BFP Sturm und Drang

BFP = Big Fat (or your favorite “f” word) Positive; used on TTC (trying to conceive) and birth loss boards on the internet.  Women who use this terminology tend to record BBTs (basal body temps) and other fertility signs.

Sturm und Drang = German for “storm and longing” or “storm and stress”

From Wikipedia:

” . . . the name of a movement in German literature and music taking place from the late 1760s through the early 1780s in which individual subjectivity and, in particular, extremes of emotion were given free expression in response to the confines of rationalism imposed by the Enlightenment and associated aesthetic movements. The philosopher Johann Georg Hamannis considered to be the ideologue of Sturm und Drang, and Johann Wolfgang von Goethe was a notable proponent of the movement . . .”

And since Goethe was one of those poets who was set by “everyone and their dawg” in the Classical musical period, I’ve come across the theme quite a bit.

What does Sturm und Drang have to do with BFP?  Here I type, “barely” pregnant, bearer of the positive pee stick (home pregnancy test), being pulled by my rational mind and wild emotion.  I have been pregnant 3 times in the past 5 months.  My June cycle led to pregnancy and a 5 week miscarriage in early August.  We waited a full cycle and conceived again, but I miscarried between 5 and 7 weeks in early October.  We waited 8 weeks for my menses to return, and in the third cycle following the miscarriage I “accidentally” got pregnant again. 

The rational mind says: (1) miscarriage is a possibility, and a higher possibility now that I’ve had 2 back-to-back miscarriages; (2) although miscarriage is a possibility, I am statistically MORE likely to carry the pregnancy successfully to term; (3) there’s nothing I can do to cause a miscarriage; (4) there is nothing I can do to necessarily prevent or treat a miscarriage; (5) that I’ll survive another miscarriage should that be the journey.

The emotional heart says: (1) Trust God; (2) God won’t necessarily spare me from another miscarriage; (3) I can’t bear another miscarriage; (4) I’ll survive a miscarriage if I have to . . . my family needs me; (5) Bond with this pregnancy; (6) Stay emotionally detached from the pregnancy . . .

Another aspect of Sturm und Drang as it applies to BFPdom is guilt.  I have guilt on two levels.  First, I didn’t intend to become pregnant this cycle, so I am a bit embarrassed about being pregnant so soon and feeling foolish for having “accidentally” gotten pregnant in the first place.  My herbalist wanted me to be on a particular herbal regiment for about 3-6 months before TTC.  Second, I participate on a birth loss forum.  Some of the women in my group have been trying for months if not years to become pregnant.  Some have been trying for months if not years to become pregnant and see a pregnancy through to term.  Some have suffered multiple losses.   So I sometimes feel guilty and petty because I do have one beautiful daughter and have at least experienced pregnancy now 4 times.

As happy as I am for me, I grieve for these kind women on my board.  It’s hard to see one of them go on to a pregnancy board and continue with their pregnancy and birth.  It’s hard to see them return after a pregnancy was lost.  It’s hard for all of us to be excited about possibly being pregnant and scared that the inevitable (menses, miscarriage, stillbirth, etc.) will fall upon us.  It’s rough waiting for the next hcg or progesterone test or ultrasound that assures us that the pregnancies are moving forward. 

I love these women dearly.  I wish the circumstances that brought us together were different, but I learn something new every day.  Someone posts something heart-felt every day that touches me.  These hopeful grieving women have marked me and I them.