Updated: Feb 18
As a young woman, I was never told anything about how and when I could get pregnant. I was told about periods and how long they lasted. I was taught about using birth control regularly. I wasn’t aware that there was really only 3-5 days my body was capable of conceiving.
I know this is many women’s story. It wasn’t until I was trying to get pregnant on purpose (with our second baby) that I looked up anything about ovulation, fertility and trying to conceive.
Understanding your cycle is more than just trying to achieve or avoid pregnancy though. A normal cycle is a marker for general health, and an abnormal cycle can point to a bigger issue going on in your body. Learning how to pay attention to the signs of your cycle can educate and empower.
Kelly and I learned how this information was lacking in our circles when we were student midwives. As new midwives, we became “that lady” women go to and ask their vagina, sex or period questions. The knowledge of reproductive health doesn’t have to be a secret only professionals understand.
We started our local Wine & Gyn group as a way to gather and talk about women’s health issues to benefit from shared experiences and solutions. Realizing we wanted to bring more accessibility to these conversations, we started the Wine & Gyn Podcast- where we get to share and connect on these topics weekly.
So where do you start if you want to know more about your own cycle and fertility? We have a roundup of the most instructional episodes from the podcast for you to get straight to the good stuff.
Episode 10. Understanding Your Cycle:
There are 4 phases to the menstrual cycle. You know all about menstruation, and may have some understanding of ovulation, but what happens in between and why should you care? Learn how understanding where you are at in your cycle on any given day can foster self-awareness and self-compassion to care for your body as it changes throughout the month.
Episode 27. Understanding Your Hormones:
The trickiest and most complex of all fertility awareness is what your hormones are doing. They essential drive the reproductive system, and every other body system, to do what it does. We break down how the sexual and reproductive hormones interact with each other, how they influence each other and how women can honor and understand the natural rhythms, signs and symptoms of a healthy cycle.
Episode 39. Charting Your Cycle:
Once you have some knowledge about what your body is doing and why, you can begin to track what you’re experiencing each month. Tracking your cycle helps you see over time what days you’re fertile, when to expect your period, and often helps you get to the bottom of some pesky pms and period symptoms.
Episode 43. Signs of Fertility:
Knowing that ovulation is the only time during the cycle that women can get pregnant, it’s helpful to know exactly when this is occurring each month. It can be tricky pinning down exactly what days the fertility window is open, its usually only 3-5 in a month. We share over half a dozen signs to learn, observe and keep track of to know when you’re ovulating each cycle.
In less than 2 hours you can become an expert on your own reproductive health! You have the knowledge, the tools and the support to know exactly when you are ovulating. Use this information as a piece in your natural family planning method of birth control (you can hear/learn about birth control options HERE). Or use this information to get pregnant- our personal favorite, can you blame us? Check out our recommendations page for additional support items to get you going in your fertility awareness journey.
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