The End is Near

It’s funny when I started this whole process as a gestational carrier one of the things that was told to me time after time from every professional was think about all the situations that could arise and plan for them.  However, just as I predicted there is no way of thinking of every possible scenario, and last week was one of those moments. 

I was at the 37 week checkup and afterwards the office had a mini class for those who were coming close to being due.  During the class the topic of having active labor came up and how to “work” through the pain and that is when it dawned on me.  With Liam and Ava in those moments of pain I told myself in the end there would be my son or daughter in my arms, and although it surely did not make the pain any better, it did renew my sense of perseverance.  I am slightly nervous now thinking about how I do not have the same motivation this time.  Yes in the end there will be a baby and a beautiful new family, however what will I have?  I am not trying to get something out of this, but I am slightly worried that I might feel….empty when this is all over.  Does that sound horrible?

I have told my husband how important it will be for me to see the kids as soon as I can after the delivery.  To have them in my arms to kiss, hold, and hug, I think it will help a lot.  I have also told him that after the baby is born and everyone is excitedly buzzing around the new baby and parents, that I might need a little extra TLC.  I worry now slightly that the aftermath might be a little harder than I had anticipated.  It isn’t that I want another baby, it’s far from that, it’s more just knowing what I am about to go through and having the strength to do it.  

10917266_819323801447500_6350335670359871823_nLiam and Ava I believe understand that the baby is not coming home with us as this is a constant conversation that I have with them.  I am so unbelievably happy that I have done this and if asked if I would do it knowing everything I know now, my answer would be yes.  However, I am looking forward to going back to status quo in my home.  I am also looking forward to having my body and life back.

9 Weeks and Counting

Baby DeliveryWell here I am 9 weeks away from D- Day and I am starting to feel like it’s the end.  Restless legs, charley horses, back pain, insomnia, and unable to catch my breath, I am in the uncomfortable stage of it all.

I sleep upright most nights to help with the breathing; however that is hard on my back and bladder.  I am up about every hour and half to go to the bathroom throughout the night, partly because of the pressure on my bladder, but partly because I am constantly thirsty and chugging water (I guess there are worse things).  However, nothing is as bad as the charley horses and restless legs.  That has been driving me insane.

Three nights ago I did not get very much sleep; maybe a couple of hours at best.  I was real delight that day.  My wonderful, supportive husband was amazing, as he dealt with my mini-breakdowns, and did his best to make me comfortable. I knew I needed to do something to at least to try to alleviate some of the discomfort.  Last night I took a hot bath before going to bed and for once my legs did not twitch.  I fell asleep in the tub and I might dry out my skin in the process, but if that’s what I need to do to sleep I will do it every night.  I also started eating a banana right before I go to bed hoping that will help with the charley horses.  A lot of people speculate that charley horses are result of dehydration (which is certainly not the case for me) or lack of potassium (possible).

I always find it interesting that at the very end of pregnancy it becomes unbearable.  Is labor not enough?  However, maybe that is the way it is intended to be.  I am in such discomfort the thought of labor does not phase me.  Sure it’s painful, yadda, yadda, yadda.  But, hey at least after it’s all over I will not be waking up in the middle of the night in agony grasping my calf muscle in pain, all while trying not to pee myself, because I have to go to the bathroom, again.

Yes I must admit as this third trimester is wrapping up I am getting quite anxious for D-Day.  I keep picturing in my mind what it will be like.  Of course, I am sure it will be nothing like I imagine, but one thing is for sure I can not wait to see the intended parents hold their baby girl in their arms.

Spring Has Sprung

As the snow is melting and gives way to spring this week I begin my last trimester of this pregnancy. Spring is the promise of new beginnings and the birth of nature. I can’t help but be excited over the new beginnings, and rebirth that is going on outside and within me.

I am excited over the new changes that are going to be taking place. The baby is due in early June and I have been thinking a lot about my kids and their reaction to this. All along I have repeatedly told them how mommy is carrying the baby; however the baby will not be living with us. I know Liam understands, but unfortunately I am not sure if Ava does. She loves anything baby and kisses my tummy almost every night. I am sometimes worried about how it will be for her after this is all over. On the other hand, I think it will be great example to my kids of doing something kind for someone else. Granted this an extreme example, but what a great way to show your kids that it isn’t always about them and doing for others is very important.

The baby in the last couple of weeks has become more active. I have been thinking about the delivery of this baby a lot lately. Although the process will be the same the emotions will be quite different. A lot of people have asked me how I will feel about it. It is hard to answer that since I have never been in this situation before, however I can’t help but think I will be excited. Excited over the new family that will be created at the birth of this baby, excited over not being pregnant anymore, and excited over new beginnings everyone will be experiencing.

This time of year usually stirs an excitement inside of me, as the grass turns green, the leaves appear on the trees, the flowers blooms, and the air even smells different. My husband and I have plans this summer for our kids, trips to go on, activities to do, that I am looking forward to. This spring is going to be very special and I am so happy that Spring has finally Sprung

What a Wonderful Life                                                                                                        Louis Armstong

I see trees of green, red roses, too,
I see them bloom, for me and you
And I think to myself
What a wonderful world.

I see skies of blue, and clouds of white,
The bright blessed day, the dark sacred night
And I think to myself
What a wonderful world.

The colors of the rainbow, so pretty in the sky,
Are also on the faces of people going by.
I see friends shaking hands, sayin’, “How do you do?”
They’re really sayin’, “I love you.”

I hear babies cryin’. I watch them grow.
They’ll learn much more than I’ll ever know
And I think to myself
What a wonderful world

Yes, I think to myself
What a wonderful world

Baby Blue Days

When I was pregnant with Liam, he being my first everything, first doctor’s visit, first kick, everything was new and thrilling.  I remember being so excited to go to Lamaze class because that meant I was coming down the homestretch.  It’s funny in hindsight I probably should have been a little nervous or even scared, but I contribute that to the fact that I refused to read the last chapter of “What To Expect When You Are Expecting”—Delivery.  Maybe I should have read it.  I would not have been so surprised when the doctor told me to lie back down after Liam was born because he had to stitch me up.   For the next 2 hours after that I tried to grapple with the idea of what a fourth degree tear was.

During my delivery I had an excruciating migraine to the point where during various times of pushing I had to stop to throw up.  The minute Liam was born my wonderful husband began trying to hustle down any nurse that could give me just a little something to eat and something to take for my head.  Persistence paid off and I was rewarded with a half a tuna sandwich and two Motrin.  With that being said I was still really out of it and my first moments with Liam are a blur at best.  I wanted to be happy and I wanted to be excited, but I wasn’t.

I had every intention to breastfeed Liam.  I even got a really nice portable pump so when I went back to work I could continue, but Liam would not latch on.  The first few days in the hospital nurses and breastfeeding experts came by to help me.  Finally, one of them gave me a shield which seemed to help a little but Liam would have to suck so hard to get just a little half the time he would fall asleep only to wake up 1/2 hour later hungry.  I was failing miserable in this.  I could never produce enough milk for Liam and once we got home each time I finished feeding him I would have to supplement some milk with formula.  The one thing I thought was suppose to be second nature I couldn’t even do.

I was so sleep deprived.  Because of my inability to properly breastfeed Liam I was on a schedule that he would cry I would feed him, put him down, and then try to pump anything and everything out of for the next feeding, and then collapse back into bed for if I was lucky an hour before the process began all over again.  Sleep deprived, failing at breastfeeding, new mother angst, I chalked the fog that I lived in up to it all.

It was a dense fog where I was very numb.  Nothing good or bad really affected me. I had no motivation to do anything; clean the house, cook dinner, do laundry, nothing.  Liam would cry and I would be unbothered by it.   My detachment to everything was unhinging at times to me.  I remember pretending at times it was upsetting me when Liam cried because I thought that is what a good mother would do.  When I went back to work it never rattled me, to the point that someone said to me they were shocked how well I was “holding it together”.  That was when I began calling home to check on him because that’s what a good mother would do.

Everyone around me kept telling me enjoy these moments they go so fast and how wonderful this time was.  Those simple comments would send me to tears in the privacy of my car or shower because there was nothing wonderful about what I was feeling.

Liam was born in February and one of my best friends had her son that September.  I remember her telling me how she was concerned that she might have postpartum depression because Baby Blues are only suppose to last 10-14 days.  That’s when it hit me like a sheet of cold ice. I had read articles regarding postpartum depression, I had seen a movie about in the hospital before I left but it was that simple comment that made me realize this wasn’t normal.  I am lucky that it was not severe but nonetheless it was difficult.  At that point it was the first time I remember mentioning something to my husband. I remember feeling so helpless and hopeless.  How could have such a wonderful thing made me feel this way?  I prayed that I would snap out of it and slowly around when Liam turned 11 months the veil of gloom drifted away and I began to feel like me again.  However, I felt terribly guilty about what was left behind.  I had no memories of my little baby boy.  I can’t remember anything about him as a baby.  When I see pictures, I know it’s him but the moment seems so foreign to me.

I am trying to let this part of me go.  I am trying not to beat myself about it too much.  It’s hard though.  Guilt sucks and no one wins with it but I tell myself now I have happy, smart, wonderful two year old and to enjoy these moments and let the other ones go.