My first smiley face!

What a difference a day makes! This morning, I had to do a double-take. My OPK (Ovulation Predictor Kit) showed a smiley face. That means I will be ovulating in the next 12-24 hours. Of course, this cycle I can’t TTC, due to my high TSH level, which really stinks. However, it’s the first time in 2 cycles I’ve ever seen a smiley face, and I was thrilled to see it. Perhaps my body is actually functioning somewhat normally.

As I consulted my chart (which I’m so glad I used this cycle), I realized that today is day 32 out of 41. My BBT this morning was 96.63, very low. A normal person’s BBT would go way up tomorrow morning, showing that ovulation did take place. I have a feeling that won’t happen for me, for two reasons: A short luteal phase (LP) and my thyroid issues.

The luteal phase is the time after ovulation and before your next period. It generally stays constant month to month – it’s very reliable. An average LP is about 14 days (hence ovulating on day 14 out of a 28-day cycle, which I don’t do). Doctors recommend that your LP is at least 12 days, and 10 is the absolute shortest it could be. With my smiley face on day 32, and my period starting on day 41, my LP is about 9 days. Is this a problem? Well, yes, but it’s easily treated. It’s a problem because the short duration of the LP won’t allow enough progesterone to be produced. Another way to tell that you don’t have enough progesterone is that your BBT won’t rise much, if at all. Progesterone makes your BBT rise. Without that, pregnancy will not occur, or if it does, probably won’t last long, resulting in a miscarriage. How is it treated? Well, I’ve read about a few things. Doctors will prescribe progesterone pills, or even Clomid, which is to help with infertility. However, I also read about taking B6 vitamins, as that will lengthen the LP. It’s something to ask a doctor. But don’t wait around a year to do this – chart your cycles, and you should find a pattern with your LP month to month. I’d call after the 2nd or 3rd cycle doing this.

In my case, I don’t know if my thyroid issues and now this are related. See, low BBTs are both caused by hypothyroidism and low progesterone  – both of which I have. Anovulation (not ovulating) is also caused by high TSH levels, but with my current cycle, it looks like I’ve avoided that problem. And of course there’s also the fact that I’m only a few months off BC, and for many women, it takes months for everything to even itself out.

So I’m thrilled to get that smiley face, but I’m not out of the woods yet. Again, I’m not TTC this cycle, so it allows me to really pay close attention to what my body is doing. My BBT is low, and we’ll see what happens tomorrow when it’s supposed to rise. If it doesn’t, I’ll bet money on low progesterone. My TSH level is too high (but we’ll see if this new diet helps). I ovulated really late, in a cycle that’s already very long. And my LP will be too short at 9 days, so even if everything else was normal, I still may have had a problem. So I’ve got many strikes against me – but one less than I thought. 🙂

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