La Coop P.A.- General and Forensic Psychiatry - Boutique-Private Psychiatric and Forensic Practice in Tampa-Clearwater-Florida


April 2016 - Happy Easter!


It's a renewal time of year with Easter around the corner. Spring cleaning is happening all over the country and that goes for our bodies and minds too.

I am always honest with my patients about what's happening in my life - after all, we are family. Many of you know that I would like a larger family and Josh and I have dealt with fertility issues as a couple for 6 years now. I thank God each day for my children and the miracle that they are to my family. They have given me life. My husband and I have been going through the IVF process again and in December the clinic made a mistake which cancelled the cycle and in February I tried again and our embryos did not make it. It has been a devastation to myself and my family. For those of you that have known this news, I appreciate the heart felt sympathies that you have shared with me.

This newsletter will be about using a serious low as motivation and inspiration. Not only to count our blessings and give gratitude for the things in our lives that are great, but to also reassess, retool and use the low to elevate yourself to the next level.

I hope you all are well and that you have a wonderfully blessed Easter.

Until next time,

Dr. L

First off, you need to give yourself time to grieve the loss that you have just undergone. Josh and I just found out about our embryos 11 days ago. Within moments of the news, I told some of my closest friends, and some were already just wiping it away. Telling me that "my family is complete" as if I should be ok with this. I feel like a few hours after finding out my babies were lost (which is how I see them) is too little time for moving on. I know the persons meant well, but it's too short of time to say that. Give yourself a reasonable amount of time to process things. That's different for everyone and if you have questions about it we can talk about it in session.

Secondly, you need to understand what the loss means to you. For some people, it may be a relief to not be pregnant. For others, it is a lifelong dream. For myself, I wanted to create more happiness in my own family and the world with these children. My Sami and Mari are extensions of myself and my husband. These new children already had a life in my mind. So, to lose them was the loss of the fantasy of a larger family and how great fun that would be. Also, to be pregnant and create a life and to bring that into the world is an experience that is life altering. To not have that experience again is also a significant loss to me. Some people are miserable being pregnant but I really celebrated every bit of it and will be sad not to experience it again.

Thirdly, one might look at their role in the loss. Could they have done anything differently to have prevented it? How can you use this knowledge to possibly not make the same mistakes again and perpetuate this loss cycle? I certainly did this. However, I know that I did everything that I knew to do to achieve my goal. I followed the instructions given to me by the doctors to the letter and even did additional things to ensure success. I have made peace with my role in this outcome. However, I deal with a lot of patients that are experiencing another type of loss (ex. job) where there were some things that they could've done differently (ex. not quit before finding a new job) that could change where they are now financially and emotionally.

Fourth, look for meaning in the loss/suffering. I have done this many times in my life and many of you know the stories and stories I've told. For this loss, I automatically turned to my daughters and just hugged them. I have come to see over and over again what true miracles they really are. Josh and I were lucky to have found CCRM and through their medical expertise, we got these Angels. We are so lucky because in this process so many things can go wrong. These failed cycles reminded me of that fact. As I am sitting up at 4:30 AM writing this, I'm looking at my daughter, Sami, sleeping and I am thrilled to know her. Now that the dust has settled and you are standing in a pile of rubble around you, think, "why did this happen?" Humans search for meaning. Make a list of the things that you have learned through this experience. The meaning may be hidden at first and may become clearer as time goes on. You all know the story of Virtual La Coop, and for those who don't, you can access that here. It took me years to fully understand the purpose/meaning of that loss.

Finally, dust yourself off and move on knowing that you have just grown. I truly believe that through each loss experience we undergo, there is a positive/a purpose. We become wiser to potential dangers in the world, we learn to live on less, we become better able to see the bright spots in the world around us. To experience losses in this way, you need to process them as I'm telling you to here. What is the lesson that we are supposed to learn here? For me, again, I have something truly great in my family. It would've been nice to see more darling faces, but I have these 2 beautiful faces (the picture is Sami and Mari at 16 months old now!). I have also learned that my body can tolerate a lot of distress even though I'm an old lady now! :) I've also learned that it's time for me to take back that body (when you're undergoing IVF they tell you to stop working out essentially) and use it to do something I've wanted to do for many years. In 2007, during my fellowship I treated a young inmate who saw how much danger I was in constantly with my work and he told me that I should learn Krav Maga (used by Israeli soldiers as practical self defense). I kept that in my data bank for many years and each week when I go to church I started to see a studio and I went last Monday. I am committing to that for at least the next 3 years to not only help myself but my family. Once my girls turn 3, they will be enrolled. This is a healthy way that I'm going to get my body back in terms of control while also learning how to protect myself and my family in a potentially dangerous situation.

Now, will I forget my embryos? No. Never. But I can't live in that disappointment forever. Too many people depend on me. I cannot sacrifice the life I've already created for a fantasy life that only really existed in my mind. Plus, I have too much work to do in the world to be stopped by one singular disappointment no matter how great it is.

You too can turn a loss into a potential gain. It just takes a desire to get out of the mental space you are in now and to get into something even greater for yourself. You can do it!

Talk soon!

Dr. L + 2

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