nfp is not the rhythm method {nfp awareness week}

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Girls dresses ~ Gymboree

{updated the title...}
It's NFP awareness week. {and just to clear things up: NFP is not the rhythm method... not all women ovulate on day 14} I won't even attempt an NFP article this year.  Who wants to hear from a mom of five? I don't want newlyweds to get freaked out hearing NFP from a mom of 5.

We are successful conceiving rather than delaying with NFP. TMI here but we knew when we conceived our littles. Hello phase II!  We have been most successful interpreting our charts to delay pregnancy during med school. We delayed pregnancy using NFP for a couple of years. Once I started taking call intern year and my temps were all over the place when I don't sleep for 24 hours every 4th night, it was a little harder.  I had days of no temps charted and we just relied on the symptoms.... Then once Daniel came, we struggled with the return of fertility signs during breastfeeding. I admit, we have one that we misinterpreted the graph because I had a 50 day cycle. After that confusion and a blessing (hello Bastian!) we enrolled to another NFP class. The way they teach the classes now was easier than the way we initially learned NFP.

Because of NFP, we have been more open to life, learned to be more sacrificing and loving as we add more and more in our brood.

I think it's funny to write about NFP and add 18 photos of my family during our downtime downtown. This is a glimpse of why we are open to life. The beauty and love we see in these children. We see the image of God in them.

Below are better posts and reasons for NFP - better than I'd ever write about it. Credit given to source.

"NFP can repair the damage (divorce rate doubling, drop in commitment between men and women)**. Men acknowledge responsibility to their wives. Commitment increases because the couples know when pregnancy is likely before they make love. Their trust increases: she trusts he will fulfill his obligations when he assents to sex; he trusts she is making accurate observations of her fertility and is keeping him informed.

He develops a sense of awe in the way God made her, and she develops a sense of gratitude that he is willing to sacrifice his own pleasure for her sake. And both grow in their love and trust in God when they see the plan for sex and marriage that He built into their bodies."
-Fletcher Doyle

"The Church’s teaching on contraception is not just a doctrine that states what not to do. Many people would benefit from knowing that it is a doctrine that explains how extraordinarily important is the act of having children. One reason that modern culture has trouble understanding the truth of Humanae Vitae is that it fails to appreciate what a profound good children are...
They do not always realize that in having children they are “co-creators” with God...

...Our culture does not really focus on helping people to realize that some day they will likely be parents and how tremendously important a task that is. We do not often think that we should be spending much of our youth preparing for the responsibilities of being parents. Contraception enables us to think of sexual intercourse as a casual and to some extent as an insignificant act rather than an act that can change the universe – for the coming to be of a new human being truly changes the universe. Someone who did not exist before comes into existence and will remain in existence forever...

If people were conscious of the extreme significance of the sexual act, they could not possibly be as cavalier about it as they now are. They would choose their spouses very very 2 carefully – and use as a foremost criterion the suitability of that person to be a parent. Those who succeed in marrying someone who will be a good parent – someone who is patient, generous, responsible, kind, other directed, and reliable also are nearly guaranteed to get a terrific spouse – for who wouldn’t want a spouse with those virtues?"
-Janet E. Smith PhD

"The Church does not teach that couples should have a certain number of children, but it does offer teaching about responsible parenthood which can be summarized in these five points:

  1.  Husbands and wives have a responsibility to understand and honor the wisdom of the body, including its biological processes.
  2.  Humans share certain instincts and passions, and Christians are to guard and control them through reason and will. 
  3. Taking into consideration the physical, economic, psychological and social conditions of their marriage, couples exercise responsible parenthood by a prudent and generous  decision to raise a large family, or by a decision (for serious reasons and made according to the moral law) to avoid a new birth for the time being, or even for an indefinite period. 
  4.  Responsible parenthood has its roots in the truth about right and wrong established by God, and spouses have a duty to inform their consciences and make decisions according to this truth. Husbands and wives recognize their duties toward God, themselves, their family and society, and are called to maintain a proper set of priorities. 
  5. Offering their marriage in discipleship to the Lord Jesus, couples do not make purely arbitrary or subjective decisions regarding becoming parents but use the wisdom of God as their guide. As in every other aspect of their lives, Christian couples always remain open to God’s wisdom and providence regarding family life, including the size of their particular family. Since God brought them together and shares his love with them, he will always guide them along paths that are best for them. 
Interwoven among these aspects of responsible parenthood is the understanding that the two great meanings or values of marriage--the unitive and procreative--are never separated. A love that is complete and faithful, a love which holds nothing back from the other, will remain open to God's creative plan."
-Most Rev. J Peter Sartain

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