faith, mom life, patience, pregnancy, ttc, tww

TTC Over 40 | Cycle 8 – Two Week Wait Symptoms

cycle day 22 – 8 dpo

If there is ever a time where my talents, skills and abilities are entirely wasted and useless, it is during the week before my cycle is predicted to begin. During the final 7 days of the two week wait (TWW) to find out if we’re pregnant, I tend to be on auto-pilot with my work and family responsibilities. Every moment I get to myself is spent obsessing over my chart (my newest thing to do since I just started basal body temperature [BBT] tracking last cycle) or reading the posts on an internet “birth (message) board” that corresponds with my predicted estimated due date (EDD). Recently, however, I’ve been less and less prone to engage in these time-stealing, obsessive behaviors. I’ve learned how to balance the madness by obsessing *only* when I actually have time, which, thankfully, is not as often as it had been previously. Ahhhh, progress.

Today is 8 DPO and I’m feeling very much like we REALLY did it this cycle. Granted, I feel super hopeful EVERY cycle but, for some reason, I think this one is IT. Here’s why:

  • Headaches. I’ve had a nagging, mild headache for the last couple of days. This is an unusual “symptom” of my TWW. It’s actually unusual, in general, for me to have headaches at all. Dr. Google says it could be dehydration or caffeine withdrawal or an increase in blood volume due to hormonal surges as my body prepares for baby. I know for sure it’s not the first two reasons, so I’m clinging to the hope that my brain is just swollen.
  • Breast tenderness. 1-2 days before or during ovulation, my breast tenderness kicks in with a huge and sudden surge of soreness around the outsides of my breasts (and into my armpits – ouch). The intensity of the pain lasts for up to 3 days before leveling out and eventually fading away 2 days after my period starts. It’s a pretty consistent symptom month after month. In this cycle, the tenderness began at the predicted time but with an unusually low intensity. Gradually, my breasts increased in soreness until they reached full-blown “don’t come anywhere near my boobs” level yesterday (7 DPO). And, there, they remain today.
  • Intuition. This is a big one! We have had two miscarriages since starting our conception journey and in *both* cycles that we conceived, I absolutely knew we had successfully caught the egg. I clearly remember during our first cycle, at about 4 dpo, I woke up totally sick for no apparent reason and hurled into my bathroom trash bin. Moments later, I excitedly told the hubs, “we did it on the first try!”. I was right. Unfortunately, it wasn’t meant to be at that time. In our second pregnancy, we baby danced on a Friday and immediately after, I felt intense cramping and I said to myself, matter-of-factly, “we did it”. That time, though, I didn’t say anything out loud to the hubs but I was right. We lost that baby, too. A couple of Sundays ago (cycle day 12) we were together and intimately loving on each other when I heard a whisper in my soul that “this is it”; should we conceive this cycle, *this* time, this day, would be when it was going to happen.

    What’s more… I had been temping and doing ovulation predictor kit (OPK) test strips to predict my LH surge and had yet to see a positive. Logically, I knew that because I tend to ovulate between cycle day 13-16 (average 15th) I would be ovulating within the next few days. The next day (Monday), my temp took a big dip and my OPK was peak positive, which meant I would ovulate within 12-24 hours. Perfect timing!
  • Cramps. Ok, so this one is tricky. I’ve been cramping during my luteal phase in every cycle we’ve had since we started TTC. And, when looking back at my notes, I experienced *less* cramping in my pregnancy cycles than in my non-pregnancy cycles. That said, I’ve had mildly uncomfortable cramping since 1 DPO. Sometimes it feels like sharp pains in the area where my ovaries are, sometimes it feels like cramping of my entire pelvic area. It can also feeling like a tugging, pinching or pulling at times.
  • Shortness of breath. I was quickly winded today when I picked my daughter up from school and we walked up a very short, low-grade hill towards our home. Last night, I had a hard time catching my breath after I climbed into bed and settled in to a cuddling position with the hubs. Weird. I recognize this symptom from the early pregnancy signs in our last pregnancy.

Other than what’s listed above, I have no other symptoms today. I’m not particularly hungry nor do I have to pee a lot and I’ve been feeling cold (as usual). My temps have been interesting since they have been the same (“flat”) for 3 consecutive days. I experienced 4 days of mostly flat temps in my last luteal phase (with a spike on 6 DPO), so I think this is just how my body is. I’m not reading too much into it.

Oh! And, I took a First Response Early Results (FRER) pregnancy test today (way too early for testing!) and it was negative. Blah. It says it can predict pregnancy in up to 99% of women 4 days before their cycle begins, which is close to where I am right now. But, I’m thinking (I don’t know for sure) that’s it is based on a “typical” 28-day cycle with a 14-day luteal phase; my luteal phase is 11-12 days. Typical implantation happens anywhere from 6-12 DPO but averages between 7-9 DPO and then it takes two days for there to be enough hCG to register on a FRER. So, that means that if I implanted yesterday (7 DPO), I wouldn’t get a positive until tomorrow, at the earliest. My cycle is due on Sunday, so we shall see!

I’m still praying every day for clarity on God’s purpose for me during our TTC journey. What am I supposed to do with the wisdom I have gained and the character I’ve developed during this 7-month long process? I’m not sure what He wants me to do but I can’t get stuck and sit around waiting. I look for signs and pray for clarity every day and I know, in God’s time, it will come.

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