Photo cred: Will Taylor
This blog contains excerpts from my interview with Shannon Schultz-Wooten and was made available to the members of our private Facebook community first. If you’re not yet a members, please consider joining us in this free community where it’s a safe space to get advice and find support. To join, simply click here to ask for permission.
Recently, I sat down with Shannon Schultz- Wooten, life coach and author of Infertility Sucks, You Don’t to talk about her own experiences trying to conceive (TTC), her acknowledgement of the 5 stages of grief and how ultimately she moved her thinking from “I suck” to “Let’s rock and roll!”
Like any couple on the TTC journey, you intimately understand the pain of finding out month after month that whatever methods you tried or procedures you had done didn’t quite pan out. For some, despite being hesitant to be too hopeful, the sadness and disappointment still cut us as once again a ‘not pregnant’ appears on the test. For Shannon, who says she tied herself to being a mommy, the continuous infertility issues made her feel like “Shannon as a human being will be forever incomplete.”
It wasn’t until she attached the 5 stages of grieving to the TTC process and began working through them that she realized that her biggest hurdle would be acceptance.
“For me, I know that reaching the acceptance phase was really difficult because I always looked at it as though reaching acceptance meant that I DO NOT care about infertility anymore. It meant that I was no longer affected by it and it no longer made me sad.”
Which of course is never the case.
Instead, sick and tired of being sick and tired, Shannon decided she didn’t suck so much after all. Eventually acceptance brought her to the point of saying, “I’ve made it through the hard shit… let’s rock and roll.”
So should we rush our TTC journeys straight to the acceptance stage?
Or as Shannon says, “ NO.NO. 1,000 times, NO! The journey is the most important process of your life. I know it really f*cking sucks right now, but allow yourself to make space for all your hurt. Give it the proper attention it deserves and be present with how you feel right now and why. Be patient with your journey and listen to you heart. It will tell you what you need to do.”
So what comes next?
This is the good news… the sky is the limit, “We all have our own journey or story and although the next steps may be buried under a bunch of beliefs that there is no hope for you- you’re nothing because of you’re infertility- that is JUST A STORY you’re telling yourself and we can move those things out of the way to figure it out.”
And that’s exactly what Shannon is helping others to do right now: take the next steps. As a life coach, she helps her clients take control of their lives and “move the blocks out of the way that are preventing them from moving forward and achieving future goals.”
She uses her own experiences TTC- and how she ultimately got her life back after losing herself to the grief- to pave the way for others to stop devaluing themselves just because of their infertility.
“I became a victim to my circumstance and because I was SO BUSY being a victim, I had no time to be Shannon. I became the baron, childless, broken, unfeminine, unsexy, vacant, heartbroken, powerless, sad, angry, and unintelligent human, instead of the energetic, brilliant, heartfelt, powerful, charming, beautiful, and lively human I wanted to be.”
But Shannon DID rewrite her story… and one by one she’s helping women to recognize that yes, Infertility Sucks… You Don’t!
If you’re interested in finding out more about Shannon Schultz-Wooten, please visit her website at www.lifewithshannon.com.