April 24th marks the beginning of National Infertility Awareness Week, a week dedicated to erasing the stigmas and barriers surrounding how families are made. Pregnancy after IVF or other infertility treatments can often be more stressful, and expectant mothers need a solid support system as they grow their baby.
Meditation expert, mindfulness coach, mother of 7 and author of 5-Minute Mindfulness for Pregnancy: Simple Practices to Feel Calm, Present, and Connected to Your Baby , Josephine Atluri stresses the importance of both mindfulness practices and having a support system to fall back on when undergoing infertility treatments and carrying your baby.
“As a mother of seven children (I have been pregnant several times, adopted, and also partnered with two surrogates to carry four of our children), I remember how challenging it was to cherish the gestational experience,” says Atluri.
“For my first three children, I was preoccupied with worries about my pregnancy and the future, so much so that I felt overwhelmed and unable to be present in my journey. Looking back, I wish I’d had the tools to care for myself so I could have enjoyed being pregnant, an unmatched experience that took several heartbreaking years of assisted reproductive therapy to finally come into fruition."
Many years later, after discovering meditation and mindfulness for herself and then becoming certified to teach others these skills, Atluri was able to apply mindfulness to later pregnancies.
As a result, she noticed marked differences in her pregnancy experiences.
"I finally savored the process! I also improved my overall state of being through reduced stress and increased positivity. These personal experiences fueled my passion to help other people on their path to parenthood by showing them how to incorporate mindfulness into their own journeys.”
As a graduate of the University of Chicago, Atluri coupled her consulting background with her passion for total wellness to become certified as a meditation coach and teach corporate mindfulness. Plus, her experience creating her modern-day family of seven children via in vitro fertilization (IVF), international adoption and surrogacy inspires her work as a highly sought-after fertility and parenting mindfulness coach.
I want to be calm and mindful even before baby arrives. Is that possible?
Available for pre-order and launching May 2022, Atluri helps women find calm as they connect with their body and their baby in 5-Minute Mindfulness for Pregnancy: Simple Practices to Feel Calm, Present, and Connected to Your Baby.
Pregnancy presents a time of great excitement and change. So it’s only natural to experience overwhelming moments as well as joyful ones. This guided journal can help women approach each day with grace and self-compassion, by turning to mindfulness. It’s full of short and easy exercises designed to generate positivity, connection, and peace of mind.
What sets this pregnancy book apart and what to expect:
Principles of mindfulness—Explore the basic tenets and benefits of mindfulness and discover how tools like breath work and visualization can ground you in times of transition.
Build a sustainable practice—Quick 5-minute exercises make it simple to develop a consistent mindfulness routine and stay motivated even on the toughest days of pregnancy.
Explore empowering exercises—Dive into a range of mindfulness practices designed for pregnancy, from yoga poses that alleviate discomfort to journal prompts that celebrate your changing body.
I'm working to be a calm, present, and mindful parent. Any guidance for parents?
Absolutely! Atluri's first book, Mindfulness Journal for Parents: Prompts and Practices to Stay Calm, Present, and Connected helps build a better relationship with kids through mindfulness. In this parenting journal, Alturi recognizes that family life gets chaotic, but with mindfulness, we can practice simple ways to stay calm and work through moments of stress.
Through writing prompts and exercises, help readers practice creating empathy, honest communication, and understanding for both parent and child.
What you can expect from the Mindfulness Journal:
Insightful topics―Focused on everything from gratitude to staying cool in a crisis, these mindful parenting journal prompts help appreciate the little moments and manage the tough times.
Thoughtful writing―See how reflecting on thoughts and reactions helps parents engage with their kids from a place of compassion, and defining values and priorities.
Support and challenge―The mindful parenting exercises in this journal are designed to encourage and support parents but also challenge thoughts and behaviors to see if they serve overall goals for the entire family.
Atluri also hosts a popular podcast, “Responding to Life: Talking Health, Fertility, & Parenthood,” where she interviews guests on their inspiring responses to life’s challenges. Listen on Spotify below!
Support after pregnancy with IVF or other infertility treatments can often be physically and mentally traumatic, so don't hesitate to seek out support. If you can’t immediately seek professional guidance face to face, and you're without friends or family support, call one of the crisis hotlines on our Crisis Support page.
Be patient and kind to yourself. We're so happy you're here, and proud you're taking steps to get the support you deserve.