Monday, August 27, 2012

The One Where my Gut Reaction Was "Oh my Everlasting Hell"

I sit on the exam table and lay back, apprehensive. This is my third time, and while I've done this already for various reasons - to get a correct size/date, for genetic screening - I personally am here for just one reason: to see the heart beating. My baby is not yet big enough for me to feel him/her moving, and so all I have to confirm that this is real and s/he is o.k. and growing is this, the sonograms that show me a beating heart.

It's been the same every time: I'm a ball of nerves as I lift my shirt and the technician preps. The anxiety feels like an elephant sitting on my chest. By the time the wand is on my belly and the tech is trying to locate the baby, I feel like I'm going to explode.

And then, there it is: an almost completely human form, and there, in the spot I've already trained myself to zero in on, is a tiny white flapping thing. The heart. It's beating just fine, and instantly, I choke up, the tears flowing as the anxiety becomes an overwhelming feeling of gratitude that everything is o.k. Despite myself, my own constant self-warnings to hold back, to be cautious, there I am, my heart squeezing tightly over the love I feel for this creature that will soon enough be my second child.

I vacillate still between amazement and disbelief and excitement and even dread. I got pregnant right after my ovary exploded, which is where the amazement and disbelief come in. On the heels of that incident, Jevo and I had a talk about how having a baby might be more complicated and take longer than we'd hoped for. Up to that moment, we'd both wanted to have one in the next two years. But with that happening, we both acknowledged that it might not be easy or happen at all, and though we agreed on nothing specific, we each felt that maybe we should start trying sooner. Inside, though, I was preparing for the worst, and in hindsight, I fully believed it was indeed going to be very difficult, if not impossible, for me to get pregnant. I had somehow come to accept that as fact, not simply a possibility.

So when a month later we conceived (though we weren't actually trying yet), I was floored. We spent more than a week taking tests and wondering if it wasn't just a fluke - until symptoms kicked in and we could no longer deny that incredibly obvious blue positive line. 

I spent the early weeks resisting the reality of this, not wanting to hope or be happy in case the pregnancy could not hold. Then I was caught up in the wedding as I dealt with nausea and achy boobs. The day before we married we had our first sonogram and saw that teeny, tiny flippity-flappity heart, and I think at that moment we both realized just how enormous everything - our finding each other, marrying, the baby, our future - really was. My honeymoon was a godsend because I got to sleep as much as I wanted. By the time we'd returned, within a week, I had to give in to maternity pants because my regular ones were no longer comfortable, and I felt terrible that I was there so quickly. With Max, I was about 14 or 15 weeks before I had to give up my regular pants. Then there's been us telling everyone, from bosses to colleagues and employees to extended family and friends to ex-husbands to Facebook. These last two weeks cravings and mood swings have dominated my life, and it feels like an insane roller coaster that I'd happily get off of and just curl up into a ball in my mammoth body pillow and sleep my life away. That's all I want, really, lots of bread and sleep.

And so it's been, this whirlwind of things happening and my reacting to them while trying not to lose it. I haven't yet been able to fully wrap my head around all this, the fact that I am actually pregnant and will be a mother of two, or what my body is going through and what lies ahead, or what it will be like to have a baby again, or what kind of identity crisis this will bring on, etc. I feel the excitement of being pregnant and having this baby with the man I love so deeply and how happy my son is and all the great things that await us, and then I feel dread at the thought of how big I'm going to get (it's true, you do show sooner the second time, and at this rate, I wonder if I'll get as big as a house), the labor, the sleepless nights, the loss of the relative freedom I've attained, how Max will adjust to it all, how it'll affect my career, and on and on and on. For every beautiful thing that makes me swoon, there is something else that makes me cringe.

All natural, I suppose. My hormones are killing me and I'm at least aware of it enough to know that my feelings will be all over the place for a good while and I should just take it in stride. And I can, I know I can, and I will... as long as no one stands in the way of my bread and my sleep.

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Posted by Tere @ 8/27/2012   | |


  • Blogger AmandaDufau posted at 8/27/2012 9:17 PM  
    I'm so utterly happy for you and your soon-to-be family of four!

    Te voy a llevar una flauta de pan next time I see you. =)
  • Blogger Holly posted at 8/28/2012 11:53 PM  
    Congrats and blessings to you!

    Oh, those hormones....
  • Blogger Maria de los Angeles posted at 8/29/2012 11:00 AM  
    Wow, so happy for you Tere! What a blessing.
  • Blogger Mary Gilmour posted at 8/29/2012 5:02 PM  
    Sure, you are going to be frightened and have bad dreams and worry and fret. Of course. You're pregnant, after all.
    So, you need pampering and rest and plans of how you are going to cope. But mostly, pampering.
    Do show this to your lucky husband.
    And before very long it will all go away and you will be sleepless but happy - bar the *post* pregnancy hormones - with your beautiful new child.
    As for showing soon - I could show you photos. But I won't. You can't be as bad as I was with my almost-nine-pound second baby.
  • Blogger Freckle Face Girl posted at 9/05/2012 9:54 AM  
    It is all so wonderful and exciting!
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