Call us crazy but my husband and I decided to take the big leap – the official jump from 1 kiddo to 2.
My recent absence from the ole blog is largely due to this fact. It’s amazing how finding out you’re pregnant can push you into a cocoon of your own world. It’s as though I’ve had this amazing secret looming over my head, being the only thing I want to talk about and write about but I can’t.
When you’re pregnant you’ve got this HUGE secret and you’re not supposed to tell anyone right? We’ve all heard the cautionary tales, the women who miscarry and suddenly find themselves retracting their statements to friends and family.
Miscarriages happen, often at no fault of the mother or any other extenuating circumstances under our control….and just the sheer lack of control can be debilitating. The level of anguish and pain one would go through having to explain this over and over is enough to have made me keep my mouth shut until it’s “safe”.
But just the idea of a “safe” time to make that announcement can be so scary, I’ve heard of many pregnancies being lost in the first trimester and I’ve heard of a some lost in the second trimester. Even worse, if you download an app like this Baby Center one, where there is a forum you truly hear nothing but the worst of the worst. While they can be extremely educational, especially to a first time mother, they can also cause massive amounts of undue stress.
I urge anyone who takes part in these forums to take them with a grain of salt.
The fact is that while miscarriages are common, the majority of pregnancies are successful and are carried to full term. This is something I had to constantly remind myself of when I read the devastating stories of lost pregnancies.
Then comes the first big sigh of relief… the second you hear that heartbeat.
Unless you don’t.
We went in for our designated “Doppler” appointment at 10 weeks, my doctor recommended we come back in at 10 weeks as it’s easier to hear a heartbeat then. I was having an awful, awful day at work and was looking forward to this shining moment.
And then, he couldn’t find a heartbeat. My heart immediately sank.
Of course this would happen on this terrible day.
Anterior placenta. This is a term I’ve become fairly familiar with. They had us go over for an ultrasound to make sure everything was okay. The first thing I saw typed on the scan were those two little words. My placenta was on the front. Again. Although it could still move, this was probably a contributing factor to not hearing a heartbeat and the main reason I could not feel our daughter move well into my first pregnancy.
But much more importantly, during this scan we also saw a heartbeat.
The level of relief that flashed over me was indescribable.
As a female, you take the test, you get a yes or no and all of the sudden your whole life changes. You’re constantly grasping at straws trying to prove that this is real. Do I feel nauseous? Am I gaining weight? Do I look/feel any different?!? Sometimes yes, sometimes no. It can be absolutely maddening.
Then you throw all of the do’s and don’ts on top of that; no lunch meat, no caffeine, no alcohol, no soft cheese, no sushi, not too much seafood, etc. etc. Then you read the forums, then you read the stats.
It. Is. Awful.
I guess my point is that every single step of pregnancy is a big “what if” game. But it’s time for us all, myself included, to cut ourselves some slack. There are no definitive right or wrong answers, and while there are some things you can control, others you cannot.
If you’re ready to tell people you’re pregnant, go for it. If you need to talk openly about a loss, please don’t hesitate. If you need to tell someone that you’re scared, or excited, or overwhelmed – there are people who are there for you if you let them be.
So rather than questioning everything and driving ourselves nuts it’s time to enjoy the journey and support one another through the beautiful, exhausting, sometimes devastating and incredibly trying experience of growing humans.