by Karla ° Monday, October 22, 2007
Breastfeeding, as lovely and glorious as it is, leaves me completely in the dark about the state of my fertility.

I have had two periods since Nate was born. The first one arrived five months after he was born, on Mother’s Day of all days, and the second one came four months later on my birthday. I like to think of them as special occasion periods, because really, nothing is quite as awesome as getting your period for your birthday.

Don’t get me wrong. I'm not complaining about not having periods. I certainly don’t miss the bloating and the cramps, but I do miss not being in tune with my cycle and that one week window every month where Mother Nature gives me a free ticket to be a bitch, thank-you-very-much PMS.

After some heavy soul searching, Mark and I have decided that we are not emotionally ready to become pregnant again. It will be my fourth pregnancy and the past four years have been very hard on us.

Mark and I started trying to conceive almost immediately after our wedding and neither of us look back on that time in our lives fondly.

Every month that my period arrived, despite our perfectly timed sex according to my temperature charts, I became more and more withdrawn and increasingly disconnected from Mark. I wanted a baby, badly, and he wanted the fun-loving, carefree woman that he married back who did not time sex around the state of her cervical mucus, Basel Body Temperature and LH surges.

The month before we were scheduled to see a fertility specialist was the month that Ava was conceived. After watching her die, and then enduring a miscarriage 10 months later, and then getting pregnant again and giving birth to Nate, I can honestly say that at this point in my life, I am ready to give my body and spirit time to heal.

I started using the Birth Control Pill when Nate turned four months old. It was the low dose, progesterone only variety that is supposed to be compatible with breastfeeding. A month later, I got my period. I figured it was the hormones in the pill, but then the following month, Nate suddenly refused to nurse and I realized that my milk supply was low. I’m almost certain the pill had something to do with that.

So, my stint on the pill lasted all of two months, which means that we have had to resort to other forms of managing the population growth in our little family. But since there is never a tell-tale period at the end of every month to tell us how were doing in the family planning department, the last four months have resulted in two suspected pregnancies.

The first time that I thought I was pregnant was during a week long bout gut-wrenching nausea and bone-penetrating fatigue.

Trying to mentally prepare myself for another baby, I took a pregnancy test.

It was negative. Surprisingly, my disappointment level was high.

Last week, after I posted about feeling unsettled, seeds were planted that maybe I was pregnant again, but between breastfeeding and keeping everything carefully under wraps, the possibility is pretty much nil.

So if I am not ready to have more children, why is it then, that this makes me feel relieved and so entirely crushed all at the same time?


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Karla- you are so strong and so full of love. As much as you have gone through, I think that you would love any babies you had at any time.

But I agree that you deserve some time to heal. There is so much ahead of you. Just look back at some of your posts during your miscarriage. You had no idea that Nate was in your future. But your future is bright. You are an amazing mother and I am so proud of you.

Posted by Anonymous Kari :  October 22, 2007

It's something about being a woman and mommy and knowing the feeling of having a baby and being a woman who was made to have babies.

No matter how much I say I don't want another, every time I feel "weird" I get this little excitement. Last month I though for sure I was pregnant, being disappointed because I didn't want to do the pregnancy thing all over again, I was, as you put it crushed that the pregnancy test (after being 5 days late) was negative.

I told my husband that I was sorry for always being indecisive about having another, I go back and forth weekly...and he assures me it was because I am a women and that was what I was made for (not is a bad way) just like he will always want sex, I will always long for that little baby to nurture.

Healing is a good thing, you have so much in store with a little guy Nates age, they are so much fun!!
Posted by Blogger Donna :  October 22, 2007

I'm sure it's the battle that rages between the heart and the mind. One can not really trump the other. We just have to try to find a balance, and live through the soul, which connects the two. That's the beauty of being a woman. We are deliciously complicated and intricate.

Don't worry. In the right timing, flowers will bloom from a well-tilled soil.


You know what's funny is that before I got pregnant my husband and I were NOT trying to conceive, but we weren't being very careful either. The not-being-careful resulted in several "suspected" but not "actual" pregnancies. Every time a pregnancy test came back negative I was both relieved because "OMG WE WEREN'T READY!" But also, disappointed and sad because "OMG I WANT A BABY!" The wanting of the baby may or may not be subconcious, but I think we feel that way because it shows us how we REALLY feel about it. When I finally had a pregnancy test come back positive I was all at once totally freaked out and also completely thrilled.

For example: What if your pregnancy test comes back positive? You would not be sad about this new baby. The baby would never feel as if it was a mistake!! It's TRUE!! : )
Posted by Blogger Jeninacide :  October 22, 2007

Oh my, do I know how you feel. I have PCOS so I basically do NOT get periods unless I'm on the pill. I stopped taking it in march to see if my body would naturally have one and I just finally got a period a few days ago. That means SEVEN months with nothing, and I'm not breastfeeding! Lots and lots of pregnancy tests and each time I feel relieved and sad. Not just sad about no baby, because I do want one, but sad because my body doesn't isn't "normal" and I know when we do go full-on with trying to concieve it's going to be a struggle. But, I'm keeping faith that it will happen when it needs to..same with you. *hugs*

Was that TMI? I really have no sense of those kind of boundaries, heh.

Ya know, they say the "mini-pill" does not mess with your milk supply, but it did mine too!!

And I also know how you feel about the ups and downs of wanting to preggo/not wanting to be preggo again, and I'm only 4 1/2 post partum. I know, we're nuts, aren't we? ;o)

i've been reading you for awhile, but have never commented. This post compelled me to comment. I never did well with the hormones in birth control. I now have an iud which I love. Ask your doctor about it. They have changed drastically since they first came out.
Posted by Anonymous Megan :  October 22, 2007

I think lots of women feel this way. We know that babies are great, but we also know that babies change everything.
Posted by Blogger Christy :  October 22, 2007

I went on the pill after a few months and my supply was never the same. I got off the pill immediately, but my supply just never bounced back, despite pumping and fenugreek.

I'm with you about being both relieved and disappointed with each new negative pregnancy test.

I know this may be TMI, but I'm personally against birth control. The way I keep from getting pregnant is just to have my guy pull out pre-ejaculation. I know, I know. You didn't need to know that about me, but it works for me. I have two daughters, one 9 and one 6 and I am 28. I haven't taken birth control with any regularity since I was 16 and both my pregnancies were planned. I've never had any "false alarms" or anything. That might not work for some people, but for me, it's perfect.
Posted by Blogger Jules :  October 23, 2007

We got pregnant so quickly after having Nikki that I barely had time to process it. Nikki was only 16 months old when Julie came along. I went through a wide range of emotions when I found out I was pregnant with Julie, so I know how you feel.
Posted by Blogger Heather :  October 23, 2007

That is such an odd and hard to describe feeling but I do understand. I have never been through anything as devastating as your losing Ava but I did miscarry before conceiving Aiden and that was very difficult. We were TTC for 2.5 years before we conceived him. I'm breastfeeding and I'm one of those lucky women that has a regular period during breastfeeding. Any time it's even a day late my mind starts to freak out a little, even though Aiden is just now only 7 months old. And of course when I start spotting a day later I feel a tug at my heart and that familiar disappointment from TTC. Even though I know it would be SO difficult if I got pregnant right now I can't stop that disappointed feeling.

Oh and I didn't even try the pill. I'd read so many women that had the same experience, I just decided it wasn't worth it to possibly mess up my milk supply. It sucks that it's not really an option though.
Posted by Blogger Brandy :  October 23, 2007

I know how you feel. I thought for sure I was pregnant for a while, and even though I didn't think I was ready for another one, even though we had been trying for another one, I was relieved and disappointed at the same time.
Posted by Blogger Gina :  October 23, 2007

I know what you mean about being disapointed. Even though Jeff and I are preventing right now I still think "this sucks" when my period comes every month. I can't wait to have another baby... I think it's just that maternal instinct.

I also hate BC pills. I tossed mine a few months ago. I'll never take them again. What really boggles my mind is that since I've gone off of them my cycles are perfect to the HOUR of every month - they were never before. The first time I got pregnant I was taking them (obviously not the way you are supost to haha) never again!
Posted by Blogger Melanie :  October 23, 2007

I understand that feeling. We are done having children. Richard is in the process of getting his stuff together for a vasectomy. A few months ago I felt sick and my period was late. I had convinced myself I was pregnant. In my mind I had come to accept that and when the test was negative I was let down even though we are Done. Yes, that's Done with a capital D.
Posted by Blogger Julia :  October 24, 2007

Unlike Julia, I don't feel "Done" yet. I am done for now, that's for sure, b/c I don't think I could mentally or physically handle another little person around here yet. Unfortunately, I might be "Done" in real life, b/c Trey has no interest in any more kids, and my mom has literally threatened to disown me if I have any more kids.

So, a month or so ago, when I was feeling sick to my stomach for days on end, and the fear of pregnancy arose, I won't deny I was a little excited. Once I found out it was just from drinking too many soft drinks, I was relieved. However, at the same time, I really was upset just a tad. I mean, come on Karla, we make beautiful babies. If anything, having children for us is like helping save the world. There need to be more beautiful and smart people in the world, and we're here to help the cause!
Posted by Blogger Christi :  October 24, 2007

Oh, and hey, as for what Jules said...Cole is a product of "pulling out". He came WAYYYYYYY sooner than I had hoped (not that I regret his arrival at all, b/c I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE him!). Jules is lucky, not everyone is.
Posted by Blogger Christi :  October 24, 2007


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