30 years later I still have my pink elephant that one of my older sisters made me.
Ok, let’s talk babies. I’ve only just recovered from last week’s episode of One Born (bravo Mr. Anaesthetist!) so I better get this post done before tonight’s! Babies have always been on the cards, it’s just been a matter of timing. Realistically is it ever the right time? It’s hardly ever the right time for anything, let alone a baby. But what I do know is that hubby and I are financially stable, emotionally secure (well he is – hah, bloody hormones) and it’s something that we both want. Surely that’s a pretty good start right?
Why now? Assuming I finish all my exams by March 2016, then the idea is that I’ll be ready to pop one right after :) Yes I know that’s only theoretical assuming I get knocked up in one cycle (I’ll get to the terminology later…)
For a little extra help I’m taking part in the CONCEIVE study at Queen Charlotte’s and Chelsea Hospital. One of my friends from college is on the research team so I know I’ll be well looked after. The study will engage about 600 women from conception to pregnancy through to labour “investigating if blood pressure or heart function prior to pregnancy is linked to the development of complications during pregnancy such as pre-eclampsia“.
I had my initial appointment at the beginning of July where they did a few medical tests and briefed me on how the study would work. One of the benefits of taking part is that I received a Clear Blue Fertility Monitor to use… I never thought I’d be so excited about peeing on sticks before! It’s supposed to monitor when you’re going to ovulate based on tracking 2 hormones in your wee. In other words, if you get a high reading, get on with it and if you get a peak reading cancel all other appointments and make sure your husband comes home on time!
Still confused? In the simplest terms, Mrs. Egg only lasts about 12-24 hours after you’ve ovulated (released the egg) so if Mr. Sperm doesn’t swim fast enough and proposes in time there’ll be no baby making until your next cycle. You only ovulate once a cycle and for the average woman a cycle is about 28 days. But since sperm can last up to about 5 days, being more *ahem* active in the days leading up to and including ovulation greatly increase your chances of conception. Hence why ‘high’ and ‘peak’ readings are important.
But a word of warning to any mums to be… at 7am on a Sunday morning when you get a peak reading and run into the bedroom to disturb your other half’s slumber whilst shoving the monitor in his face saying ‘look, look!!’… let’s just say that they won’t be too impressed and won’t realise that you need them to get to work in the next 30 minutes before you have to leave.
So then what? Do you have to schedule in times for sex? Talk about serious buzz kill. What most people advise is to try and do the deed every other during your high/peak window to maximise chances of conception. There’s a danger though that it could end up being a bit of a chore and just another ‘task’ you have to do. It’s a tricky one but I think the only way to get around it is to stay relaxed and try not to put yourself under any pressure. It’s not going to help either of you. If you’re too tired, you’re just too tired!
However, gin sometimes helps.