In Season Mom

Joan’s Pregnancy Over 35 Proves 3 Doctors Wrong

By February 21, 2017 Blog, Featured Moms

Name:  Joan

Age when you gave birth:  Less than a week from 39 years old when I gave birth to my son

State of residence:  Michigan

Current or former profession(s):  Blogger/Editor at Late Bloomer Moms


How long were you trying to get pregnant?

About 2 years

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

Progesterone, tried to eat healthy consistently and work out regularly.  I drove myself nuts with charting, temping, etc. but it was all helpful in that I learned a LOT more about the human body than I’d ever thought I would!



How supportive were your doctors during your pregnancy?

They weren’t – I went to 3 different fertility specialists (one who had been my own GYN for over 10 years).

Did you change doctors or would like to have changed doctors?

I changed doctors because I was basically told – by all 3, including my regular GYN – that I would pretty much need “medical intervention” (i.e. IVF) in order to even get pregnant, let alone have a successful birth.  I felt like they were just trying to fill their pocketbooks.

Family and Friends

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

They were all thrilled – many of my friends prayed with me, so they knew this was a big blessing for us!

We had miscarried after trying for months to get pregnant. So when we got pregnant again “just” 4 months later (the week of Thanksgiving) as excited as we were, we didn’t say anything at first.  I told my mom on Christmas (at 8 weeks) only because I was already getting a bit of a belly.  My mom cried tears of joy  because I’m her baby and I was having a baby.  And then I got knowing glances from my co-workers, but we didn’t confirm suspicions of co-workers and friends until we were in the 2nd trimester (end of January).


What do you remember most about the birth experience?

It was LONG.  I had every intention of having a natural birth if at all possible – we even hired a doula.  But at about my 35th week my blood pressure was getting dangerously high. I had to have weekly ultrasounds, and then I wound up having to have my son about 2 weeks early.  And he was NOT ready to come out.  I labored without drugs for about 21 hours  using a medicine ball, my doula massaging my back and helping me be as comfortable as possible when you’re in labor. Despite my best efforts, and as stubborn as I am, I finally just realized I needed a little “help.”  Then one of the residents broke my water and I knew I was on the clock then.  I wound up having a C-section.


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

Just having energy and prioritizing when I have a full-time career as well. I try to schedule everything and my weekends are for my family!

What do you enjoy most about being an older mom?

That I’m where I need to be.  For me, getting married later and being an “older” mom is perfect timing for me.  When I was younger, a friend of mine would lament about not being married or having kids yet when everyone else around us was. I said, “All on YOUR timetable.”    I am greatly enjoying the new kind of fun my son brings into my life.

How has becoming a mom changed you?

I honestly did not know if motherhood was for me.  But it’s the best kind of love there is in this world.  My husband and I know our son is truly a blessing, especially considering our challenges to have him.   I’m definitely more patient!

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

Have faith.  Have faith in what your body can do.  I was told I had blocked tubes and endometriosis and low progesterone, etc.  but I refused to believe I was already “too old” to have a baby naturally.  Also, educate yourself.  If I wasn’t stubborn, I would have just stopped at “well, we can’t have a baby unless we do IVF.”  I did research on my own, modified my and my husband’s diets, and that helped a lot!  Have a doctor/birthing team who has your best interests in mind!

Any additional comments?

Be flexible – know that things may not go according to plan.  Work with your birthing team to find what works for you, but know that you may need to be open-minded.



Francesca Kotomski-2 Natural Conception in Her 40s

By January 23, 2017 Blog, Featured Home, Featured Moms, Uncategorized


Name: Francesca Kotomski

Ages when gave birth: 40 and 44

State of residence:  Massachusetts

Children’s names : Lucas and Matthew

Current profession:  Fitness instructor, personal trainer, instructor at career school


How long were you trying to get pregnant?

 I was trying 4 years.

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

Slowed down, exercise, went BPA free bottles, meds and followed my cycle carefully.


The Medical Community

How supportive were your doctors during your pregnancy? 

My ob was not supportive of older moms.  I could tell and with the second one, I didn’t even see him until after the first trimester.  I thought he would tell me something bad. And when he had the chance, he did!   He was absolutely wrong!  I was so glad he didn’t deliver Matthew. A female doc in his practice delivered Matthew.

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

I only changed doctors from the IVF people to a very healthy Catholic doctor who used natural fertility methods.  His methods are proven and it worked!  I changed to this doctor because he had a very healthy and pro-life way to deal with fertility issues.    After Matthew was born, I saw my non supportive Ob/GYN once.  I switched for my GYN appointments to a regular doctor.

Family and Friends

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

Family and friends were supportive; although my mother said she was scared and felt that I was very lucky to have healthy kids “at this age.”  She said that more than once.  But everyone was very happy.


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

Yes, I took a class for the first baby.  Then after the first one, I realized that most of what I learned didn’t seem to apply!  Giving birth is fairly natural and the nurses coach you through.

What do you remember most about the birth experience?

The first one was induced, long and painful and I had epidural. The second was quick and painful but with no epidural because it was so quick.   What I remember most: pain and then happiness to see my baby.


fran with boys2

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

The future is my concern, getting older,  slowly down naturally, as well as retirement as they enter college. Hopefully, I can give my children enough lively exciting experiences.

What do you enjoy most about being an older mom?

Feeling more settled in who I am, stronger in my will to do the right thing!  It’s good to know others who are in the same place.

How has becoming a mom changed you?

I appreciate the little things.  I appreciate when I get time alone and quiet time.   It’s slowed me down, but that’s good.

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

Get into good, healthy shape.  You will need to be strong in will as you deal with others ideas of a younger mom vs older mom.  You also need to be physically able to handle the demands of an additional person who depends on you.

 Do you have any additional comments?

I like to surround myself with other moms and support groups to do play groups or library groups.  I work hard to attain a balance between professional life and time with my little guy, especially before he goes into school.  That’s a big struggle because I want more out of my professional life and I realize that time as a young child is short.  So, older moms will have that struggle as they are settled into their career.

I think it’s best for moms to be open to changing their hours or the way they do work.  I work a variety of hours and that helps with my balancing act.  Also, doing exercise at home through the home workouts saves me a lot of time. And, allows my children to participate in programs that are scheduled the same time as traditional gym classes.

InSeason Mom Cynthia would like to thank InSeason Mom Francesca for sharing her story and for being an inspiration to all of us. To learn more about Francesca’s fitness and personal training program, visit


Jill Jonas-First Time Mom Over 35 After Wrong Diagnosis

By December 28, 2016 Blog, Featured Home, Featured Moms, Getting Pregnant After 35 and 40, Popular Posts, Uncategorized

Name: Jill Jonas

Age when you gave birth: 36

Child’s name : Dean

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.


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.


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!


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 -2

Emotional Health Tips For Your Pregnancy Over 35

By December 23, 2016 Featured Home, First-Time Expectant Mom Over 40

Special thanks to this month’s blog post sponsor Heaven Sent Infant Wear-Infant Wear with a Spiritual Reflection.

If you’re a first time expectant mother over 35 or over 40, sometimes— finding emotional support for your pregnancy can be as be as challenging as finding an American teenager who doesn’t own a cell phone!

The first words out of your doctor’s mouth upon confirming your pregnancy may not be congratulations but may be monologue filled with negative statistics about pregnancy after 35 which show an increased risk of high blood pressure, diabetes, cesarean birth and chromosomal defects. Or your doctor may suggest a series of tests available to older expectant moms or ask if your pregnancy was planned.

Unfortunately, this insensitiveness for pregnancy after 35 is not limited to some in the medical community. You may be hit with a variety of comments saying you’re too old to give birth or that you should consider your age when your baby goes to first- grade, becomes a teenager, gets married and so forth.  These comments can come from well-meaning relatives to friends to strangers.

How do you handle so much negativity during a time when you are most vulnerable?

1-Realize Pregnancy Hormones Are At Work

The first tip is to remember your pregnant body is undergoing hormone changes which not only affect you physically, but emotionally as well.

Translation: Comments you wouldn’t have given a second thought during your pre-pregnancy state can make you sad or angry during pregnancy. This is true whether you are an expectant mom age 22 or age 42.

Choose your thoughts wisely. Like a gardener who pulls the weeds out of her flowerbed, pull the negative thoughts from your mind. Replace them through concentration on positive and uplifting thoughts.

2- Find Moms Who Have Been Through What You’re Going Through

Having a supportive friend, ideally one who is a first time mom over 35, you can talk to about your ups and downs will be invaluable during this time. There are also online group of expectant moms over 35 and over 40. If the online groups don’t fit your style, establish your own or join our InSeason Mom group on Facebook. If you don’t like any of these choices, email me and I’ll give you encouragement!

3- Remember Medical Studies based on Group Not Individual Results

Medical studies citing the risk factors for pregnant women over 35 and 40 are based on the results of midlife pregnant women when studied as a group. The studies are not based on your individual health history. The truth is any pregnant woman of any age may experience high blood pressure, diabetes, cesarean birth and chromosomal defects.

According to Dr. Glade B. Curtis, author of Your Pregnancy After 35,  today, many healthcare professionals gauge pregnancy risk by a pregnant woman health status not her age.

4- Follow Doctor’s Orders

Make every effort to follow the advice of your doctor which should include getting plenty of rest, eating healthy, refraining from smoking, drinking alcohol, and taking anything that is toxic to your body or your unborn child.

5- Embrace Mental and Spiritual Health

“People run their mouth” is one of my husband’s favorite sayings, which means everyone has an opinion. Opinions are not necessarily truth.

When well-meaning folks cite how old you will be when your baby enters first grade or goes to college, ask them how old you will be in the same length of time if you didn’t give birth. Hopefully, they’ll get the point. We grow older regardless if we pursue motherhood in our late 30s or 40s. Therefore, it’s important to make our lives count by pursuing our goals. Personally, I believe the adage, “Your life is a gift from God, what you do with it is your gift back to Him.”

Special thanks to blog post sponsor Heaven Sent Infant Wear-Infant Wear with a Spiritual Reflection.

InSeason Mom Founder Learns Life Lessons At Photo Shoot

By December 21, 2016 Blog, Featured Home, Uncategorized

Hi I’m Cynthia, founder of InSeason Mom with my “glamour” shot pictured above. For some time now, I’ve secretly wanted to do a photo shoot. When talented photographer Grace-Given (Jimmie Basco) presented the opportunity, I hesitated. Then I decided not to give in to my fear and to fulfill my long-awaited wish.

I asked my best friend Lisa to accompany me for moral support. Little did I know she would not only provide moral support but she would provide much needed technique support. lisa_009-edit

My friend Lisa pictured above 

As Jimmie, the photographer, suggested certain poses to get the best shot, I discovered something about me: I was as stiff as a board when it came to looking relaxed and natural in front of the camera! (I’ve heard previous comments about my stiffness when I’m dancing from one of my teenage daughters.)photoshot3_n

While he coached me along, Lisa, used her background as a former model, to demonstrate what he wanted.  Listening to what Jimmie said and looking at what Lisa did, I learned 3 life lessons:

1-Be willing to listen and learn from a variety of supportive people/mentors

Whether your goal is to become an InSeason Mom or to advance in your career, your success does not hinge on your knowledge alone. Gain knowledge from several resources. Then apply that knowledge to move forward.

2-Appreciate Your Own Uniqueness

All of us have something about us physically that we would like to change. Yet, this very thing adds to our uniqueness.  What’s even more amazing to me is with 7+ billion people in the world, you will never run into anyone who is exactly like you. Science says two people cannot have the same DNA, even identical twins. To me this means that the God of the Universe thought you were such a great treasure that He created only one “you.”


3-What You Feel Inside Will Show Outside

“Think about Larry,” said either Jimmie or Lisa during the photo shoot. Larry is my husband. Until then, I was thinking about unfinished work I had to do. And, my thoughts were showing in my eyes and in the camera lens. Soon my eyes lit up with thoughts of Larry. I would encourage you to make it a regular practice to replace defeating negative thoughts with uplifting positive thoughts.

Thanks Lisa and photographer Grace-Given (Jimmie Basco) for making my first photo shoot fun and for helping me to learn a few life lessons in the process!


Kristin Beltaos-First Time Mom Over 35 After Turmoil

By December 17, 2016 Blog, Featured Moms

Conceiving a child is more than just a bunch of numbers and statistics, it’s about the possibility, not probability that matters – Krisitn Beltaos.

Name: Krisitn Beltaos

State of Residence: Minnesota

Children: Vincent and Miles

Current or former profession(s): Life/Business Coach and Owner of A Gift of Miles


How long were you trying to get pregnant?

We conceived our first child naturally; however, we miscarried our daughter in the first trimester Thanksgiving weekend of 2003. Then we didn’t conceive after trying almost another year to get pregnant. Once we were diagnosed with male factor infertility, we utilized IUI, Clomid (for three months), progesterone suppositories and acupuncture and conceived our first son, Vincent in 2005.

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

Once we were ready to try for another child, it was determined that I had female factor infertility, elevated FSH. My FSH was so high (24) that I wasn’t considered a candidate for IVF, as 25 was the cutoff number to attempt IVF. So the second time around we struggled with male and female factor infertility. In light of this, our only option was injectible fertility medications (Gonal F and then we switched to Follistim), IUI with progesterone supplementation (first suppositories and then progesterone in oil injections). We did conceive another son, but I miscarried him in the emergency room on Christmas Day 2007.

After healing from that miscarriage, we tried another four months and conceived our second son Miles on the same above mentioned regimen. Since we decided this was going to be our last month to try, I did throw acupuncture back into the mix for that last hoorah so to speak. It was difficult to get to acupuncture appointments already having a child. But for that last month, I was determined to try everything possible to maximize our chances. Apparently, that worked out quite well.


How supportive were your doctors during your pregnancy?

Reproductive Endocrinologists are cautious individuals because there is always the chance of miscarriage. While I really liked my endocrinologist, his message was pretty consistent: you are advanced maternal age, your eggs are old and the quality of your eggs are diminished which puts you at a higher risk for miscarriage and birth defects. Hearing that over and over made it quite challenging to stay positive.

As I previously mentioned, moving to my perinatologist group for my OB care, was a relief.

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

I loved my perinatologist group; they were the absolute best. They really develop a family feeling with their patients and it was a joy to see them each visit.


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

With conceiving Vincent, the first person that I told was my husband. Our journey to have Vincent was long, and an extreme rollercoaster ride. We were elated! I can remember getting up at 4 a.m. to take the home pregnancy test. We were elated!

With Miles, it was a funny story. My period had started, or so I thought, so I was very down because we decided it would be the last month to try. I was just so very tired physically, mentally and emotionally. When my period kept starting and stopping I decided to take a home pregnancy test. My cousin was visiting me from Ohio and she was the first person I told, since she was just outside the bathroom door and heard me scream. Then I told my husband. After speaking with my endocrinologist, I was switched to progesterone in oil injections for 10 weeks, as my progesterone level was considered borderline low even on progesterone suppository supplementation.

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

Since we had a miscarriage with our first child and had to use fertility treatments, etc., we were very cautious with telling people once we were pregnant with Vincent. Naturally, it made us a little gun-shy. So once we made it through the first trimester we were overjoyed to share our news. Everyone was so happy because they knew how hard the miscarriage was on us, how hard we were trying to have a baby and how when each month passed we sunk a little deeper into worry.

When we got pregnant with Miles, since we had another miscarriage after Vincent, we were very tight lipped. Since that miscarriage required an emergency room visit, it was quite scary. In particular, my father was extremely worried about me. So once we shared, I can remember him saying that he didn’t even know that we were trying again. Well, we were just that quiet about it. Everyone was so happy that our perseverance paid off and that Vincent would have a sibling.


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

With Vincent we did because we wanted to know what to expect and be prepared. It was actually quite useful, especially for my husband, who learned how to swaddle and change a diaper.

If I remember correctly, our perinatologist group required it. Besides, we are quite the planners. However since we had to have a c-section after 10 hours of labor, we realized, as with most things in life, you just can’t plan everything. So when we had Miles, another c-section, we did not take any classes because we knew what to expect.

What do you remember most about the birth experience?

With Vincent, everything was very stressful. He was a week overdue with no signs of “dropping”. I ran out of amniotic fluid, so I was finally induced. He had terrible heart rate issues, dropping constantly. I was hooked up to a ton of monitors and hearing Vincent’s heart rate dropping was terrifying. After 10 hours of labor, he was taken via c-section, wasn’t breathing right away and had meconium. So that little guy just had one thing after another at birth. But once I was out of recovery at 4 a.m. and began to nurse, I knew we were finally complete. We felt that all of our efforts, our love brought this little boy to us.

For Miles, I remember quite the opposite than with Vincent. With Vincent everything seemed unpredictable….like nothing we could plan for…everything changed in moments and there was A LOT of worry. With Miles, it was great to know he would be there within 30-minutes of my c-section. I felt so much more rested since I didn’t have to do the labor on top of the c-section. I was much more aware of everything that happened with Miles. It was such a great experience to be more present. The added bonus, since Miles was a planned c-section, is that we have wonderful pictures of him being born. I can still look at the pictures and feel like it was yesterday.



What concerns you most about being a mom over 35 and how do you compensate for this fear?

Honestly, I don’t really have any major concerns. Even though we had to do a lot of intervention to have our boys…I truly believe that everything happened just as it was suppose to. I was supposed to be an InSeason Mom.

What do you enjoy most about being an older mom?

I feel much more secure as a woman and also as a mother. I think my focus is on exactly what it needs to be…my husband and children. I enjoy the fact that having a fair amount of life under my belt enables me to teach my boys about compassion and empathy more than if I had them at a younger age.

How has becoming a mom changed you?

I don’t sweat the small stuff. Ok, I will rephrase that; I try to not sweat the small stuff. I know that sounds cliché, but having children really taught me that everything happens for a reason and within its own timeframe. My path, my journey to those boys made me resilient…the ups, the downs, the constant unknowns makes me feel like I have been through the fire and I can handle anything that comes my way. I hope that’s also what I can teach those boys. No matter what happens in life, you are well equipped to handle anything that comes  your way.

I have two favorite quotes from my favorite children’s author Arnold Lobel. One is from the Frog and Toad “Tomorrow” story; “I am going to take life easy.” Take each and every day as it comes. The good, the bad and the, “eh”. The second quote is from Lobel’s book called Fables, “All the miles of a hard road are worth a moment of true happiness.” I think that one speaks for itself.

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

I think motherhood at any age is a wild ride. Since the chapter that paved my way to motherhood included infertility, I say to women who have difficulty conceiving that conceiving a child is more than just a bunch of numbers and statistics, it’s about the possibility, not probability that matters.

If you are having this difficulty, then frame it for yourself this way, people beat the odds everyday, people beat cancer, people have their MS go into remission and people who struggle with infertility have babies. I would much rather leave all the statistics to the racetrack and Vegas. While it is human nature to grasp onto statistics to help predict the chance of something happening for us, in many ways being too married to these numbers has an adverse effect on our psyche, stress. In turn, this stress has an adverse effect on our body. Mind stress plus body stress does not foster a good environment for conception.

I believe every month is a chance, a chance to conceive.

Any additional comments?

I’d like to provide my personal philosophy on the challenges that we experience in our lives. I believe that every challenge we face, every mile we walk in our lives provides knowledge or what I like to call “a gift”. You may not realize it at the time, it may take you weeks, months or years, but eventually you will come to know that morsel of knowledge that you were to walk away with…and those morsels accumulate and become part of the fabric of you. It’s the way that we come to know our morals, our values and our priorities in life.