Wednesday, March 2, 2011

When it's not like it should be


In hindsight, there were a few clues that something was off and having a baby wasn’t going to be as easy as it seemed to have been for many of my friends who followed this precise procedure:

1) Have sex.
2) Get pregnant.
3) Have a baby.

I had sex. Lots of times. To date, I have not gotten pregnant, nor do I have a baby. 

And the clues as to why were as follows.

For starters, my period was going haywire. It responded to every emotion, happy or sad. I quit my job and my period was eight days late. My grandfather died and my period was a week early. 

Then there was the fact that I was on a progestin (instead of estrogen) birth control pill for several years. Progestin pills are not as reliable at preventing pregnancy as estrogen pills, and to be as reliable as possible, you must take them at the same time every day, without fail. 

I can barely take a shower at the same time every day without fail, so you can imagine how reliably I took my birth control. My husband and I were supposed to use a “back up method” of birth control if I was even merely three hours late taking the pill. We never used a back up method.

Here is what the information packet that comes with my birth control pill says about the effectiveness of the progestin pill: 

About 1 in 200 users will get pregnant in the first year if they take all pills perfectly. About 1 in 20 “typical” users gets pregnant the first year of use. 

To put this in perspective, I have a friend who got pregnant while she was taking this pill. She now has an adorable baby as proof!

At any rate, since I quit the pill, my cycle has been all over the map, ranging from 24 to 29 days. After my last period started, I decided to buy the book Making Babies, and you might say that if my infertility (if that’s what it is) is a murder mystery, then I’m a detective who’s all over the case.

I’m cutting out processed foods and adding more whole grains, fruits, and vegetables to my diet. I’m trying to cut out alcohol and caffeine. I’m massaging my abdomen.

 This is what it's come down to.

I’m using a heating pad on my abdomen. I’m testing my urine for lutenizing hormone, which tells you when you’re going to ovulate. I’m taking my temperature every morning for the same reason. 

 This temperature spike is supposed to indicate ovulation.

I’m observing my cervical mucus. 

I have not, to date, begun to check my cervix’s position every day, but I am pretty sure that those dark days shall come to pass. *shudder*

More on that in a future post. 

What I’m trying to say is: Trying to get pregnant is all-encompassing. You don’t want it to be but it demands your attention all day, every day. It’s like being pregnant, without the benefit of actually knowing for certain that at the end of all this, a baby shall emerge from your nether regions.

And this stuff I’ve mentioned – it’s just the tip of the iceberg. There is so, so much more involved. Which is why we started this blog. We could go on for days, weeks, and months about this stuff. And we probably will.


  1. Question: How do you check your cervic mucus? I never understood that one.

  2. Leslie: Don't ask me how I know this, but you scoop some out of your hoohah and then pinch some between two fingers. If it's slimy and stretches it's better for conceiving.

    I can't wait to read this blog and join in on your journey's!

  3. For what its worth... I really hope this all works out. I hope there is nothing wrong with either of us, and this is just the luck of the draw.

    I just have a feeling that it's probably me :-)

    I'm a little nervous I'll have to let you share that my gonads don't work properly or are too small or something like that on this blog.

  4. Thank you, Erin, for answering Leslie's question! hahaha... Yep, you basically just observe whatever you're wiping up when you go to the bathroom. If it's sticky/stretchy, you should be humping.

    HP - your nads are not too small (hahahahaaaaaa). And if there's an issue with sperm count we will get it worked out. And I will protect your privacy. I will never publish something about you that you're not comfortable with. Also, my hunch is it's not you -- it's me!

  5. Yay Genie! Glad you are joining us! And hope we have as much success!

  6. While I know that monitoring mucous and checking your cervix can make what should be the fun of procreating very clinical and depressing, I am always for exploring yor body, getting to know it, listening to it and marveling it (regardless of whether it is functioning optimally). Bodies (and vaginas specifically) are profoundly amazing. We don't seem to have any problems letting other people stick things in our vaginas (people we love of course) so why bot our own two fingers?

    So excited to follow you all on this journey! Sending fruitful vibes!

  7. Fruitful vibes all around! Much support for all of you ladies (and gents)!

  8. Keeping it light and cheesy worked for us when we were trying to get pregnant with Sean. I'd e-mail Jason telling him to come to my work so we could get it on. We'd exchange cheesy movie lines.

    Basically, we're dorks. I was way worried about my ability to conceive too: My periods have always been all over the place with no rhyme or reason to them.

    Thinking fruitful thoughts for you all!