When people first hear how long we we tried before we got pregnant they always say, “Oh that’s totally normal!” Nine months appears to be “normal” but honestly, it really wasn’t.
About a year and a half before we actively started trying to start a family I went to see a hormone specialist because I could feel something wasn’t right in my body. I wanted to get to the bottom of it as quickly as possible and I didn’t know it at the time, but that was a huge step in the right direction towards pregnancy.
I had multiple tests done through this specialist and found out that I had several chemical imbalances. (Many of these were crucial to balance for successful fertilization.) I got started right away on the vitamins I needed to balance myself and was able to feel a huge difference within a few months! Despite how I felt, I knew it didn’t necessarily mean that everything was hunky-dory in my body.
Fast forward to when Jace and I started trying to start a family, and I knew these imbalances could still make it difficult to get pregnant. After just a couple months of trying and getting negative results, I was able to talk to my doctor about what I was experiencing and start taking pills that were supposed to help with fertility.
Month 1 on the pill: Unsuccessful.
Month 2 on the pill: Unsuccessful. Tears.
Month 3 on the pill: Unsuccessful. Tears. Heartache.
Month 4 on the pill: Unsuccessful. Tears. Heartache. Frustration.
Month 5 on the pill: Unsuccessful. Tears. Heartache. Frustration.
I went five months with the first pill we tried (most people get pregnant on this pill within the first 1-3 months) with no success! I was also using essential oils, tracking my ovulation, and trying a few other things that were supposed to boost fertility simultaneously.
I had a couple false alarms throughout these months which definitely took an additional emotional toll on my body. I decided to take a month-long break from any sort of fertility treatments to reset my mind, body, and spirit at this point. I was consistently communicating with my doctors about what was happening during this time and my hormone specialist decided it would be best to stop the pill I had been taking and try something else.
In the meantime, I found a book titled “Body Belief: How to Heal Auto-Immune Diseases” that I decided to purchase. As most of you know, I focus a lot on body beliefs here on my blog, Build Your Beautiful, so this book seemed intriguing to me! As I read, I discovered I had some of the symptoms of auto-immune diseases that were highlighted in this book. One of the side effects of these auto-immune diseases was a struggle to get pregnant. Through the Body Belief healing process I could decrease some of the symptoms I had and in return, boost my fertility. This book seemed like an answer to prayers!
Now I’ll be honest, the healing process found in Body Belief seemed a little too intense for me to follow perfectly. I did want to start incorporating it into my lifestyle though, so I started with something small. One of the requirements for this healing process is to quit eating nightshade vegetables. This includes white potatoes, peppers (bell and spicy), tomatoes, and eggplant. I recognized I was eating A LOT of these daily, sometimes as frequently as 5x a day!
I decided to completely eliminate these nightshade vegetables from my diet because I had nothing to lose by trying it! It was a lot harder than I expected because at least one of these vegetables was found in most things I make at home and many of them were found in everything at my favorite restaurants. That same month I also started the new fertility pill my doctor had prescribed me.
After a few weeks of not eating those vegetables and taking another pill, I didn’t feel any different than I previously had and a few symptoms I faced showed me that I wasn’t pregnant, AGAIN. I was devastated and had my “meltdown of the month.”
A few days later I had a laser hair removal appointment scheduled and I had to know before this appointment if I was pregnant (it’s not safe to do laser hair removal if you’re pregnant). I still wasn’t 100% positive that this month was unsuccessful, but I was about 95% sure. I decided to take one more pregnancy test to be safe and to my astonishment, IT READ POSITIVE. I was freaking out and jumping up and down and crying tears of joy. This moment was one I will never forget.
Long story short, it did only take us nine months to conceive. Doctors typically ask for couples to try for one year before they can receive treatments. Luckily, in our case, we were able to start sooner because of the tests I had already taken and the knowledge we already had. If we didn’t have the knowledge about my imbalances beforehand, we would have had to try on our own for an entire year before we could start treatments. Adding one year to our story would put us at trying for 21 months before we got pregnant. That’s well above average!
This blog post is a VERY simple version of what we actually went through. There were so many more emotions and experiences that I just didn’t want to include in a blog post, but if any of you have questions I’d be more than happy to answer.
I don’t know which helped us more– the change in diet or the pill. Maybe it was even a mixture of both! What I do know now is that eating too many of any certain food regularly isn’t the best option for any body. Our amazing bodies are made to eat a variety of foods and move in a variety of ways! Moderation in everything is key. Talking to your doctor and telling them exactly what you’re experiencing is extremely beneficial too. Being proactive and willing to try different things was essential to our success.
I know there are couples out there who have been trying for longer than 9 months, some even longer that 21 months! To those of you who have been trying and have not been successful YET, my heart goes out to you. It’s a grueling process and you are so tough! Wherever you are in this journey– mom, soon-to-be mom, looking-to-adopt mom, going-through-treatment mom, aunt, sister, babysitter, friend– know that you are not alone. Please know how loved you are and how important your journey is. Rarely do the tough times make sense when you’re battling them, but eventually the fog will clear. There is more than one way to make a family, and there isn’t one “right” way to do it!
You are incredible. You are capable. You are loved. Always remember that!
“One day you will look back and see that all along you were blooming.”
-Morgan Harper Nichols