Visit any infertility or pregnancy online support group and you’ll quickly realize how many acronyms you have to decode. “TTC” stands for “trying to conceive.” “HPT” means “home pregnancy test.” “OPK” is short for “ovulation predictor kit.” “BFP” means “big fat positive” pregnancy test.
It’s like learning a new language, one created out of love, worry, excitement and frustration, a way to type messages quickly in search of the answer to the one question everyone in the group shares: Will I ever get pregnant?
While none of us have a crystal ball, know this: TTC and pregnancy success stories abound. Here we highlight a few of those stories (you can read or listen to all of them here), along with further resources to support you as you anxiously await that day when you finally get to hold your LO (little one).
Molly: Be receptive to a wide range of options.
Molly was almost 35 years old when she began her pregnancy journey. At the time she had no idea how much her age would affect her fertility. She describes what she calls “the trying period” as one of the more difficult times in her life, so much so that it took her a long time to talk about it. But now she wants to instill hope in other women who feel as if they’re in a hopeless situation. A baby will come to you, Molly says, if you’re receptive to a wide range of options. If you identify with Molly’s feelings of failure, listen to her story here. There’s always hope.
“Everything is very number fixated, so it’s your egg count, egg quality, your age — and my age was a big issue. Who knew? Your hormone levels, sperm count, all that, ovulation days — it just consumed me.”
Krystian: Sometimes the journey is easier than expected.
Krystian says she always knew she and Caitlyn would someday want to grow their family, but she didn’t quite know what their journey would be like. After a year of marriage, they decided to do some research. They chose IUI over IVF because for them IUI was less expensive and easier on the body. After selecting a donor, Krystian used an ovulation test kit and she and Caitlyn were so pleased when they got pregnant on the second attempt. Sometimes what you think will be obstacles or hardships turn out to not be such big issues at all. For a great example of that, read Krystian and Caitlyn's story here.
“There were three major things we needed to investigate: a reproductive medicine group, a sperm donor bank and the different artificial insemination options.”
Saira: Reframing the narrative
Saira was 25 years old when she and her husband began their pregnancy journey. Baby showers and friends’ pregnancy announcements were particularly difficult while working through years of negative pregnancy tests. Before Saira started her third IVF cycle, she switched her focus from failure to one of gratitude and positivity. “I changed the narrative from, ‘I can’t get pregnant’ to ‘I can’t wait to get pregnant,’” she says.
It worked. “Finally, in 2018 I was pregnant after our third IVF cycle,” she says. “I still remember doing a digital Clearblue® pregnancy test and it coming up with the word ‘pregnant.’ After seeing ‘not pregnant’ for so many years, it was such a surreal moment for me, one I’ll never forget.” While recognizing that it wasn’t always easy, Saira believes changing her mindset and outlook helped. You can read her full story here.
“My husband and I started trying for a baby as soon as we got married in 2010. … The next eight years were the hardest of my life.”
Cat: Trying one last time
After being diagnosed with unexplained infertility, Cat got pregnant only to have it end in a miscarriage. “I can still see the look in my husband’s eye, and the sonographer desperately searching for something,” she says. “And that was a really, really heartbreaking time for us.” Cat ended up having two more miscarriages. Just as they were ready to give up, and Cat was about to turn 40, a gynecologist suggested they try one more time. Cat got pregnant with twins, only to experience heartbreak again when one twin stopped growing. “Having that mixture of a miscarriage but also a healthy pregnancy was just one of the most confusing things that I’ve ever experienced,” she says. Cat reached out to an online community for support. She and her husband named their miracle daughter Wren. At one point Cat was sure she was never going to have a baby — but then she did. You can listen to Cat’s story here.
“Grief was a huge part of our lives because that’s what infertility is. … I wasn’t a mother, which is the one thing I wanted at that time.”
Find further support while trying to conceive
One of the best things you can do as you embark on your TTC journey is learn how to emotionally prepare; we offer six tips here. Also learn more about factors that can affect fertility and ovulation and simple ways to boost your fertility health. If you’re worried about, or are experiencing early pregnancy loss, we talk about that here. And is trying to get pregnant taking longer than you think it should? You might be surprised by how long it can take and why — learn more about it here. And last but not least, reach out to others for support. The Clearblue® Conversations Facebook Group has been created solely for you. The mission of this group is to help women feel connected during their trying-to-conceive journey. The journey is different for everyone, and this group will remain a safe place to have these conversations.