Life as a New Mom

A first-time mom adjusting to her new everything


Doctors now think I’m crazy. Or going to kill my child, maybe.

I really hope most people don’t have pregnancies like I have.  Because this whole thing has sucked, pretty much start to finish.  I’m over 38 weeks and still have to take Zofran for nausea, which has been constant since about 7 weeks.  I had placenta previa (that resolved), then they found the fetal cyst (that is shrinking), they wrote me out on short-term disability because I can barely walk thanks to a low fetus that they have to reach around to do my (now weekly) cervix checks, and now, most recently, I had ANOTHER ultrasound because I’m shrinking.  YES, SHRINKING.  I now measure a full 4 cm behind where my fundal height is supposed to be, down from my all-time high at 36 weeks where I was on track and had been until then.  So they wanted to check growth, and fluid levels, to hopefully “avoid a negative fetal outcome.”  Don’t you love that turn of phrase, “negative fetal outcome”?

The results of this ultrasound, true to everything else they’ve found wrong with me, were fine.  Baby is still growing, and my fluid levels are at the high-end of normal.  What they said that means is that I’m just a “compact carrier”.  I prefer to think of it as a concealed carry, but maybe that’s the hormones…

And, by the way, I’m still not dilated at all, nor am I fully effaced, so there is no end in sight.

But I did learn something.  A valuable something.  When you tell your doctor that things need to start moving along because you are sick and tired of being sick and in pain, and you are about ready to get a coat hanger, they immediately start to act nonchalantly concerned because they are afraid you are crazy.  They start asking you questions about if you’re excited (yes, TO BE ALONE IN MY OWN BODY AGAIN), do you have help, is your husband excited (no, he’s done nothing but write checks to you people for procedures that turn out to be unnecessary), and to please remember they’re there for you.  I just bet they are, because that’s a billable visit.

So now I’m on the loony radar because they think I’m going to harm myself or be one of the women that drowns their child in a bathtub.  What they don’t get is that I will be so happy to just have the whole pregnancy part over and done, that I will be the happiest clam in the sea when it happens.


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Invasion of the body…somethings

On Monday I had contractions.  Real ones, not Braxton-Hicks, but irregular.  I went to the doctor, got it confirmed and had a surprise cervix check.

Was not expecting it, and WHOA.  Now I know how a carton of ice cream feels when I dig a scoop into it.

The doctor even commented how low Baby’s head was: “The head is, like, RIGHT THERE.  I have to reach around it to get to your cervix…”  He forgot to mention to brace myself, Bridget.  My vagina has never been more thoroughly felt.

I had to rest Tuesday, and came back to work today, but we’ll see if they want me to stay – I’m still having a contraction every few hours of the painful persuasion, so I have no idea.  I do know it makes my big boss nervous.  I think he’d like it if I didn’t come back, but that’s not happening unless I have a note for bed rest so I get short-term disability.  The reality is that I can’t afford to go an additional 2 weeks with no pay, and I’ve allocated all my paid leave for when I planned to start FMLA leave.  We’ll see how that goes.

At least I’ll have an answer Friday, when I have another doctor’s appointment!  Something tells me my vagina will be invaded again, but the doctor will be a lady…maybe her fingers are smaller.

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Failing my one job

I had my ultrasound appointment at the high-risk practice earlier this week.  They confirmed there is a cyst there, and they believe it’s on the spleen.  I go back in 4 weeks to see if it grew, shrank, or stayed the same.  At this point, the doctor tells me it’s small and doesn’t concern her because it’s below the diaphragm and there is excellent blood flow to all the surrounding organs, with fetal weight in the 43rd percentile.  All that is good, but I still have one overwhelming feeling.

I’ve failed my one job before this baby is born, and that is to gestate a healthy fetus.
Is that unreasonable?  Probably.  Have I done my best? Yes.  Does that make me feel any better?  No, not at all.

And yesterday, I find out that my husband has told his family about this, right before we’re due to go visit and before I was ready to say anything to our families.  It’s easy to be anonymous, and not have to face the people you’ve told; it’s not easy when I’ll have 3 days of them in front of me, wondering what is the problem/solution/how I am.  I suppose it’s nice to have people that care enough to be concerned, but I don’t feel like discussing this with anyone, or accepting sympathies.  And honestly?  I’m mad at the person my husband told, because THAT person is the one who went and told everyone else.  It wasn’t that person’s news to tell, and I feel my parental boundaries being stepped over.  It’s a shame my husband doesn’t feel that way.

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Another landmark, and other goings-on

I am so excited to finally have hit my double-digit countdown to my due date.  It makes it seem attainable, something I really need right now.  Lately, every evening I’ve felt like absolute rubbish, dealing with pain and unable to have any downtime after work.

After my doctor’s appointment last week, it doesn’t look like that’s going away any time soon.  I was diagnosed with sciatica, and it isn’t something they can “fix” because sciatica is caused by some other condition – in my case, pregnancy.  Their stated goal with treatment is to diminish the pain by 50%.  So I would still be in near-constant pain, just a lesser degree of it.  And the treatment?  Is going to either a physical therapist or chiropractor, multiple times a week.  I’m not interested in doing that, because our insurance doesn’t cover the cost of anything until we hit our deductible, and there’s no resolution.  It doesn’t make sense to me, rational or financial, to pay someone to treat me multiple times a week, miss work because I have to be at said treatments, and pay out-of-pocket for those treatments, when the condition causing the problem isn’t going to get fixed.  I talked it over with my husband and decided that I will not pursue treatment for those reasons.

A lot of my life seems taken up by concerns lately.  We just found out a good friend moved up his wedding to the end of September, and it means a lot to my husband that I attend.  Since he seldom asks things like that of me, I agreed to go and go approved for time off from work (looking forward to that part!).  But the wedding is an 8-hour car ride away with only 1 pit stop.  I can’t imagine how many we’ll need this time around, but I’m thinking at least one every 2 hours, plus the discomfort of riding in a car for that long.  I’ll be 4 days away from 8 months pregnant the day of the wedding, we’ll be staying with people I’d rather not, and the entire trip will occur over just 4 days.  I know I can do it, I’m just nervous about being a nuisance on the drive.  I did stand up for myself though, and told my husband that if he wanted me to go then we would have to leave earlier than we normally do, at noon instead of late afternoon, so he would have to take a half-day off at work.  When we leave, we’ll leave early morning the day after, for the same reasons: I get worse in the evenings, so it will be exponentially harder for me to leave late.

I swear, some days I wonder how I’ll possibly live with this until the baby drops.  Then I remember I don’t have a choice.  So I live with it.

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A new day, new discomforts

I’ve reached a milestone in this pregnancy.  I am no longer comfortable, anywhere, at any time.  Is there anyone out there who was ever excited by this moment in time?  I doubt it.  Doctors have tried to sugar the issue, saying things like “your baby is growing and it’s healthy!”  At this point, I can’t say that I care too much about that.  I’m going to assume for the duration that unless told otherwise, things are progressing as they should.  And I think a fetus is remarkably hardy, considering, so my exercising or lifting a box of books is unlikely to alter that.  Therefore, I am not going to be excited by the fact that my body is doing its job.  I am going to be annoyed by the fact it has betrayed me in favor of a fetus.

For over 2 weeks I’ve had pain in my hip such that I can barely walk.  Fortunately, my work schedule has involved some late days and a 4 day work-week – an extra day of rest is something I really appreciate.  But even with the extra rest, I still have the pain every day, any time I move the joint, sit on it (unavoidable) or walk.  It got bad enough that yesterday I called the doctor and left a message describing it and what I’ve done, wanting to know if I could put this off until my appointment next Tuesday.  I got a call back within an hour, and they bumped my appointment up to Friday.  We’ll see what happens then.  I hope something that fixes it.

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A fresh new horror

Maybe I’m supposed to be excited about this, but….seeing a kick from the outside actually move my skin is one of the most horrifying, blaringly wrong experiences I’ve had to date.  Everything in my mind screamed how wrong it was to see my body move in that way and watch my abdomen ripple.
I don’t care if it’s “natural” or a “bonding moment”.  I don’t even think there’s anything worth bonding over, as it would surely secure only resentment at this point.  I’m sleep-deprived because baby decided during the day is the ideal time to sleep, and now my body moves without my permission.  I have no idea how I will deal with the coming months.