Tuesday, August 7, 2012

When AF threatens TTC on 13 DPO after 3 BFNs

I can guess that you, my reader, probably fall into 1 of 2 categories:

  1. You read my title with ease -- after all, it's written in the language you practically dream in these days (or have dreamt in at one time.)
  2. You have no idea what the heck this post is all about. But curiosity won out.

If you think the title is crazy, well, welcome to my life.

My crazy life of TTC (trying to conceive.)

I don't even know what to write, other than I feel like I'm going nuts.

Life before ectopic and TTC was much simpler.

  • If Ryan and I had an argument one night, we pretty happily kept to our own side of the bed no matter the day of the month. 
  • I never knew when my period would arrive, and thought it was weird that people ever knew the exact date.
  • When I did get my period, my only complaint was that I ran out of tampons and had to use a pads for a day.
  • When I felt a twinge in my uterus or ovary -- wait, I never felt twinges in my uterus or ovaries!

Life after ectopic and TTC is much more complicated.

  • I have yet to come encounter a conundrum quite like the one where you fought all night, only to remember that you are supposed to ovulate that day.
  • I now know exactly when my period is due, thanks to my handy dandy iPhone app. (And so could the rest of the world if they ever got ahold of it!) 
  • When I get my period, it feels like all of my hopes and dreams have been put on hold and I feel despondent that yet another month has passed and we have to do it all again.
  • And when I feel a twinge anywhere in my body, I obsess over what it could mean. And I mean, OBSESS.

So just to give you a taste of this new craziness . . .

My friend got me hooked on this app where I basically chart everything from CM (cervical mucus) to cramping to breast soreness, to binge eating (does a lb. of grape tomatoes each day count?) to basal body temperature to anxiety to constipation to . . . to . . . to . . . to . . . to.

Seriously, the list doesn't end. I think there's about 80 things you could pay attention to every day if you wanted. And then there's sub-lists on top of that . . . is your cramping light, heavy or moderate?Are your breast really sore? Or only kinda maybe a little sore if your 3-year-old treated them like punching bags? And don't forget CM --- thin, stretchy, watery, creamy, non-existent? (Sorry, TMI, I know.)

Oh, and by the way . . . what "events" happened today? Did you have sex? OPK? HPT? Eat an orange? Get a sunburn?

Ok, so I'm started to get sarcastic. But you get the point. It's a LOT to keep track of.

My friend (correctly) advises me that the longer I put the info in, and the more I enter, the more accurate the app is going to be. So of course I've been documenting as much as I can, because my haphazard approach to BD (baby dance) is simply NOT working fast enough.

So for once in my life, I know the first day of my last period. I know the day I supposedly ovulated. I know the days I will most likely be fertile next. And I know the exact day my period is due.

And I actually really like knowing this info.

But, there's a WHOLE list of things that I don't know.

Did I REALLY ovulate when it said I would? Was I early, or late?

If I did ovulate, is my egg OK? Did it make it through the tube?

Did we time our BD right?

Is my hormone level right, or should I have started those progesterone pills I was prescribed when I don't even know if my hormones are off?

Is my queasiness the overabundance of garlic I ate tonight -- or is it something more?

Am I tired tonight because I worked during the day, and cleaned at night . . . or could it JUST be that I need the extra sleep because of a baby?

Is it crazy to pray that God would bless the baby in my tummy when I don't know that there is one?!

Is the light pink spotting implantation? What about the week's worth of cramping I had . . . implantation, ectopic, or indigestion?

Will I get my period? What if it's late?

I don't even know what BFN stands for, but I know I've had 3 negative pregnancy tests and I don't care if they were called the "Happy Rainbow Test," they still suck!

If 13 DPO (days post ovulation) is not too early to test, why am I still getting negatives? Why is my body not acting the same as it normally does for PMS?

If I have to breathe through cramps, but they only last a few minutes, do I list that as light cramps or moderate? Or maybe heavy?

If I am spotting, does that mean AF (aunt flow) is on her way? Or that my baby just implanted?

So there you go.

If you wonder why I suddenly stop mid-sentence and trail off . . . or develop a glazed look on my face  . . . or if I'm compulsively on my phone . . . chances are my brain is back to what my body is doing at that exact moment. I could be charting on my app. I could be compulsively googling "early pregnancy symptoms," as if some new symptom will pop up since the last 10 times I've googled them this week. Or I could be on a TTC forum, hoping someone, somewhere can just tell me for goodness' sakes if I really am pregnant!

iPhone -- where is the app for that???

So one day, while I'm compulsively checking my phone, I happened to a post that Obamacare now is offering us free birth control.

Oh my goodness, did you just read what I did? They can offer us CONTROL OVER BIRTH!!! FOR FREE!

So, Obama, here's my order:

I want to give birth in 9 months exactly. I want it to be uncomplicated. I want to be fully in control of every symptom and side-effect. I want to have a natural, unmedicated birth resulting in a healthy baby that nurses well, latches on great, sleeps at least 6 hours a night, has their nights/days straight right from the start, and only looks at me with loving, dewy eyes. No screaming, please. Oh, and I'd like that baby to come with a lifetime-health guarantee.

Oh ... and do you do express delivery?

Ok, ok, I'm done with sarcasm.

Here's the truth:

While I'm trying so hard to be in control, the reality is I really have no control. In the end, God does. And I'd probably be better off just investing that time reading my Bible app and praying than I would be searching Google over and over and over again, looking for answers that simply don't exist.

And the fallout of not having control over my body is that I'm craving organization in every other area of my life. (Or at least, I'm pretty sure this is what my therapist will say.)

I almost can't sleep at night because the office is a mess. I've gotten rid of 2 bags of clothes and shoes happily, while CHOOSING dusting, sweeping and organizing over going out to coffee. (Which, if you know me at all, I will happily put up with dirty dishes and dustbunnies if it means I get to see a friend!)

Last night, I literally could not stand the thought of waking up this morning to a dirty rug, so I drug out the vacuum last night at midnight, crossed my fingers it wouldn't wake Maddy, and vacuumed my floor before hitting the sack . . . only lay awake googling "Earliest pregnancy symptoms" and read every single link on the first page.

Then, I'm talking to Ryan about changing everything. Where we live, where we go to church, everything. I'm always so resistant to any change, but now I want to welcome it with abandon (and maybe even without wisdom).

I'll admit that there could be worse fallout than having a clean house and craving change. But I think the key issues for me really are that I don't feel content, and I don't feel at peace.  I mean, there are a LOT of things that I am very happy about now. But the anxiety and discontentment that I feel right now when things around me are stagnant or cluttered or dirty or just plain ugly are simply not OK.

This is not mindset and spirit God has called me to.


Ryan's approach to TTC is so much easier. "Rachel, if you are, you are. If you're not, you're not. Simple."

I know he's right -- and maybe it's just me  -- but TTC is about the least simple thing I've ever tried to do in my life.

Girls -- am I the only one?

P.S.  In case you're wondering, here's how the title should read in layman's terms:

"I want to be pregnant. I might be. I might not be. Grrrr."


  1. So been there......sometimes I feel like I live 'there'. And BFN means big fat negative :(

    Praying your rainbow baby comes soon!!

  2. Where do I begin... Your entire blog is my life from start to finish, if I quoted everything you mentioned it would basically be everything you took the time to type. After reading this, you have made me feel like I am not alone and I am not crazy or obsessed. The apps, the calculating, the cleaning, the not cleaning, everything is exactly what I feel and think about everyday from when i wake to when I try to rest my head at night. I thought that I was the only one who did all this. THANK YOU, I don't really know what else to say or how to explain what I'm feeling but I know that after reading this that there is someone out there that has walked in my shoes, has felt and still feels the way I feel and that I am not alone. Thank you again.. kim