Words by Jasmine Katatikarn | Take Control of Your Fertility Journey program
“Less than 1%.”
That’s all I remember hearing as I sat in the doctor’s office after my 2nd “failed” IVF. “Wait. What?” I said, “you are saying there is no chance I could have a biological child?”
… “less than 1% … “ the doctor repeated.
At this point in my journey, I had been trying to have a baby for nearly six years. Six years of never-ending doctor visits, endless needles, countless meds, multiple IUIs, and IVFs. While the doctor was trying to give me information about donor eggs, adoption, I kept thinking, this is not the perfect life I had imagined, the life that I felt I needed to have “to be happy.” I felt numb.
Let me back up to how I thought my life would go. At a young age, I was told what the “perfect life” was: good school, successful career, get married, 2.5 kids, a house, work hard, and retire at 65. That was the “perfect life” in a nutshell. I laugh, thinking back how naive I was. And here I was 35, sitting in the doctor’s office being told “less than 1% …” Far from the “perfect life,” I was fed growing up.
What happened next will surprise you.
Instead of taking professional advice to stop trying, I went a different route.
Today, I now have two biological kids, both through IVF.
⇝ How did I do it?
Using my background as an artist, I applied an artist’s mindset to overcome my roadblocks and design a life that gave me control of my fertility journey and life moving forward.
As a result, I became pregnant within months of being told I had less than a 1% chance.
I’ve broken down what I did immediately after being told I had less than 1% into three key steps:
1. STEP BACK AND REFRAME
After a good long cry, I took a step back and looked at it from a wider lens and a different perspective. Fertility is one of the most personal struggles I’ve been through, and I’m sure you feel the same. Being “in it” for years, it’s easy to get lost.
This moment is when I realized that I could approach my fertility obstacles the same way I approach obstacles at work, using creative thinking and problem-solving. Often, when a problem seems impossible to solve, I can find solutions when I step back and rethink the core problem.
By thinking of my fertility as an obstacle to “problem-solve,” I was able to get to the core problem that I was trying to solve. I had thought it was “How do I get pregnant?” but I found that it was much bigger than that. “How do I become a mother?” “How do I nurture?” Seeing it from this new point of view helped me form the path to success in my fertility journey.
2. SEEK ADVICE
This journey can feel very lonely, even if you have a partner doing it alongside you. One of the essential steps I did next was to seek advice. In my case, I went to Angela Le, a fertility expert and acupuncturist, to discuss my options. Angela was able to offer me a different perspective on my situation and also add guidance through her extensive knowledge of my case, and clinics/doctors that might work better for me. Together we discussed, brainstormed, and came up with options for moving forward.
As a result of her advice, I decided to try another clinic and doctor, where I became pregnant months later through IVF. I often think I would be sitting here without kids right now if I had not spoken to Angela to seek advice from her and others.
3. FACE MY FEARS
For years, I refused to say my fear of not being able to have a child out loud, or even think of it as a possibility. I felt that if I acknowledged this fear, it would come true.
After hearing, I had less than 1% chance, I decided that it was time to sit and talk with Matt, my husband, about what would happen if we were unable to have a child—doing precisely what I tried so hard to avoid for years.
We sat down and talked openly and honestly about what our life could look like if we did not have kids. We spoke of a life of financial freedom, travel, pursuing dreams we had in both career and personal. I remember, at one point, we said, “This isn’t a bad life at all. We could do this.” I ended the conversation with this sense of relief because I had a plan, and I realized that my “fear” was not as scary as I had made it out to be in my mind.
I still look back at that moment were being told I had less than a 1% chance. It would have been so easy to give up after that meeting. Yet it was that meeting that made me realize how I should approach my fertility struggles. By approaching my fertility through the eyes of a designer, I see multiple views and find numerous creative solutions to what might feel like an impossible problem. It allowed me to see fertility outside the box and resulted in my two kids.
This approach is a creative way that anyone can quickly learn, do, and see results. My experience and results are the driving force behind my free training and course. I hope that it helps you as it did me.
Jasmine Katatikarn is the creator of the Take Control of Your Fertility Journey program, which teaches people how to use a designer’s mindset to take control of their fertility journey and happiness. Watch her free training about the Four common misconceptions during your fertility journey HERE to make sure you are not suffering from them, and if you are, you won’t be after watching this.
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