We’ve all seen that scene in romantic comedies. You know the one I’m talking about, where there’s a couple who’s madly in love, discussing their future together. Inevitably one of them, usually the woman, brings up having a family some day and the man replies, “I don’t know if I want kids, but I’m sure we’d have fun trying.” Cue steamy love scene.
Or should I say cue ovulation kits, two week waits, and monthly reminders of how the one thing you want more than anything as a couple just. isn’t. happening.
You start out with good intentions. Let’s just keep enjoying each other and our relationship, you think. It shouldn’t be that hard, you think. After a few months, however, you decide that there must be more that you can do. You start reading up on how you can increase your chances, make tweaks in your diet, isolate your fertile window, start nagging your partner to get on board and before you know it, spontaneous screwing has been replaced by regular intercourse that feels just about as sexy as it sounds. What the fuck? Pun intended.
The changes in your sex life are just one way trying to conceive can feel like an interruption to your regularly scheduled relationship. At one point all you want is to change the channel and get back to the way it used to be. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be one or the other. With a little effort on both sides, you can still enjoy life while maximizing your chances of conception.
Here are five suggestions to get you started:
1) Stop baby dancing
Yep. I said it. Stop baby dancing. “Baby dancing” is all about getting pregnant and using that term regularly has been proven to cut your libido by at least half. (Ok, I just made that up. But you have to admit, it’s not exactly a turn on.) The bottom line is, whenever we attach a goal to sex, whether that be multiple orgasms or a positive pregnancy test, it takes away from our ability to fully enjoy it. While it’s useful for getting pregnant, that isn’t the only reason you should be getting down on the regular. Regardless of where you are in your cycle, sex is an opportunity to connect with your partner in a way that nobody else can, to enter into a beautiful conversation that allows both of you to let go, pleasure one another, and of course, “have fun.” If you’re only reserving sex for the days when the ovulation kit says it’s okay, of course it’s going to feel like a chore. Take advantage of the time you have as a couple to rediscover each other’s bodies, points of arousal, and new ways to climax. If you feel like making love most days of the week just isn’t on the agenda, you can read about how to get your sexy back here.
2) Find a passion project
Having a passionate relationship with your partner is great for making babies, but so is having passions of your own. What are you passionate about in your life right now? What part of you is waiting to be awakened? Become involved in volunteer work, learn to play the violin, start getting fancy with your reflex camera. So much of fertility is about our ability to harness our creative energy, so if you feel called to do something creative, whether it be starting a blog or taking that drawing class you’ve always wanted to sign up for, make these activities a top priority. In addition to giving you an escape from your everyday routine, they will help lower your stress levels, reconnect you with parts of yourself that you might have forgotten about, and remind you that there is a whole other world that exists beyond pregnancy tests and baby bumps. And as always, the happier we are with whatever we have going on independent of our significant other, the more joy we can bring back to the relationship.
3) Get busy in the kitchen
Okay, so this may sound like I’m going back to the first point, but I was actually referring to cooking (not countertop sex—although that’s also worth a try). There are so many delicious whole foods that are beneficial to your fertility and preparing to have a baby gives you a great excuse to start adding more of them into your diet. Get creative and start incorporating them into your weekly meals. Change things up and plan to go to a farmer’s market instead of your regular grocery store with your partner on the weekend. Look at all of the beautiful colors of the produce, the luscious fruits, the dark leafy greens. Order your regular supermarket staples online or buy the essentials on a different day so you can have more freedom to let your senses lead the way. If you enjoy cooking together, experiment with a new fertility friendly recipe when you get home. Break out of your comfort zone and be open to where it takes you.
4) Shake your groove thing
A key part of your fertility has to do with how comfortable you are in your body. If nothing else, a negative body image lowers your sex drive and makes it a lot more likely that you will avoid the very thing that could help you get pregnant in the first place (See point 1 above). Traditionally, dance has played a role in fertility, with belly dancing being one of the most ancient rituals. Curiously enough, they’ve found that frequent belly dancing actually tones the very muscles you need for labor and delivery. If belly dancing isn’t your thing, though, any dance that allows you to fully inhabit your body will help. The first time I took Zumba last year, I realized how little of my body I was comfortable using. I’ve always admired women who really know how to shake it on the dance floor, not only for their skill, but also for their ability to own every part of themselves unapologetically. Dance is a powerful tool that can help you keep your body confidence at an all time high.
5) Get away from it all
When the whole process of trying to conceive seems to be taking over your life and you wish you could just escape from it all, do. Planning time away, whether it be a weekend in the mountains or your dream vacation on the beaches of Bali, will give both you and your partner a chance to disconnect from your struggles and reconnect with your love for one another. Spending time in nature also has the added benefit of lowering levels of the stress hormone cortisol and can even give your immune system a boost. When away from home, you’re also more likely to do things that you don’t normally do as a couple, helping you break out of a rut and share experiences that will make your bond even stronger. Plus, seeing them in a different setting will help to reignite the old flame and add the fuel you need for a more passionate relationship once you get back.
Wondering how you can take the shortcut on your road to motherhood? Discover how I prepared myself for pregnancy and conceived my son on the first try! Download my FREE ebook, Your Baby Bump Is Waiting and get my top ten suggestions for improving egg quality, balancing hormones, and letting go of the struggle on your fertility journey.
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