Some women “accidentally” get pregnant, barely feel any symptoms, skate through their pregnancy fairly easily, and then push that perfect, beautiful baby out no problem.
This has not been my journey.
My husband and I “accidentally” got pregnant at the end of June; it wasn’t exactly an accident, but we weren’t exactly trying either, it was more of a test to see if the other one was ready for a child by seeing if I stopped him or if he pulled out – I didn’t and he didn’t and bam! I was pregnant. That night, after sex, I thought – he just got me pregnant. It was that instantaneous, the changes to my body, my intuition prickling.
In the first week of July I would become narcoleptic, nauseous. We traveled to Chicago and Michigan and my breasts were sore. No, not sore, they hurt, like a little jiggle when walking was painful.
Instantly, I became protective, allowing my body to rest when needed, practicing self-care (which is something I don’t normally practice yet desperately need to). I napped when necessary, kept active yet didn’t push too hard, worked, but didn’t work myself to a stressed out mess: I found balance.
And my husband was doting, running out to buy ginger beer, going for runs with me when sitting still made the nausea worse. We were excited. We were hopeful. And then a week after we got home to Seattle, I found myself eating ginger cookies simply because they were cookies and not because I was nauseous. My breasts were no longer tender. I had a day with odd blood clots, and then that was it.
This world of fertility and pregnancy and miscarriage is all so new to me, so secretive, so I went to two separate doctors and they both hypothesized that I had a chemical pregnancy (yet I still wasn’t exactly aware of what a chemical pregnancy was).
The next month we tried again, and we ended up drowning all of the little spermies in lubricant. (Whoops!)
Then the next month we both had the flu, had sex once, and bam! the symptoms were back, but this time I was not exactly excited, but wary. Was I being dramatic? Making this all up in my head? The doctors said I had a chemical pregnancy, but we couldn’t prove it because I miscarried before I could get a positive pregnancy test. Maybe I’m just being dramatic. So I fought every single symptom of this pregnancy, fought the idea that I could be right, that I could actually be pregnant, and when I took a test, I lined five positive tests up simply to convince myself that I hadn’t made it up.
I miscarried at 5 ½ weeks.
I felt robbed. Smacked in the face, now grieving two miscarriages, not one – the first at 4 weeks, the second at 5 ½ weeks. My hormones rising and falling, rising and falling – feeling like total, absolute shit for 4 months straight. Not being able to control my body. Feeling like a failure for miscarrying – twice.
It seems I don’t have trouble getting pregnant, but staying pregnant.
I believe I am pregnant again.
This time, because I have had two miscarriages, my doctor placed me on progesterone twice daily, and let me tell you, these hormones suck balls. Seriously, they do. I have all of the symptoms of pregnancy to the umpteenth degree (I drank 2 gallons of chocolate milk in 2 days), yet I may not actually be pregnant, the symptoms could simply be side effects from the progesterone.
Right now, I can’t trust my body, when I have finally learned to trust my body; control soothes me, and I have no control.
This journey has been challenging (at the very least). And I’m not sure how much longer I can continue with these hormones spiking and dropping, spiking and dropping, and spiking again. The hormones are debilitating. And I feel like instead of being excited for the possibility of pregnancy, I am guarded – what if I miscarry again?
It isn’t fair, but life isn’t fair (If you want to see unfair, look at who our president elect is, and not by the popular vote).
This is what I know: I’m jealous of other women whose journeys are easy, who barely feel any symptoms, who don’t need to try so hard. But I’m also happy for them, truly I am, many of them are my friends. And the jealousy makes me feel guilty; I’m not accustomed to being jealous. But you know what? I’m human. And at the moment, I’m struggling. At the moment, I feel pregnant. At the moment, I need to learn how to practice self-care. This journey is tiring. And perhaps I’m not as strong as I thought I was as I can’t imagine functioning as a mother, a writer, an actor, a wife, and a friend as all of these symptoms persist; so perhaps one child is enough (if/when we have a child).
Next week I will know for sure whether these symptoms are from pregnancy or hormone therapy or both. But in the meantime, I need to give myself a break. I need to rest. I need to be good to my body, my mind, my heart. I need to allow myself the excitement of a possible pregnancy – I cannot allow the miscarriages to rob me of my joy (easier said, than done, I know).
And once again…I’m waiting.
Thank you for reading. Thank you for sharing in my journey. It’s not all sugarplums and roses and unicorns and giggling bundles of baby joy. But hopefully one day, one day soon, it will be.