June 4, 2007

I can’t help but notice that despite my Dramatic Declaration of Intent back in January and the, er, Dutiful Monthly Effort since then, I don’t seem to be pregnant.

My feeling on this topic is largely one of ambivalence, although as the months go by I’ve developed an ever so slightly raised mental eyebrow: hmmmmm. I got pregnant with Riley so quickly, I naively assumed that this time around would be exactly the same scenario, whereupon we would decide, in a flurry of panic and second-guessing, to Go For It, and approximately thirty seconds later I’d be watching the second line show up on the stick while hyperventilating in a paper bag.

Instead, I’ve had weeks and weeks to panic and second-guess and re-embrace the whole idea and be disappointed when my period shows up, and lather, rinse, repeat. I’ve spent a little time worrying that something has gone wrong and a second baby just isn’t in the cards, and I’ve spent a night feverishly hoping the month’s Dutiful Effort did not take, because Riley had been so phenomenally horrific that evening and I literally could not imagine doing it all. Over. Again.

All in all, I guess I’m tentatively glad I didn’t get pregnant right away, because it’s given me time to really think about it, and feel more confident that I really do want another baby. It’s been helpful that Riley doesn’t feel so much like a baby himself these days, because I’m starting to actually miss those stages that are exclusive to the first year. I’m also happy that I lost weight and got my body in shape during the last few months (can I just interrupt my own blog entry to tell you how I felt when I tried on a couple clothing items at Lucy in a size small . . . and they FIT? Oh my god, I nearly tongue-kissed the sales clerk), and that I ignored the lazy voice in my head that told me not to bother, I was just going to be pregnant soon anyway.

I do wonder how long it’s going to take, though. I mean, we’ve been actively trying, with the oft-recommended Taking Charge of Your Fertility book and the ovulation kits and the sex when neither of us even feels remotely like having sex. (“Talk dirty to me.” “Uh, let us to be having the hot sex, for the purpose of procreation.” “Oh, yeah.”)

JB says it will happen when it’s supposed to happen, which is an oddly fatalistic comment for him. It’s a nice thought, though, and until it’s time to think otherwise, I guess that’s what I’ll believe too.


49 Responses to “In pursuit of heartburn”

  1. JennB on June 4th, 2007 4:55 pm

    I’m starting to wonder about the same thing. We’re pulling the goalie at the end of the month, and I’ve been a tad blasé about taking my pill every day…. and I just wonder what will happen – and exactly how long it will take to happen – when we do go off. I remember the first time it took 3 months, and that 3 months lasted forever, so who knows what will happen in 2-1/2 short weeks…. will there be a 3 month wait? or will it happen immediately?

    Maybe we’ll get knocked up together and can talk about how the teeny bit of tomato and garlic in dinner made us stay up all night mainlining TUMS. I don’t have any buddies on this side of the screen who want to have a kid – three of them are due this summer and my sister-in-law in the fall. I never seem to be pregnant with my friends.

    Want to be my prego buddy?

  2. Mary O on June 4th, 2007 4:56 pm

    Same story here. We didn’t even try to get pregnant the first time, it just sort of “happened”, and then when we did try for #2 it took months and months. I did a lot of premature freaking out about my fertility, thinking oh my god, have I gone STERILE since I had the first child? But now I am happily gestating number two, so don’t freak like I did. It will happen sooner than you know it.

  3. Nancy on June 4th, 2007 5:00 pm

    I must have missed your “Dramatic Declaration of Intent ” and am surprised you didn’t link it. Could you edit to add the link? PPPWWWEESSEEE?!

  4. sundry on June 4th, 2007 5:04 pm

    Nancy: I can’t remember which entry contains the Dramatic Declaration. It wasn’t really that dramatic, truthfully. : )

  5. brid on June 4th, 2007 5:08 pm

    i love that you’re posting more often.

  6. Alyson on June 4th, 2007 5:09 pm

    Baby #1 took 18 months to get pregnant with – I am guessing that my “what the hell” attitude and maybe just a little bit of weed at the same time I was ovulating (OK, so I am NOT recommending that course) might have helped that one along.

    Baby #2 took only one month (we thought it would take at least NINE).

    Baby #3….well…….Baby #3 (born six and a half YEARS after #2 – that’s a clue)……well, we weren’t trying to get pregnant at all! Our oops is turning 10 tomorrow!

    Relax, don’t worry about it. Making sex a chore is just that, a chore. Not fun, not recreation, and definitely PRO-creation!

  7. Pete on June 4th, 2007 5:14 pm

    Being an engineer I took an engineering approach to ‘pro-creation’. My approach has a 75% success rate in the first month and 100% within two months (5 pregnancies). On average a female will ovulate. 10 days after the start of her period. A sperm is viable for approximately 24 hours after emission. So I guard band for any variance from the norm and calculated that a couple should have sex twice a day starting six days after the start of a period and not stopping until 14 days after a period. A female should keep her hips elevated after emission for 15 minutes to assist the sperm move to the cervix.
    I have found that after 4 days both partners need a really good imagination. ;-)

  8. Kim on June 4th, 2007 5:28 pm

    I am the wet blanket in the crowd. I got pregnant with my daughter pretty quickly and had an uneventful pregnancy. Since we started trying again, I have had 4 miscarriages in 2 years. Very frustrating and sad. I am starting to resign myself to having an only child. I am just so very glad to have her. Whatever your future brings, you will be okay.

  9. donna on June 4th, 2007 5:46 pm

    Pete? Guard band? Is that like a cock ring? For women? Did I miss something?


    My first I tried for about 9 months with a miscarriage in there too. Got preggers 3 months after the miscarriage, and then with my son, didn’t even want to get pregnant yet, but when the contraceptive foam tells you it expires by Jan 1, 1980, you will be knocked up by Feb 4th 1980.
    What is weird was that it was so easy when I wanted to get pregnant, and didn’t when I didn’t before I got married and wasn’t even using birth control of any kind. This was in the days of no aids or herpes, and everything could be cured with a shot in the ass. I missed that too though, I was pretty lucky looking back now…..

    It will be all good, maybe you’re just too skinny? You think?

  10. Pete on June 4th, 2007 5:52 pm

    Guard banding is how much you allow outside the ‘norm’ to account for changes in the process. I forgot to mention that I think the high success rate was due to the intense praying after the first eight days that you never have to go through that again.

  11. Kristin on June 4th, 2007 6:02 pm

    Juat what you wanted, advice on how to get pregnant from everyone and their brother! My OB said to go for it every other day starting about 8-10 days after the start of my period. It worked twice though I have to agree with Pete that we had to get creative after a while…

  12. Yams on June 4th, 2007 6:07 pm

    We were trying for baby #1 for many years with much dissapointment. Then my father passed away suddenly (massive heart attack right in front of me). In my darkest of moments I got pregant and had my daughter who looks so much like my dad it’s un-nerving yet very comforting.

    We figured it would take years for baby #2 but I got pregnant the first month we tried! My daughter will be a little less than 2 when kiddo arrives this Nov.

    I agree with JB. Much luck to you both!

  13. kara marie on June 4th, 2007 6:23 pm

    Do you ever wonder if the losing weight and diet and exercise changes have played a role? It’s super great that you’re gonna start out with a pregnancy all fit and trim, and maybe your body is just waiting until you’ve stayed on an even keel for awhile before it gives the uterus the go-ahead. I think bodies sometimes know when things are going on. Of course, I’m a dirty hippie and have no professional training in this area whatsoever, so feel free to ignore me. But I agree with JB. I think it’ll happen when it’s supposed to happen, and when your body feels the time is right.

  14. AndreAnna on June 4th, 2007 6:31 pm

    We have set our goal to start trying in 6 months when our baby is 18 months old, I have got my body back to where I want it, and am done with a wedding I am a bridesmaid in. Part of me is scared as hell that it won’t happen right away (I got pregnant on our honeymoon the first time) and that setting a date to “try” will backfire in my face. At least I know that when I do try, I won’t be alone in the feelings of insecurity and self-doubt.

    It will happen for you. I know it’s hard to do but just relax. I swear, Hawaii is the cure-all (you and JB should go there!!!). They told me that with my cystic ovaries and uterine fibroids, I’d have a hard time getting pregnant and need help, so I wasn’t even thinking about it and got pregnant 12 days aftering going off birth control that I was on for 8 years.

    Thanks for being so real. :)

  15. Erica on June 4th, 2007 6:50 pm

    This is month four for us. It is our first biological child (we have two via adoption) and really have no idea how long to expect it to take. I have been counting days, checking calendars, making sure to perform our dutiful effort (perfect term) for ten days straight each month, elevating the hips, AND I even have been using something called Fertile Focus that lets you check your dried saliva (sexy!) under a microscope for a certain pattern it makes when you’re ovulating. Still, nothing yet. Here’s to this month – for all of us!

  16. coffee stained on June 4th, 2007 6:53 pm

    Not to diminish the awesomeness of your fitness and healthful lifestyle (which I envy), but could it actually be contributing to the lack of the double blue line? The last time I took on a health kick it totally threw off my cycle, although I wouldn’t have known it except that I was charting and my temps were all out of wack. I don’t know if this is the case for you, but for me it all settled out after about 4 months.

    I wish you much delightful babymaking and long term success for your efforts :-)


  17. sundry on June 4th, 2007 6:55 pm

    Pete, I am dying. DYING OVAH HEAH.

    Kara: who knows, right? I definitely eat plenty of healthy foods (no low-low-cal dieting here) and exercise a sane amount (periods right on schedule, etc), so it doesn’t *seem* like conception would be harder during this phase of my life.

  18. Melanie on June 4th, 2007 7:27 pm

    Well, you could just try to enjoy it? The sex, I mean. I kind of wish we were trying for another so I could get laid more often.

    And size small, whoo-hoo!!! Plus those are cute size smalls.

  19. Sarah on June 4th, 2007 7:55 pm

    Jon said just such a thing to me repeatedly while we were working on Sparticus. So much so that I nearly smacked him once or twice to help me deal with my frustration and disappointment. Funny thing is, he was right. When the timing was right and I didn’t even bother with the kit that month: it happened. Which I blame squarely on him. I think his swimmers were intimidated by my fastidious testing.

  20. Trena on June 4th, 2007 8:03 pm

    Yeah, we’re kind of going through the same scenario over here too. It took four months the first time around and even though I think we’re only at three months for trying for #2, I’m still trying really hard not to have the little freak-out starting at the edges (you know, where the voice in my head starts reminding me about my friend who went through early & unexpected menopause at 33 and I’ll be 31 this year and GAH). I’m trying really hard to be ambivalent and tell myself to just RELAX already (which will no doubt help immensely) and that it will happen when/if it is meant to. Which is great and all–until I hear about yet another person that *just* found out they’re totally unexpectedly pregnant.

  21. jonniker on June 4th, 2007 8:16 pm

    I would think that the healthy lifestyle would only improve the situation, but what do I know? My body is pretty much all fucked up from a diseased thyroid, but as soon as that’s fixed, I’ll be in your boat, man.

  22. Cara on June 4th, 2007 8:36 pm

    I never really TRIED to get pregnant, considering both of my kids were birth-control kids. (that shit does NOT work) But the people I know who actually worked at it found that if they just kinda “forgot about it” and just had more sex got pregnant without so much of a problem. And hey, more sex? hell yeah.

  23. biscuit on June 4th, 2007 8:41 pm

    My husband + I had been trying since January + it was April + still nothing. We are both in our early 20s, never had a baby before + of course a few days after we looked into a fertility doctor, I got a positive pregnancy test!

    It will def happen again for you, I’m sure. Just get in the mindset that you’re not trying. I told Harry in the beginning of April that I would be going on the pill @ the end of the month because I thought again we would not conceive. I was happily wrong.

    Also, sounds vulgar, I know you won’t mind, but it helps if you both orgasm @ the same time. ;p


  24. Leslie on June 4th, 2007 9:07 pm

    I hope you got the tank top, which would look awesome with your tattoo. Although I’d buy puce and melon plaid if the size Small fit me.

  25. Marie Green on June 4th, 2007 9:29 pm

    If you are using THE fertility book you mentioned, you know more about conceiving than all the commenters in this section! And also, more about your mucus. Aren’t those mucus talks the best?

    I agree with Kara that you might not get pregnant until you are at a steady weight for awhile. Running a calorie deficit *might* trick your body into thinking you wouldn’t be able to support a pregnancy, even though you are eating healthy and are at optimal health. I wouldn’t stop exercising or eating healthy, but maybe allow yourself to flatline for awhile (meaning stay at the same weight, without loosing any more)?

    Isn’t the lack of control one of the biggest lessons in these childbearing years? No control over when we conceive, if it’s a boy or a girl, if the baby will arrive early, late, on time. When the baby will eat, sleep, etc, whether the baby will be easy going, stubborn… the list goes on! Just surrender to the miracle and perfectness of it all unfolding. =)

  26. Rayne on June 4th, 2007 9:47 pm

    I’ve never heard of Lucy before – thanks for the intro.

    Both of my girls were surprises so I have no advice but I do wish you the best of luck with baby making. That is great that the wait has made you more confident in your choice. When you do get pregnant I hope you will print pictures of your growing belly again, I really enjoyed that the first time around.

  27. Jem on June 5th, 2007 12:42 am

    Isn’t there a 20% chance of getting pregnant each month, so it takes 5 months on average? I don’t know, I’ve never ever tried to get pregnant so maybe I’m just making that up. Either way, all the best of luck! I cannot WAIT to hear new pregnancy stories (I live vicariously through the internet).

  28. Emblita on June 5th, 2007 4:29 am

    Well, when my husband and I were trying to get pregnant I did the whole cervical mucus thing and found that if anything it was counterproductive because it stressed me, and gave my husband performance anxiety. So I stopped following it so strictly, and specifically stopped telling my husband about it. So when I jumped him he didn’t feel like an procreational automaton :)
    Needless to say, once we stopped worrying we got pregnant :p Good luck and happy procreating!

  29. jaime on June 5th, 2007 5:31 am

    We have just entered that weird world of trying to get pregnant (for the first time). Sort of. I’ve been off birth control officially since Friday. We’re totally taking the “it’ll happen when it happens” approach. I’m not interested in tracking my fertility, and since I’ve never had a regular period it’s probably impossible anyway. But, I’m actually hoping that we don’t get pregnant (my husband hates it when I refer to it as “we” getting pregnant) for 6 months or so because we have a really awesome vacation to Europe booked in September and I don’t want to spend my time puking my way through Greece. The only reason I stopped the bc before September is because I’ve been on depo for like 5 years and it’s supposed to take a while for your fertility to kick-start again.

    Anyway, good luck! I love Riley’s suspicious little faces, and I can’t wait to see part deux!

  30. Christina on June 5th, 2007 5:32 am

    I say stop “trying”, sit back and enjoy the ride while is lasts (of not being pregnant), enjoy a few glasses of wine some evening and low and behold before you know it you will be preggers!

    LOVE LUCY. Did not think many people knew about it – too expensive for my blood since I would need to tack on the shipping costs as well because I live in the boon docks but I love to gaze longingly at the cute work gear that would most likely end up being weekend casual wear because HA I so cannot seem to get on the work out track like you!

  31. stephanie brown on June 5th, 2007 5:43 am

    I have actually just heard Pete’s approach 3 times from 3 different woman at my church in the last 2 weeks. One of them has 3 children all conceived that way, the second has just gotten pregnant…and it truly took under 2 months, and the third also has 2 children. I’d say go for that ;)

  32. Zoot on June 5th, 2007 5:44 am

    With my daughter – we were due to meet with a fertility specialist (I’ve got a laundry list of weird issues) so we took a “break” from “trying” for a few months before the appointment after 2 years of unsuccesful attempts and a couple of miscarriages. That first month of NOT trying? We conceived. Turns out I ovulate MUCH sooner (like the 9th day after the first day of my period) that I, or any ovulation kid, predicted. My body thinks it’s funny, sometimes.

    Hang in there. And don’t worry about it upsetting you everytime you period comes. Its natural. I always “celebrated” by doing something I wouldn’t be allowed to do while pregnant, like eat sushi or smoke crackrock. It made me feel better.

  33. nonsoccermom on June 5th, 2007 7:55 am

    First kid – total surprise. Actually, I can track it back to one apparently well-timed night where we were too lazy to use protection.

    Currently I’m pregnant with our second – it took three months. A girl I worked with suggested 5 straight days of sex (only once a day!!) beginning mid-cycle – that’s what worked for us, evidently.

  34. kj on June 5th, 2007 7:56 am

    Two of my best buds have a how-to-get-knocked-up-mantra that they like: Getting pregnant on purpose is like falling in love. Pay attention, keep your chin up, and don’t force it. Also it helps to give the gods time to mess with your emotions a little bit too. Take it with a grain of salt from a never-been-pregnant fan, but remember that you have a huge fan club out here and we’re all keeping our fingers crossed for ya!

  35. Melissa on June 5th, 2007 9:07 am

    Enjoy the healthy body and the small sizes….That baby will come when the time is right. Even with all of the good advice, no one can control Mother Nature. Have fun with it and hey, it’s seems like you guys have a great attitude about it.

  36. Brooke on June 5th, 2007 9:23 am

    Me too. I got pregnant with my daughter the first time we tried. Now, my new husband and I have failed to get pregnant for two months, and I am constantly freaking out about my fertility, whether it would be overkill to buy ovulation predictor kits, and all that.

    I also have construction going on in my house for the foreseeable future, so I am your cosmic twin. Or something.

  37. Roberta on June 5th, 2007 9:30 am

    In the same boat… the first was absolutely effortless (my little guy’s a few months older than Riley.) I assumed I was a procreative genius! And now, 9 months and 2 miscarriages into trying for the second, I’m not feeling quite so bright.

    But there’s no reason yet to assume there’s a physical problem after we successfully brought one into the world…. so we just (try to) relax and enjoy it.

  38. fellowmom on June 5th, 2007 9:45 am

    It took almost five years and two miscarriages before we had our twins. The one thing I can say about getting-pregnant advice: if one thing worked, there’d be no fertility industry. It’s pretty random, and if there are issues, they can be pretty specific to the parents-to-be. There are a million different stories. I have a friend who tried for two years, including several inseminations, and then got pregnant on a break. I have another friend who, despite being an OB-GYN, spent 4 years trying to have a second child. She got pregnant on a trip to Bali, and her baby was born a few months ago.

    I am not trying to fill you head with worst case scenarios. I just don’t want you to think that there’s a “magic bullet” or blame yourself, if you are at all inclined to do so. Trying for even a few months can be worrisome. I think you have to be exercising pretty hard to have it effect your fertility, but I am no expert. I concur with everyone who’s said that your control is relatively limited compared to other life choices. So, JB has a point. Though there are some things you can do to increase your chances, nothing is a sure thing. I know how you feel, though. For me, it was hard to reconcile what I knew with how I felt. Best wishes and keep doing the things you enjoy. We are all rooting for you guys.

  39. MRW on June 5th, 2007 9:55 am

    Well Kim you are not the only wet blanket. My son is over 4 and after having my second miscarriage last month while trying for a second we decided that was it. We have one wonderful child, if that’s all nature is going to allow us, we should be damned glad we got one. After months of the exhausting mental roller coaster only to end in miscarriage at 12 weeks, we had to let go and move on. Don’t want to give assvice, but there is nothing wrong with having only one child.

  40. MRW on June 5th, 2007 9:59 am

    OK after posting that I realize it sounded really defensive, sorry. I hope all goes well for you in your decision to have a second. You are young, healthy, and in a good place in life. Like others, I think it will definitely happen for you in time, but for god’s sake, don’t let sex become a chore! ;-)

  41. sundry on June 5th, 2007 9:59 am

    MRW: I agree. I’m okay with having one child, if that’s the way it works out.

  42. jenna on June 5th, 2007 10:03 am

    I have to say that I agree with the “relax and it’ll happen” crew. I was a total crazy woman about trying to get pregnant with the thermometer and the fertility charts and the cough syrup and the whole business. I was googling and self-diagnosing into the wee hours. Finally, after a husband and best friend intervention, I stopped charting and, of course, got pregnant that next month.

    Now, I have to say, when we get off our butts and decide to try for #2, it’ll be hard not to go back to crazy baby making strategies….

  43. jen on June 5th, 2007 12:27 pm

    might i just say that it seems as if you are completely leaving old navy in the dust. yay!

  44. Pete on June 5th, 2007 12:52 pm

    Have you tried giving away all of your baby stuff. Seems to work for others. ;-)

  45. Josh on June 5th, 2007 2:36 pm

    I don’t have the mastery of english to describe in written words how fucking terrified I am of ever ever ever having a baby. The thought freaks me out. And the fact that trying to have a baby can transmogrify the act of sex from the ultimate quest of joy that i enjoy today, into some grotesque and sterile science lab experiment is only driving the never-have-a-fucking-baby stake farther into my anxiety ridden heart. Why would such a good thing lead to such a scary thing and thereby ruins itself? Why?

  46. TB on June 5th, 2007 2:54 pm

    I know how hard it is to want it and for it not to happen month after month. It sucks and I’m sorry you’re in the middle of it.

  47. Anon on June 7th, 2007 2:29 pm

    So is Lucy’s hiring?

  48. LLL on June 8th, 2007 11:45 am

    Once you are in your 30’s they say it takes 6-8 months. Its the aging-ova issue I suppose. So hang in there. And buy the clear blue easy electronic fertility thingymabob (not just the stick you pee on). It will happen.

  49. This is your brain on PMS « incognitus scriptor on March 11th, 2009 5:47 am

    […] So, since mid-December, I have been birth control free as we gave it the green light for kidlet #2. Much like Sundry, I feel sort of ambivalent, at least at this point. At first – like in January – I was actually fairly diappointed when my period showed up. I was on a vacation too and I felt – as silly as it sounds – like a failure and didn’ even want to tell Ash because, look at me, my body apparently cannot create life the way it did the first time. (Though, he was really supportive and not disappointed. What was I thinking?) I  have read a lot of things about how your second time may not happen as quickly but it sure seems like it worked perfectly on our first go-round. Maybe it is dumb of me to expect similar results but… right? Right?? […]

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