There comes a day when you glance up from brunch and notice that your infant is a toddler. You don’t remember this change happening but it’s demonstrably true, based on the fact that your current baby could eat the newborn version of your baby in a single bite. You then remember that you were planning on having kids in the plural. This is discouraging since you have only just now begun sleeping and wearing pants with zippers. Well, damn.
It’s also around now that you begin to stress out about Trying to Conceive (or “TTC” as it’s known in the business). *Please note that a poor memory is helpful to erase from the mental record the myriad of ways that your first baby ruined your looks and hygiene in a months-long shitstorm before you start “trying” for another one.
Procreation is a dubious goal, really.
Maybe it’s just me, but I’m not particularly eager to return to a time of obsessing over every possible early sign of pregnancy – signs which are uncannily similar to the most ridiculous PMS and shittiest period you have ever had in your life. Mother nature is a real jackass that way. I’m not excited to ask myself “do my boobs really hurt (an early sign of pregnancy), or are they just sore because I’ve been poking at them for two weeks straight to see if they’re sore?”
What in the hell does my basal body temperature have to do with this, again?
Once you decide that you’re going for it come hell, high water, morning sickness, or cankles, you likely turn to the most reliable source of information at your disposal – the Google search – for tips. You are now back in the TTC game, and you’re a rusty player. You need some coaching (unless you’re a Duggar, in which case you need birth control immediately).
I had almost forgotten just how asinine much of the information available to women who are trying to get pregnant really is. Luckily I had to do only one quick search to be reminded!
I was immediately pummeled by a sea of acronyms that are impossible to understand. The pregnancy forums read like A Clockwork Orange and Sweet Valley High decided to procreate. I have no idea why the mom community decided it would be easier to create a language from scratch. We need more new things to try, ladies? Really?
This is what a typical post on a pregnancy board looks like:
DH and I are TTC and have been doing the BD for two months, no results yet! I can’t stand the idea of DTD for another month and getting a BFN! Not sure if I’ll FF or EBF yet – any thoughts ladies? IMHO breast is best, but since I don’t have my LO yet who knows how I’ll feel IRL! TTYL ladies, hope to see some of you on the L&D unit, LOL! It will be amazing to see everyone’s DSs and DDs!!!
I’m not even exaggerating with this. It’s a freaking nightmare. In an earlier post I provided this cheat sheet for the uninitiated. I hope this saves someone out there a little sanity. When I was trying to get pregnant with Nolan I nearly lost mine trying to understand WTF everyone was talking about.
And then there are the “informational” articles. The first gem I found, “6 Ways To Tell You’re Fertile” from The Bump, sounded promising.
It was not.
Please read the excerpts below and notice that exactly none of these are signs that you are fertile.
“It’s time! You’re ready to have a baby. But how do you know if your body is ready to get pregnant? Here are a few simple signs that could mean you’re primed for baby making.”
You keep checking yourself out in the mirror. Damn, you’re lookin’ good. When you’re ovulating, you feel sexier and your partner is more drawn to you too. Some signs of ovulation include fuller lips, dilated pupils and softer skin. (Totally on point. I feel undeniably sexy the ENTIRE time I’m ovulating. I can’t stop checking myself out! It must be my hugely dilated pupils that are turning me and everyone around me on.)
In evaluating the above, it seems to me that maybe The Bump doesn’t know what a “sign” is. But that’s ok, because there is a whole giant internet out there for me to explore for tips on documenting my cervical mucus and its relation to my chances of spawning new life. I’m off to explore this fascinating world a little deeper, unless I get sidetracked by Facebook, in which case I may end up scrolling through 1,000 cat memes instead of preparing my uterus. Wish me luck.
I remember one simple bit of advice my stoic, German, no nonsense OB told me. After your period is over, have sex every other day for three weeks. It’s a lot of work, if your lucky, it’s fun, but if your fertile, it’s almost impossible to miss your ovulation window. Then your pregnant and no more of these dumb tips. She also said the week after your period is most woman’s most fertile time, so even if you get sick of trying to sneak in sex when you have a kid after one week, you might be ok anyway.
Oh man that sounds ambitious! And would require a lot of personal maintenance. But I can see that it would be effective. Damn those German OBs and their good advice.
I leave this comment while I’m pumping and my two month old lays soundly asleep next to me and my two year old demanding to watch “Frosty the Snowman” for the 100th time…damn you Frosty and that magical hat they found.
My tip in getting pregnant is to go out, have ‘too much fun’ and then try for that baby. This method works for dumb teenagers and college girls all the time.
I’m pretty sure that’s the method officially recommended by the American Gynecological and Obstetrical Society.
Getting pregnant the second time was a lot less stressful for me. My husband and I just didn’t use anything to prevent pregnancy and let what happened, happen! Since I already had a kid there wasn’t as much pressure for it to happen RIGHT AWAY. Although I still ended up taking a ridiculous number of pregnancy tests (since I always wonder if I’m pregnant!!)
It’s hard to not always wonder if you’re pregnant when the signs of pregnancy are so much like the signs of other things! You’d really think mother nature could have thrown us all a bone and made it a little clearer. Or at least provided us with pregnancy tests. It’s just common courtesy.
I think you’re living my life. GET OUT! No but seriously, my kid is 14 months old and I had the exact same stream of consciousness over the weekend. I even dug out my old, worn copy of TCOYF and the basal thermometer. I tried it but I don’t think it works… it just beeped at me for like five minutes straight. That’s probably not accurate, right?
I’m pretty sure any old thermometer that just beeps and beeps endlessly is 100% accurate. But I’m not a doctor so don’t quote me on that.
We just tried not to stress about it the first time around and were very fortunate that I got pregnant with C so quickly. I DO worry the 2nd time around won’t be so easy, especially since I’ll be officially AMA (35 is still the cut-off, right?) instead of narrowly missing it. So maybe a mix of all the advice above? Take a Xanax, drink some cheap keg beer, and have lots of sex. Let me know how that works out.
Super good advice Erin! I can always count on you to provide wisdom to this blog. And yes, 35 is the cutoff. You are officially of Advanced Maternal Age. As am I. I think there’s a saying that goes “Old eggs are the new young eggs” though. So we’re all good.
I think my advice will get you pregnant the first time, so only follow when you’re ready to do so. Arrange for Nolan to sleep at one of his aunties’ houses. Play some Barry White — maybe a boatload of Barry — and further create the mood with a bacon- or cheese-scented candle. If needed, Brian can pretend he’s Gronk bobbing and weaving thru the opposition to score his second touchdown (metaphor for getting the job done). BTW, I’m pretty sure today’s blog subject matter is illegal in more countries than not. You’re welcome.
You are painting both a romantic and erotic picture here LP. Thanks for that.
Is it bad that I totally understood and read that entire pregnancy board post? Hahaha, I used to follow the TTC ones for years then moved onto the pregnancy ones once I finally got pregnant! I know the full list too. We are in the same boat, my 9 month old is getting cuter every day and I’m finally losing the weight only to really want to get pregnant all over again. *sigh*
Yeah, I read way too much the first time around and 90% of the time I was just annoyed! I’m going to try to stay clear this time and focus on something more practical, like how to use the vacuum cleaner properly…
I’m pretty sure no one ever got pregnant by reading those “How to Get Pregnant” posts and forums. Furthermore- I can’t imagine they are actually inspire a romantic mood- headaches from eye strain and deciphering alien code certainly don’t put me in the mood! And I can only imagine my hubby’s eyes glazing over while I discuss the useful tidbits gleaned from such forums while he thinks “why are we talking about this instead of actually having sex right now?” Of all the things we (women) make harder for ourselves by over analysis and reading waaaay too much- this is one time we need to be saving our energy for sex every other day and those upcoming months of no more than 30 minutes of sleep at a time! And those of us “AMA” need to also save our eyesight 🙂
Exactly. I don’t know why an entirely different language had to be invented for people who want to get pregnant. The first book I ever looked at talked about doing “The Baby Dance” and I almost lost my shit.
As you know, I am usually full of comments. Today I can only offer a stream of hashtags… #lol #sotrue #lovethis #hashtagsarecoolerthanacronyms
Ha! (or should I say “LOL”?) This is amazing. Also, it made me really glad I haven’t started frequenting any TTC boards…yet…
Stay away from the boards Giedre….you’ve been warned! 🙂