Episode #87: Mia’s IVF Success Through Root Cause Healing and Mindful Nutrition

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Mia's IVF Success Through Root Cause Healing and Mindful Nutrition

What you’ll learn in this episode

After five years of navigating fertility struggles, ovulation tests, and numerous attempts, Mia’s journey to motherhood took an unexpected turn. Join me on the PCOS Repair podcast as I have the honor of sharing Mia’s raw and honest story, exploring the highs, and lows, of her IVF journey.

PCOS and Starting a Family 

At 27, Mia received a PCOS diagnosis, setting the stage for a challenging fertility journey. Despite weight loss attempts and medications, initial rounds of Clomid and IUI proved unsuccessful. Mia faced disappointments and emotional turmoil, compounded by the physical toll of fertility treatments as she continued on to IVF.

Mindset and Lifestyle Transformation

Nearly a decade later, at 36, Mia felt the urgency to start a family. This time, she sought a holistic approach, combining IVF with a focus on health and vitality. Her mindset shift from feeling helpless to actively participating in her fertility journey became a powerful tool for success.

Mia’s mindset transformation played a crucial role as she embraced a proactive and positive approach. Her commitment to optimizing nutrition, movement, and self-care became integral to preparing her body for IVF.

Embracing The Unexpected 

After several rounds, it wasn’t until the fourth IVF attempt that Mia received the call she had been eagerly awaiting. The news was positive – she was pregnant. A whirlwind of emotions accompanied the revelation, especially when she learned some additional unexpected news. 

Mia’s story shares so much hope and inspiration for navigating PCOS and fertility challenges. And don’t forget to share your takeaways and connect with me on Instagram @Nourishedtohealthy.

Let’s Continue The Conversation

Do you have questions about this episode or other questions about PCOS? I would love to connect and chat on a more personal level over on Instagram. My DMs are my favorite place to chat more.

 

So go visit me on IG @nourishedtohealthy.com

 

Let’s Continue The Conversation

Do you have questions about this episode or other questions about PCOS? I would love to connect and chat on a more personal level over on Instagram. My DMs are my favorite place to chat more.

 

So go visit me on IG @nourishedtohealthy.com

 

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Read The Full Episode Transcript Here

After five years of trying and more ovulation tests, supplements, books, weight loss attempts, and yoga than she could count, Mia and her husband were still unsuccessful in their attempts to start a family. She kept thinking to herself, I’m not getting any younger. She decided that if she wasn’t pregnant by her 36th birthday, then she was going to take the next step. But when that day came and she still wasn’t pregnant, she sent me a message and booked her first consultation. At the same time, she also started working with her fertility specialist again to restart IVF. As scared as she was to try again, she was more afraid of living with the regret of not trying again and reaching a point in her life where this opportunity had passed. In today’s episode, it is It’s my honor to share a very real and honest story that just gives me chills and touches me in ways that I am happy and emotional all at the same time when I talk to Mia and I am excited to share the story with you today, and I greatly appreciate her being willing to allow me to share it. So without further ado, let’s get started.

You’re listening to the PCOS Repair podcast, where we explore the ins and outs of PCOS and how to repair the imbalances in your hormones naturally with a little medical help sprinkled in. Hi, I’m Ashlene Korcek, and with many years of medical and personal experience with polycystic ovarian syndrome, it is my joy to watch women reverse their PCOS as they learn to nourish their body in a whole new way. With the power of our beliefs, our mindset, and our environment, and the understanding of our genetics, we can heal at the root cause.

Welcome back to the PCOS Repair podcast, where today it is my joy and honor to share a very raw and real story with you about Mia and her IVF journey to becoming a mom. I love sharing stories here on the PCOS Repair podcast that some of my previous clients have allowed me to share. These are women that I have worked with over the last couple of years, and so they are well into their PCOS healing stories. I think that being able to see where someone was and where someone was able to get on their journey is so inspiring and provides so much hope that I hope you find these episodes extra special, especially since they are a gift from the women that are willing to let me share them. With that, I want to start back with how how Mia got started on her journey with PCOS health and how this courageous woman who faced the challenges of PCOS and infertility for over a decade until she finally got her double miracle was able to work with her mindset, her emotions, her fears, and her physical health to bring this about with the assistance of modern medicine.

Mia was diagnosed back when she was 27 years with PCOS. This occurred when her husband and her were starting to try for a family. After stopping birth control, she had gone about seven months without really regaining any sign of a period, and definitely no sign of ovulation. She made an appointment with her OB/GYN. She went through all the normal run-around of tests and labs being abnormal and okay. Ultimately, her diagnosis was PCOS, and her OB/GYN Then prescribed her some metformin to take for 3-6 months with the goal of losing about 20 pounds, and then stating that if ovulation didn’t restart on its own and she wasn’t able to get pregnant naturally, to follow up, and they would consider starting some Clomid. Six months later, Mia still hadn’t recovered her period. Although she had lost close to 15 pounds, she felt really discouraged. She felt less healthy, she felt like she was just miserable on this 1,000-calorie-a-day diet that she had put herself on in order to lose that 15 pounds at such a calorie deficit, she had still only lost 15 pounds and hit a wall and couldn’t lose anymore but if she ate any more than that 1,000 calories a day, she would start to gain weight.

She felt a little frustrated with that, but also felt like if that weight needed to be off in order for her to have a baby, that was the primary goal. She would hang in for a little longer. When she went back to her doctor for her follow-up, because she still wasn’t having a period, her doctor started her on Clomid and an induction period, so probably something like progestin to induce a period. She was filled with all sorts of mixed emotions, but grateful that at least there was the option of medications. Although she felt disheartened by the fact that she had lost the 15 pounds, had taken the metformin, although it was not a pleasant experience for her, she had a lot of GI upset with the metformin, she felt like it was discouraging that none of that had worked, but was hopeful that Clomid would. Moving through her experience with Clomid, she took six months, so basically six rounds of Clomid without that being successful, they moved on to IUI, and then she underwent two unsuccessful rounds of IUI. At the time, her insurance did allow her at that point to move on to IVF, and so that was her next step.

[00:06:12.000] – Speaker 1
This was a big step for her emotionally. She felt like there had been so many things that hadn’t worked she felt like her insurance was a blessing in order to be able to have this as an option, but she felt like she was nearing the end of options, and so this felt like there was a lot of pressure on this option. She felt the pressure, but she also felt very overwhelmed as medications and instructions started to pile up. She remembers just having to almost go into an altered state of an out-of-body experience and just take it one step at a time. She recalls that she felt as if she was living her life in two week increments and nothing else in her life mattered. Everything was based around what the two weeks that she was going to be doing, and everything was focused around this. The day before her 29th birthday, she had her egg retrieval and found out how many eggs that they had gotten. She was at this point, so invested in the process that when she got the news, she cried because she had only gotten seven eggs. She felt like this was such a process that she had gone through, that she had been really hopeful for more.

Then she just kept repeating to herself, again, in this altered out-of-body experience that it just takes one, it just takes one, it just takes one. She started to another period of waiting as she waited to see how many of these eggs would take in the fertilization process. The first round of IVF yield two embryos, and they decided to do a fresh transfer, which did not succeed. She was extremely devastated by this because now she only had one embryo left. She remembers feeling like that, of course, they would try the second embryo, but at that point, she did not feel hopeful at all. With only one embryo left and her feeling very disheartened and unhopeful, she remembers not even feeling surprised when she got the news that the second was unsuccessful as well. By this point, her husband and her had had some job changes and some insurance changes. The new insurance was not going to continue to cover IVF. Between that and the fact that she just felt disheartened by all of it. She felt like none of it was working, and she felt like it was taking over her entire life. She was ready for a break.

Her husband was definitely ready for a break. They decided to take some time off and see what would happen naturally on its own and hoping that taking a break would lead to a natural miracle. Mia remembers distinctly that although she felt really devastated at having gone through all of the appointments, the medications, the side effects, the highs and lows. Over a year of infertility treatment, she was so relieved to have a break from it and to not have this disappointment just looming over her at all times because she felt like every single bit of this journey was just led with, Well, that didn’t work, that didn’t work, that didn’t work. That was how she felt the whole way through. It wasn’t like, Oh, we have this hopeful thing that’s going to happen. It was just like, fail, fail, fail. That’s how she saw this series of fertility treatments in her late 20s. She also recalls that during this period, while she had maintained that 15-pound weight loss, that she had never felt less healthy in her entire life. As she brought this chapter of fertility treatments to a close, she was hopeful of being able to focus on her health in a way where she could feel good in her body again.

So nearly a decade from when Mia had first been diagnosed with PCOS, she began to feel the urgency to try again. She was 36 years old, and since having her fertility treatment, she felt like she had never gotten her health back on track. She had gained the 15 pounds back and more. This time, she was determined to not just restart the attempts of wanting to start a family. But this time, she also wanted to feel healthy. She wanted to have a positive experience of how she felt throughout the process, both physically and mentally. She felt like While she did everything, quote, right last time, she wasn’t showing up in a way that she felt like her body was working with the medical treatment to achieve a successful result. She wanted to be a mom, and she also really had an image in her mind of how she wanted to feel and the health that she wanted to achieve in that process of becoming a mom before diving into another round of IVF. Since everything had previously Obviously been unsuccessful and because of her age, she felt like she did not want to wait to continue medical intervention towards starting a family.

When she messaged me, her primary concern that she brought to my attention was, I want to feel healthy. I need help feeling healthy again in my body. While she didn’t want to wait to start fertility treatments, she also could recognize that health and vitality were the missing piece in the previous rounds. While While she felt the pressure of time, she also felt the pressure of needing to focus on her health. Mia and her husband started their IVF process again, but this time she also started to work with her PCOS root causes, the waiting in the roller coasters, the highs and lows, and the constant anxiety that she had felt last time, this time, she took that energy and she focused it into her health. While all of those things were still happening. This is the part that watching her make this transition for herself and watching her have all of the fears and the doubts of the emotional roller coaster and the anxieties and the highs and the lows coming for her like they do for all of us. Watching her choose her mindset so deliberately and decidedly to remain positive and curious and hopeful and experimental and focusing on what she can do and not focusing on the things that were outside of her control, but being curious and anticipatory and not putting this pressure of this time has to be the one that works.

Having been through it before, she said that it was less scary, it was less foreign. She was able to, in that sense, have some feel feeling of knowing what’s coming and able to be a little bit more free with that. But choosing her mindset was an incredible, powerful way that she was able to focus on optimizing her nutrition and her movement and her mindset and self-care instead of allowing herself to get sucked into living by the two-week increments. Of course, she followed all the protocols. She did all the things she was supposed to do for her fertility treatment. The way that we worked with it together is I want to do my part of preparing my body to show up at its best, mentally and physically. As we worked together, I would assist her in what would help her body show up physically and mentally in a way that worked with her hormones to help her body be as best prepared for the medical intervention of IVF as possible. Mia’s mindset transformation from this helpless, just going through the motions to this crazy, incredible, inspiring empowerment, she began to view food as this source of healing for her fertility.

She hadn’t always been the most adventurous Eater, but she remembers feeling like it had less to do with what are her favorite foods, but more about this curiosity about how could she fit in different nutrients into her day because she knew that they were going to be ideal for what her body needed at this point in time. Rather than fighting what she felt like she needed to eat, it was this game to her of like, Well, how can I get these foods in a way that I can tolerate into my diet? She recounts how completely different she felt having this very active role. She said that it made her feel so much more engaged, like she was part of the team instead of sitting back, overthinking and just being hit with bad news after bad news. Bad news still came sometimes. But instead, because she was an active player, she felt like as bad news came, it was on her to also make adjustments. And so she didn’t feel like this helpless victim that was just being taken along this ride of bad news. Instead, she was an active player that was able to adjust and change and also impact react the outcome.

She remembers that this time around, she felt like she had this incredible energy and was no longer, because as we started to work together, we got rid of that too-low-calorie diet. She no longer was energy deficient, and she felt like she was finally actually able to nourish her body and feel great doing it and having enough calories to actually feel good along the process. She was not met, like I mentioned, she was not met with immediate success. It wasn’t until the fourth round that she finally got the phone call that she had been waiting for. She remembers the phone ringing, and she had been waiting for the call. And although she was doing a very good job of keeping a positive mindset, she remembers the phone ringing and her stomach just dropping. All of a sudden, she was just convinced it was going to be more bad news. But this time it wasn’t. She was telling me how she’s like, I’ll never forget sitting there hearing the news and realizing that this time was successful and being offered an appointment to come in to have an ultrasound and not even being able to fully comprehend what all was being said.

But she remembers smiling all day long. She’s like, It didn’t matter what someone was telling me. It didn’t matter what was going on at work. She’s like, I could not get that smile off of my face. When her husband and her went in for their first pregnancy ultrasound, she remembers, again, having just these butterflies in her stomach feeling like something wasn’t going to be quite right. When the doctor was really quiet looking at the screen, she remembers just waiting for more bad news. But when the doctor turned around and started pointing to the screen, he said, Do you see that? She remembers squinting and looking at it, and he’s like, That is your embryo, and it has split. You are pregnant with twins. She was just like… She said that if she wasn’t sitting so firmly on the table, she would have just collapsed to the floor. She all of a sudden had this just overwhelming, it had been so long that they had wanted to start a family She had gone through so many emotional roller coasters of thinking of the timing of how would they have more than one children. She didn’t like the idea of raising an only child.

She wanted to have many children, and yet time was ticking, and all of a sudden, she was having twins. Then at the same time, she knew that the risk of twins was definitely higher. She just started to all of a sudden have all of this excitement, but all of these fears. She remembers thinking later that I thought this was the point at which I got to be happy, and now all of a sudden, I barely had a moment to even be happy before I start to worry again. Thank goodness for the tools that I had learned to have the mindset to be able to to cope with continued stress along a high-risk pregnancy. She did, later on in her pregnancy, at 33 weeks, have some issues with preeclampsia and eventually had to deliver early. Her twin girls were premature at 34 weeks, so they did spend a little bit of time in the NICU, but luckily, she was able to carry them as long as she was. Thirty-four weeks has a very good outcome probability compared to in the the late 20 weeks or even earlier 30 weeks. She did take the time to meet with me in preparation for recording this episode today.

But twin life has definitely been very busy and overwhelming at times. But, and this will make me choke up to, she was saying how every time that she starts to get overwhelmed with having two small, very busy, very energetic powerhouse daughters in her home, and she starts to feel overwhelmed and too busy and pulled in too many directions when she takes a moment to take a step back and to realize how much went into those two little miracles, the emotions are still very overwhelming to her, and she still very frequently is overrun with being choked up, just like I am now. I know looking at my own children and realizing when you have struggled, when you have put this in there, and when you have overcome, and you have been able to achieve something that You didn’t know what it would look like yet. She didn’t know it would look like twins. We don’t know what that future holds for us, but we show up every day and we work on our root causes, on our health, on our healing, both physically and also extremely importantly, mentally and emotionally. We don’t know where it will take us.

When it takes us there, the person that we become through that process is also a very incredible journey. With that, I always like to invite you to reach out to me at my Instagram DMs. When we’re sharing stories of women that have been willing to share their stories here as a reminder that you’re not alone, as a reminder that there are so many ways that we can impact our health and create what we want to create in our lives. I love to share your takeaways with them. If you have any ahas, inspirations, things that touched you, moved you, and that you’ll be taking away from these stories that we share here, I would love to share your takeaways with Mia. If you have any things that you would like me to share with her, I would love to hear them in my DMs. Of course, if you have any questions about PCOS, that’s also a great place to reach me over on Instagram @Nourishedtohealthy. Until next time, bye for now.

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About Show

Welcome to The PCOS Repair Podcast!

I’m Ashlene Korcek, and each week I’ll be sharing the latest findings on PCOS and how to make practical health changes to your lifestyle to repair your PCOS at the root cause.

If you’re struggling with PCOS, know that you’re not alone. In fact, it’s estimated that one in ten women have PCOS. But the good news is that there is a lot we can do to manage our symptoms and live healthy, happy lives.

So whether you’re looking for tips on nutrition, exercise, supplements, or mental health, you’ll find it all here on The PCOS Repair Podcast. Ready to get started? Hit subscribe now