Women who are trying to get knocked up can be some of the craziest chicks you’re ever likely to meet.
I counted 83 pregnancy tests in this picture.
An entire language of mysterious acronyms has formed around the act of conception, and obsessive women in forums all over the world have developed their own linguistic code related to the acts of engaging in procreative sex, analysing vaginal discharge and urinating on plastic sticks.
OPKs (ovulation predictor kits) help couples who are TTC (trying to conceive) determine when it is the optimal time to BD (baby dance) or DTD (do the deed), which is what otherwise mature adults generally refer to as “having sex”, because using the term “baby dance” in the boudoir is a sure-fire way to kill your husband’s hard-on 4EVA.
Most sensible women will wait until around 10 DPO (days past ovulation) to POAS (pee on a stick), when HPTs (home pregnancy tests) can start to detect HCG (human chorionic gonadotropin), the hormone which indicates pregnancy.
The colour and consistency of a woman’s EWCM (egg white cervical mucus) is robustly debated on parenting fora in relation to peak fertility, and I have personally been witness to a forum member who posted a photo of scrunched up toilet paper with a sticky smear of rust-coloured vaginal fluid on it. There was much lively discussion as to whether it was implantation blood spotting or just poo. TMI.
Hardcore pee-stickers will know that FMU (first morning urine) is the gold-standard piss for sticks, because the hormones are reportedly at their most concentrated levels. If the test fails to show a second line you have a BFN (big fat negative). If the test shows a second line you have a BFP (big fat positive) and are officially UTD (up the duff). OMG. GTFO!
Some women do scores of these tests, multiple times a day for days and weeks on end. They meticulously inscribe the time and date on each stick with a Sharpie, lining them up in strict chronological order to compare and contrast the darkness of each result, posting photos on baby forums and pleading with internet randoms to validate their insanity.
This is what pregnancy – and the pursuit of pregnancy – does to you. It makes you do crazy things. It makes ridiculous rituals seem utterly reasonable.
Even more bizarrely, some women actually keep their positive pregnancy tests as mementos; stinky, urine-stained sticks mouldering away in a drawer somewhere, kept as a lasting reminder of the pregnancy.
I kept lasting reminders of my pregnancies too. I call them “children”.