Struggling with secondary infertility has its mental, physical, and emotional challenges. In this podcast, you’ll get tools to help with the mental and emotional side of it, which is often left out of the doctor’s appointments.

You’ll learn how to deal with disappointment, how to know when to keep going or call it quits, how to make the process less painful, and how to feel empowered in a situation that feels completely outside your control.

If you, or someone you know, is struggling with fertility, this episode will help get your mindset in a helpful place so you can show up intentionally and wholeheartedly, without any unnecessary suffering in a challenging situation. 

If you’re a mom, you’re in the right place. This is a space designed to help you overcome challenges and live your best life. I’d love for you to join me inside the Mom On Purpose Membership where we take this work to the next level.

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Welcome to Mom On Purpose, where it’s all about helping moms overcome challenges and live their best lives. My hope is by being here, you are more inspired to become the mom you are made to be. I’m Natalie, your host, a wife, boy, mom, dog, mama, Chicagoan, and former lawyer turned professionally certified coach. If you’re here to grow, I can help. Let’s go.

Hello, my beautiful friend. Welcome to the podcast. I am very excited to talk with you about today’s episode. Today I’m going to be answering a caller’s message about infertility, specifically secondary infertility. So this caller already has children and wants more children and hasn’t yet been successful and is really struggling around how to approach wanting this without seeing the results. This episode is about so much more than just wanting to get pregnant and wanting to have another child. It’s about anything that you are desiring as you’ll hear in a second. The overarching question is how to feel in waiting, how to want something that you don’t really yet see a result for and should you keep wanting it and how should you feel about it? So if there is something in your life that you are wanting and you’re not yet seeing the result for, you are going to love this episode. And with that, let’s dive in.

Hi Natalie. I am calling to ask for advice on how to make the process of trying to get pregnant less painful. Um, I have been trying to get pregnant for three years. I am not pregnant yet. My husband and I already have children who we love. They’re amazing, I’m so grateful for them. But we feel called to have another baby. And despite our best efforts and going through fertility treatments, we are not pregnant yet. And it’s really hard and painful and I am so attached to this outcome. I don’t know how to keep trying and make that enjoyable.

My friend. Let me start out by saying thank you for calling in with this. You are going to help so many people and I hope that what you get from this is also really helpful. The first point that I want to start out with is your note at the end that you’re really attached to the outcome that is actually not true right now you’re really attached to the how, which is why you feel so frustrated and kind of why you’re describing this as really hard and painful. There’s a big difference between being attached to the desire and the outcome or the result versus being attached to the details of how you get it. So very clearly here. The result that you want is a baby. If you think about getting pregnant, that’s just one how, right? No one wants to get pregnant as an end result, right?

We want the baby. Getting pregnant is one of the most common ways to have a baby. Right now, it sounds like you’re really committed to having a baby in the same way that you have had your other children. And this makes sense because of the way the brain works. You know how it worked before with your other kids and so you’re expecting it to work the same way, but there’s a subtlety in where you’re putting your energy that is so important to notice. When you focus on being really attached to how you get a result, you will continue to try the same thing. And that means continuing to try something even if it’s not working. So instead, what I suggest is to attach yourself to the result that you want. Attach yourself to the desire that you want. The desire that you have is to have another baby.

Let go of the how. Maybe it’s going to be in a completely different way with different fertility treatments. Maybe it’s going to be naturally, maybe it’s going to be through adoption. Maybe it’s going to be some other way that’s so easy that you haven’t even considered. Just think about what I teach here in separating out thoughts, feelings, actions from the facts and from the results. The result that you want is a baby. I want you to deeply desire that if that’s what’s on your heart, I, I think that all of our desires are meant for us, not even so much to get the outcome, but to lead us towards our best life. But when you attach yourself to the how you think, you know exactly how it’s going to happen. And of course, as we all know, we don’t have to have experienced this to know that it always happens in a completely different way.

And so shift your energy away from the how and be open to so many different hows the end result that you want is a baby. Focus on desiring that and give yourself space to want that from a place of positive, higher vibration feelings. The only reason that wanting something ever feels painful is not because of the actual desire. It’s because of the thought after the desire that says something like, I can’t have this. This isn’t working. We’re not going to get this. The desire itself feels very authentic, feels very connected, feels amazing. We all know that when we access our true desires, it feels like expectation. And the more that you are in that feeling state, the more you will open up different ways to allow that possibility to be created in your life. So very practically how this would look in your example is you want another baby and you’re totally open to all of the different hows.

You’re not going to close off any of the hows and give yourself permission to want this without letting fear take over. Sometimes the fear will be there and that’s okay. Let me give you another example where I experienced a lot of doubt in something that I wanted that’s a little bit different. I wanted to get married so badly and I was in my early thirties and I didn’t think that it was going to happen. And I remember deciding to let go of the how and even just let go of thinking I knew this was going to happen, but deciding that I wanted to be a person who pursued this desire, even if I didn’t fully believe that I was going to create it. Because at the end of the day when my head hit the pillow, I wanted to be someone who tried.

And so for you, can you get to the place where you’re not thinking that happiness is necessarily over there, but that while this is a true desire that you want to expect for your future, you let go of the strong attachment IE dependency on it for your happiness and you decide to be happy now and proud of yourself that at the end of the day when the head hits the pillow, you tried. That my friend is a beautiful part of the process that will help you stay in a much stronger, more connected place. The other part of this that I want to mention is that there is everything that’s happening, the facts, and then there’s what’s going on in your brain and body. And I just want to point that out because the way you describe it is that it’s hard and it’s painful and I know that it feels that way. And I am not suggesting that you want to think this is the most fun process. This is amazing. But I do want to help you empower yourself so that you decide on purpose how you want to think and feel about this.

So how do you want to think and feel about this desire about it not having happened yet? How do you want to think about it for the next three years? And how do you want to feel? Do you want to try for the next three years? Just because that’s who you want to be. And I think focusing on your future self looking back can be really powerful tool here. So ask your future self. Maybe she’s five years down the road or 10 years down the road, how does she think that you should think and feel about this? What advice does she have for you? Your future self is so wise and particularly because you have kids already, you’re probably very focused on how you had those kids and what worked in that way. And so your brain is just focusing on the past. But as you already know, the future is different than the past.

And so the more you can access your future self for advice and for wisdom, the more you will create your future deliberately. Instead of trying to repeat the past, there might be part of this where you want to be willing to be wrong about what the experience was going to be like. So for example, if having your other kids was a different experience, which the way that you left the message leads me to believe that is true. You might want to come up with some thoughts like, oh, I thought having this child was going to be a similar experience to having my first kids, but I guess I was wrong. Having this thought about being wrong can be really empowering because if you’re feeling any frustration with the process right now, it’s because of some sort of thought error where you’re not accepting reality and that just adds frustration to an already challenging circumstance for you.

So instead, you might come up with a thought like, oh, I thought having this child was going to look like having my other kids. I guess I was wrong about that, huh? And you’re doing it not from a place of beating yourself up, but just from a place of curiosity. Oh, I didn’t expect that. I expected what happened in the past. I guess I was wrong. And that’s okay. Having this child is going to look different. I don’t know how it’s going to happen. I just know it’s going to happen. And then you get much more into that future focused energy not attaching to the past and not attaching to the how. One of the most powerful places that you can get with respect to desiring is desiring it because that’s what’s on your heart, but not because it’s what you need to be happy. And that truly my friend, is the secret to wanting this and continuing to pursue it without making it so painful.

Might you still interpret it as hard? Yes, but hard doesn’t necessarily have to be devastating. It can be hard and you can think thoughts like this is a lot harder than I thought and and what are you going to put after that? And and I’m still up for the challenge and this is who I want to be in the world and I want to keep trying. So when you’re interpreting it as hard, choose intentionally what comes after that because your brain on default will want to go into, this isn’t fair, this shouldn’t be happening. I can’t handle this. And none of those thoughts will serve you. Give yourself love and self validation. If you need some space, some self-care, make sure you are giving yourself all of those things, but then choose the way that you think and feel about it on purpose. The more you get into acceptance instead of those kind of resistance, this shouldn’t be happening.

I didn’t notice any, but in case you have any self-pity thoughts like poor me feeling like you’re at the effect of your life and it’s not working out for you, any of those thoughts, they just make the experience worse for you and they can feel so real. And so you want to notice them and say, you know what brain, these thoughts aren’t serving me. I’m going to give myself compassion and love and kindness and I’m going to choose on purpose how I interpret this challenge. This is hard and I’m up for it. I have a desire for the end result, which is to have a baby. I don’t know how it’s going to happen. We’ve tried a couple ways, we’ve tried for a couple years. We’re going to keep trying different ways. We’re going to be open to so many different hows and really open up to those possibilities that all lead to the end result of a baby.

This is so important. We get so fixated on the how particularly with something that’s like fertility treatments, that’s so science related, but you can do this with any example. I coach women in business and it’s the same thing. I, I keep trying the exact same way. It’s like, yes, if you keep trying the exact same how it’s not going to work, it’s going to give you the exact same result. Just like with dating, I remember when I was dating just the wrong guys, the guys that led to the exact same result, which is not the result I wanted. And as soon as I committed to the result and not the how, then I opened up to dating lots of different types of guys. And it was really hard because my brain and body were so used to dating a certain type of guy, but I wanted the end result.

The end result was marriage and a committed lifelong partner. The end result was not dating guys who didn’t want to get married, just like in this case, the end result is not getting pregnant. The end result is a baby. And so being attached to that from a place of this is what’s on my heart. I desire this and letting go of the how is the work and allowing yourself to, and not making your happiness dependent on the desire. I want you and everyone listening to get the result that you want to get the outcome that you want, but that is not happiness, right? They’re just different. So happiness is a feeling that you create with your thoughts and that’s awesome. And that creating your desires is also awesome. They’re just totally separate things. And if you kind of take a step back and you think about this in something that’s not so attached to you like a job, we know that jobs don’t make us happy.

We know that there are jobs and we know that there are our career goals and those are awesome to achieve, but they don’t create happiness, right? It’s just they’re totally separate. The same thing is true here. Our relationships don’t make us happy. Having babies, not having babies doesn’t make us happy. And so it’s really important to just separate this out on your mind so that you’re not making it worse for you because it is hard for the brain for us as humans to want something, try a bunch of ways and not get the result that we want. That’s hard. And you can decide to stop or give up or quit just because you want to. But I just want to challenge you not to stop or give up or quit if it’s still on your heart because I think that is quitting because the how isn’t yet working.

Instead of deciding, you know what, I no longer want this desire or outcome, which is also totally fine. Your desires and results that you want to create for your life can change. But that’s a very different reason to stop. Most of the time when we want something, we attach to the how and when it doesn’t work, we make it mean something about ourselves. This isn’t going to work. I should just give up. What’s the point? Anyways, this is too hard. That is questioning the result because a certain how didn’t work. And I want you to do the opposite. Commit to the result that you want because it’s a desire that you have wholeheartedly expect it for yourself. Give yourself permission to be in the space of having it, but completely let go of the how and when one way doesn’t work, try another way and try another way and try another way and try another way and be open to the possibility that you have no idea what way you are going to have this baby.

Then you don’t ever make. Not having the result means something about you because you can create the result. It just might not be in the way that you thought. Such an important distinction here. That is I think life changing. For anyone who desires anything, attach yourself to the result and desire that, not because it makes you happy, just because that’s what you want to do with your life. Be completely open to the how. This is magic my friends, because when one how doesn’t work, you try another how and a different one and a different one, and you’re open to just the possibility that you don’t even know what the how is going to look like. And the same is true for money goals. The same is true for getting married. The same is true for having another baby. Any outcome or result that you want to create, getting better at time management, becoming more easygoing and laid back, an internal identity shift or an external goal, they’re all outcomes that we all want to create.

That desire on your heart is there for you. I want you to go for your desires and I want you to believe in them wholeheartedly. Attach to those and move and live into them, but don’t attach to the how. Be open to so many different hows and when one, how doesn’t work. Try another how and another how and another how. One of my favorite quotes is by Thomas Edison. He says, “when you have exhausted all possibilities, remember this, you haven’t”. That my friends is the mindset that will help you keep trying different ways from a place of believing in yourself and your desires, but completely letting go of the how. And remember achieving your goals, creating new outcomes for yourself is awesome. It is so fun, but it doesn’t change your worth. It doesn’t make you happy. You are 100% worthy. You are good on the inside and your happiness is dependent on the thoughts that you think.

It’s just totally separate from the outcomes that you are trying to create with your life. So make sure that you’re giving yourself space to do the mindset work of feeling good and happy in your life because there’s always going to be outcomes that you want. If you just think back to different seasons of your life, different decades even, there’s always something that you’re wanting and how you wait in wanting matters. It matters because it’s your life and it’s your experience. And I do think it can be a skill that you really can work on so you can get good at waiting in wanting. You can give yourself permission to feel happy now, to feel joy now and to allow there to be space for multiple things to be true. You can be satisfied and joyful and happy in your life, and you can be working on this outcome that’s challenging and hard, particularly when there are fails and the how’s that you’re trying aren’t working.

But it doesn’t have to be so heavy if you don’t want it to be heavy. I just want to give you that opportunity to know that you can create this for yourself. If you believe in the outcome, the result that you want is a baby, leave the how open and try different ways. This is the secret to success in any desire or outcome that any of us want. Alright, my friend, thank you so much for calling in. I know this helped so many other women. As a reminder, if you would like to get coached, get some advice, get some tools for whatever it is that you are working on, going through, struggling with, want some tips for call into the podcast hotline. The number is eight three. Three three. Ask Nat. That’s 8 3 3 3 2 7 5 6 2 8. I love you so much.

Thanks for being here and I will talk with you next week. Take care. Thank you for being here and listening. Now, head on over to to learn more about the Mom On Purpose membership, where we take all of this work to the next level.

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