The whole “trying to conceive” process (a.k.a. TTC) can be tiring when you have a history of fertility issues. For me, last month was the perfect example of how tiresome it can get.

The month of May marked the first cycle we were allowed to start trying again. I went off birth control, and immediately started preparing and getting back into TTC mode. In short, I was armed with my box of ovulation sticks, and I knew how to use them! Ovulation sticks look like home pregnancy tests. They come in a box of 7 sticks or so. You pee on a stick a few days before you think you are going to ovulate. If you have a 28 day cycle, you probably ovulate around Day 14, and should probably start testing on Day 10 or 11. Every woman is different, and it depends on your cycle length. If you get a positive test that means you are experiencing an LH surge, and will ovulate within 24-48 hours (a.k.a. you better get busy ASAP).

I got ahead of myself, and began testing with the ovulation sticks very early starting with Day 8. Negative. No big deal. I tested the next day. Negative. The day after that. Negative. As I inched closer to Day 14, I don’t know how to explain it other than my body just didn’t feel like it was going to ovulate. And, by all scientific accounts, it didn’t. I never did get a positive ovulation test.

For the first time in months, we had a real chance to conceive this fake, overly-discussed baby, and I wasn’t ovulating? Are you kidding me?! For those of you that slept through health class, a woman has to ovulate for there to be any possibility of conception. No ovulation = bad.

I tried not to over-think things (which is funny when you’re TTC. You over-think EVERYTHING), and L and I continued giving it the old college try. However, I wasn’t very hopeful, and was already settling into the mindset of expecting my period. I told myself that I would get my period on Day 26, and that was that. I’ve had a 26 day cycle for as long as I can remember.

Then a funny thing happened (or didn’t happen, I should say).

Day 27, 28, 29, and 30 came and went. No bleeding. No signs that bleeding was on its way.

Enter hope.

Those four days were confusing for me. I didn’t tell L much of what was going on. I kept inferring that my period was on its way, but in the back of my mind, I was secretly excited. I had hope. Hope that maybe I did ovulate, and the sticks just didn’t catch my LH surge. (It happens. I googled it, and some alien lady got knocked up without a positive ovulation stick, and asked Yahoo Answers about it back in 2004. Solid evidence, right?) Hope that my period’s wackiness meant something significant. My period is NEVER late. Early – yes! Late – never. I was actually starting to believe the voices of hope in my head.

That’s never a good thing.

Sure enough on the evening of Day 31, I got my answer. Blood everywhere. I was a crampy, bloody mess. It’s like my period was mocking me. It said, “Haha, you thought I was gone? Nice try, lady!” as it went on a tirade through my body.

At that point, I hit a major low. I couldn’t fight the feelings of utter sadness, and disappointment. I told L that I was giving myself a day to just feel bad. One day, and then I was cut off. We had a really busy weekend ahead of us, and I was determined not to get caught up in the shitty circumstances of my life.

Honestly, in my heart, I wanted to give up. If you know me, you know that (a) I’m not a drama queen, and (b) I don’t say things like “I give up” lightly. In the past two years or so, I’ve never even hinted at giving up during our entire process of TTC. Yet, I’m not going to lie, the thought entered my mind for awhile. I expelled it almost as quickly as it entered. But still, I had allowed it to creep in. Defeat. Emotionally, that was pretty significant for me.

L gave me my day, and I just allowed myself to feel like crap. I even divulged some of my baby sorrows to L, and vice versa, and we felt bad for ourselves together. The honesty was kinda nice. We weren’t pretending anymore.

This hurt.

Then the next day, I felt a little better. And the day after that was better than the one before.

I’ve decided that I’m not going to give up. Yes, I was knocked down. It has happened many times before, and it will likely happen again in the future. But I’ve gotten up, and I’m ready to start over again.

Onto the next month…

June 27, 2011



  1. Mandy

    June 24, 2011

    Ugh, I'm sorry that this is such a trying and frustrating process. I think it's great that you guys gave yourself that day to reflect and be sad about it. I'm thinking of you guys and I'll keep my hopes up for you!

  2. Busylizzy

    June 24, 2011

    Oh, so sorry for you! Thinking of you, all the best!

  3. Colleen C

    June 24, 2011

    Hi – my name is Colleen and I think I must be an alien lady … at least according to you. ( 🙂 !!!) I did not get a positive OPK the month that we conceived. I had done OPKs for three months before, so I knew what I was doing. I was measuring my BBT and the 'jump' in my temperature happened but the OPK did not give me that lovely little smiley face. (We went with digital.) We, like you, gave it the college try anyway and … BABY!!

    I am by NO means telling you to try not to worry about it, because I was impossible during those few months of trying — but I think not getting the positive OPK actually helped us relax and enjoy ourselves a little more and enjoy the (ummmm) process of baby making, and make a baby we did.

    I'm so sorry this is hard for you, but yes, onto next month!! And keep sharing your story. I'm sure it is helpful to you and many other women who are out there going through this too. Lots of love Carly!

  4. More Than Rubies

    June 24, 2011

    Hi Carly – I just wanted to let you know that I'm rooting for you and despite all these disappointments and bouts of sadness, "onto the next month" is a great mindset to have. Thinking of you!

  5. Amanda

    June 24, 2011

    I'm so sorry you're having to deal with all of this! I'll be thinking of you, and I hope next month goes much better!

  6. Vanessa

    June 24, 2011

    Thinking of you and sending lots of positive thoughts to you for next month! <3

  7. Mrs. B-P

    June 24, 2011

    My hubs and I are TTC. After I went off BC it took 3 months before I ovulated – so don't be discouraged! Your body will get into a normal cycle eventually 🙂

  8. Amber

    June 24, 2011

    Oh Carly, I love you. I love you dearly, and while I didn't have the medical struggles you have had to deal with, I struggled for 12 cycles to conceive and I know that feeling. I know it, I know the sadness and the heartache. I just want to give you HUGE HUGE hugs. You're wonderful.

  9. -J.Darling

    June 24, 2011

    Hi Carly! Sometimes it can take a month or more for your body to adjust to being off the pill. Sure, some women adjust quicker than others, but it's probably just that. Hugs!

    I have to wonder if we don't have TOO much information on TTC. My husband and I have already talked it over – he knows I have 1 ovary. And that I do have a period when I'm on the pill. However, there is a good chance that now that I've had surgery, adhesions have grown in, more endometriosis has grown in, and more unhealthy cysts. There is a good chance this bio baby thing may not be an option for us. We've talked about adoption and we agreed on this plan:
    We'll give it 2 years. In those 2 years, I will NOT be using an ovulation tester or anything like that. We'll just "pull the goaley" and enjoy ourselves. If it happens, great! If it doesn't I MIGHT consider invitro, but that's still up for debate after we get an MD's consultation about it.
    If it doesn't happen in 2 years, we'll start the adoption process.
    I think sometimes having all that info stresses women out (which is why women often concieve once they've given up on bio kids and filed for adoption – the pressure is off). Stressing out is BAD for conception.
    Keep doing your daily stuff to keep your spirits up! Go for a walk – and live the active life you want to live. Contribute all you can to the world and it might help you and L out in a lot of ways. 🙂 Maybe even the baby way!

  10. Brandi

    June 24, 2011

    Carly- you seem like such a strong person and you are going to make one amazing mama one day 🙂 I'll be keeping you and L in my prayers

  11. Matthew & Rachel Hughes

    June 26, 2011

    UGH I hate it for you. Stupid cycle! Try a 28 day ovulation kit…you may not ovulate at day 14. Don't give up. It took us two years and a little help from the doctors. I know you can do it because I am a whimp and give up easily.

  12. thelessthandomesticgoddess

    June 27, 2011

    You are all so sweet! I sound like a broken record, but THANK YOU so much for your kind words. I wish I wasn't always blabbering about bad news when it comes to TTC. Hopefully that will change at some point. Love you guys!

    @Amber: Love you, too. xo

    @J. Darling: I think that's a great plan! It seems like you and your husband are on the same page when it comes to trying to conceive. I agree that these days we are armed with way too much information. It can get very overwhelming! That's why I allowed myself a "bad day" and after that I tried my best to move on. I think it's natural to feel sad if you're trying to conceive and it isn't happening for you. But, I definitely try and avoid getting too stressed out over things! 🙂

  13. Michelle

    June 27, 2011

    Carly, I love you so much. It is so damn frustrating when our bodies mock us and make us feel like we have no control over our destiny.

    I applaud you for your decision to give yourself a "bad day". We are so hard on ourselves at times, after all you've been through lately you more than deserve it.

    Much love. ♥

  14. Kasia Fink

    June 29, 2011

    Don't give up. You are lovely and the world could do with some mini-yous in it. xo

  15. Sugar

    June 30, 2011

    Another person routing for you guys!! Crossing my fingers and toes (and making my little one-to-be cross its fingers and toes too)!! oxox!!

  16. waitingforthenugget

    July 12, 2011

    I think it is totally healthy to allow yourself a day or two to really feel and process the grief that occurs when another attempt is unsuccessful. For me, allowing those days keeps me sane the rest of the month. Fingers crossed for this month!!!!!

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