pregnancy, sickness, and not having that “glow”

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This weekend we went to a friend’s birthday party and at this party were two beautiful and glowing pregnant women at completely different stages in their pregnancies. One was going to give birth any day and the other was just over halfway there.

Have you ever met that person who LOVES to be pregnant? The one who is just glowing the whole time and really only aches and pains at the end of the day or pregnancy? Well, that was not me. At all. I was sick, I was huge, and I was uncomfortable. Don’t get me wrong, being pregnant was one of the best times in my life and I was able to enjoy the fact that I was GROWING A HUMAN BEING inside of my body, but I’d be lying if I told you all that it didn’t make me question if Baby J was going to be an only child.

Let’s back up to the whole “I actually was able to GET pregnant” issue. I was told in April 2011 that I would be unable to become pregnant without the help of medication due to some medical issues that I had had. So, when we got married, we figured, why try to prevent having a baby if I couldn’t? We’d wait a year before really trying and seeking out help with fertility medications and whatnot. It was sad that I had been told this news, but ultimately, Mr. Wonderful and I believed that if God wanted us to have a baby, He would give us one at the right time, whether through adoption or one of our own. That being said, Baby J came along just 8 weeks after we had gotten married (which made me grateful that I had waited until marriage to be intimate with my hubby). He was a surprise blessing to say the least.

We were in Napa  for my brother-in-law’s wedding when we found out and I was certain that I was NOT pregnant, but I was nauseous and exhausted and had to buy a new bra while there since mine was suddenly too small. Mr. Wonderful’s dad said “Jen’s pregnant,” and so we went to go buy a test. When I took it, I got the faintest positive, so I figured it was a defective test and kept drinking the whole weekend not really knowing if I was growing a life inside of my belly. When we got home, I took another test. It was defective. I waited one more day and took another one and low and behold, “Pregnant” appeared on the screen. Seriously?! I ran downstairs, crying, and told Mr. Wonderful. Before he got too excited, he said I needed to go to the doctor to confirm it. So I called and set up that appointment. At the appointment, my doctor said to me, “Well, you are pregnant and doctors aren’t God,” since this SAME DOCTOR had told me 5 months prior that I would be unable to have children the old fashioned way. 🙂 We were ecstatic!

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Now came the hard part. I was SO SICK. ALL THE TIME. I initially lost around 10 lbs. because I was so sick. When they say that it’s morning sickness, they lie. It’s all-freaking-day sickness. But, for me, I didn’t just have morning sickness. I had something called hypermesis gravidarium . It may sound familiar because the Dutchess of Cambridge, Mrs. Kate Middleton, has been suffering from it. I was extremely sick, but my case of hypermesis gravidarium was actually less severe than many cases.

16 weeks

16 weeks pregnant (and already in maternity pants)

I tried all the tried and true tricks to get rid of it prior to the diagnosis. I had tried the pressure point bands, peppermint, peppermint oil, ginger EVERYTHING, B6 and Unisom, eating before bed, eating right before I got up for the day, a saltine diet, and just laying in bed… all the time. Nothing worked for me. I was sick for a long time. Finally, my doctor prescribed the miracle medication, Zofran, for me. It stopped the throwing up… for a little while. Then, I needed something more frequently to stop the vomiting. I was on three medications to stop it until around 20 weeks and then I went down to two medications, and then finally none around 26 weeks pregnant. My cravings were McDonald’s sausage burritos and lemonade or orange juice. That was pretty much all I could really keep down for close to 20ish weeks (it’s a miracle Baby J came out healthy…).

Needless to say, I do not think I was one of those women who “glowed” when they are pregnant. I complained. A lot. I’m sure I had my “glowing” moments, but I was sick and I was massive and I was tired and sore. I missed 26 days of school that year and it was HARD. I had gained 55 lbs. (45 from pre-pregnancy, but I lost 10 initially) and got to weigh over 200 lbs. in my final weeks. I was swollen and my belly looked (and still looks) like I’ve been through war. I waddled. But, I’d do it again… and again… and again… and again, for the love that I have grown for my sweet boy.

25 weeks

25 weeks pregnant

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30 weeks pregant

35 weeks

35 weeks pregnant

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40 weeks pregnant

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41 weeks, 5 days pregnant

Pregnancy is rough for most women at some point, and everyone experiences it differently. I have friends who are pregnant now and all of them are glowing and beautiful and have zero stretch marks because they were blessed with elastic skin. I hope that if Baby J ever has a brother or a sister, that I will get to experience feeling great during pregnancy. Each pregnancy is a beautiful thing, but I want to be that woman who loves being pregnant the whole time, who has the birth they want, and bonds with their baby immediately. I didn’t have that experience this time and that is OK, but if I get it next time, that’d be awesome.

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One thought on “pregnancy, sickness, and not having that “glow”

  1. Pingback: waiting… | Cupcakes and Cloth Diapers

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