Be Ceremonial

Trying to Conceive After Pregnancy Loss

Madison shares her story creating a ceremony for Trying to Conceive after pregnancy loss using the Be Ceremonial app for guidance and support.

“Trying to conceive after loss sucks. Even the language of “trying” I don’t particularly like. Giving myself permission to feel that helped me move into accepting all of the uncertainty that lies ahead. I made a little room for some peace and hope.

I began this journey by creating a TTC ceremony using the Be Ceremonial app to process my emotions during the two week wait. I don’t do this every month – there are times when I avoid looking at the calendar. The lesson here is to meet yourself where you’re at. Do what is necessary to tend to your needs and calm your nervous system.”

Madison in Vancouver, Canada

What Does A Trying to Conceive Ceremony Look Like?

I was drawn to Be Ceremonial after I lost my son at 6 months pregnant. I wanted to gain new practices to process my grief, and make space for a future child while still connecting with my son’s spirit. 

I didn’t grow up with many ceremonial practices, so I wasn’t quite sure where to start. I chose Be Ceremonial’s Trying to Conceive ceremony, although I didn’t connect with the language of ‘trying’.

I reframed it as a conception journey and created a Welcoming Conception Ceremony for myself. 

I wanted to honour the passing of time during the two week wait between ovulation and an expected or missed period. The wait can be so disconcerting, and I wanted to find a way to ground myself and process my emotions each day.

Trying to Conceive Rituals

I chose the Two Week Wait ritual and created a paper link chain to count down the days during the two week waiting period. I think it’s important for people to realize the chain doesn’t need to be 14 links – it can be less or more, depending on when you want to test for pregnancy. 

Each day, I would write down one word on one of the paper links, describing what I was feeling or holding. I would then tear it off and put the broken link in a jar. At the end of the two week wait, I would empty the jar of words onto the floor so I could reflect on each emotion once the two week wait was over. 

I then lined up the paper to create a threshold to step over. The purpose of stepping over the words was to acknowledge that I survived each emotion and that I was now entering into a new phase.

Two Week Wait

Stepping over the threshold was powerful because it reminded me that it is a new beginning, rather than simply a disappointing ending if I wasn’t pregnant.

If I had a fire pit, I would have liked to have burned the paper and watch each piece dissolve into the earth and sky, instead of tossing it into the recycling. 

The Role of Ritual and Ceremony

Some days, I wouldn’t do my welcoming conception ceremony because I preferred to distract myself and not fixate on the counting down of days. I learned that that was perfectly fine too. Ceremony and ritual should never be forced or prescribed. We need to do what’s best for us in the moment, and sometimes that means not doing the ritual. 

I wanted to acknowledge all of the emotions during those passing days. Writing down my feelings and reviewing all of my emotions together at the end of my cycle was so powerful. 

I love that Be Ceremonial’s ceremony helped me process my feelings on the broken links each day. It helped me normalize and honour the TTC process. It’s incredibly scary to try for another baby after loss. I didn’t have the privilege of ignorance anymore, and I couldn’t pretend that the two week wait didn’t exist. So instead of resisting it, I embraced it. 

Trying to Conceive can be very isolating. Ceremony and ritual helped me feel more connected to myself, my son and my spirituality. 

Madison is an in-patient psychiatry social worker. She lost her son Lev when she was 6 months pregnant, and has been creating rituals and ceremonies to acknowledge him and her own journey ever since. You can follow her journey here.

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