The fertility awareness method is an effective way of tracking fertility signs and can be used when trying to get pregnant and also as a method of contraception either alone or in combination with the barrier method of your choice.
The 3 signs that are primarily used to track fertility are cervical mucus, basal body temperature, and cervical position.
So why would anyone want to take the time to examine her cervical mucus, take a daily temperature reading, or better yet, try to figure out what position her cervix is in today?
Well, that depends on what her goals are, what stage of her life she is in and how much patience she has.
I started tracking my fertility in my early 20s. I had initially started using the pill to deal with my intensely painful and ridiculously overwhelming menstrual cramps, and I was ready to ditch the hormones and start focusing on my health. I have always been wary of taking medications, especially indefinitely…when I’m not actually sick.
So I started by learning how to chart my cycles. I read Toni Weschler’s book Taking charge of your Fertility, made some excel spread sheets and off I went.
I connected with a group of women in my community and began teaching other women to chart their cycles. I created a charting book for myself to be able to keep track of my cycles and shared it with other women in my life who wanted to start charting their cycles too.
Being able to understand how my fertility changes in a cyclical fashion were so fascinating and liberating. It erased all of the “sex ed” scare tactics that had been forced on me in junior high like “you can get pregnant any time and abstinence is the only way to prevent pregnancy (was a Catholic school I attended by the way).
I felt empowered by having this information. It doesn’t mean that I have been diligently charting every single fertile sign every single day for the last 10 years, but it has given me the freedom to make informed choices without feeling like “the pill” was my only option. When I was ready to start a family I had the knowledge I needed to make informed choices with my partner to improve our chances of conception.
My goal for Fertility Friday is to give every woman the opportunity to learn as much about fertility awareness and fertility related health topics as she wants to learn. What you do with that information is then up to you!