So many of my friends have (and are) struggled to get pregnant. While it may look like we had it easy (and we did on so many accounts), I haven't been without my worries and stress about the road to motherhood. I felt like writing some of it out, so it could possibly give some insight into this and also as a way for me to vent my worries. It is long and I will go ahead and apologize about that right now.
I spent my teen years (and early twenties) worrying that, if I ever got pregnant, it would kill me (myth), thanks to Steel Magnolias. I spent my early twenties to mid twenties worrying about finding that special someone to be my husband. You know, special because all of the things Type 3 diabetics have to learn and worry about, especially when you add pregnancy in the mix. I found him in the most wonderful guy in the world, the Timmy. After marrying T, I worried about getting my diabetes under control so we could have a baby. A healthy baby. After about 9-ish months of a1c's under 7, we got a go ahead from my doctor to try. After several months of trying and not getting pregnant, I started worrying that something might be wrong with my body, either diabetes related or something else.
But then we got pregnant. The worries quickly changed to joy. Mental plans for the future swam through our heads. Christmas here, birthdays there. This way of teaching, these activities. All of the things newly pregnant people discuss, think about and plan. But it didn't last long. After the miscarriage, I worried that maybe there really WAS something wrong with me. Perhaps I could never carry a child. Perhaps I shouldn't reproduce. An ex-boyfriend's mother once told me that she didn't want me for the mother of her grandchildren (even though she liked me very much) because of the entire diabetes issue. Comments like that stick with you and, when the miscarriage happened, it kept rearing it's ugly head.
Even with all of those worries, we kept on trying as soon as we got the doctor's ok. I kept on worrying. T kept to himself whatever was on his mind. Once again months passed without any luck. At one point during that time, I spent way too much money on pregnancy tests, due to an unexplained 90 day cycle. I thought I was pregnant. I had to be! But the tests said no. Again, I worried that there was something wrong with me. I started to consider going to some kind of specialist, but I knew T would say that if it was meant to happen, then it'd happen. Finally that horrendous 90 day cycle ended right before my birthday this year. It was a wonderful birthday present.
Then I got busy with life. Vacation Bible School at church, followed by a trip to Oklahoma, with various birthdays and minor holidays thrown in there. Even so, I kept on wondering when my time would be. When would I be a mom? Would I ever? Should I? Those worries and that busyness kept on. July approached.
I knew July would be a difficult month. That is when our lost baby would've been due. Those thoughts kept going through my head. I remember the 4th of July being especially difficult because that was the "fun" date I had in my head for a potential c section delivery date. A delivery date for a baby that did not make it. That day just made me feel nauseated. Perhaps it was due to memories and stress. Or perhaps it was due to what happened soon (super soon) after.
I was late. I worried that it was another super long cycle like the one from the cycle before. T was working nights, leaving me alone with my worries. Finally, I decided to take a pregnancy test. Positive! I didn't believe it. This was a test that was taken at night. Those tests aren't always accurate, my silly brain tried to tell me. Since they recommend home pregnancy tests be taken in the morning with first morning urine, I waited and retook the test. Still positive. :) Even with the happiness, I was still scared. What if I lose it? What if it happens AGAIN? What if?? Of course, T was still on night shifts and these terrors were racing through my head. That's how my best friend Megin became the first one to know about San Francisco. She talked me down off the figurative cliff. She told me it was going to be alright. Her conversation gave me the permission to try to be excited. I bought a bib and decorated it to tell T the good news.
He was excited, of course. I was excited. But how long would that excited last until it happened again? I worried about that until our first ultrasound. I was terrified that there wouldn't be a heartbeat (or even a baby), like the ultrasound I had in the ER during the miscarriage. I couldn't even look at the screen at the doctor's office until they told me everything looked good. I was afraid of silence, so I covered my ears to prevent not hearing the lack of a heartbeat. There was a strong, fast heartbeat.
I still have trouble giving myself permission to get excited about this baby. Perhaps that's why we didn't make a big deal about telling everyone. Every appointment I fear going in and there not being a heartbeat. Luckily, the doctor has found it quickly every time with the exception of that one time. I constantly worry that my diabetes (and years of poor control) will and are hurting this baby. During my ultrasound from last week, I was reassured that everything looked good that could've
Then I was told about the cord. Something new to worry about! It's not a big deal, but it is a big deal. A friend told me that her mom lost a baby at 7 months because of this same thing. Granted, that was, like, 30 years ago, but still. I've feared that I would lose this baby this entire time for one reason or another and , now, I'm given another reason to fear this.
Learning that this baby is not an it, but, in fact, a she has made this so real. Seeing her face(!) has made this so much more real. Knowing her name has made this so much more real. And, now, feeling her move has made this extremely more real. Emotions that I could push back before come pouring out so easily. Sad videos or songs or even songs of joy bring tears. Memories of my pop who I miss terribly bring tears to my eyes. SF, my little San Francisco (not her real name, fyi), is so real. And so mine. I don't know how I could stand if something happened to her. These worries are going to drive me crazy if I don't just have a little faith. I gotta believe everything (and everyone) will be alright.
I also know I need to understand that these worries I have now aren't going to change. I'm going to be a mother and a mother worries about her little loves.