GROWING FORWARD ON THE PATH TO PARENTHOOD

A WOMEN’S GROUP FOR BUILDING RESILIENCE WHILE TRYING TO CONCEIVE
Seven Thursdays between October 5 and December 14, 2017
7:30-9:00PM  |  321 Carlaw Avenue, Toronto

This group is for women who are bold in spirit who refuse to shrink into a lesser version of themselves as they continue forward on this journey to become a parent. This group is not about helping you get pregnant. It’s about helping you preserve your sanity while you try, and grow in ways you had not thought were possible.

The goal of the group is to equip participants with tools they can use independently to support their own personal growth process. I have also enlisted some other master teachers who are incredibly talented and passionate about promoting women’s health.  Most of them also come equipped with wisdom they have gained from the challenges of infertility, and pregnancy loss they have experienced personally on The Path to Parenthood.

The in-person group is limited to 8 participants

  • Each participant will receive their own Growing Forward Journal, included in the price for the group.  I designed The Growing Forward Journal to help you process, and work through all of the emotions that come with significant life challenges while also challenging you to grow forward consciously through them. It was designed based on research on post traumatic growth, resilience and positive psychology and was inspired by my work with women trying to conceive.  I am excited to offer it here first.
  • The discussion in the group will be focused on sharing reflections and insights.  Some of the anticipated topics will include
        • Harnessing the compassion and empathy you have for others as a resource for your own journey
        • Assessment of your personal strengths and how to leverage them to cope effectively
        • The impact of practicing radical acceptance on the self and our relationships with others
        • Honouring the vulnerable self with action
Format 90 minutes

10-minute guided meditation to help set the tone and focus your intention for the session

20 minutes for each participant to share key insights and reflections from the week

45 minutes focused discussion on specific topic

10-minute closing meditation to consolidate learning

PLUS access to the Growing Forward private Facebook page, for ongoing support for your continued growth after the in person group ends.

Cost

$455.00 (10.5 hrs of psychological services covered by most extended health benefit plans)

+ $45.20 for Growing Forward Journal ($40 + $5.20 HST)

$ 500.20 TOTAL

SPACES ARE LIMITED

REGISTER BEFORE SEPTEMBER 21, 2017 to RESERVE YOUR SPOT

 

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Session #1 – October 5, 2017:  Introductions and Orientation led by Dr. Stacy Thomas

Dr. Stacy Thomas is a clinical health psychologist, whose private practice in Toronto was inspired by a desire to help women and couples’ challenged with infertility.  Dr. Stacy is known for integrating a wholistic mind-body-spirit approach with evidence-based techniques to help clients design their lives.  In addition to providing services to clients in her private practice, she also works as a consultant to TRIO Advanced Reproductive Care North York.

Special Topic:  Assessing and mobilizing your signature strengths.  When we are going through stressful times, the discomfort that comes with growth makes it hard to recognize that we have strengths.   Increasing your awareness of your strengths during times of struggle can not only help to improve your confidence but can ensure that you are leveraging them well to support you through tough times.  Prior to this session, each participant will be sent a link for completing an assessment of her signature strengths.  Our discussion will focus on how you have used your signature strengths to help with the challenges of trying to conceive and how you might further develop and leverage others lower on the list to maximize your coping.

Session #2 – October 12, 2017:  Healing through Writing with Allison McDonald 

Allison McDonald wears many hats: mom, writer, expressive writing workshop facilitator and greeting card designer  Allison has written for a variety of Canadian publications including The Globe and Mail and Toronto Life and is the owner of September Project Cards, an eco-friendly greeting card line sold through Etsy (www.septemberproject.etsy.com) and in stores around Ontario.

Allison’s writing workshop series, Healing Through Writing, incorporates expressive writing techniques with a gentle, mindful approach designed to help participants engage in personal healing, using writing as a tool in the same way one might develop a meditation or yoga practice. Her moving piece on surviving miscarriage prompted Dr. Stacy to invite Allison to contribute to the group and to provide her workshops to clients in Dr. Stacy’s private practice.

Session #3 – October 19, 2017:  Mobilizing Spirit with Lynne Newman (https://lynnenewman.com/new-page/)

Lynne Newman is an Occupational Therapist (OT) , birth doula and mother in Toronto who provides holistic wellness services to women and families in times of challenge.  

After suffering two miscarriages and months of infertility treatments, Lynn went on a journey focused on extreme self-care and holistic health.  In addition to sharing her insights from the journey, Lynn will be sharing mind-body techniques to help mobilize the spirit and facilitate the process of healing through challenge.

Session #4 – November 2, 2017:    Body Love with Nikki Bergen

An inspirational trainer and creative educator with a  passion for encouraging women to lead happier, healthier lives, Nikki Bergen is one of Canada’s most sought after health and fitness experts.

Through her own journey with infertility and IVF, Nikki Bergen has experienced firsthand the feelings of betrayal and loss that can come from your body’s inability to reproduce naturally, like it’s “supposed to”. Nikki Bergen will guide you through a movement workshop that will reconnect you to your breath, reinforce your strength and renew your sense of trust in your body.  (http://thebellemethod.com/about/instructors/nikkis-bio/). 

Session #5 – November 16, 2017:  How to be mindfully present in our  relationships with ourselves & others with Dr. Stacy Thomas

Empathy, Acceptance, Compassion and Forgiveness are the four pillars of living mindfully.   Dr. Stacy will lead us in exercises that will challenge us to practice empathic listening,  accept unwanted and contradictory parts of ourselves, and consider what it might mean to forgive so we can free ourselves from the past and grow forward in the present and future.

Session #6 – November 30, 2017: Celebrating your Divine Feminine Beauty – Wholistic Skincare with Jackie Shawn (http://jackieshawn.com/wblab/).

As an international makeup artist and beauty expert, Jackie Shawn’s passion is in her ability to make her clients shine from the inside out…naturally.  Jackie founded the wholistic beauty lab after she developed health challenges as a result of chemical exposure during her work in the film and television industry.  Her own journey to recovery has resulted in a very unique approach to skin care and beauty that combines her expertise with her ability to understand the individual needs of each client on a physical, emotional and spiritual level.

In this exclusive workshop, Jackie will teach us about chemicals that can impact fertility and general health, and provide a hands-on tutorial about how to evaluate and care for your skin through the hormonal changes that accompany fertility treatment and pregnancy. 

Session #7 – December 14, 2017:  Final Reflections led by Dr. Stacy Thomas

In this final session, Dr. Thomas will lead the discussion on the big take aways and “ah ha!” moments that occurred over the course of the 11 weeks.   We will reflect on the areas of growth experienced and witnessed.  We will also discuss what will be necessary to continue with the process, including resources that will be available to participants for ongoing support following the last in-person session.

If you have any questions about this group, please contact Stacy Thomas for more information.