First a little disclaimer. When I was writing my first trimester recap, this story came out all on it’s own. It explains my story about getting pregnant, but keep in mind that everybody is different. What I tell you here is not medical advice and don’t hesitate to see you’re care provider if you have any questions on the matter. That being said, this story is very personal, but I hope it can help you apprehend conception with more power and serenity. I loved reading stories about pregnancy before getting pregnant and I hope this will help you too. I hope you can keep reading till the end, it is a rather a wordy post, enjoy.
I want to start pregnancy talk, with my conception story because it’s something we don’t always talk about or that we sometimes omit. Even if some can get pregnant in the blink of an eye, it’s not everybody’s case. In fact, it takes 6 month on average to get pregnant. This can of course be shorter, or longer. I am very grateful that I could get pregnant in about 8 months, without any medical help or without suffering any miscarriages, however, those 8 months seemed like forever during the time we were trying.
I took oral contraception ( the pill) , for 10 years prior to trying to get pregnant. Before taking the pill, I had very regular cycles but they were very painful and I had a heavy flow. This I why I started to take the pill in the first place, and I must say that it worked out pretty well. If I had not wanted to conceive, I would have probably continued the pill for a while because it was addressing my symptoms from before very well.
Having such regular cycles before made me think that it would all come back normally afterwards. Boy was I wrong ! It took me 4 months to have a cycle back after stopping the pill. I knew this could be “normal” after stopping the pill so at first I was not very concerned about it all. I felt the hormonal changes in my body, so I also knew it was probably recovering from taking a medication for so long.
Some symptoms I experienced during those first 3 months
- Way less mood swings, and way less crying. I used to cry all the time when I was having a fight with my boyfriend. All of a sudden , my emotions were more stable
- Less head fog , a more clear mind ( maybe that was just in my head haha)
- So much more libido : really this was just shocking. I was just convinced that with growing in age, I was less interested in being intimate with my partner , but that proved to be in fact wrong :D.Even just days after stopping the pill this was the best point I think.
- Getting pimples
- Having hair growing way faster. But not only the hair on your head , all your hair
- Getting a greasy skin, and well, greasy scalp
- I must say though that although all this symptoms were very present the first 3 months, they were more mild afterwards and kind of ” stabilized” if we can say so ?
Anyway after all this symptoms and some impatience waiting for a cycle, I finally had my period back after 4 months. Mindless to say, I had already taken at least 10 pregnancy tests during that period that were all negative. It was a long wait.
Thankfully my period came back , and then , I waited another 3 months. Another 3 months of waiting and asking yourself questions and thinking that you will not be able to conceive without a doctor’s help.
Yes because, people told me it could be a long time before getting a child. But exactly how long, nobody can tell. But I knew being an obgyn resident that you should not wait too long before going to see a doctor. In my head it was clear that I would not wait more than a year to go and see a doctor . But the more the months passed and the more awful you feel and let’s be honest here. Even if you know the drill, it is always difficult to wait for a good sign, it’s easy to feel let down.
The second time around during my 3 month waiting period, I bought cheap ovulation tests. I thought that maybe I could find out an “ovulation period” but having such long cycles did not make it easy … the first time around I never detected an ovulation period.
On the second cycle it seem to have worked out : I had two very bright pink strips one day, which indicate that you’re going to ovulate real soon and I got my hopes really high up. But, it did not worked out in the end.
Finally on my 4th cycle ( who was the first one to come after a normal 28 day cycle), I tried it out again but with taking distance from it all ( or trying to) , I peed on the stick very thoroughly, respecting what’s indicated on the test’s instruction manual. Luckily for me the test strip came positive once again and we decided to give it a go again :D. Normally, cheap ovulation test say that approximately 10 days after conception a HCG test (or pregnancy test) can be positive. But, it wasn’t and I still hadn’t had my period.
So after trying these ovulation test for 2 months in a row we decided to let things go and just go with the flow. If I wasn’t going to have regular cycles anyway, let’s just try to make babies whenever we want then :D.
Luckily for us the second time around I was actually pregnant and that’s why it took so long for my period to come … 😀 . As for why the pregnancy test did not came positive before longer I don’t really know. On the sonogram the baby is supposed to be conceived 10 days after the positive ovulation test, which seems quite odd since for me its physically impossible ^^. But I guess we’ll find out at birth !
Anyway after this wordy and nerdy post on conception. I just wanted to say that trying to conceive can be on the longer side, or it can seems like an eternity when you are trying. It’s always stressful and you always want to keep your hopes up and it’s not always as easy as it seems. Best advice I can give you is do your thing. Try to enjoy being with your partner and having this beautiful project of constructing a family.
By all means try to let go and not focus on it all the time. But If your type A and peeing on a stick to see your ovulation is motivating, well go for it !
Anyway, just do your thing and enjoy the ride
Here come some tips I was given that I found useful and hope can serve you too
- buy cheap pregnancy tests on amazon , or somewhere else. Don’t get fooled by the very expensive drugstore tests , there not better thant the cheapos believe me.
- If you’re a planner and like having everything under control, it can be interesting to buy ovulation tests. Some people like the idea of knowing , others don’t. Anyway I liked it better when I knew. Here are the ovulation tests I bought, again those are cheap tests:
- Learn about women’s natural cycle and physiology. Thankfully being an obgyn resident I had some clues, but it is really interesting to learn some more. The woman’s body is just incredible. here are some resources I found helpful:
- Dr brighten’s tips on post-birth control syndrome (did not apply the diet but still found the reading interesting)
- The real life RD : this is a great resource!! Robyn did an amazing job at explaining how our hormones work. I read a lot of the different articles she wrote. She also offers courses about reproductive health if you want to go more in-depth
- The ultimate health podcast : this podcast focuses on a healthy living overall, but there are tons of episodes about women’s health, preconception healthy eating, hormones and so on.
- Balanced bites podcast : this podcast is more paleo-oriented. But one of the founder of this podcast wrote a whole book about making babies (baby making and beyond) . They also have tons of podcasts about reproductive health that I listened too (see their archives about fertility).
- Be mindful about it all. Try to be self-confident ( after all we make babies since bilions of years). Try to be mindful about all aspects in your life at the moment : fitness, eating, stress-levels and so on. It’s not the time to start a diet, a very intensive sports regimen or to be stressed out. Easier said than done, I know. But now is really the moment to enjoy the practicing sports you love, to eat mindfully, and to do things that help you feel good ( yoga , meditation , taking long baths, whatever). And please : take a break / vacation if you can :).
- Don’t tell everyone that you’re trying to have a child (this is just my opinion). It can be quite annoying after a while to have people ask you how it is going when it doesn’t work. However , maybe tell one or two close friends (or your mum, or your sister), just so you have someone you can complain/ talk to if it doesn’t work :).
- And these are all my tips y’all
I hope this post can help you cope with the sometimes difficult road to getting pregnant, and that it can at least give you some insights so that you don’t feel alone on this adventure !
See you soon for my 1st trimester recap.