Updated: Mar 1, 2022
Before I dive into the whole conceiving thing, i just want to mention that if you have the means and resources to do a proper genetical testing before you even start trying with your partner, please consider to do so. It’s very important as it can point out some genetic mutations that could be harmful for your baby. I know that such recommendations and possibilities vary from country to country but if you can, try to get yourself informed. For us this was very important, so we followed the rules of the book.
First of all, to conceive a child is nothing like what you see in movies. It’s not "we did it once and there was a child." Or at least not in most cases. When we started to be interested in this topic, we asked people and colleagues around us, how long did it take them to be pregnant and the average response was around 4 months. You had those that for whom it unfortunately took almost a year or even longer and had to explore other methods (such as IVFs or surrogacy). We know a small number of people that they said 1 or 2 months and then the majority said they have been trying for around 4-6 months before succeeding.
So when we started to try, we took that into an account that even though I was just changing my work it would take us probably at least couple of months before we are able to conceive successfully. Well, that was not our case. Turned out we were one of those couples for whom it worked out immediately (and don’t take me wrong, we are very grateful for that and we consider ourselves lucky).
When we tried to conceive, I started to follow a few doctors on social media, those doctors that have daily Q&A for their followers and answer their followers' questions related to pregnancy. Some of such questions were, if for example a woman should raise her legs up after the romantic moment in order to increase the chances to become pregnant, or if you should practice a specific position and so on. I wont go deeper into that but know that there are some good resources that you can learn from and which can help you along the way. Just make sure it’s a proper doctor.
I am a person, to whom it matters greatly to do things the right way and so when we said that we are starting to expand our family, I stopped drinking any form of alcohol, reduced the amount of coffee (I am a big coffee lover, or at least I used to be but to that we will get later), I was already eating relatively healthy but I cut on the amount of sugar and processed foods to its minimum. At that time I didn’t know the “healthy living” will not last long.
After a successful conceive, I started to feel immediately that something within my body is changing. Know that not everyone reacts this way and most of our friends found out only around week 5 or 6. As a relatively tiny person, I was not used to having this tender feeling on my chest (not even before my monthly cycle) and so for me that was the immediate sign. I remember that I did a test on Tuesday afternoon, which came out negative but inside me I knew that its not true. Then I waited and did the another test again a day before my cycle was supposed to start and this time there were two lines (one was stronger than the other – yes, turns out that this is totally normal and can happen. Also I didn’t use a sample from my morning urine but an afternoon one) The next day I did another one but this time right in the morning and it clearly stated that “we are pregnant!”
While we were both very excited, neither of us has an older sibling that was recently pregnant and could share with us the “dos and don’ts” and so we started to read and research on the internet. At the same time I scheduled an appointment to the sister in the women clinic that is supposed to be your supervisor throughout the pregnancy. (In Israel, this is the person who will measure your blood pressure, ensure you are getting all the vaccines on time, and so on) I went right the week after to meet her with a lot of excitement, I mean at that point she was the only one who I could tell but when I met her I got the first snap on the face. At first she was very excited to hear the news, brought this little book on pregnancy journey where she and I could basically fill out my test information and keep track on my weight and so on. She started to ask and fill out if there is any history of specific illnesses in my family and then she finally asked me what week I am in. When I told her “week 4” she said: “Oh, so you haven’t even checked if there is a heartbeat?” I said “What? No, I haven't had yet any check up.” and with that she closed the book and told me to come back once we see that there is a heartbeat.
To me this was a shock and also a very scary moment. Maybe other women are more prepared and studied more prior to conceiving or heard more about the different complications in early pregnancies but to me this was a new thing to consider. Suddenly, I understood that not just the conceiving itself may be problematic and difficult but so can be the actual early stage of a pregnancy.