A Story of Resilience, the Healthy Moms Way
Did you dream of having your own family from the time that you were a little girl? I definitely did not. My own childhood is not one that I look back on fondly, and so I had this fear of parenting like I was parented and as a result convinced myself it would not be part of my life plan. “Stick with what you are good at” was my philosophy.
You may wonder what led me to have 2 boys of my own and what changed. My 26th year was one of emotional turmoil. I had gotten divorced after a very short marriage and just a few short months afterwards I was diagnosed with cancer. I felt like nothing was going the way I had planned or imagined. I felt like I had failed. I knew I needed the support of a psychologist to get through this difficult time. That doctor made me realize I was not to blame for the actions of my parents, and I had the power to control the choices I made for myself. I committed to staying true to the values I defined for myself and the people I decided to surround myself with: honesty, trustworthiness, compassion, courage, integrity, patience, positive attitude. I was free, no longer living in fear, and was discovering who I truly was and what was important to me.
I had the opportunity to relocate to Singapore with the company I worked for and was leading marketing for Southeast Asia. It was my dream job and leaving my hometown of Montreal could not have come at a better time in my life. I had finished my thyroid cancer protocol, which involved a total thyroidectomy, radioactive iodine, thyroxine therapy, and whole-body scintigraphy scan. Though I still needed to have monthly blood tests to ensure my TSH levels remained suppressed and quarterly thyroid ultrasounds, I got the green light that I could be monitored in Singapore, which actually has state of the art health care.
If you ever read the book “Eat, Pray, Love” I felt like this was my life version of self-discovery. Beyond the amazing places I had the opportunity to see, I also met very spiritual people that have had a great influence on my life. One of my favourite quotes is:
Forget who hurt you yesterday, but don’t forget those who love you everyday.
Forget the past that makes you cry and focus on the present that makes you smile.
Forget the pain, but never the lessons you gained.
In addition to my path of self-discovery I also found out I had Polycystic Ovary Syndrome and was told if I had plans to have children that it would be unlikely. Having children was not part of my life plan so when I was told that, I felt it was further confirmation I wasn’t meant to have children.
Fast forward one year, when I met my future husband. He was so caring, loving, patient; all qualities that I did not grow up with. And he wanted children. We talked about me not wanting to have kids, mainly because of my fears of being a terrible parent. With my husband by my side I felt I could overcome those fears and become the parent I wanted to be. Was I too late? Being 35 with PCOS, I was well aware it might not be possible, but after just 2 months of trying I became pregnant with our first child.
I know many women with PCOS who struggle to get pregnant and I am not a medical professional but I do believe that my lifestyle choices – eating whole foods in a paleo-type diet, exercising with yoga, strength training, and running, getting off the pill and regulating my cycle, vitamin supplementation – tipped the odds in my favour. Being diagnosed with cancer 10 years prior made me focus on living a healthy and natural life. Eating a whole foods diet with my vitamin supplements together with exercise must have contributed to my ability to have not just one child but two amazing, high energy boys. I always look for natural solutions as my first line of defence.
Parenting does not come naturally to me, but my boys have been my greatest teachers and I am always striving to be a better person because of them and I am grateful for the gift. Namaste.