Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Real Pregnancy Update

I am 17 weeks now, almost 4 months.  There are days when I feel like this is the longest pregnancy that I could imagine, and others when it feels like it is going by so quickly.  I am just starting to "pop" and I started feeling the baby kick quite a bit this last week (it actually already is hurting me - not a good sign!).  But overall, it's been a strange experience being pregnant with my third child.

I am not one of those people who has said that I have hated pregnancy or that I feel like I have awful pregnancies.  I've also never particularly loved being pregnant.  With this pregnancy, I'm not sure I would use the word hate, but I'm definitely towards that side of the scale this time around.  I've experience nausea before, throwing up every so often, learning the tricks of the trade where I avoid certain foods, eat every so often, blah blah blah.  But those tricks have not mattered at all this pregnancy.  I started getting what I would call average morning sickness right away, lasting about two weeks, and I thought, "Oh yeah, I know how this goes."  But right around 6 weeks it changed, and it turned into morning, afternoon, evening sickness, all the time.  I had the hardest time deciding what to eat, it literally changed every day.  And then I got smart and decided to choose the foods that were easy to throw up.  I was miserable.  I have always looked at other women who get really sick during pregnancy and have felt so bad for them, thinking I could never do it.  Well, I was right to feel bad for them.  And I was right to think that I couldn't do really do it, 'cause I didn't really. Things in my life were sort of chaotic.  Luckily, that ended about 15 weeks.

Right around 12 weeks, I started getting chronic migraines.  I get migraines normally fairly so often, but that is one thing I love about being pregnant - no migraines.  Wrong.  They lasted about 3 weeks, and I was able to get through them with some newly prescribed medication.  The migraines turned into just average headaches around 15 weeks.  

Right around 15 weeks the itching started (yes, THAT itching).  Luckily, LUCKILY, it was fairly moderate and came off and on.  I got testing done right away and right now my levels are within the normal range, so phew nothing to worry about yet.  It's still there, but again, it doesn't keep me up at nights like it eventually will.

I started feeling good.  It was amazing.  I felt hope that I was in my second trimester groove, and even started bragging about it.  Then 16  weeks, I got slammed with the worst flu I've ever had.  I think for me, the flu has always been a two to three day thing where I rest a lot, take some pain meds, maybe if my temp gets high call in an antibiotic.  But I'm very good at sleeping, and that has seemed to work to my advantage.  This flu was different.  Apparently, there is some awful flu going around the schools, so maybe I got that, I don't know.  But I was literally in bed for 5 days straight.  I walked downstairs usually once a day to see if I could find something to eat.  Other than that, I was holed up in my room, sweating, in pain, and in absolute misery.  Luckily I was able to get some meds, and that has started the mending, but I am pretty sure it will take a while before I am completely healed.  I still can't eat (it's been a week), my throat is extremely swollen, I have a cough, and I get winded when I walk about 10 feet.  This flu sort of traumatized me and I'm not exaggerating.  There were a few times where I hoped I would slip into a coma or something so that I could escape the pain.  Nick and Briz are now fighting it, and so we are not socializing much, but I'm just glad I am able to get out of my room.

And comes the last piece of the puzzle to my pregnancy thus far.  My emotional stability.  I knew that being pregnant again/having a newborn would be a bit of a roller coaster for me.  I was talking openly with my doctors about it and my therapist before I got pregnant.  And I was overwhelmingly grateful when I first found out (we had been trying for a bit and I was starting to get a bit worried that we would need to try some more intensive fertility treatments), so I was just so excited initially.  I like to think that may have lasted a bit longer had I not been so sick, but who knows.  Either way, the emotional struggle started fairly early.  I started having nightmares every night about death, about my baby dying, both in-utero and outside.  I had dreams filled with anxiety and self doubt (Luckily most of those dreams have subsided).  During my times when I am awake, I question myself.  I wonder if I can handle another baby.  I feel like I have forgotten all about being a mom to a newborn.  I am scared that I will be disappointed that this baby isn't Holland.  I feel guilty at times that I am forgetting my other baby.   I feel angry that I am pregnant for the third time and yet most people don't know that.  My family seems in a strange way more incomplete than before.  And above all, of course, I am beyond scared that I won't be able to keep my baby alive.  

I wouldn't normally consider myself a worrier (analytic sure), and I know you might be thinking that some of those thoughts and feelings are normal.  They aren't for me.  You also might be thinking that they are kind of absurd thoughts, but it's difficult to reassure me because of my last experience with a baby.  It's funny how many times I hear, "Oh well, they'll survive," or "Well,  my kids haven't died yet . . ."  I don't have that rationale in my mind anymore.  So . . . I worry.  And yeah, I'm pregnant, so chances are I'm slightly more emotional than normal anyways :)

I love being a mother more than anything else.  I have craved it my whole life, and never did I crave it more than after Holland died, but as we all know, being a mother is a complicated thing.  We face so much physical and emotional pain, uncertainty, doubt, insecurity, and fear.    It is hard to face a lot of those negative emotions surrounding motherhood when I would love to be a googly eyed pregnant woman, just elated about onesies and baby nurseries and showers.  But I'm not.  I truthfully don't care about any of that (for now :) ).    

I have had some of the most tender moments of my life through the last few months because even when I doubt myself, I have found strength through others, particularly my daughters.  So for that I'm grateful.  And maybe soon once I can eat food joyfully, then I will be less grouchy :)


Brittany Farfan said...

Lex, I loved reading this. I have some of the same fears, but not from experience, just hearing of yours and others stories.
We're expecting baby #4 and I am doubting our decision to have another child..even half way through pregnancy. Take care of yourself and I hope the latter half of your pregnancy smooths out and you can enjoy food, and more food.

Amander N said...

Ugghhhhhhh. If it makes you feel better (to have commiseration), I threw up almost immediately after reading this post.

I have many of the same worries. Obviously I haven't lost a child, but with my last miscarriage I now pretty much expect to miscarry every day. It makes it hard to be hopeful or excited. And even experiencing Holland's death from a distance, I worry about keeping a child alive (and knowing often there is nothing you can do). And I agree with you, I am not usually a worrier. I analyze things, but I tend to not worry much. So all of this worry is new for me.

I want to be a googly eyed pregnant woman too, but I kind of don't see that happening this time around. Oh well, I guess I just have to trust that I will get through whatever comes. Love you mucho. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

Maggie said...

I am a huge worrier so these thoughts all sound a little too calm to me :)

Reading this, I just hope that people who are going through similar trials can find your blog. Your honesty would be such a balm to people having these feelings and thinking they are alone.

And why is your body so mean to you?! I know 24 hour pregnancy nausea/grossness but if I'd had any of those things on top of it, I'd have found a bus and hurled myself in front of it.

Thinking and praying for you often. Hope to see you sometime sooner rather than later. Come to Utah. The air will do wonders for your health :)

Steven said...

I don't like pregnancy, I view it as a necessary evil although I don't have to deal with very much of the terribleness that you do. It was the first few months of motherhood that rocked my world and literally made me a little nuts. I have told myself that I will be able to handle it better the second time, but now I am having twins and I am pretty sure I will be crazy again. People love to ask me how I am going to handle twins and a move, and although I think about it all the time, I procrastinate actually doing or planning anything.
Sorry my comment ended up being about me...I appreciated reading your candid thoughts and learning about what you are going through across the country. Wish I could help, or at least sit around miserable together.

Meredith said...

HAHAHAHA! I am on Steven's computer and didn't realize it was signed into his account. Steven's comment was from me, Meredith