The Thought Process of Being Negative

Leandra Medine | March 22, 2017

The Thought Process of Being Negative Man Repeller Feature 1

Optimism-Month-Series-GIF

It is 7:36 a.m., I have just woken up and I’m trying to figure out what I have to do today. My heart is beating really fast, which I suppose means that I have a lot to do — but wait, why is Abie still in bed? He’s usually out the door by now.

Oh! It’s Sunday. Not Monday.

It’s Sunday.

Which means I don’t have to do anything! I could go back to sleep.

Sleep. Sleep. Sleep.

I can’t fall back asleep. I shouldn’t have had that tequila last night. How many pizza slices did I have with it? That pizza was so good. My toes feel puffy. I need to take off my socks. Why did I sleep in socks? Why is my heart still beating so fast? I have to get up, I can’t stay here.

First I’ll brush my teeth — no, first I’ll take my vitamins. Then I’ll make my herbs, then I’ll brush my teeth. No, teeth, then herbs. Fuck, I have to take my temperature. I don’t even know what I’m looking for with this temperature shit. How will I know if I’m ovulating? Why do I have to take these herbs? And the stupid vitamins. Why can’t I just be a normal person who has sex and gets pregnant? I hate details, God knows I hate errands and details and TRYING to get pregnant is basically submitting yourself to a holding pattern that contains only details and errands. I will never get pregnant if I stay so anxious. If I resent this process so much.

The Thought Process of Being Negative Man Repeller 2

What do I do? Just give up? When have I ever given up? I can’t even trick myself into thinking that I will give up because the last time I did, I got pregnant. I’m too aware of the process now. If I say I’m giving up, in the back of my mind I’ll know it’s with the purpose of getting pregnant, so I’m not actually giving up and therefore probably not getting pregnant.

I am so sick of being inside my head. I can’t talk about this anymore. I can’t think about this anymore. If I were Abie, I’d pack my fucking bags and hit the road. He’s young, he’s handsome, there are plenty of fertile women out there who will probably be able to give him kids right out of the gates.

Why did I assign myself this story? I mean, literally, this story — The Thought Process of Being Negative. Or, in other words, the thought process of being Leandra. They (you?) are probably, rightfully, so fucking sick of hearing me talk about this!!! I am sick of hearing me talk about this. How could it be that four months later I’m not in the least over it? I’m worse off now than I was then. I’m such a loser. Too inside the darkness of my own head to peek out and see that all is well. Imagine if I was sick. Then I wouldn’t even be able to try.

Oh God, do you think this happened because I am sick? I should go for a breast sonogram, my last one was in July. Abie’s up. Don’t mention any of this. Don’t mention any of this. Don’t. Mention. Any. Of.

“Do you think we lost our pregnancy because I’m sick?”

Leandra!!! Is that the kind of question you think your husband wants to be greeted with upon waking up on a Sunday morning? Why are you doing this to him? To us? Pretend it never happened. Change the subject.

“My temperature is 97.1.”

That is not a subject change. What’s wrong with you? Go brush your teeth and make your fucking herbs.

The Thought Process of Being Negative Man Repeller 3

Why is this happening to me? I must have done something sooooo shitty to deserve it. They say good people never think they’re good and that bad people often think they’re great. I have never thought myself to be a terrible person, which maybe means that I am one. I was so mean in elementary school. I strung that guy along in college. I deserve this. I should just accept that I deserve this.

Maybe I need to pray.

I don’t want to pray. Why am I still writing all of this down? There is just no way anyone wants to hear this. You’re bitter and heartbroken and the world needs you to be positive, to be optimistic, and yet the best you can muster is victimizing yourself? Would you want to listen to someone go on and on and on and on about the very same problem for months on end?

Why do you do this? Why are you letting this define you? Pushing the best thing you have (your audience, your community) away with this ongoing narrative of woe-is-me? Wake up Leo! Smell the damn roses! The sun is out. You know that because you have eyes that can see. Your herbs don’t even taste bad. You know this because you just made them, which means you have a stove and functioning fingers and enough money to buy $40 herbs. Is it really all so bad? Are you really so cliche that thinking about your obvious haves: a functioning body that takes care of you even when you don’t take care of it, a beating heart, a roof over your head, is going to turn your negative-thinking spiral around?

Yeah. I am that cliche. This is all part of a larger plan that I have zero control over. I have to believe that. There’s just no other choice, right? Don’t put so much pressure on yourself. Leave it to the doctors! That statement usually makes zero sense in action, but I need to genuinely surrender — give up control and stop comparing myself to other people (How will I do this? Okay, here’s an idea. The next time it comes up, the next time you get down on yourself because someone else has something in utero that you don’t, observe the irrational conclusions you’re drawing. There is a huge disconnect between reality and what your head is trying to trick you to believe is real. Why does their having something indicate that you can’t have it? Or won’t have it?) and stop thinking about the future of my family (you want to be there so badly that you’re forgetting to live and in forgetting to live, you’re projecting so much fear! So many grim scenarios that are completely hypothetical, of course you can’t smile, or see the sun, or smell that first whiff of New York spring air. You’re not here). Focus on the current state of my family — my husband and me. All we have is right now!!! Right?

Right?

Let me touch the table in front of me. Okay. I feel my fingertips against it. It’s 9:48 a.m. I’m drinking out of a mug with boobs on it, flipping through the Review section of The New York Times and the sun is shining in through my window. Today, right now, in this moment, everything is perfect. I wouldn’t change a thing. I think I mean that. I should share this with Abie! He will be so proud of me. But first, should I make us breakfast?

“What do you want to eat? I’m going to make a sweet potato/avocado sandwich — supposed to be good for fertility.”

…Leandra.

Illustrations by Juliana Vido; follow her on Instagram @julianavido.

  • This is beautiful. Loved every raw emotion and humorous word of it.
    xo http://www.stylefile.in

  • Kelly Baskin

    I could have written this 6 years ago…stay strong and as grounded in reality as possible 💗. It’s tough-to-impossible most days, I know. Infertility to me was a series of finish lines, all having to line up (successfully) just so. It was exhausting and demoralizing and I, too, can’t believe that my husband had as much patience with me as he did (he has far, far less now 😉). I eventually got pregnant after 3 years/4 IUI’s/3 rounds of IVF. I wish I would have trusted in the doctors/process/had faith/dwelled in positivity as I went through it…it was a constant mental battle, as you demonstrate above. Good luck, good vibes, and hang in there.

  • You wrote a few times you really want to … have a good life. Like, really enjoy it. Now this is a personal treat I can identify with and this force is strong with me, always, so I assumed it must be important to you to. Sorry if I am projecting the wrong way right now – what I wonder is: What about it now? No desire for a happy life, for you and your family? You know, to ameliorate the Wish to Suffer? No desire to poke fun at yourself till you laugh? I know yours is everything but an easy situation, yet … you should be able to step outside yourself every now and then, no? Find the trick?

    (I sometimes use this penchant for pleasure to trick myself out of bad mood and Co., as a form of self-therapy, whereby I prescribe myself a nice whiff of perfume, a bath, a book, an apple … whatever the happy me thinks would snap the unhappy me out of it. If it doesn’t work, I try something else. And I am not ashamed of blatantly playing a self-therapist, my otherwise sarcastic mind can tolerate that 🙂 You do know you deserve many things, don’t you? I mean, deep down? Because if not, you might want to suffer some more until something deep down decides enough was paid and live should be lived as it is. Or something.)

  • Tessa

    Leandra, you keep doing it!!!! You keep showing me that I’m not alone. I am caught in a cycle obsessing about losing weight and I am under the SAME exact thought process. Knowing that once I stop caring and trying so hard is when I’ll finally probably lose it, but I already know that so I can never actively bring myself there! Like knowing that it’s all going to happen on accident! Goodness gracious. We are the same human.

  • Erin Khandjian

    This is along the lines of my thought process with my relationship/why I haven’t been proposed to yet. Losing your child is 1 million times more difficult and daunting, but I am 100% on the same page about victimizing myself and trying to pull myself out of obsessive thinking patterns because it’s hard when your heart hurts. I think maybe thinking about it all of the time is something that we can control, thus it feels less exhausting than just letting nature take its course (even if it’s not). I donno.

    • Millie Lammoreaux

      But…you can do the proposing! Just something to consider 🙂

    • Adrianna

      When my boyfriend and I started dating, I wanted him to want to live with me. To 23 year old me, that would be proof that he really loved me and was committed to me. I realized that I wanted that more than I actually wanted to live with him. Five years later, the idea of being surprised with a proposal and expected to make a major life decision on the spot horrifies me.

      Would a marriage proposal resolve what you’re feeling? I know it’s not very romantic, but it sounds like you guys need to have an honest conversation about why you’re feeling anxiety about the relationship.

    • CatMom

      Millie is hitting on something pretty important. This is something that you actually can take control of, unlike whether or not a pregnancy takes (or happens in the first place). Have you talked about getting married in the past? It’s possible that just having a conversation about it – establishing if it’s something you both want and when and how you see that happening, expectations about how that should happen and what a marriage should look like – might make you feel more in control. And communication is a vital part of a marriage – or any relationship! – so this is a good place to start.

  • tmm16

    I admire your courage and honesty. I strongly related to, “I am so sick of being inside my head.” I am an over-thinker and I’m trying to not ponder over things so much to maintain my sanity, but it’s hard. When you really want something, you’re passionate and maybe borderline obsessive, but it’s not a bad thing. It shows dedication. It’s clichéd and arguably cringe-worthy, but nothing worth really working for comes easy. Chin up, keep eating pizza and drinking tequila, and good things will happen! <3

  • I’m sorry you’ve gotta go through all this in your mind but it makes me feel better because I GO THROUGH IT ALL TOO. Different topics, sure, but the same spirals. If I wrote down half the shit my mind subjects me too it would be horrifying. Eye-opening, but horrifying. Thank you, as always, for sharing your heart and your thoughts with us, Leandra. It helps people know they’re not alone.

    • Suzan

      Seconded! Sending out positive & optimistic vibes to everyone caught in a negative spiral! Especially to you right now, Leandra!
      I like Alcessa’s medicine (in a different comment here) of prescribing yourself some small daily happiness! You might just trick your brain for a moment into care-freeness 🙂

  • Imaiya Ravichandran

    the artwork for this story is beautiful

    • Imaiya Ravichandran

      as is the story itself!! <3

  • Sarah Saladino

    Stop fighting your mind! Have these thoughts, observe them, they exist and will continue to. Just let them be. They will disappear if you let them be.

  • Cynthia Schoonover

    Leandra, you are not a loser. You are not the only one, in spite of all you have to be thankful for, who is having negative thoughts. All sorts of stuff goes around in my head, and right now, instead of being grateful for all I have, I’m having negative feelings about my job, and trying to hang in there for 2 years until I can retire, and I can’t change careers because I am too close to retirement, and I sometimes I wish I had not become a teacher, and I don’t have a master’s degree, so that leaves out college level teaching. I used to enjoy teaching, but many students in public school are so spoiled and entitled, so the rotten apples overshadow the good ones. I have my thoughts and let them go.

  • I think…the thing about repetition and being inside of your head (and sharing those thoughts with us) is that it is honest. You are not trying to hide from yourself and even though the unending internal dialogue may upset you, it is helping you. I would say that the ending here is a sign of that; we may be stuck inside our heads but at some point we look up and the little details pop out and we give ourselves a moment of calm. It does not matter how long that moment is, it just matters that it happens. You will always be inside your head.

    side note: all hail Juliana Vido!!!

  • Caro A

    Recently I literally told my thoughts to shut up. I got so mad at them and I asked them who they thought they were. What good were they serving? And what made them think that they were right, that they knew everything?
    Keep going, Leandra. You can do it.

    • Mad Deamon

      That made me laugh.

  • Ella

    THANKS for sharing your thoughts with us! I am going through something very similar almost since the time you started writing about it & it gives me a lot of energy only to know that there are others out there that experience the same and have the same twisted thoughts about the topic! Also +1 for the artwork! x

  • me

    Dear sis: Youre not alone — we all spiral negative at times (some of us more than others).

    Trust me: if obsessive thinking were an Olympic sport, I’d kick Michael Phelps’ tail on the gold medal count.

    So, as long as you share these posts, we’ll continue to read them. And feel your pain, and keep cheering you on.

  • Totally. Hug?

  • I know this process so well, as well as I know my daily route to work. While it may focused on topics, I think in exactly the same way. Reading this and all of the comments where other people have felt the same has been at once heartening, to know I’m not alone, and saddening, to know that everyone else is doing this too. I wish there was a way I could help switch it off because I know how much it sucks. Sending love and good vibes out there to all of my negative spiral people

    – Natalie
    http://www.workovereasy.com

  • Jerney

    Just want to send some Love and Understanding.

  • Nickname

    Perfection. Thank you for your brutal honesty. It’s so nice to see someone as successful as you share feelings other (subjectively) less successful people feel. Xo

  • Stacey

    It’s hard hey. I prayed and am grateful God gave me peace. I hope you can find yours too xx

  • Sarah

    I have these thought spirals all the time, granted it’s about my PhD and future as a scientist rather than pregnancy, but it’s all just facing the overwhelming fear and anxiety that comes with failing at something that is outside of your control. Facing the question, what am I if I am not this?

    For me, it’s about becoming comfortable with the idea that I may fail, it may not work out for me in the way that it does for others and that I currently want it to, and I have to learn to be ok with that. You’ll still be you, still find a way to exist in a way that is wonderful, even if it isn’t the version of happy you imagined.

  • Shevaun

    I don’t know if this is a no-no to suggest or whatever but girrrrrrl u gotta get u some ~ w e e d ~

    this basically reads like my internal monologue while i’m in school. i get horrible anxious heart-stammering “what-if” thoughts, and pair that with consecutive nightmares/night-terrors where i am literally drowning/experiencing my father’s heart-attack again/sprinting away from monsters and it becomes just like, TOO MUCH.

    so i smoke (vape) some of that weed to calm the heck down. it makes you (me) enjoy the moment more, and like, dulls the urgency of my thoughts and allows me to see them more clearly/deal with them more effectively than just blind useless panic.

    but I live in Canada and it’s easier to get here maybe/has less of a stigma here?

    anyway. i feel ya girl.

    • Shevaun

      Q: is it totally inappropriate to recommend drugs (lol weed) to professional women on the internet?

      A: probably.

      Q: does this bother me?

      A: nah B)

  • ashley

    does it help writing it down? Do you think daily writing about your quest would be overkill? maybe it would help, seeing feelings ebb and flow. And in the future your mother self will (definitive will) have a whole new perspective on life and wants. It’s probably so much easier said than done but giving any worry to this community of men and women going anywhere is nutty – we are yours. All of yours

  • b.e.g.

    It is easier to say it than to do it, but try to destress your life. Even if it means handing over the reigns to someone else for a while. Your job, although it may seem glamourous to many, I am sure is very stressful. All those demands, responsibility for your crew, decision after decision, money, accounts, etc. Stress is arguably the most harmful to your body and mind, and trying to get pregnant after a miscarriage, and with all the stress …. you will not lose control, just unload for a while and relax a little more. Trust in the persons you assign to especially because you seem to have a team that will surely look after your interests. Not forever, just a short while.

  • J

    Dear Leandra, I get this story. My story is a little different, but I get the process of being in your head and feeling negative. I am on my second year of recovering from two ectopics, one that ruptured and nearly took me with it. I think about those lost babies all the time. Now I am super high risk to conceive in the future, it’s kind of a Russian roulette with my tubes-if I have a third ectopic it will be very dangerous and I have to stop trying. Or you know-everything could be fine. My husband, like you describe yours, has been amazingly patient as I went through/go through cyclical grief, shock, anger, and numbness over those losses. My trust of my body has changed drastically by the process. But it is getting better. I drink a ginger tea daily-whether because my doctor told me it will help regulate my hormones, or because it is a calming ritual. Not really sure, but it helps. I also found that this is the first time in my life that I can be consistent with exercise. Because before I didn’t really enjoy it and only did it when the pants got too tight. But now it is needed-both to help my body feel better after two surgeries, and to get my mind out of itself for a while. It’s helping me feel stronger and trust my body more, which does sound cliche but itsn’t for me. And I let myself be angry when I need to, as well as enjoy the good things in my life when I can. Like my job, and my good friends, and my family. And even prayer when I can muster it. I try to not talk about it all the time because that makes me less available to hear from my husband and friends about what else is going on in their lives. And that listening can be a good reprieve from my own world. But my husband and my good friends are still here-still willing to be a part of my life, whatever cycles and emotions it has right now. So I will be ok and so will you.

  • Jolie

    For the past year or so, I’ve been having a lot of unexplained health issues (hopefully to be explained soon) that have changed my body, made me change my view of my identity, and really made me depressed and angry and freaking obsessed with talking about them. My poor partner has to listen to me constantly talking about my health problems and how much I hate my body and how everything I do is somehow related to my problems (I’m going to drink this detox tea! I’m going to see if a barre class helps! I’m going to sit a certain way because it might make me feel better!).

    So I relate to this sooooooo much. My only thought while reading this was that I wanted to give you a hug and tell you not to stress and that everything will be okay—then I realized that I need to do that to myself too! I need to give myself a break because I know I WILL overcome the shit I’m going through, but I can’t expect it to just happen overnight, which is the way I’ve been going about handling it and why I’m constantly disappointed. I can’t have 90% of my thoughts be about my stressful issues.

    You’re not alone. And take the advice I can’t give myself—nothing happens as quickly as you want/need it to. You’ll get the answers. You will not feel this forever.

  • Bree

    <3 <3 <3

  • Thank you.

  • Hannah Cole

    How did you know that is exactly what my brain is doing right now

  • Amber Fitzner

    Four months is not enough time to get over a miscarriage so do not be so hard on yourself. It is ok to never get over it….. its a loss, a disappointment and a death that deserves to be mourned so be gentle! I lost a baby at 8 weeks before having my son and I can say honestly having a baby doesn’t wipe clean the slate. You have to grieve and honor the experience whatever it is. Sending a big hug!

  • Ursula Castrat

    I love this! We all make this mistake, not being able to letting go the bad things that happened to us. Its absolutely normal, because this kind of things makes us US, they define us, they teach us things, and that how we learn how be better persons. Lots of love Lea, you will be happy again living the present.

  • Hellbetty666

    “”Why did I assign myself this story? I mean, literally, this story — The Thought Process of Being Negative. Or, in other words, the thought process of being Leandra. They (you?) are probably, rightfully, so fucking sick of hearing me talk about this!!! I am sick of hearing me talk about this.”

    Leandra, I can’t begin to imagine what you’re going through (I’m in my 40s and happily child free) but please, don’t stop writing and talking about this. The description of literally counting your blessings while still feeling overwhelmed with anxiety and a feeling of futility really spoke to me, and I’m sure it will for many others, whatever we’re going through.

    Keep on keeping on <3

  • My brain, always.

  • Love the story. Thank you for sharing it with such honesty. We’re still not bored 😉

  • Katy

    Hey Leandra, your writing on this issue has been so great. As someone who went through a big bereavement some time ago, I have kept wanting to say the following: there is no way you would be over this after 4 months. 4 months is, in grief-time, literally nothing. Make some space in your life for the grieving process, be patient with yourself. It will be over, but not before you have asked yourself “WHY IS THIS STILL HAPPENING?!!” like a million times.

  • molly_maureen

    You are not alone in this, Leandra! Thank you for writing these open, vulnerable, honest, raw, real and emotional essays. I always feel like I’m in a discussion with a close friend who just GETS me when I read your articles. Don’t get discouraged. Let these feelings and emotions pass and acknowledge them. It’s all temporary! Your readers love you whether you’re sad or filled with joy and optimism 🙂

  • Beasliee

    4 months is not a long time. If you get over it, great, if you never get over that’s up to you and is also fine. Be kind to yourself.
    Good luck with the baby-making. xxx
    P.s. I find getting a REALLY annoying song stuck in my head keeps the plague of thoughts away, at least for a while. Irritating but less emotionally draining.

  • SpiritAndCourage

    I too, had a miscarriage in December. Then, two weeks later, when i was just starting to get an inkling if my former self back, I found out a close coworker was pregnant, and then a week later found out my sister was pregnant too (both of them due the same week I was supposed to be due!). It literally felt like I had been punched in the gut (the ovaries?) and it set me back to worse than I had felt before. What you said about being too aware of the process “If I say I’m giving up, in the back of my mind I’ll know it’s with the purpose of getting pregnant,” is so real, it’s like you are inside my brain. So, I’m not going to offer you an “it’ll happen when meant to be!” or whatever encouraging thing people say that doesn’t help at all, but I will say that I’m right here in it with you. Solidarity, Sister.

    • Leandra Medine

      Ugh, my best friend and sister in law are due the same week I was due.

  • I want to write you a lovely long comment, because your situation is my situation as well as so many other women’s. But nothing I type out strings into a coherent enough sentence so I will just say yes, yes, yes. This is me too. Thank you.

  • Pandora Sykes

    This is why blogs are started. Not that yours in the least constitutes a ‘blog’ anymore, in the regular sense, but this is shoot from the hip, emotionally ready stuff. Well done. And stay strong.

  • Allison Hanna

    keep writing this stuff and sharing, please! it is real and raw. it’s therapeutic for you and for us. it reminds me of my own frantic scribbles during fertility struggles, and during battles with anxiety in general. it’s natural – thank you for sharing! it reminds us we are not alone. you are not alone.

  • EmmaTOB

    I am so so grateful that you share about this stuff, and that you don’t put a falsely cheerful spin on it. We’ve been “trying” (and failing) to get pregnant for officially a year now and I spend my whole life thinking about it (and pretending I’m not). It makes me feel less alone and less like a fertility-obsessed crazy pants to hear you be so real about it.

  • Hannah Cole

    Can’t tell you how much it meant to me to read this. Thank you Leandra.

  • Charlotte

    I have been where you are. Only when I allowed myself to let it be all about this for a little longer is when I calmed down. Love.

  • Alexa

    I cannot imagine the loss and grief of a miscarriage but I can completely understand the anxiety and negativity you feel. I feel it every day and on most days, I feel it all day. I feel it because of the things that have happened to me too. The way in which you have written this allows for me to feel like I am not alone. You are not alone.

    This is generally the part of a comment where someone gives you advice on how to live your life and change what you feel. I won’t do that. I will not tell you to change your thoughts. I will however tell you to accept them and to mindful and submissive to them in the sense that accepting is not giving up or giving in but rather the purest form of fighting forward. You are not alone in your thoughts and feelings. Do not forget that.

  • Sam

    Literally never ever stop talking about this process , even when things finally do work out for you and Abie. These articles are helping me survive this exact same horrifying ordeal. There is no one else out there who has seemingly “everything” and a “perfect” life talking about this subject. Everyone likes to stay quiet about it until they finally have a child and then they want to overshare about how “they have been there, trust me ; I know it’s hard but like it’s ALL gonna work out I promise!” And all ur left irrationally thinking is “omg if DOESNT happen for me, does that mean I am a worse person then everyone I know who HAS gone through the process and STILL managed somehow to get preggo and give birth!?” . It’s horrible. You could just be walking down the cereal aisle and see a kid in a shopping cart crying and you see his mom preoccupied on her phone , reeking of ciggies, shoving chocolate down his throat to shut him up. At this point all you can do is look up and ask ” Reallu?! Seriously ?! You decided she was better suited for this then me! Seriously!?! Ok. Your the one with the “plan”. ”
    For me the worst is the constant comparison. Its second only to how everyone around you who knows what your going through walks on constant eggshells (embryoshells?), which somehow makes it all worse…
    It’s awful but I really hope anyone that goes through this comes out stronger in the end…
    hope to see us both get what we want in the end ❤️.

  • Mila

    Hey Leandra. It is so good to read this. Not that I want you to be negative. But I ame going through something similar right now, and to know that I am not the only one who is this crazy in her own head is comforting. I have always wanted to be a mum, but there were always circumstances in the way, I was young, I had university, I was not ready… Now I’m 28 and I said OK, lets do this, to my boyfriend, feeling ready and expecting it to work for the first time. But it didn’t. Not even the second month. Not the third. Then I got news – high testosterone level, blah blah. And now I’m going crazy inside my head, and I realize it is not because I so desperatly want the baby (well, partlu, obviously, yes), but what makes me feel this shitty is the fact that it is my body and it is not working the way my mind wants it to work. And just like you I try to come with reasons why, and I try to tell myself that naah I don’t care, but the back of my mind knows me so well and it knows that I’m bluffing…. so. Well. Maybe the thought rhat we are in this together, women, struggling with our heads and ovulations can be comforting for you. It is for me. And the cliche I hate so much but deep in my heart I know it must be true tells me: Don’t worry, you’ll get there. And we will! ♥

  • Cirene Jiménez

    Hi, Leandra. I’m Mexican and the last seven days I was in NYC by first time on my life. A friend asked me if I could meet someone “famous” who would it be and I said you (sorry she didn’t even hear about you before) so it made no sense for her. But my point is, I really love and appreciate your job and that includes this kind of things you use to share with us and that makes me feel the obligation to tell you this: yeah, you’re right, there are so many things we should be thankful for. For example, your city is amazing, the possibility you could live that way is almost a dream even for me but you know, fuck that. You should be thankful but nobody (even you) can tell this is something you couldn’t be complaining about. It’s a big deal. It’s your life. I have the same problems. I overthink, I know I shouldn’t do then I feel sorry, I think I shouldn’t feel autocompassion, I should “act” to fix the situation. But my point (again) is, you’re not alone, you shouldn’t feel sorry about this situation (overthinking). If you feel sad, you have the right. It’s all about time (everybody say te same I know). But you’re not crazy. There are people around the world who are reading you and who is feeling the same shit and you are brave enough to share your experiences that encourage us to share and to talk about that. Go gurl. Life is not fair but I’m sure you’re doing your best and THAT’S all that really matters.

  • AlisonGrooveQ

    I recently had a full scale panic about a pap smear test a few weeks ago. The test before had come up with ‘small changes’ and this was the followup. I have been vigilantly doing TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) from a fantastic practitioner, who (against my hyper-vigilance about medical tests wishes) told me I needed a a few more months of ‘damp heat’ work before taking the followup test. This one came back absolutely fine!! BUT in the wait for the results, the lead up to having the test, I guess I had my first real brush with uncontrollable anxiety. It was beyond frightening. No sense of time or place, just fear and the sense of not hearing anything or being in the here and now. I decided then and there that this needs to be addressed … professionally. In my mind my health trajectory was a horribly negative one. I’ve started reading a great book called The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk. I come from a pretty traumatised and anxiety riddled childhood and I thought I had kinda coped. You know the usual, yoga, CBT. But I haven’t at all. Now the hard work starts. I’m going to see a psychiatrist specialising in PSTD, who, in tandem with my psychologist, will give me a set of tools that I believe will be helpful. Negative spirals can be so overwhelming and reading your story Leandra and all of the comments here, I don’t feel alone. Thanks. I’m probably a bit older than you all and everyone my age loves to pretend how ‘together’ they are. Honesty is the best policy and this blog is amazing! xox

  • rhu

    You’re not alone! I’m sorry that you’re going through this. I am facing many of the same issues, including infertility. I also regularly feel guilty for focusing on the negative, and not being able to appreciate what I do have. A big hug to you.

  • mel

    My great uncle (who just turned 100) and his wife were never able to have kids. They remained one of the most in-love and happy couple I have ever encountered. Nicholas Sparks would be jealous. I hope you get the baby you want, but if you don’t I hope you and your husband are one of the couples that makes all other couples jealous.

  • Lara Clinton

    Leandra, never stop sharing what you need to get off your chest, even if you’re worried that it’s too negative, or a burden, or doesn’t fit MR — because it’s real and we want to walk with you. I unfortunately know a lot about how you feel and there’s about nothing in the world that will try harder to destroy your identity and self worth than infertility. As women, our bodies are meant to do this one thing, why isn’t it working?

    I wish all the best for you in your journey to motherhood, and I hope you turn the corner again soon with only good news to follow. I kind of give up on hoping for that for myself, but it’s easy to hope for a friend! In the meantime, although I’m very much NOT glad that you have this struggle, keep sharing without shame as you feel the need.

  • Micah Lambeth

    **If you start reading this response, please read until the end**

    I’ve always loved Leandra and then I found out that she was trying to have children. I didn’t understand at first. She has a successful business, what seems like a beautiful marriage, and lives in the greatest city in the world. What more could she want? To me, that seemed like something out of a storybook and since I’ve never wanted children, I didn’t see why her and her husband would want something to “mess up” all of that.

    I have a very negative mindset in the opposite way as Leandra. I live my whole life in fear that one day, I will get pregnant and lose all control over my body. Less than a month after Trump was inaugurated, I got an IUD thinking this would give me some peace of mind. It didn’t. I am coming to the realization that I will never be able to be intimate in ANY way with a man because my anxiety over this issue is so strong to the point where I cannot focus on schoolwork and I can’t fall asleep at night. Since obviously no heterosexual man would want to be with a woman that can’t please him, I’m accepting that I’ll most likely never have a normal relationship, if I ever have one at all.

    I’ve been thinking about Leandra this whole time because I know that she suffered a miscarriage and was having a hard time with it. I couldn’t get why someone that I look up to so much would think the complete opposite of me when her present life seems like my dream and then I read this article and found out that our situations aren’t that much different.

    She has the right to jump up and down and cry and yell about how no one understands because, in her mind, no one does. Same with me. There have clearly been people before us that suffered through miscarriages and also people who had crippling anxiety over unwanted motherhood. I hope that Leandra finds peace in the fact that she is still only twenty-eight years old. My mom was thirty-five when she had me and I was told that I was a “miracle baby”. I can only pray that someday her and Abie will be gifted the baby they want whether they are biological or adopted. Then she can write an article about the thought process of having positive thoughts. While I’ll most likely never get over my extreme fear and anxiety over having a baby, I could probably learn a lot from that.

    • Leandra Medine

      Thanks for sharing this Micah – it brings up the most important part of being vulnerable enough to share your suffering, which is that it doesn’t matter why you’re suffering or what it making you suffer. Often times we are afraid to try to console our friends or relatives when something traumatic happens because we feel like we don;t understand because we have never been in the situation they’re describing, but the truth is, if we know what it feels like to suffer, we have all been there. For you, it could be about overcoming your not wanting to have something that society seems to tell us we must want to have if we are to proudly call ourselves women, for someone else it could be a lost parent, or sick child…it is remarkable how frequently it boils down to compassion. You can be there for me and I can be there for you because we both know what extreme upset feels like. It’s really kind of relieving

      • Micah Lambeth

        Thank you, thank you, thank you. You have such an inspiring presence. As someone who would love to work for a magazine or website such as yours someday, reading your posts reminds me that even though your passion for your work is so prominent, you’re still human and Man Repeller is about so much more than clothes. Your compassion and understanding for women everywhere is so beautiful. We’re all in this together.

  • Jane

    Oh Leandra, I read this and had such a strong feeling of deja-vu. I was writing the same stream of conscious anxiety ridden prose when I was going through fertility treatments 15 yrs ago. When you are in the thick of it, it is so hard to see the forest for the trees. Be kind to yourself- you are young and successful and talented and creative. Hang in there it gets better and yes you will forever be a wiser woman because of it. Your 45 yr old mom of 3 fan.

    • Leandra Medine

      Mom of 3!!!! Hope that’s me +1 at 45.