I don’t remember much about my pregnancies to tell you the truth. I do, of course, recall the bad stuff. What I remember the most, however, was the shocking disappointment I felt in NOT having that euphoric, rosy glow that everyone had always promised me. In fact, I felt like I had PMS. That wouldn’t go away.
All the books and movies and friends had glowed with joy during pregnancy recollections, deliriously happy to have their beloved baby growing inside them. It was as if they were floating on a sea of bubbles and unicorns and had never felt such wonder or personal satisfaction. Hmmm.
Me? I felt like some foreign alien had just invaded my body. And there was not one darn thing I could do about it. This alien made me feel exhausted all the time. It restricted my fun, refusing to allow me even a drink with my friends. I couldn’t go out anymore and certainly not dancing. I was bloated 24-hours a day and crampy but where Mother Nature usually swooped in once a month to relieve me of such discomfort, this alien refused her arrival.
Normally, when I felt so out of sorts, I might indulge in a little junk food, but the alien forbade this as well. He used every resource I had, making me feel more exhausted than I ever had in my entire life. What had I gotten myself into? I didn’t even know this person but I was letting him run my entire life, including my body, from the inside out??
He played tricks on me too. I would get tests done that came back with scary results only to have to undergo more tests. Only to find out everything was fine. Was he doing this on purpose? His best trick was to send me in to early labor. I was sent to the hospital, got shots in my hips. Yes, you read that correctly, IN MY HIPS. All while worrying this little nymph might actually get out too soon and die. Sounds strange I’d be worried he would die after all he’d been putting me through, but that’s what these little aliens do to you. They take over your body and life, torture you mercilessly, then somehow make you become willing to do anything to keep them alive and well. HUH?
I named my little foreign invader, hoping that would help us bond. Adrian. The two of us were sent home to lay around for several weeks doing nothing in order to persuade him to STAY IN my body a while longer. This is the crazed state of mind I was in by that point. I was willing to lie flat for up to ten weeks to keep my tormentor INSIDE my body. So, I did.
Talk about bored to tears. And yes, I cried. Adrian kept on planning his escape while I choked down medication that made me feel like I’d almost rather just die. But after about seven weeks of this unique form of alien torture, I was told, “We’ll, it looks like he really wants to come on out, so we’ll go ahead and let him.”
I was almost free! I was off the bed. I went to the store, oh, the store! I started counting down the hours until my body would belong to just me again. When those numbers started to get in to the hundreds, confusion set in. What was this trickster up to now?
I’ll tell you what he was up to. He decided to wait exactly five more weeks, otherwise known as, a week PAST his original due date to make his move. I was getting close to performing a DIY C-section. I’m not kidding.
But he wasn’t done toying with me. Upon arrival at the hospital, I was hooked up to a super fun drug called pitocin to speed things up. All pitocin really does is make you think your body is actually capable of spontaneously breaking into multiple pieces while simultaneously reigniting a belief in god. You will pray again. I prayed long and hard: “please god, just let me die or pass out” I believe was the gist of it.
Since 12 hours of this torment wasn’t doing the trick, the rumor in the hallway was they were actually going to go in and get him. See? Told you I wasn’t off-track with that C-section idea I’d had. I got prepped with an epidural and one final check before the OR and…what do you know? There’s the kid’s head.
Now, at this point I couldn’t feel a thing. Thank god I had my eyesight, because that was the only way I knew the midwife was…well…where she was. Got him out, au naturale. Finally. Then the going away gift he left behind. A huge incision which was repaired sans anesthesia. Thanks, kid. I’ll never forget the journey we took together that was pregnancy and childbirth.
For those of you that don’t get the puppies and rainbow glow during your pregnancy, you are not alone. I love my kids with all my life. I love them so much, that even after that horrific experience described above, I actually had another child, Ethan.
But my god. Being pregnant sucks rocks.