3 years ago, my husband Shawn and I decided that we would try one last time for a baby shortly after my 35th birthday. My girls have been nagging me for a baby brother for a few years and we were hoping to welcome a boy. Especially my husband, because he grew tired of being outnumbered by me and my daughters every time, for absolutely everything.
We thought it would be a smooth journey of conception after 1-2 attempts like my two past pregnancies. But this time round, I failed to conceive for over 6 months!
Struggling to conceive in my mid-30s
Honestly, I was not surprised. My biological clock was ticking, I didn’t even know if my body had what it needed to support a pregnancy or bring about one. Doctor appointments began with back-to-back blood tests and the plants/photo frames on my dresser were replaced by stacks of hormone supplements and fertility medications.
I was starting to get a fair idea that my youngest baby will turn out to be my hardest pregnancy.
I soon grew tired of all the wacky diets like seed cycling, bitter supplements, and spraining my back time and again doing prenatal yoga. My internet search history was 90% fertility hacks and 10% diet hacks for fertility.
During this time I had filled a shoebox with ovulation strips that I was using for two weeks every month. I hid them away because I didn’t want my husband to find them in the trash and pity me for what I was going through. My cousin Natasha came across this shoe box and gave me an hour-long lecture on why ovulation kits don’t work and “fertility trackers” are the newest fertility fad that helped her conceive twice!
In no time, I ordered five different kinds of trackers and somehow all of them required me to test them in different ways.
Zeroing down on the perfect tracker
My first step was to keep the “fancy” fertility trackers aside. One of them required me to put a pin up my arm for a few days which looked snazzy but was very uncomfortable indeed. The other two didn’t measure progesterone which I learned was the key fertility hormone without which you can never be sure that you actually ovulated.
This left me with two options. Both were nice-looking, handy, and easy-to-use fertility monitors with amazing reviews across the internet, so I continued testing with both for nearly two cycles until I ran out of strips. Then it came down to the wire.
While the oval monitor was working well for me, it had to be used twice a day with two sets of strips to measure fertility hormones like LH and progesterone separately. I didn’t even mind peeing into a cup more than once. The problem arose when I had to place an order for test refills.
It was costing me more than I expected as I had to place an order for two sets of strips. Inito worked with one set of strips, required me to test only once a day, and even offered good subscription prices.
So I decided to stick with the option that was more affordable and convenient in the long run.
Testing my hormones with Inito
At the outset, I was pretty impressed to see how a simple urine sample can give you a world of information about your hormones. Both the fertility monitors did a great job showing me exact hormone values with nicely arranged charts that could be shared easily on online messaging platforms.
What stood out to me was how Inito worked.
When I started using it, the Inito app asked me a ton of questions about my vitals and specifics about my health like past pregnancies and conditions like thyroid. After using it for a cycle, it started giving me more information about my body by studying my hormone trends over the 15 days that I tested with it.
It also did a lot of hand-holding by telling me when to test and ‘what’ gets tested ‘when’ which was a huge bonus for me as I could check the internet parallelly for more information on them.
Natasha also pointed out that Inito was the only fertility monitor that tests ‘Beta LH’ levels instead of Alpha LH and that’s good news for us because Beta LH lowers the chances of cross-reaction with other hormones and gives more accurate results.
Finding out that I have anovulatory cycles
While I was taking medication for almost every hormone ranging from estrogen, and thyroid to progesterone, I had no idea what was working and what wasn’t.
After testing for two cycles, I was able to track my fertile window, but Inito never confirmed my ovulation. I got in touch with their backend team just to double-check my results and they confirmed that my progesterone didn’t rise at all and asked me to correlate my hormone charts with a medical professional.
I was so thankful that I did because that’s how I found out about a condition called ‘anovulation’ or not ovulating. This turned out to be the primary reason why I was not able to conceive for so long.
After taking the medical route for over three months, I got in touch with a fertility coach and tried to make a few additions to my diet and made lifestyle changes that were prescribed earlier for me.
What was different this time, was that I was able to track changes in my hormone trends. This was my chart during an anovulatory cycle during my first two months of testing.
After making lifestyle changes for nearly 3 months, I was so thrilled to see my progesterone rising again!
This small glimmer of hope was a game-changer for me.
Inito helped me conceive successfully!
Five months after I opened my Inito Starter Kit, I finally got a positive result on my pregnancy test. We tested a few times just to be sure as my fertility coach warned me about getting my hopes up too early.
Through all the months of testing, I figured out how each hormone played such a crucial role in bringing about your ovulation and supporting your pregnancy.
In the middle of my fourth month of testing, I even discovered that my LH levels surge twice in the same cycle! This kind of explains why ovulation kits failed to work for me in these cases.
We were overjoyed to find out that we were having a boy after all. My doctor put me on progesterone supplement along with thyroid supplements during the first trimester.
I can’t emphasize enough how hormone tracking can make your TTC journey so much smoother. The right kind of fertility monitor makes all the difference and for me, Inito ticked all the boxes.
If you want to learn more about this device and if it will fit your TTC requirements, you can join their Facebook community and visit their website.