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Bringing Your Body into Harmony: Fertility and Pre-Conception Tips

We hear a lot about ‘self love’ and ‘self care’ but what does that really mean?



I’ve been working as a wellness practitioner since I was in my 20s, intellectually I knew a lot about the human body, but practically I was avoiding many enriching practices. I would follow systems from different philosophies around the world, handing over the authentic needs of my Body-Mind-Soul to a person. In each course or retreat I participated in, I was offered a system, giving me a sense of purpose, so I could tick off my ‘self care’ box. I was mothering myself using practices I had read or heard from people I felt drawn to, but what did I truly need?


Motherhood has made me face this question; there’s no hiding behind books and belief systems. For one, I just don’t have time and secondly, it feels out of line with my heart. Initially, I would beat myself up over not completing my daily Ashtanga sequence or meditating for 60 minutes a day, as before Auraya was born, these were my anchors, and ticking these boxes led me to believe I was on the right track.

I used to call it a sacrifice, as I gave up one thing after another. I would cry to Ilan as I grieved for my old life, ‘my freedom’, and the simple moments of just enjoying a lie-in with a cup of coffee.


The truth is, as soon as I loosened up the ties to my old life, I became lighter, more glowing, and more inspired! I became a creative vortex, and my body felt stronger than ever. I wasn’t surprised; I had such a tight grasp on my past! As I listened to other mothers, I realized this feeling of grief wasn’t only for mothers who had unplanned conceptions but for mothers who had consciously conceived. This is a death and a rebirth of the self.


I wouldn’t say there is a magic process or set time frame to transition, but I would say that you are going to feel the resistance more and more as time goes on if you continue to hunt the ghosts of your past. Be gentle, be patient, and know you are not alone.


Coming home to your body and nurturing your temple is the first step to merging with this new life.


Let's explore a few areas,


Physical fitness


Firstly, let’s figure out a few things:


What is your baseline fitness?

Do you know how you can support your pregnancy and labor?

Where do you need strength and where do you need to make space?


Starting a new extreme fitness regime is not recommended, but adapting with an old one can be very empowering.


Walking, yoga, dance, swimming, to name a few examples, bring strength, hip mobility, and opening when performed correctly.


Some days you may wake up feeling exhausted; now is the time to figure out if you need more sleep or maybe just a good shake-out. Walking always helps me to reconnect to the fundamental needs of my body. Strolling through the forest, held by the earth, I asked my body:


‘How are you today?’


Over time, I became familiar with my internal voice of wisdom and I started hearing what would serve me in that moment.


Consciously breathing with movements to feel the expansion and retraction of the body is such a gift. When you are doing body work, take your time, listen to your body, feel each movement. Nothing needs to be rushed. Now is the time to drop into the gentleness of feminine magic. This is a time for expansion and deep relaxation, as the body relaxes, you begin to move into a more harmonious state of being. Creating the perfect home for your new soul.


I was very active and extremely passionate about sport. I would push myself to the limits, learning the skills my body needed to perform various movements efficiently. After leaving the army, I wasn't as extreme but I was still very active. During my pregnancy, I walked 5km on the beach every day, practiced my yoga sequence, and remained very much embodied. While this may seem great, a lot of it was out of fear of losing my physique and my rituals which I believed kept me conscious and awake. In reality, I think my strength became an obstacle during labor as my pelvic floor muscles felt so locked.


I recommend exploring somatic movement as a practice. Allow yourself to be guided by your breath and explore all areas of your body. Notice any areas of dullness, tightness, or any areas that are hot, cold, or buzzing with energy. Intuitively move your body gently and lovingly to dance with these sensations. You may feel like bouncing or shaking. You may feel like spinning, twisting, or expanding. You may even want to lie there and breathe into different areas of your body. If you haven't tried this before, it can be very soothing to be guided. This is something I started sharing from a distance and it is very powerful.


Being guided holds you in each moment, helping you stay with all that arises. It provides gentle reminders to come back to the body again and again. Things will surface because the body holds all of our past experiences, from this lifetime, our parents, and our ancestors. With somatic movement, you can get to the root of many patterns that keep playing out and you can begin to process emotions that keep you in a painful cycle. It is the most transformative practice I include in my day.


Nutrition


When it comes to nutrition, the simplest way to cover this vast topic is to return to nature. Eat foods that are salubrious, rich in nutrients, free from chemicals and additives, and that make you feel healthy and filled with life. It's not just for you, it's for the man involved in this co-creation too! It takes about three months for the egg and sperm to mature, so giving this time to nourish your whole being is a powerful foundation for life.


Foods brimming with life force will share their wisdom with you to offer you optimal nourishment. We have been fed lies our entire lives to drive us to purchase foods that give us moments of joy but longer emotional and physical crashes. Even with this knowledge, give yourself a break from societal guilt. The patterns and habits we have surrounding food are deeply ingrained, and it may require a stronger intention to move towards nourishing foods. That's why pre-pregnancy is the best time to start reprogramming the beliefs you have around food!


In the past, food was my comfort. I struggled with an unhealthy relationship with food in my early 20s, including binge eating, vomiting, restricting, and over exercising. It came up again for me in early pregnancy because I was craving so many foods, but I still had that voice telling me I was going to gain weight and be unlovable. Luckily, I had Ilan to hear the voices with me. We would listen together, and he would remind me of my intention to nourish myself and our baby. It was tough, because for the first time in my life, my intention to protect and nourish my baby was stronger than my fears.


There are endless nutrients to support a healthy functioning body, but here are a few to get you started: foods rich in zinc, selenium (wholegrains, fish, nuts, eggs, dairy), omega-3 (fish, nuts), vitamin E (sunflower seeds, almonds, peanuts, spinach, pumpkin), beta-carotene (yellow, orange, and green leafy fruits and vegetables), and vitamin D (sunlight, fish, eggs, mushrooms).


In addition to these nutrients, consider incorporating animal products such as meat, poultry, and dairy into your diet. These can be excellent sources of protein, vitamins, and minerals. Just be sure to choose high-quality, ethically-raised options whenever possible. Raw dairy products, such as milk, cheese, and yogurt, can also be a nutritious addition to your diet.


Recommended herbs: ginger (anti-inflammatory), evening primrose (balances hormones), cinnamon (improves circulation), nettle (supports the toning of the uterus), red raspberry (hormone balancing), red clover (hormone balancing, alkalizes to restore pH), ashwagandha (removes toxins and reduces stress), maca (fertility superfood, balances hormones, increases libido).


Toxins


Humans are rapidly losing touch with our natural state of being. Externally, we are being pulled in all directions to serve a collapsing economy and an idea of perfection that is completely intoxicating.


You can see the toxins offered to us in everyday life clearly: makeup, toiletries, cleaning products, perfumes, car fumes, medications, the list is endless. But there are also many other hidden poisons that are leaking into our temple.


When we absorb a poisonous substance into our body, we call it a toxin. By managing our external world to reduce exposure, we can support a harmonious and thriving body. Of course, it’s easier said than done. We have become accustomed to the effects these products have on us and the way they may bring short-lived ease to our lives.


Initially, we may not see the side effects of our choices, but as the toxins build up within us, they block vital pathways in the body, leading to dis-ease and hormone imbalances as the liver is put under tremendous strain. This leads us beautifully into hormone imbalances. As the body works hard to remove these toxins, it takes its focus away from synthesizing excessive hormones that have built up in the bloodstream.


The adrenal glands become exhausted as they call in a state of emergency – an enemy has entered the lines and must be destroyed. The inflammation response kicks in and suddenly you are in a state of stress. Help yourself out – check in with your choices and ask yourself very vulnerably what changes can be made.


Rest / sleep


This is the time to get as much nourishing sleep as you can. It's quite simple: the more quality rest you take, the deeper your cells will heal and rejuvenate! Different people need different amounts of sleep depending on their body constitution, their current state of health, and their mental, emotional, and physical exertion during the day.


Ask yourself:

  • How are your energy levels when you wake up?

  • Are you getting quality sleep?

Firstly, I would highly recommend naps if you can fit them in. This was always a tough one for me, even after Auraya joined us. I resisted napping because my societal wounds ran deep when it came to my self-worth being measured by my productivity. Now, I feel so smug if I get a nap. I can't believe my whole life I've neglected this healing practice.

Secondly, check your space. Can you:

  • Reduce EMF in your place of rest?

  • Turn off the WiFi at night?

  • Remove unnecessary electrical items?

  • Eliminate unnatural light entering your room? This can seriously affect your pineal gland, as light inhibits melatonin secretion - that wonderful hormone that helps you drift into the dream world.

How comfortable is your bed? Do you need new, fluffy pillows? Are your covers cosy enough? Treat yourself - this is the time when you will go into a state of deep healing on all levels!

Finally, create a ritual. Take an hour before you plan to sleep to:

  • Turn off your phone

  • Make a sleepy tea (chamomile or lavender are good options)

  • Dim the lights

  • Release your body with gentle movements

  • Tune into your breath

  • Give thanks for your day and the lessons learned.

Massage


What better way to come back to the body than the intentional healing touch from yourself or a trusted other. I have had many massages and healing sessions in the past, sometimes I would be left with a bitter taste, I just presumed it was my process of healing deep trauma and emotions that were being brought to the surface. One day I finally stepped back to get a better look, I realised I was handing my body over to people I did not know. Were they fully present with me in that experience?


Also, I was not being completely authentic within the experience, I became mute, I was unable to voice my preferences, leaving me feeling disempowered and neglected. When I realised this, I was liberated! As a masseuse and healer myself, I know how important it is to be a clear vessel during each interaction. It is an honour to cross the boundaries of another, I ask for permission to move into that person's space. That is where the real healing begins. There are many forms of holistic healing which can nourish you, each uniquely powerful. If your partner can intuitively guide their hands over you, this would be the ultimate gift for a deeply intimate and enriched experience.


When offering a massage to yourself, take your time and treat yourself gently and with compassion. No need to rush. Breast and yoni massages will awaken you womb-heart magic and fill you with the jewels of your inner wisdom. Take your time in a specific area with a certain motion, then change the speed and the rhythm, really feel the sensations. Throughout the practice let your breath be your guide. Breathe with a natural yet deep motion, let your body melt with your touch and let all be seen and all be loved. As you dive into the depths of yourself let the pulsing rivers pass through you.


Thank you for reading,


Danielle


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