Project Susan: Update

Name Susan Higgins
Age 30
Occupation Beauty PR
Relationship Married
Goals To decide whether or not she really does want to start a family, and to check her fertility levels

Monday, December 31, 2007

Are you ever ready to have a baby? I’m not sure whether I am but when I say this, people say funny things like “no one is ever ready, you can’t think about it too much or one day it will just happen”. But surely you have to think about it. Nothing good in my life so far has just happened. I’m used to planning and preparing so why should this be any different. If I am going to be a parent I want to be the best I can be, after all starting a new life is pretty major isn’t it?

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

2008 will be our year to do all the things we’ve talked about doing but never actually got down to organising. Finally we have some money behind us and can afford to do things without being broke for months afterwards. This means taking the dream holidays (for Ian that means Whistler and for me the retreat in Sri Lanka), cutting down on the stress levels and making a conscious effort to enjoy life.

Ten things to do before we try for a baby

1. Go on major skiing holiday
2. Go on mega yoga retreat
3. Get healthy and fit, and find out about fertility
4. Be spontaneous – while we can!
5. Get mentally and emotionally in check (Lifecoach)
6. Get calm and distress life
7. Learn to work together
8. Get odd jobs around house finished
9. Organise our finances
10. Enjoy being young and married

Thursday, January 3

I met with Melanie the nutritionist at the Zita West clinic today. She was sensitive, funny and made me feel at ease. We discussed my routine and possible triggers to bad eating habits as well as my diet and ways we can improve it.

1. Try and include exercise in my day – i.e walking to work, at lunch time
2. Eat smaller portions. She suggested that eating from a smaller plate would help
3. Cut out sugar. Apparently I eat lots of it
4. Eat regularly (something every 3 hrs)
5. Eat slowly, chewing properly
6. Plan my meals (so I don’t get caught short and want something bad)
7. Enjoy my treats – be “present” rather than scoffing without thought and then guilt
8. Think like a thin person, eg: would a thin person have that pudding?

I left feeling quite uplifted and hopeful. This is such an opportunity for me!

Saturday, January 5

Woke up and read the papers in bed. Yay, I love being able to do that! Ian went to golf and I took my sister to Borough market to buy healthy stuff. I bought loads of vegetables, fish, meat and rye bread – because Mel says that’s what I should be eating. It cost me sooo much money but our fridge looks amazingly healthy.

Met Jane (the fertility expert) for a one-off fertility awareness session at the Zita West Clinic. My biology was embarrassingly rusty and I was shocked to find out how tricky it is to get pregnant. The window of opportunity is so small! She said I shouldn’t worry too much and definitely try not to plan too meticulously. Apparently babies tend to happen when they are right and women on average take seven months to conceive. She gave me my charts and now I must track my cycles.

Tuesday, January 8

Met Beth (the life coach who specialises in motherhood issues). I was quite apprehensive about these sessions as I’m quite goal-orientated already and I didn’t want to get caught up in any more lists and objectives, my life is already full of those. Beth was fun and excitable and I feel like she genuinely wants to help me. We discussed areas of my life that needed some balance. We talked about my values and how it would feel to be less organised. She is giving me some homework to do for next week.

Wednesday, January 9

Today was my introduction to Cognitive Behavioural Therapy or CBT. Carla is new at the Zita West clinic and I loved my session with her. We talked about the practical implications of having a baby ie agreeing a support plan so both Ian and I can maintain our basic needs and some “me-time” in our lives. It’s so important to me that we have a plan and our needs are protected when we start family life. This kind of work is what I was hoping for. Carla understood me and my lifestyle very quickly and I am going to look forward to working with her regularly.

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