Slimming for the Sibling: Trying for Baby #2

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I want to say that I’ve been trying to slim for the sibling since 6 months postpartum but really I was just trying to slim so people wouldn’t think I’ve been sitting around stuffing my face with cheese doodles. If you read my post last month about my body image right now then you know that I’ve been frustrated by my weight loss journey. Last month, I also turned 35. That’s right any pregnancy from here on out will be described as a pregnancy of advanced maternal age. I’m just thrilled about that. So, we had a decision to make, keep waiting for me to achieve my ideal body or work on my body while simultaneously trying for baby #2. After some deliberation with the husband, we decided to go with the latter. That means that for the time being I will continue my current fitness and nutrition regime, while also trying to conceive.

Surrounded by little toddler mess.

This month was the first month that we tried – not with a super bold effort but we did the dance on the dates that my cycle tracking app recommended. What my cycle tracking app didn’t consider was that I would ovulate about a week late. Getting your period a week late when you’re trying to get pregnant can be one of the more disappointing things in life. I should have expected it though, ever since my thyroid got swollen my cycle has been about a week off. But it didn’t help that I have developed serious baby FOMO. It seems like everyone is pregnant with baby #2 right now while I’m just fat, so I was pretty bummed when my period showed up.

I want my fellow Mamas to know that it’s okay to feel a little FOMO when you see other Moms expanding their families, it doesn’t mean you’re ungrateful for the child (or children) you already have. It just means you like being a Mama and you’re crazy enough to want to go through the whole process again for more babies. So yes, I’m of advanced maternal age and I’m crazy. Gimme all the babies! To that end I’m going to share some of the things I’m doing to give us a better chance of snagging that egg:

Started a Prenatal: Back in April I stopped taking my prenatal vitamin. It never made me sick but I kind of felt like it had a bit too much of things, namely B-Vitamins. I then read this study review Excess Vitamin Intake: An Unrecognized Risk Factor for Obesity. To me it made sense and reminded me of something my Mom used to do when I was a kid, which was ask the doctor if there was a vitamin she could recommend to help me gain weight. So I stopped taking it and I started to lose weight. But obviously, if I’m trying to conceive I should be taking vitamins just not an excessive amount of them — you don’t need to take 800% of the daily recommended value for a pregnant woman of vitamin B12. So I looked for a couple weeks, even asked on the Mom boards and then found this prenatal: Zahler Mighty Mini Prenatal Vitamin. For me it’s perfect! No extra B-Vitamins, comes with Selenium and Chromium, and no Magnesium so I can take my preferred magnesium supplement. Been taking it for a few days now and I love it!

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Started taking Vitex: I’ve done a couple rounds of Vitex in the past. The first time I took it was after I stopped taking birth control in 2016 to get my cycle regular. I took it for about two months and then stopped. The second time I took it was after losing Sprout and wanting to make sure my cycle was regular before we tried for Rigel and I got pregnant the first month we tried. I’m taking Nature’s Way Vitex because it’s what I’ve taken in the past. Traditionally, doses between 20-1800 mg/day for a crude herb version of the supplement have been recommended. I just take one capsule a day (400mg) though Nature’s Way does recommend you take it twice daily for the first 8-12 weeks. I have found for myself that one capsule a day is more than sufficient but my irregularity is fairly mild.

Vitex, Pregnancy Tests, and Ovulation Test Strips.

Bought Ovulation Test Strips: This is something that I did not do while trying for Rigel but I’m going to do this time around, at least until my cycle becomes more predictable again. I’m just curious to see how it correlates with my Cycle Tracking App and if anything I’m doing might be affecting it. I got the Pregmate Ovulation Test Strips – hopefully I can figure out how to use those suckers correctly. Wish me luck.

No Two Week Wait Paralysis: If you’ve been trying for a while or have suffered a loss, it’s really easy to come down with a kind of two week wait paralysis while you wait to find out if that baby is going to stick. I’m not going to lie this month I was guilty of it. It’s almost like you think if you just don’t move the fertilized egg with move without issue to your uterus, even though study after study tells us that exercise doesn’t affect implantation and does not cause miscarriage. So going forward I’m going to try my best to continue working out and keeping up with my healthy habits regardless of what symptoms I think I may be experiencing.

Continue Eating Healthy and Exercising: I’m going to continue tracking macros like I have the last month and continue exercising. My exercise emphasis is going to continue to be on cardio because my blood pressure was a concern during my pregnancy with Rigel. I hope to continue using my treadmill throughout my next pregnancy and keeping these blood vessels in tip top shape.

Finished my first Treadmill run since the Thyroiditis this week.

Bought Pregnancy Tests: I spent a dumb amount of money this month on pregnancy tests because I’m an early tester and an over tester. It also didn’t help matters that my period was a week late. So to accompany my Ovulation Test Strips, I also got the Pregmate Pregnancy Test Strips. Even though they’re affordable I’m going to try my hardest to not test until my predicted period date (assuming I have no signs of Aunt Flo arriving).

Bring Back the Romance: You’d think trying to conceive would be fun but it has a way of turning into just another thing you have to do. My husband has already voiced some concern since I told him I was going to be using Ovulation Test Strips. I’ve assured him we’re still going to have fun with this but I really need to know what’s going on with my ovulation, not just for purposes of snagging the egg but also for purposes of more accurate pregnancy dating once we do snag that egg. Beyond that, just being parents in general can remove a lot of the romance, so I’m going to make an effort to bring the romance back. I can neither confirm nor deny that I acquired some lingerie recently (here’s hoping I don’t look like an exploded sausage).

I have all kinds of new fears going into this attempt to go along with the old ones. I worry about how my incision has healed. I worry about my blood pressure. Am I healthy enough to do this again, even though I haven’t lost all the baby weight? Will I be able to have a vbac? What if we have trouble – what would we be willing to do? I should probably just go with the flow but that’s not really my style, I’m a planner, so I can’t help but want to be prepared for every eventuality. Ultimately, I know it’s all in God’s hands and he’ll be sure my body can handle whatever it needs to, so I shouldn’t worry.

Let me know in the comments if you’ve decided to try for baby no. 2 and have some new worries that you didn’t have the first time around. Also, c-section Mamas that had successful vbacs would love to hear what your experience was.

Sending you all baby dust,

Author: Grace G.

New Mom and Retired Lawyer trying to share the ride.

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