Karoline Heldt, CFCP
Pregnant! What next?
What can you expect when you achieve a pregnancy while using Creighton Model? First, contact your practitioner! As part of our education as practitioners we have been trained to complete what's called a "pregnancy evaluation". Ideally, we'd like to be able to do this sometime in your first trimester.
Depending on whether or not you were trying to achieve a pregnancy at the time and how many questions you have, the pregnancy evaluation may be anywhere from 20-60 minutes. They're generally insightful and educational for both the practitioner and the couple. We'll ask you lots of questions about your charting and observations in the cycle of conception. We'll ask you questions about your pregnancy symptoms and what types of testing you've had at that point.
If you were surprised by your positive pregnancy test, your practitioner will use her training and experience to help you get clarity around the circumstances which led to the pregnancy. This can help give couples in difficult and frustrating situations more peace and confidence going forward.
We'll use all of the information given in the meeting to calculate your time of conception and estimated due date (both a date and a date range). You can also get a due date by going to any online calculator and using the first day of your last menstrual period. But one very useful thing about the pregnancy evaluation is that your "Creighton Model due date" tends to be more accurate. This is because it's calculated based on when you actually conceived your baby - we can usually get pretty precise with this. The online calculators and even your typical OBGYN is going to calculate that due date with the assumption that you ovulated and conceived on day 14 of your cycle. Its a standard formula that works well in most instances because many women don't know much about their cycle beyond when they started their last period. However I've had clients that conceived their baby as early as day 8 or 9 of their cycle or as late as days 22-25 and even larger variations aren't unheard of. This can make a big difference in your due date!
Another thing that's wonderful about the pregnancy evaluation is that we're able to offer ongoing support. Lots of couples will ask at the pregnancy eval what to expect with charting postpartum. Your practitioner will try to check in with you once or twice during your pregnancy and then shortly post partum to offer support with the transition back to observations and charting.
Some women will choose to chart during their pregnancy. They may choose to do this for consistency and maintenance of their good habits or for keeping their health record. The hope is that some day we will have enough research on pregnancy charts to be able to use the information from them to predict and improve outcomes for things like perinatal infection or preterm labor.
Regardless of the circumstances surrounding your pregnancy, your practitioner would love to hear from you after you get that positive test. We are hear to help you learn and grow through this experience, to connect you with the resources you need, to walk with you, rejoice with you and pray for you.