Pregnancy Struggles


pregnancystrugglesAfter six months of being married, my husband and I decided to start trying for our first baby. I quit birth control and figured things would just happen quickly, for no good reason other than I lack patience and didn’t see a reason it wouldn’t. After almost a year of crying every time good old AF showed up we went to the experts, got a few things squared away (nothing major) and within a month we FINALLY had that positive pregnancy test! We were both super pumped, and since my mom had sailed through two pregnancies without hardly any side effects, I mistakenly assumed it would be the same for me, because, well, genetics.

It was completely different. Without the support of Zofran I was throwing up 99% of what I ate and drank, including water, right up until 34 weeks, at which point I was put on bed rest. Our little buddy had tried coming a little too early, and we needed to prevent labor for a few more weeks. For the next two weeks I stayed home except for doctor appointments and non-stress tests for the baby. After that I returned to work and began having contractions every few days that were strong enough to be stopped by the nurses in triage, what felt like my second home. I asked, why does this happen to me? And they would say “it’s just your body reacting to being pregnant. It happens sometimes”. That didn’t really make me feel better, as I was not gaining weight (20 pounds total) and now this baby wanted to exit as quickly as possible. I had a lot of friends say how jealous they were about the weight gain (or lack of) but they didn’t understand that I would hold my breath at each appointment until I heard that heartbeat. I just didn’t understand how I could feel so lousy and still have a healthy baby. Somehow, at week 38 our first little boy was born!

The second time around we were able to get pregnant right away, but then after eight weeks there was some spotting, which lead to miscarriage watch until week 12.  Once again, everyday I would pray and hope that we could make it one more day without having anything happen to our new little buddy. We did make it, and then it was smooth sailing until week 32 when I ended up having contractions early again. Back to bed rest (not so easy with a toddler!) until week 37. We had a few more triage visits to stop contractions, but were able to hold out until week 37 when our second little boy was born!

To be clear, my version of ‘struggle’ with my pregnancies is, of course, relative. I have been blessed to not go through any major fertility treatments or miscarriages, which would of course be worst case scenarios. My version means that I was continually afraid for my babies and worried that my inability to be a good ‘host body’ would somehow cause them harm in someway.

Both times I had hoped to love being pregnant, or, at least not hate it. But to me, pregnancy is a means to an end. I would do anything for my boys, even before knowing them, but I am very glad to be done with pregnancy. At my next follow up appointment I will be asking about permanent birth control. Yes, I would love one more little baby to snuggle, but it seems too risky to put another baby through pregnancy in my body. It isn’t an easy decision, but, neither is the decision to have kids, both scary, both permanent, both made with love.


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