16 Nov 2015

Pregnancy and I

Don’t worry, this isn’t a surprise announcement or anything! But, for some reason or other, I have been thinking a lot lately about pregnancy and the times when I was pregnant. A number of bloggers I follow are currently pregnant, and their posts are obviously focused on their exciting news and week by week progress accounts. My Instagram and Facebook feeds are also awash with baby news and growing bumps, and you can’t help but feel so happy for these ladies and share in their excitement.

But, whilst I’m genuinely delighted for everyone and love reading their updates, I am also a little envious of their enthusiasm, their baby glow and how much they are loving being pregnant.

Because for me, pregnancy was not like that.

I know you’re not supposed to say it, but… I hated pregnancy.

There, I said it.

I was grateful that I was pregnant, of course, and in awe of the miracle that my body was performing; I couldn’t wait to hold my bundles of joy each time and did everything I could to keep them safe and well for the duration of the nine months. But the process itself was hard for me, both physically and mentally.

Even though my pregnancy with Becky was relatively easy and straight-forward physically, apart from a spell of SPD (symphysis pubis dysfunction) in the late stages, it was also the time I had to face up to 17 years of eating disorder and had to seek help for the sake of my baby and to ensure that I was healthy and well to carry her until full term. This was not an easy process to go through, even though it was definitely the right thing to do, and in hindsight, this pregnancy was probably the thing that “saved” me, even if this sounds a tad dramatic and for want of a better way of explaining it. 

When you’ve had body issues most of your life, embracing your changing physique is not easy, and whilst I can look at other women’s baby bumps and think they look cute and lovely, my own made me feel heavy, unattractive and alien, and this feeling tarnished both my pregnancies.

With Alex, I had a much tougher pregnancy, physically speaking. From extreme nausea for weeks on end to heavy nose bleeds, unexplained itching and allergic reactions to a much earlier onset of SPD around week 20, which eventually led to full on sciatica by week 30 and left me unable to walk and on crutches by week 32 – it really was awful. And when you don’t feel well, it’s hard to muster up the enthusiasm and convince yourself that pregnancy is brilliant. In fact, by week 34 I was so fed up, that my mind was playing tricks on me, and even though deep down I was praying that this pregnancy was going to be full term and that my baby was healthy, I was obsessed with the one ubiquitous, overwhelming thought that I just couldn’t shake: “I hate pregnancy!” I thought it first thing when I woke up and last thing I wiggled into bed, heavy, uncomfortable and in pain.

And forget the proverbial baby glow. Ok, my hair, nails and skin were amazing, I’m not going to lie, but apart from that I looked like a massive, red-faced, puffy walrus with feet and ankles so swollen that I couldn’t even get into my Uggs (with Becky, who was a winter baby) and my Birkenstocks (with Alex, in the summer). And that's saying something!

Of course I, too, loved the little precious moments when I could feel my babies wiggle, move and kick me, of course I, too, marveled at the scan pictures, and I, too, would stroke my belly and feel an overwhelming sense of love for the little beans in me. But, for the most part of pregnancy, the other feelings prevailed. 

So when I see all these happy pictures of pregnant ladies, I feel a tad sad that my own experiences were just not like that. That I couldn’t embrace it in the same way. Because it is such a blessing, I am totally aware of that and I count my lucky stars indeed.

Now, looking at my two babies, I can see and appreciate what an amazing thing my body has achieved, and I am so unbelievably grateful that I have my two gorgeous kiddies. And even though for me pregnancy was not the wonderful process it probably is for most, it was totally, absolutely, 100 per cent worth it. And I guess, that’s all that matters. 

* Linking up to Lets Talk Mommy and #ShareWithMe


1 comment

  1. It really is a miracle what our bodies can do isn't it? It's not easy for everyone being pregnant and I think that's not just the hand we are dealt as we all get different symptoms etc but seeing it through your first ones eyes it's different too isn't it? Lovely post. Thank you for stopping by LTM and linking up to SWM. I hope to see you again tomorrow for another great round of #sharewithme


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