sorts of conditions, even PCOS*. So I started asking around our small town to see if anyone knew of a good acupuncturist. After talking to a few, I felt positive that this was a good place to start. No one in town had any direct experience with fertility so I chose a woman who had done a lot with women’s health and acupuncture for pregnant and laboring women. I figured that might be close. At my first appointment I was there for 2 hours giving a very detailed history of my health and lifestyle. They ask about your poop, your diet, your moods, your sleep, if you get hot or cold, pretty much every question you could think to ask a person about their body. And I got my first treatment. I was not nervous because I have never had a problem with needles or shots and I have only ever heard anyone say that acupuncture does not hurt, “you can hardly feel it” everyone says. Um yeah you can! I found it fairly uncomfortable actually. It’s not like I expected at all. I can’t really say it is the poke of the needle that is uncomfortable but the sensation is crazy. It’s almost electric feeling. I described what I was experiencing to the lady with the needles and was assured that this was ok and I was noticing it because it was a sensation I wasn’t used to. She said that I was feeling my chi move around and that most people don’t have enough body awareness to notice it. Great! All this amazing body awareness I had gained from my yoga, all this meeting my body and knowing how it feels all the time meant that I could feel my chi. All I can say is chi feels crazy when it gets stirred around with needles. Not all the needles provoke the feeling or the same intensity so it’s kind of like a guessing game, will this one zing me? Will this one? But once the needles were in there was no lingering crazy chi sensation and I was able to relax. You can’t move for fear of this crazy chi feeling so I was highly motivated to lie very still and invite the healing. After my treatment I felt great. We decided that I would go in for weekly treatments and after I jokingly suggested that she put some sperm on the needles to speed things up, she convinced me that the goal would be to regulate my cycle not necessarily to get me pregnant right away. As I was lying on the table listening to soothing music and looking at the needles all over my body I had a feeling that this was good for me and I felt excited that I was officially doing something positive and proactive for my reproductive health. I knew I would be excited to share the story of this experience with my children someday.
*I tried this diagnosis on, I wore it around for a while. Look everyone! I have PCOS! But it didn’t really fit. It felt close but it just never felt exactly right. I didn’t have any of the classic telltale PCOS symptoms. I am not overweight, after I got the depo out my system my face cleared up and I no longer suffer from acne, I do not have any unwanted male pattern hair growth. So I threw it out. I threw it in the bin with the infertile label. Maybe I just don’t like being labeled and that is a whole other issue I should be managing. Regardless, I am fine with saying I have poly cystic ovaries, since that part is true, but the syndrome part just isn’t for me.