A while ago I posted about how much I’d like a third child but I was having difficulty persuading my husband. I’d been trying to persuade him for years – well, two years anyway (since The Minx was born), but I had pretty much resigned myself to the idea that, short of a Euromillions win, it was never going to happen. So imagine my surprise when shortly after I’d posted it my husband agreed that we could have a third! Maybe it was my stellar powers of persuasion, maybe it was because close friends had decided to try for a third, or maybe he secretly reads my blog… Whatever, I was over the moon.
Having successfully got pregnant twice, you’d think that everything would be plain sailing. I still remember suggesting to my husband that we try for our first. I’d glanced at a pregnancy book in the book shop (so was obviously an expert) and had a rough idea that I might be ovulating when I “casually” threw the idea out there one night, but it was a case of one chance and then we would have to wait for next month, so I really didn’t expect much that first month. It was a really stressful time – we were between houses and I had a “challenging” class to teach and getting pregnant was the last thing on my mind.
I can remember having a light flush of blood a little before I thought I was due but I thought nothing of it – I just expected my period to start properly in a day or so. A couple of days later I was driving to work and suddenly felt really dizzy and nauseous. I got really panicked about being dizzy whilst driving which, of course, made me worse and by the time I got to work the Headteacher insisted on driving me home and made me make an appointment to see the doctor. I duly traipsed along for my appointment where the locum doctor asked if I could be pregnant. I remember saying no then correcting myself. I could be pregnant but there had been that light bleed and I felt crampy – like my period was due any moment. She tested me anyway and it came back negative. We put it down to stress. This was a week before Christmas and on Boxing Day I realised my period still hadn’t come so did another test and this time it was positive. We were so excited! Clearly a super fertile couple, we’d got pregnant on our first attempt – fabulous, though I was a little disappointed that I’d missed out on all the extra “practice” tries…
When the time came to get pregnant again we were cocky. We were experts at this so getting pregnant would be no bother. Sadly, this time that wasn’t the case. For the first few months I’d thought my luck was in only to be cruelly disappointed when my period did eventually come. I started to research anything conception related I could think of on the internet and was soon taking such a concoction of vitamins every day that I’m surprised I didn’t rattle as I walked. Vitamin B50 from Holland & Barretts, vitamin C, zinc, agnus castus for one half of the month, and evening primrose oil for the other as well as the mandatory folic acid tablets and probably others I’ve forgotten.
I started to blame my lack of fertility on anything and everything. I was back at a healthy weight but thought maybe I’d benefit from losing more so I lost another 10lb. Then, when that brought no success, I thought maybe dieting was the problem so I stopped losing. I ordered ovulation sticks over the internet – 30 green sticks that I could wee on whenever I liked to see if that elusive egg was going to make an appearance. If they were to be believed, I never ovulated. I had hormone tests done, I bought a basal thermometer and started to keep a BBT chart every morning, I checked my cervical mucus (sorry, TMI) at every trip to the loo. I obsessed over every tiny twinge my body made: my head hurt – was it hormones!? Was that tummy cramp a sign!? Did my boobs twinge? Were they any bigger? Was I weeing more often and I was definitely yawning more – surely this month would be my month! Was that really heavy enough to be my period or could it be a slightly heavier implantation bleed….?! And if I thought we’d missed out on the “practice” the first time around, we were certainly making up for it now.
In the end, it was the month I stopped taking all the pills I got pregnant. It was the month when I had NO “symptoms” or discomfort that I got pregnant. It had taken 10 months – not long compared to many but I’d had friends get pregnant and give birth before I’d managed to even conceive. To me, it was a lifetime.
Having decided that we both wanted a third I had no idea how this time would work out but I did want to be more relaxed about it. We decided to wait another two months so that the baby wouldn’t be due around Christmas (too poor) or in February when it would be the youngest in its year. The time came to try and try we did. I was so sure everything was going well – I was on holiday, it felt just like it had with the Monster so I took 2 tests whilst on holiday but nothing. Then all the symptoms stopped – was this a bad sign or was this just like that symptomless time with the Minx!? In the end, I peed in a pot to do my next test only to discover that my period had arrived. A hard blow but it was only our first month.
Another two months have passed and the two week wait from when I think I’ve ovulated to when I think my period may be due (I’m not very regular) is hell. I’m back to counting down the days and obsessing over every twinge. My boobs tingled last night – could my luck be in…! Then I awoke this morning with terrible trapped wind and stomach cramps. I have been doubled over at points and have gone back to frantically Googling symptoms. I’ve had a brownish streak but still no period and, though it feels like I really can’t be pregnant and I know time will show that, I can’t stop hoping that this could still be the month.
Why do we do this to ourselves? I know there’s very little I can do to swing the outcome one way or the other and yet I still feel like a failure. I’m just one step away from ordering a new thermometer and it’s only been 3.5months, but I just don’t want it to take 10 months – or even longer – like last time. The friends who may have helped persuade my husband are due their third at Christmas. Her bump is growing, she is glowing and, as pleased as I am for her, I am so jealous. When will it be me?