Pregnancy is a gift, and I don’t hold it lightly. I have walked this mamahood trail with brave, tired, joyfilled and at some times, unsure, friends…because mamahood is the good. And it is also the messy and the hard and the humbling.
Pregnancy, for me, is much the same.
My pregnancy with William, and my pregnancy this time around, have been drastically different. They feel like two different worlds, each teaching me anew.
I promised I’d share the wellness that didn’t exist the first time around and the gratitude that overflows because of it…when I swing my legs out of bed, in the conversations of our home, and the energy I carry as a mom to a 16-month old.
Stick with this “physical” leg of my journey, maybe you know someone there.
Blatantly, the first pregnancy
Pre-pregnancy weight: 160 lbs
Diet: not horrid, but not balanced. Ate as I pleased.
Exercise: Moderate until 10 weeks when I tore a stomach muscle and was restricted until little man arrived
Self image: I loved the way my body was changing and forming a little person. Jeff reminds me that I felt the most beautiful than that I have the entire time we’ve been together…true!
Symptoms: Severe nausea and all-day vomiting from week 8-24…hard to leave the home. Tried several medications and vitamins, to no prevail. Diagnosed with Hyperemesis Gravidarum after IV hospitalization. Introduced to Diclegis at week 24 and it eased the severity.
At week 32 developed an itchy, total body rash. Diagnosed with PUPPS. It was miserable. Induced at week 39 for it.
Due to the natural bone structure of my birth canal, labored for 24 hours with an emergency C-section as I was not able to dilate past 4cm.
I loved carrying him for every second, but the pregnancy was hard. The recovering and healing went well. I lost the weight quickly, I was on cloud 9 and absolutely in love. I was able to ease into exercise and began eating a more balanced, whole foods diet.
But I was tired, my mind would fog, my mood swings were spiraling, and my digestion was out of whack…oh and I caught every bug in the book (as always).
At 4 months post-partum, I developed a scary rash that covered my breasts. I was sent to specialists and doctors of all sorts…and finally told I had a deep tissue autoimmune disorder.
After much research, prayer and pursuit by a dear friend, I began a more holistic route of treatment…all natural supplements through Plexus…committing to giving myself time to heal in a steady way.
After ONE MONTH, my rash was GONE, my milk supply had increased, my energy levels and sleep were beautiful, and my brain fog dissipated.
…then I fought off the winter colds like a champ, no chronic runny noses, I lost consistent weight, my mood swings and menstrual cycle regulated and my digestion in-balance (along with my bathroom visits)
Now, ten months later I am pregnant again…
Pre-pregnancy weight: 147 lbs
Diet: balanced and whole, eating every hour pretty much
Exercise: regularly 3-4x a week depending on my energy. And always, always walking.
Self image: an honest struggle. I worked really hard to gain my strength back as a mama…but having a baby takes its toll, so does a c-section. Most days I carry my “scars” with sooo much pride. But some days, the stomach that is carrying life now just feels squishy and undone, and the new dimples and flesh can be hard to embrace.
Symptoms:Nausea and occasional vomiting the first two months, managed with diet and supplements…still a breeze comparatively. The ill-feelings eased with my young living oils. No medication necessary. Energy is amazing for having a 16-month old, and I get out of the house every day.
At 12.5 weeks I am elated. We all are.
My doctor and midwife affirmed…it’s the gut health being restored and daily in check. I have a stand-alone probiotic that none can beat, a magnesium supplement that oxygenates me, a blood-sugar balancer that helps my rapidly changing hormones and a multivitamin that beats out any I have tried or researched.
I am stronger, happier and healthier this season of my life.
This is my story, one I won’t stop sharing. If you know someone walking the mamahood journey…pre, during or post…connect me with them. This is ALL worth it, they and you are worth it.
One friend to the next