I wasn’t a good pregnant person. I didn’t jog or do Yoga. I didn’t eat right. In fact, I was so ill I barely ate at all. There was no such thing as morning sickness for me. It ran rampant twenty-four hours a day and I lost twenty-three pounds off my already light frame. I broke out like a puberty-riddled teen. I wasn’t radiant and I sure as hell didn’t shine with a maternal glow.
But, I did love my baby. After all, I’d beaten the odds. When I was nineteen, I was told I’d probably never have one. A Bicornuate and Retroverted uterus were the culprits and quashers of my dreams. Although the odds weren’t in my favor, if I wanted a baby, I’d have one. I somehow just knew it.
When I was twenty-five, validation appeared as a double blue line. As simply as that, I was pregnant. But getting there was to be the only simple thing about it. Three weeks after my discovery everything went sideways.
The sickness was severe and the weakness, extreme. I never dreamed anything so wonderful could be so gut wrenching awful. I visited the Doctor week after week, presenting with a new ailment each and every time.
I’d known pregnant women. Women, who had worked through their entire pregnancies and here I was, unable to even lift my head off the pillow. How did they do it? And some more than once! I knew one thing for sure; I’d never be doing it again.
The five-month mark crept up painfully slowly, and as it arrived, it brought what anyone with child dreads…warmth…hot and sticky between my legs. It was that moment I realized how smug I’d been. Who was I to question…no, challenge a Doctor? Who was I to believe I would beat the odds?
My heart ached like I’d never known. In one fell swoop, I wanted that baby so much I would do anything to keep it. Simultaneously, I wished I’d never known what it was to feel it twisting and turning in my belly, convincing me my womb had become its home. This loss would be so much more now than if I’d never gotten a glimpse of what could’ve been.
As it turned out, my baby decided to hang on. And, if it could, I would. And we did. Together, we got a little better each day…used to each other, less…savage. I promised nourishment, rest and optimism and it pledged to dig in and plant itself. And, it worked…until five weeks before it was due.
At thirty-five weeks, the day after I’d completed prenatal classes, my water broke…in a big way. What seemed like gallons splashed onto the bathroom floor. The baby, not ready to be unearthed, was transverse and was pulled, rather than pushed into the world by Caesarean Section.
Again, I was hit with the inadequacy of my female parts as they put my baby in danger. But, despite the nurse’s warnings that my little one would be gray and sickly, his lanugo-covered, velvet skin was shiny and pink. He looked up at me, his tiny, round head perfect, his eyes, big and ocean blue. We knew we’d done it…and I couldn’t wait to do it again.