For 30 days, there is a build up. It (usually) starts after a failed cycle. It’s day 1 of a new cycle, and you are armed with the fierce determination to do everything differently this cycle. You eat right, take your vitamins, watch out for your ovulation with a keener eye than an FBI agent, you have enough sex to get you covered and then you wait. Because you are so sure you have done everything right, you mark your calendar for the day your period is supposed to show up, making a mental note to stock up on pregnancy tests before that time. You go through the 2 week wait with so much confidence; experiencing all the symptoms you are supposed to. The comes test day. You grab your pregnancy test(s) and run to the loo. Your excitement and/or anxiety barely keeps you from weeing all over your hand as you struggle to position the test stick properly. Then you set the test down and wait. It’s the longest 3 minutes of your life. And then boom
The negative result hits you in the face like a hot slap. Whether in black and white, as with the digital tests, or that lonely line from the regular tests, the sting is just as painful. NOT PREGNANT.
Sometimes, you accept your fate after that single test, shrug it off and go wait for your period to start. Other times, you wee on multiple sticks, so certain that the previous one was a dud. Of course you’re pregnant, you think. You feel pregnant, you look pregnant, so the tests must be wrong. It takes a while to accept the painful truth that, in fact, you aren’t. I don’t think there’s another reality check more painful than that one.
Unfortunately, for women trying to conceive, and more so for those who have been on the case for a while, we have had this awful awful experience. I have discussed the 2 week wait and its faux symptoms have in another article, but reference has to be made to how we go through the motions and have symptoms so strong that we are sure this cycle SURELY has to be the one.
Because I knew my 2 week wait symptoms were so deceptive, every cycle I would make sure I watched out for the symptoms I had the previous cycle which, obviously, did not lead to anything. Then I would experience a completely new symptom that would convince me that, since I didn’t have that symptom the previous cycle, it could only mean one thing; pregnancy. I was convinced each cycle was different from the previous one, but they mostly turned out the same. Negative, negative, negative!!!
The day I would take a pregnancy test, my ‘pregnancy’ symptoms would be so strong that I would barely be able to get out of bed. Often times, I would feel so ill and nauseous, that I would mostly be useless to myself that day. Then I would grab a pregnancy test, and run to the bathroom. And here’s the funny part. While waiting for the result after peeing on the stick, my symptoms would suddenly vanish. I would suddenly feel absolutely nothing but a huge sense of panic. And the second before the result would jump out at me, deep in my stomach I would already know.
And then I stopped taking the tests. I decided it would be better for me to just get my period;.or preferably not. I was wrong. This was just as heart breaking. The day or 2 leading up to my period, I would have so many damp panty moments, that would see me racing to the toilet to check. Then when I would see nothing, I would be so pleased because, after all, increased cervical mucus and period-like feelings were one of the most common pregnancy symptoms, right?! But even after 100 false alarms, the moment my real period would come, my heart would sink with the knowledge that it was for real this time. The sight of the first swipe, smear, or drops of red blood broke my heart and crashed my dreams so many cycles; .so many cycles.
So what to do after the negative pregnancy test, or period emergence? I will speak from my own personal experience. Give yourself the morning, afternoon, evening, or even the whole day to be disappointed to cry, vent, whatever works best for you. But this must never exceed the day. You mustn’t forget that are in a brand new cycle, there is really no time to waste. If you are trying naturally, start prepping yourself and your partner for your ovulation, and make sure you guys get enough sex in. If you are going the assisted route, now is the time to speak with your Doctor to decide on what is the best route for you. Whichever the case, by day 2, you have to be on a plan for that cycle.
The funny thing? My successful cycle, I didn’t have as strong “symptoms” as I’d previously had. When I walked into the toilet to take my test, it was almost with nonchalance. Even though I had digital tests, I couldn’t be bothered to waste them, so I used one of the regular ones at first. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw 2 lines, so much so that I immediately ran to fetch my digital ones. And sure enough; positive.
It definitely was worth the wait, and immediately erased the pain from my earlier disappointments. If you are still walking that road, I join hands with you in prayer and wish you the breakthrough of a positive pregnancy test, that will lead to a happy and healthy pregnancy, which will heal all the heartbreak from the previous failed cycle.