Did you have an easy pregnancy or a difficult pregnancy? Mine were horrible! I was ill the entire nine months during both of my pregnancies… but I came out of it with two beautiful boys!
I did NOT like being pregnant. It was PURE HELL! I was weak. The headaches were non-stop. My body was in constant pain and throwing up was my daily ab workout for nine months. Getting out of bed and dragging myself to work… pulling all-nighters to meet deadlines… fights with the insurance company to get anti nausea meds so I could just keep enough food in my body to stay alive.. Staying hydrated was next to impossible because nothing tasted good, or felt good… Those were the slowest days of my life! It was just awful. My two boys sucked up all my energy (who am I kidding; they still do). 😉
Sam and Gabe were born 3 years apart because after I had Sam I had to go right back to work despite my health being horrible. Plus, as Nate was going to school and working the early morning shift loading trucks at UPS, I knew I would still have to be the primary bread winner during my second pregnancy and chances were good that I’d be sick for all nine months again. It really kicked my butt the first time. I was so afraid of going through that again. But I did it again so Sam could have a sibling.
I also found out that these guys had a lot of room to grow… due to my elephant-sized uterus! My mom had an 11.7 pound baby (my brother) and I was 10.5 pounds when I was born. After my mother’s pregnancies she had numerous health difficulties and eventually ended up getting a hysterectomy. And I inherited some of those challenges. Close to my due dates, I wasn’t even dilated. Neither of my boys wanted to leave the hot tub! My children would have been HUGE, just like my mother’s, if not for my very observant doctor. He realized that with both pregnancies I had the same measurements of an average woman carrying twins! So, he suggested early delivery via c-section so I wouldn’t deal with potential complications during delivery and issues with recovery afterward. Both boys were pulled out at 8.6 pounds. Had I left them in there until I was fully dilated who knows how big they would have been.
Despite delivering both boys early via c-section I still had difficulties afterward…
I was only 28 years old when I had my second child, Gabe. There was a part of me that really wanted to have another child. But, after Gabe’s birth I continued to bleed for nine more months. I would bleed out and make a mess on a regular basis. Totally embarrassing! I went through tampons and pads like crazy! I remember one time in particular: I was at work in a meeting and blood completely soaked my pants. I had to excuse myself and wheel my stained chair out of the room. I tied my coat around my waist, ran to Target, bought a new outfit, washed myself down in the Target bathroom, changed and went back to work.
After several visits with my doctor, I was faced with one of the most difficult decisions of my life: I could take my chances and try to get pregnant again right way, or I could have a procedure on my uterus to stop the bleeding. Both options were pretty rough. Another pregnancy would almost certainly mean another nine months of nauseating hell, while raising two boys and working full time to provide for my family. But the second option was even more bleak. The procedure would stop the bleeding… but the impact would be permanent. It would leave me unable to give birth to another child. Even though I didn’t think that I could handle another child at that particular point in time, I really didn’t want to permanently close the door on the chance to have another child someday.
It was an extremely painful and difficult choice. I felt as though I’d be letting someone down if I got the procedure, or even worse, that I’d be letting myself down. I had no problem getting pregnant (we tried exactly twice to get pregnant and ended up with two boys) and I felt that I was abandoning the gift of bringing more life into the world. It was a heavy decision to make at such a young age. It was heavy on Nate and I as a couple. It still is, sometimes…
During the procedure there were complications. That was when they realized how gargantuan my uterus really was… what was supposed to be a 30 min procedure ended up taking 4 hours. The first attempt didn’t work due to the size of my uterus, so they had to try a second time using another method. They moved organs around, shoved a breathing tube down my throat and bruised crap out of my stomach. I had no problem recovering from two c-sections but this recovery was a nightmare. On top of that, I made a mistake at work right before my surgery, so while trying to recover, I had to scramble to fix my mistake and catch up on work.
I often look at larger families and think that I could have had another child… or I wish things were different at that time in my life. Maybe if I didn’t have to work outside the home I could have endured one more pregnancy. I’m not going to lie, there are still times that I regret my decision… I still carry some resentment. It still stings sometimes.
Life throws us curve balls, sometimes. This experience really hit me hard… but I have two beautiful boys that keep me on my toes. They tangle and fight as siblings do. They say “I hate you” and “I love you” as kids typically do, but at the end of the day we forgive, say our prayers for strength and hope for a better tomorrow.
After I made a full recovery from my surgery and my boys were just starting to interact with each other, I composed this song for them. I’m playing the short version. The extended version is much longer, but I don’t think I could play that long in front of a camera without making a number of mistakes. I’m not a concert pianist. 🙂
For those that haven’t had kids yet, I don’t want to freak you out. My experience was NOT normal. Every women is going to have a different experience. Most women I know just have the traditional first three months of nausea and sickness. Some have nothing at all! (So lucky!)
What were your pregnancies like?