Welcome Rhonda and congrats on your new baby!
Well, you’ve jumped in head first here, haven’t you? There is one upside… NFP only gets easier after this stage (postpartum charting is the most difficult of all)!
I have been successful in using NFP postpartum after my previous 2 pregnancies… so it’s definitely possible. So stick around here and ask LOTS of questions! We love helping each other out!
Here’s my experience… (everyone is so unique, but hearing experiences may help)…
Temperature readings are not a lot of help before you’ve ovulated, which is difficult to determine when you don’t have a cycle. I had very fluctuating temperatures and I know that’s a very common thing.
Mucous patterns are also hard to track, but definitely stay on top of charting those. Pay particular attention to the QUALITY of the mucous (color, thickness, stretchiness)… these are important in determining your fertility.
The cervical checks, in particular, were the best indicator for me. They were difficult to figure out, but once I did it’s made NFP much easier. I would often have patches of very fertile-looking mucous (clear, very stretchy)… but the cervical checks were vital in determining if I was actually ovulating… most times my cervix was closed up tight, so that was my comforting sign.
After my 2 pregnancies I was able to detect my first postpartum ovulation at 5 1/2 and 7 1/2 months postpartum. I was SHOCKED at how OBVIOUS it was. The amount & quality of the mucous was enormous, and the cervical change was SO CLEAR. I was able to cross check that this was indeed ovulation by noticing a definite temperature rise… and then, within the next 2-3 weeks, I experienced my first postpartum period. The first several cycles were VERY abnormal… 21 days one month, 60 days the next… but still, I was able to get a grasp of where I was in my cycle. After 6 or so cycles, it started to get more normal (ranging only from 30-38 days)…
Anyway… that’s my experience. It IS very hard, but if you keep up your charting, go to your NFP teacher with ALL your questions, and ask questions here as often as you need to… hopefully things will work out for you too!
God bless and good luck!!!