It’s kind of amazing how women going though infertility treatment can find hope again after so many disappointments and failures. I can’t tell you how many women I’ve seen in support groups hit what appears to be the lowest point of sorrow and despair, only to turn it around, try again, and hold hope. I’m truly amazed and inspired by these women.
I’ve read so many posts after losses and failures where women have asked the question, “How do you go on? How do you find the strength to try again?” Inevitably someone responds with the declaration that you just will. I wish there were instructions on how to climb out of the pain. And certainly, different people find strength in different places. For some it’s spirituality/religion. For others it’s support and love, whether from family, friends, or the infertility community. For many it’s that drive to have a child that is so strong it seems to have a life force all of it’s own. For some it’s habit. And for yet others it’s the passage of time that heals. Maybe it’s a combination of many or all of these things, or something completely different. But for all of us it includes an internal strength that we might not have even known that we had.
After my failed FET I questioned my spiritual beliefs. I felt abandoned by the Divine and lost in a vast universe. I felt alone and confused. I think it’s normal to feel all of these things after loss. And for a moment, I wasn’t sure if or how I would gain back my sense of faith and connection that my spiritual beliefs have brought me. It felt like an identity crisis. Because after all, my beliefs are a central part to my being. I didn’t share my reaction with my IVF support community because I often feel like a spiritual outsider in IVF groups that are often composed of many vocal people with Christian beliefs. I typically don’t mind the difference because I appreciate religious diversity and understand how much support and strength women get from their personal religious beliefs, just as I get strength from mine. But I didn’t feel like that was the right forum for sharing my crisis of faith because I knew that the responses I would receive wouldn’t be inline with my particular belief set. I’ve yet to find a pagan post in my IVF support groups. Of course, I’m sure they are quietly in there, just like me, but that’s another topic.
So I took my struggle to two of the pagan online communities that I’m a part of, even though they are not infertility groups. The responses I received were overflowing with love, kindness, validation, and support. Not one person told me how to “fix” my crisis of faith though. And I really wanted someone to tell me what I should do to feel better. So there I sat, re-reading all of the supportive comments from mostly women who had never dealt with infertility (and a few that had), and somehow after a while I began to slowly feel better. As it turned out, these wise women gave me exactly what I needed. They didn’t try to fix it or convince me that “everything happens for a reason”. They just held space for me in my struggle and offered me kindness. I suppose they knew I would find my way back to Goddess, and I did.
Earlier in the month, as the dark moon transitioned into the waxing crescent, I found myself ready to begin again. Renewed from the darkness. I revisited my candle magic that I did here during my first egg retrieval, to modify it for what I felt was the new focus for this upcoming IVF stimulation. For this cycle I’m focusing on energy and power – that fiery spark that my eggs will need to grow strong and healthy. Egg quality was a problem for me during my last round, and at my age that basically means that my ovaries and eggs didn’t have the energy stores needed to really thrive. So here’s what I did for my egg ritual this time around:
- Beeswax egg candle
- White dish (white is for activation, beginnings, blessings)
- Green glitter (fertility and rebirth)
- Rose (for love) and Frankincense (for energy and attraction) essential oils
- Herbal blend of Apple wood shavings, rosemary, basil, sage, and lavender (this combination brings in action, beginings, fertility, blessings, energy, love, protection, and a dash of luck)
- Crystals: bloodstone (strength & reproductive health), amazonite (calm, clarity, & peace), moss agate (fertility & birth), rose quartz (love), and septarian egg (healing, nourishing, & calming)
I started out my ritual by invoking Gaia, my spirit guides and angels, and all those allies in my fertility journey to hear me and grant me their assistance in making this IVF stimulation cycle successful by helping my ovaries grow strong, healthy eggs that contain all the energy and life force needed to form healthy, normal embryos – one of which will grow into our second healthy child. This was my intention for this working.
Then I did some candle magic! First, I anointed the egg candle with rose and frankincense essential oils. Second I carved some symbols. I combined 3 runes that I intentionally selected from the Womanrunes deck into one symbol: The Dancing Woman (rune of power), The Yoni (rune of making), and The Flame (rune of fire/energy). On the other side of the candle I carved the Reiki Power symbol to boost my intention. The Reiki power symbol (“Choku Rei”) is often translated to “place the power of the universe here” and I love to work with this symbol when using Reiki. Then I sprinkled on the green glitter because who doesn’t like glitter? Next, I placed the candle in the white dish and surrounded it with the herbal mixture and crystals. Finally I lit the candle and as the wax pooled near the wick, I sprinkled some of the herbs into the melting wax.
As the candle burned I held my hands over my ovaries and let the energy flow. I focused on healthy eggs growing, visualizing my ovaries glowing with light as I said these words:
I send energy and love to my ovaries. I carry the seeds of life within my ovaries. I send energy, vitality, and love to my eggs. My eggs that are being stimulated during this cycle are healthy and have all the energy needed for development. From these eggs, my healthy baby will grow. So mote it be.
I repeated those words until I felt done. Then in closing I gave thanks. It felt good to re-connect with the Divine and the magic within me, especially after I had thought I was lost.