The last two times I got my period, I was pregnant that following cycle with one of my children.
Today I got my period for the first time since Harvey was born last year, but I know that I definitely won’t get pregnant this cycle – or anytime soon for that matter! I’m really not sure how to feel about that fact. After all of our struggles with infertility and all of my wonky, long, anovulatory cycles that drove me bonkers for years, it’s just pretty unreal to not be on the TTC wagon again.
With my first pregnancy, I got my cycle back after 728 days. That’s 38 weeks of gestating and another 15 months of nursing that kept my cycle at bay. I got pregnant with Harvey right away that first long cycle (I finally ovulated on CD37 and miraculously got a BFP).
This time around, I got my cycle back after 700 days. That’s 40 weeks + 4 days of gestating and 13 months of nursing that held off the return of my cycle, but the difference this time around is that I know I have a (non-hormonal) copper IUD in so I can’t get pregnant, and that is SO WEIRD to think about.
Pregnancy is so hard on me, and for a multitude of reasons we are pretty sure we are done with 2 kids. That being said, we are not totally sure that we are done (I often lean towards LET’S HAVE ANOTHER ONE while my husband is more in the NEVER AGAIN camp), and now that it’s real to me that my cycle is back and yet we are actively preventing any possible pregnancies… *sigh*… I don’t know, it just makes me sad and conflicted and relieved and torn. I just wish I knew what our family was “supposed” to look like. Will we try to have a third? Or will we stay a family of four?
Also, how am I so blessed that this is even the question I’m struggling with?
It’s amazing and humbling to remember how I used to pray and pray for just one child in my life, and now I find myself deliberating between two or three. How the world has changed for us in the past four years! I hope to never forget how truly lucky we are to have these children in our lives.
- March 15, 2011 – After nearly two years of TTC, the IUI cycle began that brought us Stella
- December 8, 2011 – I had a couple of weeks of bleeding after she was born, but that was it.
- March 12, 2013 – My first postpartum period, and thus began the (LONG) cycle began that brought us Harvey.
- January 12, 2014 – I had 1-2 weeks of bleeding after Harvey was born, but again, not bad.
- February 10, 2015 – My first postpartum period began, and hence the TTC question is on my mind again… Just 3 periods in 1428 days… wow.
3 periods in 1428 days sounds glorious, if the pregnancy and breastfeeding parts could be optional too 😉 I definitely get the feeling of unsettledness (that’s a word, right?) when considering family size. If only everyone could feel definitively one way and have their partner feel the same, right?!
Yeah, it’s definitely been nice to not deal with a period. On the flip side, I’m kind of hoping my body will figure out this whole cycling thing, b/c it’s definitely not “normal” to be anovulatory and have cycles last 2-6 months, you know? I just want the underlying issues I have to be “fixed” if possible. Who knows…?
And yes, I really wish Charlie and I were on the same page, though I know there’s time for that to happen b/c no way could we afford a 3rd child right now anyway!
Yes, if we have to deal with the old hag AF, the least she can do is follow the rules!
One fortunate side effect I have had since having an IUD inserted in May 2013: no more periods. 🙂
Wouldn’t life be easier if there were a “right” answer to questions like “how many children should I have?”
I actually have the copper (non-hormonal) IUD, so it should NOT be affecting my cycles. They were so fucked up for so long that I really wanted to know if my body would cycle on its own postpartum without other hormonal involvement!
Um, you tagged this TTC#3.
Just sayin’. 😉
Hahaha. Eagle eyes! I did that just in case we ever DO TTC#3….this would be the beginning of that thought process. 🙂
I’m posting another comment because I keep forgetting to change my name on your site and it’s driving me insane. So now I changed it. Finally.
I started my first post-Poppy one last week. It definitely is weird to think about not trying and all that. But I really, really, really think we’re done. I have way more to say. Maybe I’ll just write my own post 🙂
I was chatting with some IF community girls and we all agreed how strange it is to not be trying when you get your cycle back. Almost wrong when you pass up a ewcm day. Like what a waste. 🙂 it’s so biologically and behaviorally ingrained now.
It took 15 months for my period to come back post partum. I have no plan yet what to do. I immediately packed up my maternity clothes to give to a pregnant friend, and decided I want to do a blog giveaway with my clear blue fertility monitor, and then im like really?! I’m just done?! But I think part of you just has to be, or your heart takes over and yearns for more.
I told mark after the delivery I was done, and he asked if he could get that on video. Then like three days later, looking at my son, I’m like….wellllll. 😳
Ha! Isn’t it funny how nature does that? Like… it wasn’t SO crazy. I could do that again!
Yeah, in the moment it was the craziest thing in the world, and then I find myself thinking, well I i had #3 I would need to do it at home because I clearly wouldn’t make it to the hospital. And then I’m like What am i thinking?!
lol, you’re thinking that homebirth would be AMAZEBALLS! 🙂
I can totally relate. We went through a lot for our first 2, then our younger 2 got pregnant first month of trying!
Ours are all close in age, and after the third (2 early miscarriages right before I got pregnant with him), I saw how close my older 2 are and while my husband was VERY happy with 3….I really wanted a fourth. And he is my little guy who is 2 wks younger than Harvey 🙂
I don’t take BC (I already had enough hormones in the past for a lifetime thanks) but we are very very careful. Even with a year of BF each my period always came back by 8-9 months postpartum and I have never gotten pregnant unless we actually “tried” Aka my last 2 babies.
I had horrible morning sickness like you til 18 wks pregnant EVERY time even with meds and lost weight and I really don’t want to do that again..I love babies but I was SO sick.
Feels definitely different to be not trying for another.
The morning sickness is probably the biggest reason my husband is afraid to even think about more kids. I was completely incapacitated. If we tried again, I think it would be in a cpl yrs when the kids are a little more self sufficient in case I’m laid out again. Then I worry I’d want a 4th to be close to the 3rd though, and yeah…. ha! Pre-infertility issues, I wanted 4 and Charlie wanted 3… so it feels very weird to now think we could possible have that big of a family someday. Or who knows, maybe 2 is the number we were supposed to have all along. 🙂
I hear ya! I don’t think I will ever feel “done” but I can’t imagine going back to being that sick either puking 10 plus times a day. It’s horrible as you know. Totally worth it but horrible.
We agreed on 3…then my older son and daughter are so close and my husband came around to a 4th so we decided to try and now the 2 littlest boys are 21 months apart (mine are all under 2 years apart.)
I can’t believe it either. We went through hell to have the first 2, then 2 losses and the last 2 were the first month of “trying.” Blows my mind
Mine only came back after Nicky was 2! So I had a nice break. Wish it was that easy to get pregnant again though.
Yeah, I think every day about how amazingly lucky we were to be “those people” when it came to getting pregnant with Harvey. I literally couldn’t believe it when I saw that 2nd line.
Wow that first line. Crazy!!!!!
I feel very blessed to know our family is set with one child and that we feel content.
It doesn’t matter how many kids you have, if you don’t feel like your family is complete.
obviously you are thrilled with the family you have, but if there is still indecision or longing it’s hard.
Exactly. I’m so happy for you that you DO have that feeling of contentment and peace! I’ll get there too…someday. 🙂
I feeeeeel yaaaaaa.
It’s still so amazingly crazy that you got Harvey on your first cycle back! Just wow!
As we’ve said back and forth to one another – don’t know how I’d feel with something so practical as an IUD. I’m more in the “if it happens” camp for now. And Stan is definitely moving closer and closer to my real home base of LET’S HAVE ANOTHER.
Right? It still blows my mind that we were “those people” with Harvey. Just…insane. Also makes me a little afraid to not be trying this first cycle for a 3rd, you know? Like what if this is our only chance? Gah. I hate IF.
Is that healthy?? seems like way too long… I remember my wife complaining about shark week the month after having both babies… I wonder if your body was still producing eggs and ovulating.
I would love to have another baby girl I just don’t have the patience to raise another child 🙁
LOL. Yeah, if I wasn’t breastfeeding it wouldn’t be healthy, but it’s very common to not have your cycle return until you’re done breastfeeding. Since your wife didn’t breastfeed, it makes sense she got her cycle back right away. I nursed exclusively the entire first year for both of my kids though, and I’m still nursing Harvey 1-2x/day, so it make sense that my hormones are just now regulating enough to allow my body to ovulate. If I was ovulating before, I would have had my period (or be pregnant) right now, and obviously that isn’t the case! The true test is moving forward if my cycle regulates. It was really messed up before when we were trying to have kids, so we shall see…
I would love another baby girl as well, but I also can’t imagine raising 3 children right now!
I felt the exact same way when my period came back after Alex. In fact, I didn’t even go back on the pill until THIS month but have had my period for about 8 months now. We kept our options open until we KNEW we were done. And now, having Alex at 17 months and T at almost 3.5, I’m really looking forward to the next stages of our life – ones that include full nights sleep and no more diapers!
I am still waiting for my period, but I feel it coming. After Matthew weaned, it took a month or so to get it back, and we wanted it to get here so we could start the ttc process again. Now that we are done having kids, it can stay at bay for as long as it wants. Ha! In the last 4.5 years, I’ve had two periods. That is awesome!
I’m getting my tubes tied this fall. My uterus is a potential death trap for me and a potential baby, and we’re so ready to shut it down for that reason. At this point in my life, I’m literally scared to get pregnant. I never thought I’d feel that way.
Still no period for me, but I’m still nursing Callen. I’m going to try the Whole 30 this month in hopes that cutting out sugars, carbs, processed foods, dairy, will help my shitty PCOS body. UGH. I wish I could get a period…I’d love #3!
[…] good ole’ Aunt Flo decided to come back yesterday for the first time in 700 days, I am haaaaarngry. Like, I want to eat ALL THE CHEESY THINGS. This is obviously not great when […]
Just read this and thought of this post.
Wow, AWESOME article. Thanks for sharing.
I’ve shared my story numerous times about getting my period back and how quickly I realized things can happen if you aren’t preventing. And wouldn’t you know, now that I don’t NEED or WANT my period on schedule, that bitch comes every 28 days now! Well, you know what I mean…pretty darn close. I’m more regular than I’ve ever been in my life. I still have our emails with the pics of the line getting darker and darker and HFS it was positive and you were pregnant!! 🙂 My period doesn’t so much bother me but the fertile days when before I’d be wanting to jump JJ’s bones, those days are weird because I’m like, meh, it doesn’t matter anymore. Such a weird place to be in.
This is actually one of the reasons I don’t want AF to return… because it will be soooo weird to have cycles and not be TTC!!! So so weird. And right now we have no plans for birth control so figuring that out too which may possibly mean purposely missing around ovulation time which would be so weird too. Ohh hopefully I still have many months to go before I have to worry though. Oh and now just reading Steph’s comment above, I totally agree about the wanting to jump their bones on fertile days and then now it just feels like “what’s the point?” I know I have to get past that feeling because you know, sex has other purposes!!! But even in the hell of IF.. I always like the feeling of, “This COULD be it.” Ohh why can’t it just be simple?!
I’ve been thinking about this a lot. I don’t actually want a 3rd child, and it would be a really bad idea, career-wise. But I do have major new baby longings – now that Freya is almost 1. When I’m out of the ‘MUST HAVE A SQUISH TO WRAP’ haze, I realize I’m just nostalgic for when my babes were little – not wanting another little one. I hope my period doesn’t come back for a loooonnnnnggg time.