During my post-partum check-up in the hospital last year, my gynae told me that I could try for another baby again after I got my first period cycle back and was convinced that getting pregnant again after giving birth would be a breeze. Many women who experienced still-births (and delivered the baby vaginally) are able to easily get pregnant again within the 6 months after they lost their babies provided if they are ready to be pregnant again. Hearing this, I silently screamed to my gynae "Yes, Doctor. You have no idea. I AM SO VERY READY FOR BABY #3!" My gynae mentioned that these 6 months are the best time for my husband and I to try again and the chance for me to conceive again would be VERY HIGH. Therefore, I was not supposed to delay the plan to get pregnant with baby #3. Further, research found that women tend to be fertile mertile post baby delivery (that's why those who just gave birth their babies safely are usually advised to have birth control as soon as possible to avoid 'accident').
I was very optimistic that in just few months after I lost Dylan, I would shake and surprise the world with the good news that I am expecting a baby again. I read a lot of online articles and they too proved me that there are numerous women in this planet who successfully got pregnant again less than 6 months after they delivered their angel babies.
Who knew that 6 months and few period cycles later, I am still struggling with getting pregnant again?
Before I go further, please note that initially I didn't want to share this particular TTC-ing (Trying to Conceive) effort of mine because it's quite a frustrating issue to me and I really wanted to keep this affair as private as it can be. For months, I've kept this matter to myself, my husband and a handful of close friends and family members of mine. My in-laws know nothing about this and I intended to keep it this way. Previously, I was not keen in sharing this issue in my blog because I know some of my husband's relatives read my blog and I am not too comfortable sharing this topic with them. In addition, no pun intended, I am lazy to entertain some people I know who will personally contact me for further clarification or questions about this not-so-great side of my life after they read this post. Nonetheless, I had a second thought about keeping this story to myself. If my story on TTC-ing journey after Dylan's loss would be helpful to other mothers out there who are also in the same boat, then I better share this. Especially if one day my husband and I would be successful in conceiving baby #3 and bring him/her safely to this world. This story could also serve as a lesson to learn to other couples who are trying to conceive their baby after they went through some kind of life duress. Try not to do the same mistake that I did.
How was the TTC journey after Baby Dylan so far?
Rocky, I would say. It's clearly not as easy and smooth as I once imagined. The past few months were mainly about religiously calculating my fertile period every month. Well, all this before my period cycles (which were always like clockwork before Dylan) became erratic and I couldn't determine my fertile period any more.
We're not pregnant again just yet. I got pregnant with Naomi after 4 months trying and was pregnant with Dylan almost immediately after my husband and I decided that we were ready for another baby.
What's the problem here?
STRESS. This is the main creepy culprit that I am aware as of now.
Stress and irrational pressures that I created for myself (probably I was emotional and hormonal too post-delivery) as I really wanted to get pregnant again for the third time gave lots of issues to my fertility. You can probably say: My mind is willing but my body cannot cooperate accordingly yet.
Few months ago, I pressured myself really hard to get pregnant again because I more or less felt like I've lost my train and needed to do a serious catching to be in the same lane as everybody else who is now carrying her baby in her arms or currently pregnant again. Once, I also ridiculously blamed my husband for not bringing me to a relaxing overseas travel or another honeymoon trip to take a break from the whole ordeal on Dylan's demise as I understood some women who went to honeymoon travel after giving birth to a stillborn got pregnant again not long after they returned home.
Sounds dumb and lunatic to you? This happened to me.
Moving on, here's my TTC-ing journey to date in a systematic flowchart. It's not the prettiest flow chart you've seen but I think it's quite self-explanatory. Please excuse my ugly hand-writing here, OK? I hope the following is still readable.
TTC-ing journey after pregnancy loss.
In the past few months, I learnt my expensive lesson about stress and TTC. Stress would not make me pregnant. Instead, it inhibits me from getting pregnant again and ruins my overall health.
Late last year, my period didn't come for about 2 weeks but the pregnancy test was negative. Turned out, I had a 3cm cyst on my left ovary thus the Aunt Flo's absence. Seemingly, my high stress level messed my hormones and caused hormone imbalance which led to the development of a cyst. I was then treated with birth control pills for 3 days to make my period come back. Thank God, the cyst was gone 6 weeks later. My gynae warned me to watch my stress level carefully and stop acting like a 90 y/o lady who worries about everything. She gave me another 6 months to try for another baby naturally. If this fails, then I would have to begin some fertility treatments.
Early last month, I got really stressed again. This time around, owing to my manic work load before CNY, my stress resulted in mid-cycle spotting for more than a week. *sigh* Apparently, I didn't ovulate (anovulation) last month due to low progesterone level, hence the mid-cycle spotting. I was just off from taking progesterone pills for 10 days to return the healthy balance of my progesterone levels. Additionally, I am scheduled to see my gynae again in next month for another check-up and if by then, I'm not pregnant yet - I may have to start some hormones treatments.
Some friends advised me to try to get pregnant again naturally and leave this matter to God as there is a season for everything and God knows the best time. However, come to think of it, given so many fertility issues I encountered lately - if I don't seek professional help for this, wouldn't it be just a waste of time? Truthfully, I never thought I'd have trouble conceiving like this before.
Anyhow, this is my story of TTC-ing again thus far after my world was turned upside down in mid August 2014.
What is the lesson learnt here?
If you can, don't beat your self up because... it's pointless.
At this stage, I am not in the position to preach to other people who've lost their babies about being relax or taking this whole TTC-ing thing easily and such because I know this kind of advice is practical in theory but often times, it is hard to put this into real-life application.
I will update this blog again on my TTC-ing journey, hopefully with a more delightful news.
P/S: I've come to terms with Dylan's passing now and nowadays, am grappling with conception of another baby. Also, I had my husband's consent before sharing this blog post.