Strength

For those who don’t know, my husband and I finally achieved success in our 5 plus year battle against infertility. I won’t go over the journey we took, because I’ve done that already on this blog. 

That’s right! I’m pregnant!! I am so blessed that it worked. It worked. It was our last chance, and it worked. 

Since I gave my body over to infertility procedures, and my heart to the emotional agony, I expected, and maybe I can say, I deserved, a joyful, magazine-worthy pregnancy. With my other child, I had scares, but it was pretty easy. 

It was also 7 years ago. 

The blessed pregnancy began in disbelief, and it took me a while to accept that I could relax – we had done it! I began to be hard on myself for not being happier. I was anxious and had severe, nightly, panic attacks. Whenever I could, I caressed my baby belly and cried with joy.

Soon, the physical toll kicked in. By only 6 weeks, I was so out of breath and exhausted that I would get dizzy spells at work. I could barely manage stairs and basic tasks. It felt like all the treatments up until then had decided to show their side effects in full swing. I was so lucky I could quit, but I don’t know had I been compelled to work, if I could. 

The day after I quit, during dinner out with friends, I suffered a massive, and I mean massive, hemorrhage. I was 9 weeks, and we knew it was over. We ran to the ER, and when we finally got the ultrasound, I told Mike, “I don’t know what else to say or do. I give up. But it’ll be okay. It has to be. But I really don’t know how I’ll move on.” Suddenly, we saw the gummy bear baby, oblivious to the trauma, alive!!! We cried in joy. I went home under bed rest and extreme care. 

I continued to bleed for weeks. I didn’t do much. I wasn’t a fun parent. I couldn’t even cook. My husband picked up a lot of slack. 

Yet, this little fighter stayed. 

I am 28 weeks, 5 days pregnant. This baby is staying. The panic attacks have subsided a bit, but still come severe, and to the point where I wonder if we should go to the hospital so I can breathe. 

I can barely go up my stairs still, I am incredibly weak, breathless, and dizzy. I feel very ill daily where I can’t but lay down until it passes. I have severe varicose veins that will require 2 surgeries once the baby is here. I will bleed sometimes, and have lots of contractions. Nights of chest pain and numb shoulders. There is heartburn, headaches and all that usual stuff. Mostly, what gets me, is how weak I feel. I get sad that I can’t do normal pregnant mommy things. I can’t usually cook, clean, do laundry, or go places. I see other pregnant moms do normal things and I compare myself to them. I barely see friends because it’s hard to do much. I can’t do more than an hour of church before I get very sick. My brain is convinced I’m not a good pregnant person. That I’m weak. And that I’m somehow a failure for not having a more joyful pregnancy! Some days (during panic attacks), I have actually been convinced that I might die. It’s ridiculous. 

But then I videotape my belly moving. I talk to my baby and feel him kicking the crap out of me and  honestly LOVE IT. I have my child touch my belly and we laugh and talk about how life will change once baby is here. I touch my beautiful belly constantly. I sometimes stop, stunned, and realize I’m pregnant! I rejoice! 

I can’t do much for some reason. For some reason, this has been a very difficult pregnancy. But I am housing this baby. This fighter has found a home in my body. My body is (gratefully) doing all the pregnant things it’s supposed to do. It didn’t expel the baby like I thought it would. This is just what has happened. I couldn’t have willed it one way or another. But I am SO grateful for my body regardless. I am proud of my body. I take the moments I can and try to see them in full color: WONDERFUL. And the bad moments, I can’t deny, they are hard – BUT – I would much rather be here than still lost in the why of infertility. I can do this, easily. I just need to be nothing but positive toward myself. 

I just realized, my body has been through a lot, and I should be patient with it. And maybe that’s why it’s been a tricky few months. 

I love this baby so much. Thank you for staying. 

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