Monday, September 7, 2009

Trying to Conceive

Originally posted 4/15/09

This post may be a little PG-13.

I mentioned a while back that I was trying to conceive. I'm sure there are others either trying or trying not to or currently pregnant. (I know, that's just the kind of mood I'm in.) I wanted to let you know what works for me in this area.

First of all THE book on the topic is Taking Charge of Your Fertility. Whether you are trying to conceive, trying not to conceive or are just a woman, read this book. YOU NEED TO. I learned things about my body I did not know. Things no one ever told me. Highly informative.

If there is ever a time my husband tells me I can no longer have babies we will use the information in this book to avoid children; natural family planning.

For now, I'm using it to try to conceive.

There are two signs you look for when watching for your fertility, and one for sure method to know if you ovulated.

The first is cervical fluid. When you are fertile your cervical fluid will be like egg whites. The term for this is egg white cervical fluid (I know, deep thought put into that). It will be like snot, stretchy, wet and clear. This is the fluid that causes your toilet paper to glide when you wipe. It also will rub between your fingers, if you were so inclined to rub it that way. NOT to be confused with sperm which is very similar in appearance, but does not stay wet when rubbed. Sperm rubs in like lotion. (OH, EWW! Not a nice picture.)

The secondary sign is your cervical position. You have most likely not given much thought or feel to your cervix. If you have attempted at some point to feel your cervix you probably came up empty and were not able to. That was probably a time of higher fertility. I have found that if I go into a deep squat I can feel my cervix no matter what time of the month I'm trying.

When you are fertile it will be high, soft and open. If it's soft, it will feel like your lips or your ear lobe. When it's hard, it feels like your nose. I've noticed that when it's high it's kind of in the shape of a penis and reminds of me that...hmm? Is that weird? Never mind. So...It will be high but the cervix will actually dip down some. It will be soft and squishy. And it will be open. If you have given birth it is always partly open anyway; having not given birth it will be closed. When it is open, you can feel the opening very easily.

The real "proof" that you ovulated though is a thermal shift in your temperature. It will go up in temperature several tenths of a degree, possibly a whole degree. I know it seems like a lot of work to take your temperature every morning. (Not to mention washing your hands to check your cervix and cervical fluid...yes, please wash your hands.) It's really not. I fought it tooth and nail because it is recommended that you get three uninterrupted hours of sleep each night and awake at the same time to take your temperature. Well I can tell you, when you co-sleep, that don't happen much. (GRAMMAR POLICE: I spoke that way on purpose. I got me some education.) But I have found that it doesn't really affect my temps.

What works for me is getting up at about 6:00ish when Asa wants another bottle, going to the bathroom and taking my temp. It only takes about a minute. Sometimes Asa wakes me up before that and sometimes after, but it's still right around that time that I get up. I am also able to go back to sleep pretty easily, so it doesn't bother me at all. My temps are staying steady no matter how much sleep I did or didn't get.

The reason you want to watch your temperature is because you can have other fertility signs and still not ovulate. Watching the thermal shift lets you know that you did ovulate. If you are trying not to get pregnant then when you have a second batch of fertile cervical fluid you would know that was potentially fertile, since you didn't observe the thermal shift. If you are trying to get pregnant you would immediately start the baby dance again.

Baby dance you say? All this new lingo for you. Baby dance, horizontal tango, doing the wild thang, the deed, putting up shelves (although let it be known that when Jeff came over to put up shelves when we were dating, he REALLY put up shelves), wrestling (that's a good one if a kid catches you), sex. What do you use to explain it????

Once you have a sustained high temperature for 18 days, you are most likely pregnant. YEAH! CONGRATS! And you'll owe it all to and your DH and God, but mostly me. BUT, I have never made it to day 18 to test. Have you? I start testing, well, early, let's just say. But I know people who have tested as early as seven days post ovulation. Not me, of course. I have a friend who tells me that if I don't test so early and find out then my pregnancy will seem shorter. But I CAN'T not test. (My name's Michelle and I'm a habitual pregnancy test taker. Hey, it's cheaper than crack.)

Here are some resources for you:


Fertility friend (I use this. It's free. You input your data each day and the software tells you when it thinks you are fertile. Then when you start obsessing about your chart you can look at other charts. WHAT? That's just me????)

Ovusoft is the official software of Toni Weschler who wrote the book. I haven't tried it but I have looked at it. It is far superior to Fertility Friend, in my opinion. (If you decide to go with them, give me a heads up, as they have an affiliate program.)

To talk to others trying to conceive, visit And don't forget to talk to me about it too!

If you have been trying and trying (and trying), well for one you are probably really tired. But second to that you are probably losing heart. This is the key. If this doesn't work after trying for six months then you head to the doctor to see if there is a real problem. Just having lots of sex doesn't do it. (Well it does it, all right, but it won't necessarily get you pregnant.) It's having sex during the fertile time that gets you pregnant. (Have sex at other times to though, your husband will thank you...and me. Well he probably won't thank me cause he won't know that I suggested that.)

So have you been trying and not getting anywhere? I would love to know.
Have you just started trying and think you'll try this? I would love to be a part of your journey.

Have you considered using a non-hormonal method of birth control? (You mean there are actually people who try NOT to get pregnant. Wow!)
So let me know.

Lastly, for those who may wonder why I would want number six (well, seriously, just look at how cute my kids are), I leave you a wonderful Bible study on being a mother for the kingdom. Wow did I need that this morning.

(And don't on all my advertisers and buy through my links when you need something. I make a tidy know a cent or something. But if everyone clicked, every day, I could buy a Dr. Pepper....or a pregnancy test.)


Helen said...

Oh, my gosh. We use the same method, but for different things. I swear by TCOYF because for the past year and a half, I have been off of hormonal birth control and, obviously, I am not pregnant yet. I'm up at 5:30, take my temp, and go back to bed. I use a oral thermie, though, because I'm lazy, and it's digital, again... lazy... but it works well for me. Other than a few friends that I've gotten started on this, you're the only person I've met! Er... known about.

Waiting said...

My friend borrowed me this book yesterday. It is awesome. I am reccomending it to everyone!

Andrea said...

Yep...I have the same book as you and we use the exact same method and have since we got married...and it works like a charm! We did NOT get pregnant on purpose for 4 years and then got pregnant every other time on the 1st or 2nd try. LOVE IT!! And good luck...hope you get a postive test soon!

AmberRay said...

Great post about fertility. I have read a book like that or it may have been the same one. I got pregnant not too long after that with my third baby. Now, I am back on the pill for hormones because I have had 2 early miscarriages. I would like to have another but do not want to go through that again. Trying to get my body healed to try later. Thanks for this post.