Dear couple struggling to conceive,
If you are just starting to try to get pregnant, than this is probably a super exciting time for you. But for those of you who have been trying to conceive for months now, you might be starting to feel discouraged. I want you to know, I know how hard it might be for you right now.
When my husband and I started "trying" we decided we were going to stop preventing pregnancy and we were just going to let God take control. The thing is after months went by of negative pregnancy tests and my menstrual cycle starting... it was hard not to get depressed and worried. We started to talk about whether or not there was something wrong, or if we could even get pregnant. We tried to be okay about the fact that we might not be able to get pregnant, after all we do plan to adopt in a few years. But we really weren't feeling okay.
We started off officially not "trying," but after a few months went by of negative pregnancy tests... we ended up trying too hard. We were tracking my ovulation schedule, I bought special lubricant that wouldn't kill semen, and I avoided anything that I could ingest that would hurt a baby (alcohol, caffeine, ibuprofen...). Eventually we were working so hard to get pregnant that we no longer enjoyed our intimacy together.
Finally I decided to just hand it over to the Lord. We surrendered it, prayed about it and let go. Later that month, I found out I was pregnant!
There are many things I would tell myself, if I could go back in time to those months we were trying to conceive. I would say to my past self:
- Talk to people you trust. I do wish we had not been silent about our struggle to get pregnant. We at first were silent because we wanted to surprise our friends and family, later we were silent because we were embarrassed. But if we had talked to our friends we could have found out that several of them were also trying to get pregnant and were having similar problems. If we had talked about it maybe we wouldn't have felt so alone. If we had found out we couldn't conceive at least we would have friends/family to talk to about it who could support and encourage us.
- Stop trying and trust. I know it may seem easy for me to say this since I'm past this moment in time, but it isn't. It's never really easy to surrender things to the Lord. But we really need to trust God's master plan. I know for us, Baby P. couldn't have been born at a more perfect time! I had just finished teaching for the semester, and turned in grades when I went into labor. Baby P's arrival couldn't have been planned more perfectly, and that is because God was in charge. Scripture says "Your eyes saw my unformed body, all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be" (Psalm 139:16). God knows the perfect time your child should be born, whether you conceive that child or someone else does and you adopt that child. God has a bigger plan than we could ever understand.
- Know you are not alone. Several people I know had problems conceiving at first. For many of our friends/family members, it took them anywhere from 6 months to 2 years to conceive. After doing a lot of research, I found it often can take some time because there are a lot of things in a woman's body that have to coincide at the exact moment in order for a woman to conceive (see this article for the best time to get pregnant based on your ovulation cycle). Also, if you were on birth control prior, it can sometimes effect your cycle.
I'm hoping that my experience will help you who are trying to conceive and comfort you in some way of knowing that you are not alone!