At a recent doctor's visit for this pregnancy (now almost 16 weeks along!) my doctor and I were chatting about the differences between first and second pregnancies. I should probably preface this by saying that my main OB is male, something I was TOTALLY skeptical about in the beginning, but I will be scheduling this repeat c-section based entirely on his schedule in the operating room. While he may have never birthed a child, he has NEVER made me feel crazy or dismissed any of my questions. So the conversation that ensued I totally bought into without ever thinking "ya, but this guy has never experienced anything I'm talking about so how would he get it?!"
The short of it is most mamas-to-be don't really read pregnancy books with subsequent pregnancies. Even if they did, there isn't a ton out there that talks about things to expect during subsequent pregnancies except the age old "you'll start showing sooner" mantra. Maybe it's not true for everyone, but what else comes along with the showing sooner is earlier more severe round ligament pain, earlier/more back pain, even more exhaustion (why?! because you have at least one other small being running around this time), and for most the sheer bliss of first time expectancy has flown out the window. You KNOW (unless you were super lucky and absolutely LOVED being pregnant every second the first time) that pregnancy is NOT a cake walk or remotely glamorous. And with that knowledge can sometimes come fear. You've been through a delivery before, and realize that no matter how many of them you will go through, you'll still never know what to expect!
We talked about that too. About how during my c-section with Abby I had the mother of all anxiety attacks and wanted to bolt off the table - paying no mind to the fact that that would have been physically impossible. We talked about why it happened, that I'm not alone, and that there are ways we can try to work around it this time! We talked about me considering getting my tubes tied...yes...at 27 years old I am legitimately considering this. Why?! BECAUSE! I LOVE children. I would have a huge houseful of them. I have miserable early (if not entire) pregnancies.
This beautiful little fact was something I didn't even realize until this pregnancy. If you had asked me after my pregnancy with Dablet how it was, I would have said "fine! no issues!" HUH?!?! Let's reflect - severe nausea and vomiting the entire pregnancy, migraines, two early labor scares, choking acid reflux, almost two weeks of early labor contractions every two minutes for intervals of hours on end with no progress...sounds like a day at the spa! But I was BLISSFUL, and honestly I am convinced that your body produces something as soon as that little bit is born causing amnesia so you continue to procreate.
And yet, my dearest friends still have to dig deep to ask me how I REALLY am this time, why? Because there is that "I'm not sure what to do with these frustrated woe is me feelings because I should only feel blessed" gray area that comes after having a miscarriage let alone multiple miscarriages.
Here's the truth - it's 40 weeks of unpredictable chaotic hormone filled physically draining exhausting wonder, during which time you literally lose your mind. Pregnancy brain is a legitimate thing people! There is NO reason to feel guilty for not feeling good, wanting the pain/nausea/exhaustion to go away. None of those feelings discredit the recognition that life is a blessing, and because this is something we wanted so badly we are lucky to be experiencing it. It's kind of like the ultimate fear factor - every crazy mind-boggling task you go through to get the prize is so entirely worth it, but it doesn't mean you can't gag when you see some of the things you go through!
So here's to hormones and embracing whatever is about to happen next!