Actionable Advice From My Doctor

I got to go to my OBGYN for my normal yearly check up this past week and it was good timing in the grand scheme of things.  We've been trying for about 4 months so I was able to ask all the questions I've been researching on the internet to my real doctor that I trust.  

So I went in and filled out all the paperwork and was genuinely excited to be able to mark "no contraception" and "trying for 4 months."  It's exciting to be able to openly share that.  It felt good to write it on paper knowing that I'd get to talk about it with someone who I trust to give me good advice.  

I had lots of time to think while I was waiting since the office was running about a half hour behind and I'm always way too early to those appointments.  But I was proud of myself.  I put my headphones in and listened to a protection meditation song and just meditated while I was waiting.  I breathed in love and breathed out fear.  When a question would come into my mind, I made a note of it and then went back to focusing on breathing. 

I actively tried not to think about the million different answers to the question and paying attention to the meditation track seemed to help.  It didn't always work but I felt relatively calm through the whole waiting period.  Relative to some of my past visits where I've worked myself up into crying the moment she walked in the door.  Have I mentioned how much I hate going to the doctor?  Well I do.  It's makes me feel small and out of control and stupid and in the past it has been like pulling teeth to get my doctors to take my complaints seriously. But that is a story for another day.

Here are the questions I thought to ask in the moment:

  • Does everything seem ok as far as you can tell?

  • If I'm still not pregnant, when can we start doing testing for fertility issues?

  • What foods should I be eating or avoiding?

  • What else can I do to help the process?

That's all I could think of that made sense to ask my doctor.  All my worry and anxiety boiled down to 4 real questions.  So here are the answers she gave me: 

Does everything seem ok as far as you can tell?

Yes.  Everything seems fine.  It just takes some couples longer than others to conceive. 

What foods should I be eating or avoiding?

  • High protein, low carb, lots of fruits and vegetables.

  • And take a prenatal vitamin. When you get a positive pregnancy test switch to one with DHA.

  • Cut out caffeine.

  • Not too much alcohol. (She said one drink a day was fine until I got a positive pregnancy test.)

What else can I do to help the process?

  • Walk for at least 30 minutes every day.

  • You do not need to have sex everyday! Have sex every two or three days starting after your period until you are sure you've gone past your ovulation day. If your cycles even out, and you can predict your ovulation day you can just have sex two days before, the day of, and two days after your predicted ovulation day.

  • If you have two more cycles that are 6 weeks or longer make an appointment because we can do some testing.

If I'm still not pregnant, when can we start doing testing for fertility issues?

"If you are not pregnant by winter, let's do some testing.  We can test your hormone levels and make sure nothing jumps out and we can do a semen analysis. 

Some people wait a year or two before even asking about getting testing done and that is crazy.  We want you to get pregnant if that's what you want so don't wait forever to come in and start the fertility testing process."

(I remember this part verbatim because I was so surprised by it!)

Can I just say how much I love my doctor? 

She is just the amount of chill that I want in a doctor who has to look up my lady business every time I go to see her. 

In all my research online I have never heard ANYONE say that their doctor started their fertility testing before the 1 year mark of trying to conceive. And here goes my doctor like, 10 months is plenty of waiting, let's get the testing going if you are not pregnant by winter.  My god I love her!!!

She's basically making me wait to do testing as long as I would have to wait from conception to birth of an actual baby.  That seems appropriate to me.  I can definitely get on board with that system. 

And she didn't tell me that I was too fat!  Funny how that feels like a victory!  I mean don't get me wrong I already know that I could be healthier but how she phrased it works for me.  Eat better, walk more, no caffeine.  These are things I have control of.  These are choices I can make on a day to day, hour to hour, minute to minute, choice by choice basis.  I can't just tell my body, 'stop being fat.'  That is not actionable advice. But I can choose to put down the dinner roll and pick up the broccoli.  I can choose to walk around the neighborhood instead of watching my 8th episode of The Office today. I can choose to do a shot of captain rather than have a captain and diet pepsi. 

These are choices that I can make.  And now that I have heard this actionable advice from a reputable doctor not just the internet I feel even more committed to making the choices that will support my body while trying to conceive. 

Have I mentioned I love my doctor?  God, I love her.  She seems to understand what to say and how to say it.  Not many doctors that I have met can do that.

I wonder how many of us can truly say that they have a doctor they trust...let me know in the comments below. 

Trying to Conceive - Actionable Advice From My Doctor