When my husband and I first wanted to try to get pregnant I was naive and figured it would happen fast and easy. Boy was I wrong! After talking to a few other women who have struggled with getting pregnant as well as speaking with Midwives, it was recommended that I read a book about the Fertility Awareness Method. What is that?!?
"Fertility Awareness is simply a means of understanding human reproduction. It is based on the observation and charting of scientifically proven fertility signs that determine whether or not a woman is fertile on any given day. The three primary fertility signs are cervical fluid, waking temperature, and cervical position (this last one being an additional sign that simply corroborates the first two. FAM is an empowering method of both natural birth control and pregnancy achievement, as well as an excellent tool for assessing gynecological problems and understanding your body" (Taking Charge of Your Fertility by Toni Weschler, MPH page 4).
Not only is it used to help women realize when they are most likely to get pregnant - it can also help individuals who are trying to avoid pregnancy - naturally! Knowing your body and your cycles is important not just for conceiving reasons but for overall reproductive health knowledge.
In my previous posts I have talked about charting cycles... well what does that really mean? It's not just how you feel, when you had intercourse or if you had a visit from Aunt Flow. It's more than that. As listed in the passage above the three important pieces are Cervical Fluid, Temping & Cervix Position.
HOW does one track this stuff? I mean really... it sounds like a lot of weird work. At first, it is but it get's easier. Let us take a deeper look into this...
Tracking Key Notes
My first set of advice would be to buy the book Taking charge of Your Fertility by Toni Weschler, MPH. I am not going to lie. It is a BIG and thick book but, it has a TON of helpful information. I have found it easy to understand. This book is for the general public - thankfully. So you don't have to worry about too much medical jargon you wont understand. There are also charts, graphs and photos to help you gain further understanding of what you are reading.
Note that this book goes into great depth on fertility. For the sake of this blog I will be covering only three of the important things to note.
So what will you need to keep track of all of this? You only need a few simple things...
First, find an app that works for you. I am currently using three different apps. You DO NOT need to use three. I am just for the sake of my blog and the different things each of them track.
Using three apps to track my cycles.
Here are the two that I am using... (as shown in the picture above with the book!)
Facebook Support Groups:
TTC Journeys with FAM
Fertility Awareness Method of Birth Control
I personally am on these Facebook Group. I have been connecting and learning more about FAM. It is a great place to ask questions.
As far as my personal charting...this current cycle I have taken a break. I have had a lot going on and needed to focus on other things for my own mental health. Don't be afraid to do the same if you have been tracking your cycles for a while. You need to remember that emotional and mental health are just as important as physical health. I will be starting back up on tracking my cycles with my next expected period October 1st.
As always, thanks for reading & Baby Dust to all!
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