That is the question.

Trying to conceive is an emotional rollercoaster for many couples, and it can take months, or even years, too.

Each new cycle is met with mixed emotions of disappointment from the last cycle, and hope that this month will be the one.

Timing is everything.

Being told over and over that if it’s going to happen, it all must align at the perfect moment.

So, you may be tracking each little symptom and bodily function in your calendar, and taking your temperature every morning in hopes that you can have a clue as to what’s going on inside your uterus.

Then comes the waiting.

A few weeks of wondering whether you magically aligned everything as needed this month.

A few weeks of the constant “Pregnant or PMS?” game going on in your head, a little something like this…

Symptom Number 1: Fatigue

There are countless reasons as to why you could be feeling tired, but there is one that keeps popping up in your mind.

Could you be pregnant?

Fatigue is one of the earliest pregnancy symptoms that many expectant mothers experience, so could this be your body telling you to get that extra rest now, since it will be difficult in the months to follow?

OR could this just be your pre-menstrual cycle hormones demanding some lazy time?

Fatigue is one of the classic “Pregnant or PMS” symptoms that can get you anxious.

Symptom Number 2: Appetite/Cravings

Got a sudden need for pickles?

Are you finding yourself sneaking extra snacks throughout the day, or have you got a hankering for some specific munchies?

Crazy cravings are one of the most common pregnancy symptoms you hear about, and maybe you have even experienced them yourself before. Is this a little bean inside you sending up meal requests?

OR is it just your crazy hormones giving you grief again?

Because goodness knows it’s natural for a woman to get cravings. Otherwise how would the chocolate industry be doing so well?

Symptom Number 3: Sore Breasts and Nipples

You’re told that the pain you’ve been experiencing in your chest could be a wonderful sign.

But it could also be a part of the crazy hormone dance your body does every month.

So which is it?

Are your breasts prepping for a new full-time-job of feeding a little one, or are they protesting the latest underwire you’re using?

Symptom Number 4: Bloating

Is your “mommy gut” showing a little more than usual?

You’re finding yourself dressing in more flowing and forgiving tops to hide the extra air and wondering… could this be the beginnings of a darling baby bump?

OR is this just your body’s cruel way of letting you know Aunt Flow is on the way?

Having been pregnant before, you’re told that your next bump may appear earlier than the first time, so any outcome is plausible. But which is it?

Symptom Number 5 (and possibly the worst yet): Bleeding

Looking at that symptom-diary of a calendar you’ve been keeping leads you to wonder if Aunt Flow is a little late for her monthly visit, until you discover some dark spotting in your panties.

Is this the happy sign of that embryo embedding in your uterine lining?

OR is this your cycle starting off slow just to get your hopes up, only to crush them completely.

There are plenty more “PMS or Pregnant” symptoms your body can play on you, and maybe they vary from month to month to keep you guessing. Trying to conceive is a whirlwind of hormones, not helped by the anxiety many of us PAL moms experience surrounding pregnancy. The months passing can make it feel like the day for your own rainbow will never come.

It can be frustrating to hear things like, “relax and it will happen,” or, “just enjoy the stage you’re in now.” And sometimes it can feel like there is no one who really understands what you’re going through.

Each day closer to that fateful date where you are officially “late,” you test again hoping that there will be a second line, and maybe you even convince yourself that there is one there, just very faint.

All up until you start bleeding yet again and you are in for another hormonal rollercoaster before you’re ready for the next round of “Pregnant or PMS.”

For me, this “Pregnant or PMS” game is the most frustrating part of the journey to my rainbow. Wanting something so badly leads me to trick my mind into believing what I want of every symptom I experience, even when my head may know better.

It’s a crazy cycle that I voluntarily sign up for every month again and again because even though my only children live in heaven, the three of them are enough proof I need to know that the difficulties are worth it. Every month longer I have to wait is just thirty more days of dreaming for my rainbow.

We are all on different roads, but we do all have one thing in common.

We each have angels who are rooting for us on this TTC journey.

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