“I felt the best I ever had during my pregnancies! I wish I could have bottled that feeling and sold it”
These are the words of my mother on the topic of pregnancy. The saying goes, ‘The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree’. Well, this apple fell off, rolled into the orchard next door, was then harvested and made into applesauce.
I wish I had experienced maternity the way my mother had, unfortunately that just wasn’t so. Although this was a magical time in my life (I mean it’s not every day you create a human), it had its difficult days.
Pregnancy is awe-inspiring and beautiful. To have the capability to make life is a privilege more rewarding than any other experience I have encountered. The love that blossoms for your child is like that of no other. Yes, we all love others in our lives, but our children are a part of you. Some say to have children is to have your heart walking around outside your body and it’s true!
With that said, and before I share my pregnancy debacles, I want to say that in no way do I regret having children. I love my kids. I love them so much I went ahead and got knocked up a second time so that our family would have more to love.
This is an opportunity for me to share my experience so that any mom-to-be or second time around moms can take away any information that may be beneficial to them. No two women are alike and this is to provide insight and help some women who feel alone in their experience, know they are not. It’s not all roses and sunshine. This is my preggers story.
I found out I was pregnant late in the evening when my temper was all over the place. I thought to myself, “I’m going to start my cycle.”
Then I thought, “Well, when WAS my last cycle?”
We were trying for a little one, so it was not a huge shock that a baby was now in the picture. The flood of emotions that went through me were too many to describe. I was happy, elated, excited, scared out of mind, sad (no more wine), stunned, nervous, ecstatic and add dash of panic. That is not the tip of the iceberg, but I don’t have a hundred pages to write emotional adjectives. To sum it up, finding out your pregnant is an adrenaline rush and a moment you won’t forget.
For my first pregnancy I had no idea what I was doing. I called my OBGYN, with the intention of heading on over immediately only to be told I had to wait until I was 12 weeks in. The wait up till that appointment was maddening! I wanted the Sonography picture of my little bun in the oven NOW!
Luckily, baby number one did not come with morning sickness. We dodged a huge bullet there, I didn’t realize how huge until baby number two. During the first trimester I was still active and went to gym regularly, however I had to modify my routine drastically. Walking instead of running and substituting the bench press for dumbbells were a few quick fixes. As time went on, I began to notice that I hurt a lot and all the time.
Concerned I brought it up to my oh so “lovely” midwife who replied, “That’s pregnancy”
Being this was my first baby, I trusted her and went on with the notion that all mothers go through this. NOT TRUE! My midwife was a nightmare. The reason I even bring this up is so that you know that you have options out there.
A natural birth was something I wanted to try and she was the only midwife at the OB I frequented. I was new to the maternity world, had no idea what I was doing and did not know that I could go somewhere else if I so chose. Looking back, I wished I would have looked into several options before accepting the first presented to me. angry
The Home Stretch
Time passed and on came the third trimester. I was big, hungry and hurt. My hips just don’t take pregnancy well. Walking was painful, sitting was unpleasant, I had a heated temper and sleeping was a joke. I was ready to have my baby. Three days before my due date, baby number one was ready to come.
This is where my story takes a turn for the worst. Be forewarned I’m going to get a little gritty here. I don’t want to scare any new moms out there. On a positive note, before we get into the horror story I’m about to share, my second delivery was pure bliss. I find that having had experienced giving birth in both a traumatic circumstance and a peaceful one, allowed me to appreciate both in their own way.
A Visit from Freddy Kruger
I call my first labor and delivery “Night mare on Elm Street”. We arrived a little after 9pm. I was admitted to a delivery room and strapped to all those fancy monitors. A dear friend of ours who is a Doula rushed to my side as soon as she heard the news to assist me in all my labor woes. We walked, breathed, poured water over my tummy, anything to get through the contractions.
I honestly don’t know what I would have done without her. Having her there as a support system kept me sane. Otherwise I’m pretty sure I would have just rolled into a ball on the floor cursing at my husband. If you can afford it, I highly recommend looking into having a doula assist you through birth, especially if it’s your first baby. They take a boatload of stress off your shoulders.
After hours of this, I just didn’t have it in me. I was exhausted. Contractions seriously take it out of you. Not to mention it bloody hurts! I called for the epidural. Ah, what relief. I made a point not to wait for that on baby number two. However, this is baby number one we are talking about, back to Elm Street.
Hours went by after the epidural. My Doula friend went home to catch some Z’s before her busy morning arrived and I lied there with hubby waiting. My baby was stuck.
Oh the Horror
Next, a hoard of people and a doctor with foresepts came in to pull the baby out. At this point, my epidural was wearing off. I told my nurse and she called for the anesthesiologist who quickly arrived and took care of it. Now, it takes time for that pain relief to set in. I explained this to the doctor with the giant salad tongs that I can still feel everything, to which he did not even acknowledge my existence.
The foresepts were forced inside, pain and all. Blood was everywhere. It flew on the chest of my gown on the floor. It was “Nightmare on Elm Street”. Eventually the pain subsided as my epidural kicked in and my baby was brought into this world. My big chubby boy! That was all that mattered and all I cared about.
Tears fell from my eyes as I heard his first cry. Unfortunately all this urgency was due to my baby having difficulty for those last moments in the womb and I was not able to hold him when he was first brought out. They whisked him away to stabilize him and he was given to me about 30 minutes later.
I got My Baby Back
He was here! Finally, after all that, he was here! Although it was not a glorious experience I had hoped for, it was worth everything just to hold him in my arms. He was beautiful. I cannot express how much love filled me the moment I held him in my arms. Suddenly the earth stood still and I felt the urge to protect, love and cherish him for eternity. I still do.
Recovery was hard from that delivery. I was almost a stage 4 episiotomy and it took some time to recuperate from that one. Lots of rest and a donut helped the healing process. I share some of my recovery tips in THIS POST.
My Preggers Story Part 2
Now, let’s talk about baby number two! With all that had happened with my first I really wanted to prepare myself for baby number two. I worked out and ate clean in the time leading up to my pregnancy and then, BAM, the test was positive!
Another bun in this oven and I was determined to do it right. I wanted to eat right, exercise, get a better doctor and make this pregnancy a good one. Oh the goals I set for myself are so high. First trimester came with a surprise, morning sickness! It was awful. I wouldn’t wish that feeling on my worst enemy. It was similar to walking around having someone punch you in the gut all day and never sure if you were about to blow chunks everywhere.
Don’t Toss One’s Cookies
Eating was difficult. I could hardly stomach much of anything. I tried a natural route to ease the sickness, only to find my head in the toilet a moment later. As much as I really despised having to take anything unnatural during this pregnancy, I accepted my doctor’s prescription of maternity anti-nausea medicine and I don’t feel bad about it.
Once More Woes
With that taken care of, I felt better for a time. Second Trimester comes around and I start to hurt again. My daily bout of yoga was fading into a thing of the past. Sigh. The pain was unbearable this time. There was a constant burning sensation in my pelvis, hips and groin. I had a difficult time walking, standing and I couldn’t lie on my sides at all.
Again, I asked my doctor, my new, awesome doctor that was determined to give me a better experience than my last pregnancy! She recognized the pain and recommended I see a prenatal Chiropractor. At first the idea frightened me. Cracking and popping while pregnant, the thought did not sit well in my mind. On the other hand, I was truly desperate for relief, so off I went to my orientation appointment.
Crack me Correct
I was pleasantly pleased. The orientation was extremely informative and the owner was also a mother of several beautiful babies herself. I then proceeded to make an appointment for the big adjustment. During the appointment I was told to lie face down with my stomach in a concave belly pillow. This alone was wonderful. It had been so long since I was able to lay on my front.
The adjustment proceeded and was quite painless and quick. Once I stood up I burst into tears. I couldn’t believe it, I didn’t hurt anymore! Walking no longer caused me pain. Overwhelmed with joy I just cried, right there in front of everyone. They were all super supportive and assured me I was not the only one who had burst into tears.
Apparently, my hips had been off center and twisted, something that most likely occurred after giving birth to my first baby. The specialists recognized the issue, aligned my hips and alleviated pressure off my lower back. This alone was the best pregnancy decision I have ever made. I would see the Chiropractor once a week or every other and they would adjust my hips back into alignment. It was a dream, I was mobile again until…wait for it… Braxton Hicks kicked in.
Hold That Baby
I just got it all with this baby, but I would say this pregnancy was more luxurious than my first. I began to become plagued by Braxton Hicks contractions daily. Then at about 35 weeks pregnant, I went into labor. We headed to the hospital and I was admitted to labor and delivery after evaluation. I was heartbroken. I knew if my baby was born then, they would have to keep him in the NICU for at least two weeks and I would be sent home without him.
Luckily, after several hours, with all the doctors and nurses certain I was to have that baby today, my contractions eased and I was able to go home. I was told to be on bed rest until I was due. I was instructed not to partake in any strenuous activity or tasks and I’m a very “to-do list” kind of girl. It was difficult after that to take it slow. However, I did as I was told and took it easy.
Until You Can’t Hold No More
Two weeks later, labor pains again. A call with the doctor resulted in them insisting I come in. Off to the hospital we went again, on Easter Day! I was 37 weeks and that baby wasn’t going to stay in this time. This labor was a dream. I was admitted and informed the nurses of my wishes to labor for a little bit and then send in the epidural.
The epidural came, I dilated after a few hours, and then it was time to push. The doctor was extremely genuine and kind. He made me feel empowered that I could do this. Only 50 minutes of pushing and that big beautiful baby out! It was magical. The NICU nurses were on standby due to the baby still technically a preemie only to have them take one look at his chubby pink skin and say, “You don’t even need us here. He is perfectly healthy”. I was able to hold him immediately and he was given right to me, squishy white goo and all.
It was that quick, that simple and that easy. I was completely flabbergasted at how smooth the entire process went. I was united with an adorable healthy baby with no complications or obscene occurrences. It was enough to make me want to do it all over again. (As my husband glares at me out the corner of his eye) Honestly, the experience changed my outlook on what labor and delivery can be about. Labor and delivery can be pleasant, uncomplicated, powerful and attainable.
That was a magnificent day and a complete turnaround from my first delivery experience. I am very grateful to have had experienced both labors good and not so glamorous. Each gave me my precious children who are the loves of my life and I wouldn’t have it any other way. To bring them into this world and gaze upon their precious faces is breathtaking.
In the End
I wish all you mothers out there and new mom-to-be’s the best of wishes in your pregnancy journey. This was mine and to share it with you is just a way for me to get a bit more personal with you. I hope that if you take anything from this it is that no matter how your pregnancy may unfold, that sweet little baby in the end makes every ache and pain well worth it.
All my love Mom’s!