Maybe. Not like it's a long journey or anything.
I've spent a good deal of my time today researching late ovulation. Without getting into too much inane detail - I haz it. Anything after cd20 (and in some cases, before that) tends to be considered 'late' and that means possibly bad things. Up to and including - potential fertility disorders like PCOS (too much to explain - broad-based syndrome with many potential negative implications for fertility and ttc), hormone imbalance (delayed hormone production/release, equating to delayed cycling and longer cycles), weak ovulation, poor egg quality (which can increase odds of genetic anomalies and subsequently miscarriage), progesterone deficiency (which can increase the odds of poor implantation - cough, cervical ectopic, cough - and early miscarriage), weakened egg shell (which could allow more than one sperm in for fertilization, which results in a hot genetic mess), poor endometrial lining (not conducive to implantation) . . .
In other words - oh shit.
It wasn't something I worried about before, and I can't say why I picked today to start. My cycles generally fall within 'normal' time frames or have reasonable explanations about they don't. The problems I did experience before ttc left after losing some weight, and I seemed to be pretty regular, with a regular bleeding time/pattern. I just assumed that things were probably ok. I haven't been tested formally for PCOS, but the consensus seemed to be that I probably didn't have it, as I exhibit only 1 of the common symptoms (being overweight) - but without the full formal panel to check glucose tolerance and homeostasis for insulin resistance and checking testosterone and FSH and E2 levels, I can't be sure. But as far as I know, my glucose levels are normal, ultrasounds for pregnancy have shown 'gorgeous' ovaries free from the common tell-tale polycystic ovaries (from whence the disorder derives it's name - though it is possible to have PCOS and not have polycystic ovaries). I don't have excessive hair loss, or growth, or androgyny issues or darkened skin patches or skin tags or excess acne (outside my cyclical issues), or any of the other common symptoms (again, it is possible to be asymptomatic and still have this disorder).
But after reading up and chatting with people, I'm more concerned. Far more concerned. There are some things to try to and fix the problem if it exists, but the easiest, cheapest and best overall - lose weight, and exercise. Regular exercise - even without weight loss - makes a huge difference in stored estrogen levels and insulin resistance, and dropping even 5% of the total body weight can better regulate cycles.
So, uh, it's clear what needs to happen now. And I will make it happen. I have no choice. If I can get my ovulation to more regularly occur before cd 20, it should make everything easier. Which isn't to say that women can't or don't get pregnant and produce healthy living children with late ovulations, but just that I now fear that this may be the culprit in our reproductive struggles and as such . . . given there is something I can do which has every expectation of helping (and is healthier for me overall), I have to do it.
God, I hate exercising. So much so that it is difficult to express exactly how much I loathe it. Still - if it helps me get pregnant and stay pregnant - worth it, right? Even just 20 minutes a day, even that little should help, right?
Other things I am considering for this cycle? Taking up drinking green tea (which I like, actually, but haven't made a point of drinking). Supposedly it increases fertile cm - which, uh, I don't actually need help with, so that's a bit of a drawback - but also may help with hormonal irregularities. Studies indicate increased conceptions among women who regularly consume it. Problem is - it can inhibit folic acid and iron absorption, so it has to be taken well away from the prenatals and folic acid supplements I take. Also considering Vitex (chaste berry) which has been highly recommended to aid in hormone balance (especially with progesterone and in women with PCOS). It really is more cumulative than anything - it won't show effects for a few cycles, by which point, I hope I'm already knocked up, but it's worth considering. I've even considered Fertilitea.
Which makes me feel desperate and a little ashamed. But . . . Fertilitea aside . . . maybe these aren't terrible things to try? I swear I won't be busting out the sturdy towel and standing on my head or using Instead Cups to keep the spermies near my cervix. Still, it feels a little crazy.
Let's hope that the efforts with exercise (AUGH - have to get new earphones!) will yeild high dividends and this other stuff not be really necessary. . .