Who should sign up for this course?
- This course is open to women who are thinking about conception or are actively trying to conceive. If you happen to get pregnant during the course (lucky you!), much of the information will still be relevant, and you can tailor discussion topics in the community forum area to meet your needs. However, this course is not designed specifically for folks who are already pregnant.
How does the course work?
- Spaces will be available on a first-come, first-served basis and will be limited to the first 100 participants. The total cost is $99 USD. The average class size is usually about 10 participants, which creates an amazingly intimate community.
- When you register for the course, please use a Google Mail e-mail address. That way, I can send you the password-protected web address for the course, and you will be able to log in with your gmail account. You will also receive information about joining the online community.
- The next course will run from January 16 through February 10, 2016 . You will receive all the log-in information within 24 hours of payment and you will be welcome to access the website to take a peek at the pre-work. You can also log into the community forum area to create your profile and introduce yourself.
- Once the course starts, you are free to participate at your own pace. A new post will be updated each day by 5am CST, and you can read and reflect upon it at your leisure. You can work through the course independently, or you can engage with others in the community forum area. Each post will have a corresponding forum topic for shared comments, but you will also be invited to start your own discussion threads that relate to the course topics.
- You do not need to be at your computer at a certain time each day! This course will wait for you.
- The only prerequisites are internet access and a willingness to learn!
What can I expect to learn?
- Preparing for pregnancy is a holistic process that touches all areas of our lives. This course honors the multifaceted nature of conception and pregnancy by addressing a wide-range of issues. The general categories include--but are not limited to--nutrition, exercise, mental preparation, prenatal vitamins, conception as a life stage, stress reduction, finances, your relationships, and biological considerations (e.g., menstrual cycles and sex). This course does not purport to take the place of qualified medical advice and treatment. I will merely share the information I have learned (citing sources wherever relevant).
- If you have already been doing independent preparation for conception (great!), then some of the information may be a review for you. The information is not ground-breaking or innovative. However, it is a whole, comprehensive, and thoughtful way to approach conception with intention and purpose. It is also a community of like-minded people who are on a similar journey.
Will I have access to the course materials after the course is over?
- Absolutely! All the course content and material will be open for two weeks past the course end date. You'll be able to review posts that really resonated with you or catch up on any material you missed or exercises you didn't have time to complete. I'm sorry, but a pdf of the course material is not available at this time.
- You will continue to have access to the online community for an indefinite amount of time. That way, you can continue to cultivate connections with like-minded individuals who are on a similar journey.
Who created this course and how will that person be involved throughout this process?
- For a detailed biography, check out About the Author. Before starting to try to conceive my first son, I spent almost a year reading books, attending birth fairs, watching documentaries, meeting with a midwife, and blogging about the process. I wrote this online course to share all of the information I learned in a more consolidated and user-friendly way and to create a community of kindred spirits with whom to share the experience! I will participate in the community forum area throughout the course. I look forward to meeting you!
- The course is co-facilitated by a former Purposeful Conception participant, Katey Zeh. She and her husband have a two-year old daughter named Samantha (Sam for short). They live in Cary, North Carolina with their shih tzu Lucy. About a year ago she left her nonprofit job to start a small business helping social justice organizations achieve their big dreams for a better world. She's still in the early stages of learning how to run a company, but she loves the flexibility that comes with working for herself. Life with a two-year-old is unpredictable, and she's grateful that her schedule can accommodate the unexpected! When she's not working or hanging out with family, she's usually practicing songs on her guitar, downward dog-ing at the yoga studio, or re-watching Gilmore Girls for the zillionth time. She and her husband participated in the Purposeful Conception course in 2013 and found it to be tremendously useful and encouraging during their journey toward parenthood. You can find her at http://kateyzeh.com.
Reviews & Recommendations
- "I want to recommend the heck out of this!"
- "I feel like I have a really solid reference point; all the journaling these activities inspired created a larger awareness for me of what we’re getting ourselves into. We both feel a lot more informed not only about some specifics of preparing for pregnancy, but also that we have a broader groundwork with which to do more research and a better understanding of what we think and feel about taking this step. I feel more careful about how I’m organizing my life, more intentional about my time and space; my husband has had a chance to work through many of his fears and is more eager than ever to start trying! I think previously I was ready just to dive in and figure it out as I went, now I am a lot more confident in my ability to handle this."
- "To be honest, I was hesitant at first to spend the money on a class about preparing for conception (rather than saving it towards actually having a baby!). However, both my husband and I have benefited SO much from this; it's been worth EVERY penny and more. Truly. It's been fantastic and I'm so glad I 'splurged.'"
- "This was an excellent course and a lot of thought, research, hard work, and love went into it - that is obvious. It was comforting to find a community of others who are really taking the time to plan for conception and parenthood, because I don't find that among my local community. Great job, Sara. Really and truly. This course was a big help to me and I will definitely recommend it to others!"
- "I think that this course really shines in the lessons that require self-reflection. You brought up several issues that I hadn't really considered."
- "Thanks to all the reflection, guided discussions, and useful advice from this course, [my] worry/fear has pretty much disappeared. My partner and I have figured out what 'ready' means to us, and it's not as hard as we thought it would be to get there. We have a short to-do list with achievable goals. I'm happy to be where I am right now in my life."
- "Thanks for taking the time to put all of this information together and for sharing so much of yourself with us. I enjoyed the course."
- "After working through the course I feel much more comfortable with the idea of having a child and much more prepared to expand my family."
- "I was very ambivalent about having a child before taking this course. I now know that my husband and I are more prepared than I thought we were to have a child. For the areas in which we need some work, I now have concrete action steps to complete...It's wonderful to actually be excited about this next step instead of fearful or unsure."
- "I have a long way to go, but I want to work on myself before having a baby. This course has helped me identify concrete areas that need work."
Frequently Asked Questions
Is this course LGBT friendly?
- Absolutely! This course works from the premise that intentional, loving families manifest themselves in diverse ways. First, the language is inclusive, and I will try not to make any assumptions about how couples are conceiving their babies. There will be one specific lesson about trying to conceive through intercourse. The course is very personal, since my goal is to share this journey with others, so there will inevitably be a heterosexually-bent perspective. However, I see conception as a very holistic process, and there should be lots of relevant information for LGBT couples about the emotional, financial, nutritional, relational, etc. aspects of conception. The course is not designed to explicitly address the aspects of conception that are unique to LGBT couples. However, we can create discussion topics in the Community Forum area to discuss them for sure.
- Secondly, I don't anticipate any hate speech in the community forum because I imagine that the course will only draw like-minded individuals. However, when I share the directions for using the community forum, I will be sure to establish parameters around creating a safe and welcoming environment. I will moderate the discussion, if this becomes a problem.
- The course does make the assumption that you are trying to get pregnant with a "partner," so if this is not the case for you--straight or LGBT--you can easily substitute "support network" for "partner."
Can partners work through the course and participate in the community forum area, too?
- When you register for the course, you are welcome to share your private login information with your partner without paying any additional registration. Any of you who want this option for your partners can let me know in the "additional notes" section of your paypal registration, and I can be sure to send him/her an individual invitation to join the community forum area.
Any chance you'll be giving away a course or have scholarships available?
- From time to time, I host a giveaway, and I always link to them on Feeding the Soil, so you can find them. I debated a lot about whether or not to charge for this course. I benefit every day from the generosity of others on the internet. People share so, so much! However, once I started planning the course (creating content maps, researching various technology options, designing the site, etc.), I realized that it was going to take not only days and days or weeks and weeks but months and months. I already spend a lot of time generating free content via my three blogs (with little to no financial reward--expect for the Amazon Affiliates program). Also, my hope is that the registration fee will help ensure that people are signing up for the course with commitment and intention to prioritize it and make the most out of their four weeks. It will also require a substantial time commitment throughout the four weeks of the course to moderate the content and the discussion.
If you have additional questions, please feel free to e-mail me!