In my years of helping women get pregnant, one thing I’ve noticed is how addressing a few key emotions makes all the difference when trying to conceive. I remember how I struggled with not trusting my body, feared that my body would always fail me, how I overly relied on masculine energy to battle my PCOS and applied type A/perfectionist behaviors to hopefully control for a more positive outcome. Sound familiar?I spend a lot of time talking to you about facts because I know that’s where we all start - we want to know what is wrong. An equal part of the FLO protocol, however, moves beyond nutrition, to the integration of your feminine energy and a healed relationship with your body from an emotional point of view.
This to me, in my own health journey, and for the thousands of women I have taken on that same journey to hormonal balance, is as essential as the food and supplements you take.This is especially true of improving your fertility. I’m now 9 months in to this motherhood gig, and let me tell you, it is a meditation on feminine energy and balanced masculine energy every moment! The energy I hold now is what I used to open me up to conceive. The emotions I had to work through to open that conception energy were a huge part of my journey to motherhood and I suspect they might be ones you might want to incorporate on your journey too.
Read on to learn more about how Nicole undid these emotional blocks using the FLO Protocol and is now 7 months pregnant after 1 year of trying.
“My body had everything it needed from years of healthy eating, I just needed to recognize the emotional blocks that were holding me back.”
Nicole thought she was doing everything right to get pregnant. She was following the WomanCode protocol independently for months in the hope that just eating in her Flo was all she needed to do to finally conceive. Then she had a breakthrough. She realized that good nutrition was just one aspect of her health and she needed to turn her attentions to her emotional well-being to start a family.Here she shares her transformative story with us...
My lifestyle was making conceiving difficult
Two years ago, I defined fertility as whether or not I was able to become pregnant. Like for many women, the journey seemed black or white: fertile or infertile, pregnant or not pregnant.When my husband and I first started trying, I experienced what many women do: stress and anxiety, partially brought on by a demanding job. I had also been commuting two hours a day for more than a year, and the chronic stress was starting to take a toll on my body, manifesting in physical symptoms like difficulty sleeping, night sweats, and irregular cycles. My colleagues and I were four months away from planning a large conference on the other side of the country, and the closer the event moved on the calendar, the longer my cycles became.
My body was so depleted that the month our event took place, I didn’t get my period. That was my first wake up call.I discovered WomanCode through the Facebook page and I had been eating in the FLO ever since just after the book was released in March 2013. Although my monthly symptoms gradually decreased and I had more energy, my cycles were still longer than average (32-34 days), and I wasn’t ovulating anywhere close to Day 14. It felt like my body knew what it needed to do, but just couldn’t get there every month.
The following month, I got pregnant, except I was only pregnant for five weeks before having an early miscarriage on Christmas Eve 2013.Over the holidays we decided to take a break from trying, but I spent the next year preparing my mind and body for conception, reshaping our lives to make space for the future family we wanted. I started weekly acupuncture treatments, found a new job, and we moved to a condo by the beach in a more relaxing neighborhood where both of us would have short commutes.
I wanted the magic supplement to get pregnant asap
Still convinced my hormonal issues were purely physical, I dove into supplements. There was a three month period I drank dong quai tea daily, but it didn’t reduce the length of my cycle. Then I ordered maca powder, assuming this would be the golden ticket to conception. I refer to what happened next as “the maca powder incident,” as it was the catalyst for my journey toward inner reflection and ultimately, getting pregnant.
It was September 2014, and I had been adding a small amount of maca powder to my morning protein smoothie for approximately three weeks. I usually experienced light cramping during my cycle, but nothing debilitating, so I was surprised to find myself unable to get out of bed the morning I got my period.
I thought back to my diet in the previous month. The only variable I could identify was the maca powder, but I couldn’t fathom that several weeks of mild use could have such a negative reaction in my body.
I realized I was using a masculine approach to access my feminine conception energy
I took the day off work, and decided to walk to the beach that afternoon while listening to a Fertility Revolution podcast interviewing Randine Lewis, author of The Infertility Cure.“People treat fertility as a problem to be rectified, but it needs a deeper pursuit of what’s going on internally,” she said. “We can’t be in a fear-based relationship with fertility, because fear contracts reproductive energy. You can’t bring life into the world when you’re fighting fear.”I learned approaching fertility like another thing on the to-do list (a habit of many women, particularly Type-A personalities), can actually block conception, because we’re not addressing the root cause of emotional resistance keeping us from unlocking our full fertility, body, mind, and spirit.The following day, I signed up for the FLO Living program. This was October, 2014.
The Flo Living program dives much deeper into the science and emotional side of hormone balance, which I hadn't been addressing up to that point. Within the first month of coaching I’d made efforts to nurture my feminine side through self-care practices that felt good to me. Until I read the materials Alisa suggested, I didn't realize how much my masculine side dominated a lot of my day-to-day.Through the personal reflection that is part of the FLO Living program, I experienced several emotional breakthroughs, the most enlightening being how a medical issue I had in high school informed my relationship with my body for more than a decade.
I forgot that I had stopped trusting my body in high school
In my senior year cross-country season, I started experiencing a strong, dull pain across my abdomen during daily runs. Even after myriad tests, including ultrasounds and painful physical therapy to loosen my tight hip flexor muscles, no one was able to identify the cause.Then, my mom took me to a physical therapist who incorporated eastern medicine into his practice and uncovered a severe vitamin deficiency. Finally armed with a diagnosis, I gradually began to heal, transform my diet, and embrace nutrition and wellness beginning with cooking for myself during college.
But although I was physically healthy again, I had stopped running out of fear of feeling the same pain. A mistrust had settled in my body that was so deeply rooted, I wasn’t even conscious of it until I walked on the beach 10 years later, ready to become pregnant. I realized that day, with sea salt blowing my hair, until I trusted my own body again, I’d never be able to carry a pregnancy to term.
I got pregnant finally after doing the emotional work in the FLO program
The following month, after starting the FLO program, reading Northrup’s book, and spending time in reflection, I ovulated on time and had a 28-day cycle (which hadn’t happened in at least a year).Three months later, I was pregnant. We’re expecting a baby boy this October (one year since I signed up to the Flo Living program).My body rejected the maca powder to offer an important lesson: nutrition wasn’t my obstacle. As it turned out, my body had everything it needed thanks to years of healthy eating, I just needed to recognize the emotional blocks that were holding me back.
Exploring this aspect of fertility can be harder than simply eating well and incorporating fertility-friendly ingredients into our diet, because it requires an intense vulnerability and openness to make connections between our early experiences, the messages we’ve received about our health, and our current circumstances.If I’ve learned anything on my journey to motherhood, it’s that fertility is more than our ability to physically become pregnant.
True fertility is the convergence of physical, emotional, and spiritual health, not only for conception and birth, but for our entire creative lives as women, and I’m finally ready to embrace it all.(To read more about Alisa’s “conscious conception” approach to achieving pregnancy naturally check out our two posts on prepping your body for pregnancy and the non diet-based secret to conceiving.)
Always remember, that once you have the right information about how your body really works, you can start making health choices that finally start to work for you! You can do this - the science of your body is on your side!
To your FLO,