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Trying to Conceive Coping Tips Ebook

By September 23, 2016 Featured Home

booktable_nQuick-read guide offering 30+ practical spiritual, mental and physical tips to cope while trying to conceive in your 40s. No depressing medical jargon or statistics. Written by author who conceived naturally, gave birth at ages 42 and 44 to healthy babies and now offers live support/coaching based on this ebook.

MEET MOM DINAH MEYER CICENAS

By September 1, 2016 Blog, Featured Home, Featured Moms, Uncategorized
Dr.-Meyer-with-son

Name: Dinah Meyer Cicenas

Age when you gave birth: 39 (Son born only days before 40th birthday)

State of residence: Ohio

Child’s name: John

Current Profession: Associate Professor of Psychology, Licensed Psychologist

PREGNANCY

How long were you trying to get pregnant?

I was not! I did not get married until I was 39, and my husband was 48. We just kind of assumed that we were too old to have a child, and I foolishly thought that 39 was too old to get pregnant!

What did you do or not do to increase your chances of getting pregnant after 40?

I became pregnant about 3 weeks after our wedding, but I didn’t find out until I was about 8 weeks along. I had been feeling ill nearly every day for a couple of weeks, but the sickness never hit me until about noon, so I never recognized my “morning sickness”.

I taught a 1:00 class and would sit in my office beforehand feeling sick as a dog, so I had to cancel that class several times. One day, driving home after cancelling the class yet again, I was ready to call my doctor because I was sure I had some virus. It suddenly hit me that I should take a pregnancy test, although I was sure that couldn’t be it.

I know now that was the Lord telling me what was going on, because I was clueless! Of course, the test stick turned blue in a second because at that point I was nearly 8 weeks pregnant. I was so shocked I took the “used” test to a public dumpster to throw away so my husband wouldn’t find it! I then took a second test and was able to get into my Ob/Gyn that afternoon, where a blood test confirmed the news. I waited another day to tell my husband, so he could accompany me for the ultrasound, which I insisted upon because I just couldn’t believe it.

 MEDICAL COMMUNITY

How supportive were your doctors during your pregnancy?

My longtime OB/Gyn, Dr. Costa, was so happy for me, incredibly supportive and calmed my concerns about my age. She kept telling me that tall women (I’m 6’1) do very well during labor and she was right in my case! I did have some issues with low blood pressure and fainting during the pregnancy (unrelated to my age) so I was also followed by a cardiologist.

Did you change doctors or would like to have changed doctors? Why or why not?

No, I couldn’t have been happier with Dr. Costa.

FAMILY AND FRIENDS

What was the reaction of friends and family when you told me about your pregnancy?

Shock. We had just gotten married, and I think everyone else had assumed we were too old to have kids! However, everyone was thrilled. My in-laws were in their mid-80’s at the time and were so happy that their only son was having a son.

LABOR AND DELIVERY

Did you take any childbirth classes? Why or why not?

Yes, we took childbirth and breastfeeding classes. Both were helpful, although I feel that no class can adequately prepare you for the realities of breastfeeding. I found it to be the hardest thing I had ever done in my life, but a one-on-one consultation with a lactation consultant a week after my son’s birth turned everything around. I nursed my son for 14 months and loved every second.

What do you remember most about the birth experience?

It was the happiest day of my life. I stayed at only 2 cm for about 6 hours, but after having an epidural, went to 10 cm in about 45 minutes! I’m so happy I had the epidural – after that I felt intense pressure, but no pain and was really able to enjoy my labor and birth!

I do have to admit, however, I wasn’t prepared at all for the roller-coaster of post-partum emotions. From the moment I got in the wheelchair to leave the hospital with my baby and throughout the 40 minute drive home, I sobbed in the back seat while my husband drove. All I could think about was how scared I was and how suddenly our lives had changed forever. I’m very blessed that those feelings dissipated quickly and I had no problems with post-partum depression, but I encourage women to seek medical help right away if their sadness persists.

The other very memorable thing is that my son was born days before my own birthday – in fact, we came home from the hospital ON my 40th birthday! What a miraculous gift.

I AM MOM

What concerns you most about being a mom over 35 and how do you address these concerns?

I do worry at times about my son being an only child with 2 older parents. My husband and I have both had some health issues the past few years, but are taking care of ourselves the best we can. We want to be grandparents someday!

What do you enjoy most about being an older mom?

Everything. Every cliché you hear about motherhood is true – I never could have imagined experiencing such an intense love and I’m so grateful that I didn’t miss out.

How has becoming a mom changed you?

After living pretty much only for myself for 39 years, the sacrificial part of parenthood has definitely been an adjustment, but one I’ve taken on happily. Motherhood changes every part of you – you can’t look at the world or other people the same way anymore.

What advice do you have for women considering motherhood after 35?

Well, I’m not sure I’d wait as long as I did if one has a choice (and I know some women don’t have that choice) – I do have less physical energy than I did 20 years ago. However, I’m so appreciative of every moment with my son, and think sometimes how much “color” he’s added to my life. I would encourage more mature moms to build a support network of other moms with young children. I’ve been blessed to find a group of amazing women with kids my son’s age. Most of these moms are in their late 20’s and early 30’s, but we’re all at the same developmental place in our lives right now.

 

Becoming A Mom in Your 40s Myths Still Strong

By August 29, 2016 Articles, Popular Posts
pic10-Midlife motherhood myths dispelled

Although I’ve added some new content to this post, originally Midlife Motherhood Myths Dispelled by a Midlife Mom, the main content is still as timely and relevant as it was years ago. Why are these myths still popular?

This morning I just saw/read a Hot Celebrity Moms who gave birth in their 40s list.  Halle Berry is holding firm to her spot on the list  followed by Salma Hayek.  I don’t understand how the myths still linger while being so far from the truth. Here are three of the most common misconceptions. Read More

Meet Mom Jill Jonas

By August 1, 2016 Blog, Featured Home, Featured Moms, Uncategorized
Jill & Baby-1

Name: Jill Jonas

Age when you gave birth: 36

Child’s name and age: Dean, 9 weeks

Current or former profession(s): I have worked abroad quite a bit (Egypt, Dubai, Mexico) and international business is my career passion. Since living in New York, I work for a medical device company.

PREGNANCY

How long were you trying to get pregnant? 

We were very fortunate and got pregnant right away in the first month we tried. We decided to try for a late spring/summer birth month and voilá! I thought it would take a couple of months at least.

However, it wasn’t completely smooth sailing at the beginning. We had two doctors tell us we weren’t pregnant and that we’d had a chemical pregnancy! Although I knew something was happening, we were in limbo for about two weeks. Finally, the HGC blood test (it test your levels 48 hours apart) results came back. My levels were rising nicely. Okay, I thought to myself, so we ARE pregnant and then glorious 9 months followed.

What did you do or not do to increase your chances of getting pregnant after 35?

We did not take my age into consideration when we were trying to conceive. It was pretty simple – I knew my cycle and we had a time frame to try. What we did not do is stress.

On another note: When I thought that we had a chemical pregnancy, it opened my eyes to how much time and effort getting pregnant could really take, as well as the emotions involved. I am very grateful to have had this realization. It makes me appreciate Dean even more.

SUPPORT

Medical Community

How supportive were your doctors during your pregnancy?

My doctor is the one who joked with me about the AMA(advanced maternal age) he had to put after my name on my charts. He said, “for NYC you’re a baby”. So, that’s very supportive, I guess!

Did you change doctors or would like to have changed doctors? Why or why not?

I changed doctors before we conceived. I was not happy with other OBGYN’s I had gone to previously in the city. My GP (general practitioner) recommended Dr. Andrew Scheinfeld and he only takes patients who are pregnant or trying. He is an expert at pregnancy and delivering babies – which is what I wanted and what I got!

Family and Friends

What was the reaction of friends and family when you told me about your pregnancy?

My in-laws were elated and surprised. We put t-shirts on our niece and nephew with the words “number one cousins” on the front with our due date on the back. It took them a while and a little encouragement to realize what those shirts meant. Once they realized what it meant, they were ecstatic. Nothing was ever said about my age.

Jill & Baby-3

When we surprised my mother, I learned something that day. She came to New York (I’m from St Louis and that’s where most of my family lives) to visit and to celebrate her birthday with Josh (my husband) and me.  When we decided to tell her the news,  I made her a birthday cake and wrote “#1 Grandma” on it. We walked out and presented her with the cake. She was so surprised, but then noticed what was written on top.

She thought we were making fun of her age and just calling her a grandma! It turns out she wasn’t expecting me to have children.  She thought I was just focused on career and other things. Once she realized that I was pregnant, she teared up and was so happy. Even though she wanted grandchildren very much, she did not burden me with that pressure. and I am very thankful for that. I am even more thankful that she is now a Grandmother, Grammy T!

On another note, anyone who has children later in life risks losing someone close to them before it can happen. I lost my father 3 years ago to cancer. Every day I think about how he would be as a grandfather, but it wasn’t meant to be. He never put any pressure on me to have children, either. I’m sure that if he had seen “Grandpa” on his cake, I would have learned something that day, too.

Labor and Delivery

What do you remember most about the birth experience?

Luckily I remember everything. I’m not THAT old! Since we did not know the gender, the best part was hearing, “it’s a boy” and then seeing this amazing little boy held before us, behind the clear curtain. I had a gentle C- section. Dean was breech for almost the entire pregnancy. My husband and I felt like we already knew the little guy the moment we laid eyes on him!

 I AM MOM 

What concerns you most about being a mom over 35 and how do you address these concerns?

Having a second child. I don’t think I will have time to mentally prepare for that, before it is a little too late. Another concern is one that any parent has, being around for them as long as possible.  This motivates me to stay fit and healthy.

What do you enjoy most about being an older mom?

I’m just enjoying being a mom! You cannot truly describe the feelings it brings or the experience with words. It’s the best thing I have ever had the privilege to do.

How has becoming a mom changed you?

Everything has a bit more meaning. Also, I’m much better utilizing the time that I have everyday. It’s hard to procrastinate these days!

What advice do you have for women considering motherhood after 35?

Don’t read (focus) too much into what you read about– articles like if it is the best time for you to try for a family or to add to your family. Do it your way and don’t let anyone tell you how you should feel or what you should fear.

Jill & Baby -2InSeason Mom Founder Cynthia would like to thank Jill for sharing her story!  Are you over 35 or in your 40s trying to conceive or first time mom to be? Could use emotional support from a woman who’s been through what you’re going through? Get live support from Cynthia http://inseasonmom.org/trying-to-conceive-in-your-40s-coping-tips/

Meet Jennifer Workman

By July 1, 2016 Blog, Featured Home, Featured Moms, Getting Pregnant After 35 and 40, Uncategorized
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Name: Jennifer Workman (pictured above with son)

Age when you gave birth: 37

State/Country of residence: Columbia, SC

Child’s name and age: Jaarr

Current or former profession(s): Author, Inspirational Speaker, Entrepreneur, Playwright http://jyworkman.wix.com/jennifer

PREGNANCY

How long were you trying to get pregnant?

I didn’t have a set time.  When it needed to happen, the Lord blessed me to have my son. That’s the best way I can explain it!

What did you do or not do to increase your chances of getting pregnant after 35?

Positive thinking and speaking it into existence for the Bible states emphatically that “life and death is in the power of the tongue (Proverbs 18:21, NIV).”

SUPPORT

Medical Community 

How supportive were your doctors during your pregnancy?

I was thankful to have a very experienced and compassionate group of people in the medical field around me. They made the process so much easier as I was going through my pregnancy. They were willing to answer any questions or concerns that I had. I’m grateful for the experience.

Did you change doctors or would like to have changed doctors? Why or why not?

I kept the same doctors through the process and I wouldn’t have had it any other way!

Family and Friends

What was the reaction of friends and family when you told them about your pregnancy?

My family was very happy for me especially my mother because she was waiting for a long time for me to have children and was very supportive and helpful.

LABOR AND DELIVERY 

What do you remember most about the birth experience?

The birth experience was slightly scary as this was my first time. But to my surprise, the Lord blessed it to be a smooth transition.  I did have a caesarean section which was very uncomfortable. Other than that, to see my beautiful baby boy and to hear his melodious cry made it all worthwhile! I would do it all over again!

I AM MOM!
jen and son (2)

What concerns you most about being a mom over 35 and how do you address these concerns?

I really don’t have many concerns. I pray the Lord gives me the strength at 40+ and patience to be a good mom and to be able to do all the things for my son as any other parent. Other than that, I am okay and I pretty much go with the flow.

What do you enjoy most about being an older mom?

I thank God for the wisdom that he has given me to impart to my son at this age that I may not have been able to do at an earlier age. I am just more settled minded at this age and I believe that this is both beneficial to myself as well as my son.

How has becoming a mom changed you?

Being a mom has changed me in many ways and has given me more focus for life. All before, I was more individually focused. Now, I have a child that’s dependent upon me. My love has expanded and my desire is to be a good mom, good role model and example for him and others to follow. I recognize that he’s learning from what he sees, patterned by myself and his father. I don’t take this lightly!

What advice do you have for women considering motherhood after 35?

Don’t fear having children or parenting after 40 for it is a great and rewarding experience. God doesn’t make mistakes. If He has given you the opportunity, at this venture in your life, to be a parent, know that He has entrusted you to be a good mother. Utilize what He has equipped you with the best you can. All that matters is He loves you and will help you along the way!

Additional comments?

Cynthia’s note: Below is an article Bouncing Baby Boy: The Joys of toddlers Growth and Development  Jennifer wrote about her son Jaarr:

jen and son (1)

 

“Oh, the joys of motherhood!”  I am so thankful for the great privilege and opportunity that I’ve been given to raise a strong, courageous, rambunctious and gifted little boy. The Lord blessed me with my son (Jaarr) on March 25th, 2012 and ever since, it has been a rich, full and rewarding experience. But, what has made it an even more enjoyable experience was when I noticed several months ago, my toddler constantly bouncing and “boogeing” to every genre of music. He loves music! It doesn’t matter what is transpiring during the day. If he hears music, he will stop what he is doing altogether and begin to dance all around the house.

“And I do mean boogie.” With legs lifted, arms extended, shoulder jerking motions, and all, he “parties like it’s nineteen ninety nine.” It is the funniest thing to behold and if I am feeling hard-pressed and tired from a long day, seeing him makes me “laugh exuberantly.

Not only does my son participate in this form of “active play” but he encourages my active participation in the process. I think I may have a professional dancer in the making or is that just “my wishful thinking?” I believe that whether he is a dancer, doctor, lawyer, and/or preacher, he is going to make a great contribution to the world!

In the meantime, I am going to continue to educate, motivate and cultivate an atmosphere of “active play” that is essential to his overall physical, psychological and emotional development. Furthermore, if he chooses to dance, then dance it is. If he wants to play, then play it is. Or, if he wants to read, write, or otherwise, then “so be it.” Children are like “sponges” and “soak up” everything around them. In other words, they are constantly learning from their environment. That is why we as parents must give them the freewill to explore and learn.

 

Meet Rachel Demas

By June 7, 2016 Blog, Featured Home, Featured Moms
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Name: Rachel Demas

Age when you gave birth: 44

State of residence: New York

Child’s name and age: Claire, 4

Current profession: Freelance Writer/Editor

PREGNANCY

How long were you trying to get pregnant?

We tried for about a year and a half. I got pregnant fairly quickly for the first time, but had a miscarriage at 13 weeks. We followed our doctor’s advice, and took about a six month break after my miscarriage. I got pregnant a second time about two months after we started trying again, but I lost that pregnancy at five weeks. We didn’t wait following that loss, and I became pregnant with our daughter, Claire, around three months later.

What did you do or not do to increase your chances of getting pregnant after 40?

I went to a fertility specialist to make sure everything was in working order. The doctor said that I checked out fine. In fact, he practically gushed when he saw how many eggs I had on the ultrasound. He told me that he had thirty-year-old patients who would be quote “jealous” of my “egg supply”. While I was happy to hear the good news, his comment also made me really uncomfortable. I wish that he had managed to relay that information in a manner that was more matter-of-fact.

SUPPORT 

How supportive were your doctors during your pregnancy?

In general, I think the term “geriatric pregnancy” needs to go. I found that the medical community has a tendency to lead with that age-based assessment, and see you through this lens throughout your pregnancy. Specifically, though, I felt incredibly supported by the midwife, Barri Malek, who delivered our baby. The unfortunate thing was that there were four midwives in the practice, and I saw each of them during routine check-ups. I didn’t feel as supported by them, because they could be quite doom and gloom about all of the complications that can happen when you are pregnant past a certain age (none of the complications happened to my baby or me).

My husband and I were hoping that Barri would deliver our baby, because of her positive attitude. But we weren’t able to choose a specific midwife from the practice. Basically, the policy at the birthing center was that when a woman goes into labor, the midwife who is on duty that week delivers her baby.

Indeed, we hit the jackpot and went into labor when Barri was on duty. My labor went like clockwork (eight hours), but we had two complications during delivery (neither of which was likely due to my age). Claire had a shoulder dystocia, which Barri nimbly fixed with no harm to our daughter. More concerning, I had a postpartum hemorrhage, which could have been life-threatening. I lost about two liters of blood.

Barri stopped the bleeding, and I feel that I owe my life to her. Later, she told me that she attributes her expertise in postpartum hemorrhages to her time spent delivering babies in Indonesia, something I highly doubt many traditional doctors could boast.

Did you change doctors or would like to have changed doctors? Why or why not?

I was originally with an obstetrician, who referred to me as a “geriatric pregnancy” at our first appointment. I wasn’t thrilled with our rapport with her, but she seemed smart, knowledgeable and experienced. We went to her until I was eight months pregnant, when we decided to look elsewhere. It was not a decision that my husband and I took lightly, but I was committed to having a natural birth if I was able with as few interventions as possible, and we came to feel that our obstetrician would not be as amenable to this idea as we had originally thought. It was hard to be so close to the end of my pregnancy without having everything in place (or a place to go. I joked that I felt like Mary looking for a place at the inn!)

But at my eight month check-up, my husband and I asked our obstetrician if we could start talking about a birth plan. At the mere mention of the words “birth plan”, she became incredibly strident.  Before we could even get into any specifics about what we had in mind, she told us that quote “she was the captain of the ship” and that “if we didn’t like that, we could leave her practice now.” The thought bubble over my head was “I thought the baby was the captain of the ship not you”. But I didn’t see the point of getting into an argument with someone who, clearly, had ideas that were different from ours, so I said ok and left.

That day, I started looking for another place to give birth. I found a birthing center, which was farther away from our house than we had wanted. But it turned out to be the best decision we have ever made, because I was able to give birth to my daughter naturally like I had wanted.

It’s funny how situations that are extremely stressful and trying can sometimes end up being the best thing that could have ever happened to you! I have ended up feeling thankful to the obstetrician for, basically, giving us the boot from her practice! Also, I attribute my willingness to leave her practice to the wisdom of age.

As I have grown older, I have learned to trust my own instincts and to push through the fear of not knowing what was going to happen. I think that, if I had been a younger version of myself, I probably would have believed that the doctor knew best and stayed with her out of fear of making a wrong decision.

What was the reaction of friends and family when you told me about your pregnancy?

Everyone was extremely thrilled.

LABOR AND DELIVERY

What do you remember most about the birth experience?

Of course, seeing my baby for the first time was the most memorable and amazing part of giving birth. Probably every woman feels that way, but it has special meaning when you become a mom after a certain age. You aren’t given much hope that you will have a baby, so you have a tremendous sense of God’s grace in this gift. Also, when you are pregnant after a certain age, you are told that there can and probably will be complications from beginning to end. Until you see your baby for the first time, you aren’t sure whether you or your baby will be a casualty of poor statistics. So when I saw Claire, it was a moment of great joy about life’s abundance and the power of surrendering to the unknown, as well as incredible relief that we had made it safely to the end.

I’M A MOM

What concerns you most about being a mom over 35 and how do you address these concerns?

I definitely have less energy than I did when I was in my 20’s or early 30’s. I think I am a more tired mom than I would have been, if I had had my daughter earlier. I have an earlier bedtime now, so that I feel rested enough to keep up with my busy, busy daughter! I also worry about how old I will be when she is in high school and beyond. Watching her grow and learn and experience life is the greatest joy I have ever had. I, greedily, want to go on seeing her life unfold for as long as I can. I know that, at some point, I will leave this earth and leave her. Odds are that it will be much earlier than I would like. But, really, no one has guarantees, so I try to live each day without dwelling on my mortality too much. Some days it’s easier than others to do so!

What do you enjoy most about being an older mom?

I have more of a sense of self now than I did when I was younger. I feel more grounded, which allows me to let my relationship with Claire be more about what’s best for her than what I want or need. Basically, I like to think of it like a tree. I am firmly planted in the ground, yet, when the wind blows, I am flexible and can bend. When I was younger, there would have been a greater chance that I would have just plain old broke! I’m by no means a “grand old oak”, but I’m trying!

Rachel-2-jpg

 How has becoming a mom changed you?

Being a mom requires an amount of sacrifice that I’ve never experienced before having Claire. Surrendering to that kind of selflessness is both challenging and rewarding. It’s not always easy, but it’s an incredible gift about what it means to be in relationship to another human being. The “I and Thou” relationship takes on a new and powerful meaning that is extremely beautiful.

What advice do you have for women considering motherhood after 35?

Oh, don’t get me started on this question! I have so much to say about how necessary it is to ignore the bad statistics and cultural messages surrounding becoming pregnant and having a baby after a certain age. We are individuals, not statistics. Every woman is entitled to her own journey around having a baby, regardless of what other people believe or what the statistics say about her age. Indeed, I have so much to say that I will refer your readers to a post that I wrote about it on my own personal blog, because I’m too tired and busy from caring for a four year old to write it all over again here! http://taoofpoop.blogspot.com/2013/09/my-geriatric-pregnancy.html

InSeason Mom Cynthia would like to thank Rachel for sharing her story! Download my quick-read guide offering 30+ POSITIVE tips to cope while trying to conceive (after age 35) in your 40s https://gumroad.com/l/hfaIs