I wrote my second book, Yes, You Can Get Pregnant: Natural Ways To Improve Your Fertility Now & Into Your 40’s, when I was 38 years old. At the time I had just gone through a breakup with a man I thought could be my husband and the father of my children. I was devastated. And, I was scared about my fertility. As my 39th birthday approached, I was still single and still concerned about my own path to having children. I always knew I would have children, I always believed in my health and my fertility but as my age ticked closer to 40 I had that nagging voice in my head that kept telling me, “Aimee, your time is running out.”
Truthfully, I never believed that voice in my head. Although it was there, I had very good reason to question it. I had been helping women conceive for over a decade and many of them were in their late thirties and early to mid forties. So, intellectually I knew I was still in a safe zone for getting pregnant, especially when I was following the same plan that I had all of my clients on. My plan was working for them and their fertility and I believed it could work for me. However, with treating all these women for fertility, I couldn’t entirely shield myself from their worry and fears over their age and their fertility. Nor could I protect myself from the medical doctors I have relationships with who were constantly asking me when I was going to freeze my eggs or when I would just pull the trigger and get pregnant on my own.
Egg freezing never quite made sense to me as I rarely see women use their frozen eggs. I have seen cancer clients use the eggs they froze before receiving cancer treatments, that made sense to me. But, in my clinic, none of the women who froze their eggs in their thirties as an insurance policy have ever used them to make a baby. If those women wind up needing fertility treatments (a lot of them wound up getting pregnant naturally once they met their mate) the doctors they work with still have them undergo an IVF (in vitro fertilization) cycle and choose the fresh eggs over the previously frozen ones. And, having a baby on my own didn’t resonate as I just knew in my heart that I was going to have a family with my husband, whomever that man would be. I was open to the idea of using assited reproductive techniques if I needed them, once I met my partner, but I was willing to wait and find the right guy for me.
As time went on and I got older, I did what I tell all my fertility clients to do: I kept the faith in my body and my fertility. I treated my body like the palace it is. I nourished my body with nutrient dense foods and supplements. I slept 7-8 hours each night. I found joy in my every day life. I meditated. I journaled. I talked to a life coach. I got acupuncture regularly and took my Chinese herbs. I did it all. Sure, I had moments of sadness and frustration. I had pangs of fear, “Will my man ever show up?”, “Will this ever happen for me?”, “Maybe I should just get pregnant on my own.”, “Am I going to be able to get pregnant in my 40’s?”. Yes, all of those fears came up for. All of those fears were very real for me. But, in my mental battle what always won out was my firm belief in my body, its fertility and the destiny I knew was mine. When those fears came up, I found a way to quiet my mental chatter, tune into my heart and reconnect with my truth which was: this will happen for you; be patient; remain calm; find joy now and continue to nourish and support your healthy, thriving fertile body. And, so I did.
Right before my 40th birthday, I met him. Finally. My man exists. He is real. He is here. And, he wanted a baby as soon as possible, with me. After my 40th birthday while we were discussing getting engaged, I said “If you want to have a baby, we should just start trying. I did just turn 40.” He was totally on board with the idea. And, on the second month of trying to conceive naturally, we got pregnant with our healthy, thriving son Jaymes (who is about to turn 2 as I write this). I never had my FSH or AMH checked. My husband never had his sperm checked. We never saw a fertility doctor. In fact, my then gynecologist (who often referred fertility clients to me) said to me right before we began trying, “Just go home and do what you tell all your clients to do: have fun sex and know that your body can do this. Aimee, you’ve been preparing your body for this for years.” She was right. I had been practicing what I preached- mentally, emotionally, nutritionally and physically- for over 5 years by that point. So, intellectually I knew it should happen. And, I also knew that I was armed with the knowledge I needed in case we did have to seek assisted reproductive techniques. But, rather than stress about whether or not it was going to happen, I just assumed it would. Not from some hokey place but from a place of trusting that the plan that was working for all of my fertility clients would also work for me.
When we did get pregnant as easily as we did, I was relieved. Not only because I was pregnant, but I now knew firsthand that my plan works. My doctors were incredibly supportive and thorough. Yet, I still encountered some resistance by the medical community for having an ‘advanced maternal age’ pregnancy as a women’s health expert. It’s interesting to me how as a society we have forgotten that women have been having children in their 40’s for millenia. And, it is my hope that we can continue to do so. We just have to honor our health, on every level, and I believe we can do it.