Can You Slap A Pregnant Woman?

A co-worker of mine is pregnant. They got married at the end of August and the baby is due at the beginning of June. I don’t have a problem with that.

What I do have a problem with, is this: the whole summer when she was planning her wedding, she kept venting to me and saying she wasn’t sure why she was going through with it. That she wasn’t even sure she wanted to marry him. She was angry and frustrated and questioning their relationship. And now she has been saying that she is regretting getting pregnant so quickly. That she wishes that she would have planned better, that she should have thought things through.

I hate the fact that she is pregnant already, but I hate even more that she is regretting having the baby. And I doubt that she actually regrets the baby, because she’s talked about being a mom for a while. I just feel like she’s rushed into this, which she admits, and is just setting up the baby for a rough life.  After losing Jamie, it just hurts so much to watch this unfold every day at work. To see someone regret the child growing inside them. Because it’s something we would not regret. She gets pregnant super easily and is now bringing a baby into an unsteady relationship, and Rob and I want a baby more than we can say and we have very little chance of having a baby. It just sucks. It makes me want to walk up to her and slap her for being so ungrateful. For not cherishing that little life inside of her. I would give almost anything to have Jamie back again, or to have another child, and she is complaining.

It makes me feel twisted and dark inside. Like I’m filling up with bitterness. And I know I should pray for her, for her situation to improve, and I am trying. I really am trying. Because I do want her to be happy, and I want so badly for that baby to have a good life, but I am so angry. I am so hurt. And oh Lord, I am so bitter.

Baby?

It’s hard not to think about having kids. It’s something Rob and I both want, but at the same time feel we can’t have. At least, not right now.

We tried to conceive several years ago after we lost Jamie, and found out that I don’t ovulate, at least not with any regularity. That, combined with several other factors, led us to the decision that we should hold off on having children for a few years. When we talked about it again, we both kind of mutually agreed that we would adopt.

But now the subject has come up again, and I’ve been thinking about rainbow babies. Carrying a baby inside of me. I know it seems irrational, because we have all these good, logical reasons why adopting makes more sense, but maybe this doesn’t have to be logical.

A co-worker of mine is pregnant, and when I saw her ultrasound pictures today I was just filled with this deep sense of longing. Not anger, not jealously, but deep, heart-filled longing.

And as I was leaving work tonight, I was so sad, because having a baby is something I want so badly. And I just kept replaying the other day when Rob said “Now I just have to not get my hopes up” in reference to us being pregnant. Not that we’re trying, but we’re also not not-trying.

And I guess there is always a chance, but I just don’t really see how we could conceive. Actually, I guess I’m concerned that we wouldn’t conceive a healthy baby. If I rarely ovulate, what are the chances that we will randomly have a healthy pregnancy? And if we do decide to try, I need to switch medicines because some of the ones I am on are not safe for TTC. I am so scared to conceive while on dangerous meds. I can’t even describe how scared. In all reality, I could be pregnant now (highly unlikely, but possible), and I have even been wondering about it the last few days.  Things like, ‘huh, my breasts are sore’ and ‘man, I am really hungry’ even (sorry if this is TMI) ‘woah, weird discharge’.

Part of me wants to test and find out, and the other part of me just wants to ignore everything. I don’t want to get my hopes up. I don’t want to find out I am. Because if I am, I have been on meds I shouldn’t be, and I could be hurting the baby. But if I am, I need to know sooner rather than later to stop the meds. But then I think I am just being paranoid and tricking myself because I want it so much.

I just don’t know what to do. Should we try again? Can we even afford a child? Are we ready for a baby? I feel like we are ready for a baby, but does being ready for a baby mean that you are ready for a 7 year old, because I do not feel ready for that. Can we handle it if we lose another child?

What Do We Want?

Rob and I have been talking a lot since my realization and our talk at Steak n Shake.

Since we lost Jamie and stopped trying to conceive, we have wavered back and forth on whether or not we want to have kids. Do we adopt? Do we not have kids at all? At one point we were convinced we were going to adopt, and at another point were absolutely convinced we weren’t going to have kids at all. We just could never seem to make up our minds, or even truly know what we want.

And then we started talking about before we lost Jamie.

It wasn’t an accident that we got pregnant. We had been wanting to conceive for a year, and had taken steps (changing medicines, etc) for when we did. We had wanted a child for so long, and were so excited when we found out about Jamie.

But after we lost Jamie everything changed. Rob and I realized that we were both trying so hard to get pregnant right away because we wanted to make up for losing Jamie. We wanted to make it up to the other one because we felt like we let them down. Then, we ended up putting so much pressure on ourselves to get pregnant that we started creating all kinds of problems for ourselves. That’s when Rob’s intimacy problems really flared up. That’s when I had my major PTSD freak out. And we just kind of ran away from the idea of kids.

And now that we are both working through the truth of what happened as well as working through our issues, we are wondering if we do want kids. Were we running away from the idea of being parents because of all the trauma, or because we really don’t feel it is right for us? Everyone has told us that we will make wonderful parents, but we don’t feel that is a good reason to have kids. It needs to come from us. And we still don’t know. Rob wants to finish working through the issues he has just started addressing in therapy, and I want more time to absorb and process the new knowledge that I was a good mom, that I am a good mom to our angel baby.

I think I might want to be a mom again, but I’m not sure yet. I don’t know how to be sure.

Broken Now Instead of Destroyed Later

Right after losing Jamie, I talked to (and yelled at) God a lot about why He took our baby from us. I knew he had a reason, but for the life of me I didn’t understand, and I didn’t agree. Every one I spoke to about this said the same thing, that ‘someday’ we would understand. But I felt so betrayed by God. How could He do this to us? What possible reason could He have for taking away our child? Were we being punished? Had we done something to deserve this pain? For months on end we talked and prayed, questioned and cried. Every time a person said ‘someday’ it felt as though a bitter knife was driven a little deeper into my heart. I blamed myself for being a bad mother, I blamed God for being unfair. I hated myself and I especially hated every pregnant woman I saw. And I still miss Jamie. I would still give anything to hold Jamie in my arms, to kiss that little face. I still wish that things had turned out differently. But I think we’ve reached ‘someday’.

When Rob and I went through our rough patch in August, we had a lot of heart to hearts, and one of the things we talked about most was Jamie. We both agreed that we never really processed losing Jamie, or accepted that loss. We both just tried to push past it, to tell ourselves that if “this” happens, then the pain will stop. We talked about how much we missed our baby, and how losing Jamie broke our hearts. We talked about how not mourning together ripped us apart and in many ways broke us. And, hardest of all, we talked–honestly–about what could have happened if we hadn’t lost Jamie.

It’s easy to tell myself that life would have been perfect, but the truth is that’s probably not real. I had a really hard time being pregnant. I felt like I wasn’t in control of my own body. All of a sudden there were so many things I couldn’t do, food I couldn’t eat. I was feeling things I had never experienced and couldn’t stop and couldn’t take medicine for. Feeling out of control is a huge trigger for my PTSD, and so many things about being pregnant were making me feel out of control. When I started bleeding at 9 weeks, I was put on partial bed rest and told not to lift anything. Rob, being the sweet and loving man that he is, did everything he could to take care of me, even carrying my purse, but to me it felt like all of a sudden I had lost my power. Now instead of having a few restrictions, I wasn’t allowed to do anything. I was frustrated and even resentful that I was having to go through this, all I wanted was to be pregnant, but be able to live my life normally. When we had our honesty talk, we realized that those feelings wouldn’t have just gone away. In fact, there is a very real possibility that they would have gotten worse. That could have, in turn, caused issues with the pregnancy and delivery. It would have

The scariest thing we talked about was postpartum depression. I was told by my therapist that I was at very high risk for postpartum depression due not only to my PTSD, but also to the fact that I have depression. What if I had abandoned Rob and the baby? What if I had started cutting, or even killed myself? What if I had hurt the baby?

What if I had killed our baby.

I know I could never have forgiven myself. That would have destroyed me. In all honesty, I probably would have killed myself once I realized what I had done. That would have destroyed not only me, but Rob, and our relationship. Rob recently told me that even when I was pregnant, the thought of me with postpartum being home alone with the baby terrified him. Even then, something inside him was afraid.

I will never be glad that we lost Jamie. I will never stop missing or stop loving Jamie. Jamie is our miracle baby, and I am so thankful for the time we got to spend together.

We believe that God took Jamie home so soon because He wanted Jamie to be a light in our life. A reminder of our love and happiness. He took Jamie so that we were broken now instead of destroyed later.

Note to Self:

I always feel better after talking.

Hardly anyone understands loving someone who has an addictive personality. But Emily does. She and Drew have gone through some of the same things that Robby and I have. Drew is struggling with porn and Emily is struggling with self esteem because of that. Emily is struggling with the pressure of trying to conceive and Drew is struggling with withdrawing within himself, with keeping the “I’m fine” mentality when he really isn’t.

I thought that it would be helpful to talk to her, but I didn’t expect how healing it would be.

I know I have trouble reaching out for help when I need it, so I am writing this to myself: You always feel better after talking.

Talking with Melissa

I wrote the other day about how my good friend Melissa has unexpectedly found herself pregnant, and it really shook me up. After a lot of praying and crying I started to be able to wrap my head around her news. This is a chain of emails between us.
Date: Thu, 15 Aug 2013 19:32:11 -0600

  Subject: hugs for Melissa

 Hi Melissa,    I wanted to write you a little email to say a few things. First off, I am SO happy for you, and Bob. Second, I would like to thank you from the bottom of my heart for being so kind in telling me your news. So many people have thought only of their excitement and not of how other people might feel, and one of the most amazing things about your spirit is how empathetic you are. Thank you for being you. Third, I love you to pieces. I consider you one of my best friends (#1 local friend! 🙂 ) I know that life has thrown you a curve ball, and I just want you to know that I am here for you in any way you need me. I am more than happy to cry with you during movies, eat weird craving food, listen to your hopes and worries, and anything else you need. I know that you are concerned for me and I love you for that. I’m not going to lie, it does hurt that God hasn’t blessed us and that we are going through such a difficult time right now, but I don’t ever want you to hesitate to call me because of that. It would hurt me so much more to have a barrier come between our friendship. I am praying for you, Bob, and the little one to come and I hope and pray that everything turns out well. I would be honored to get to be by your side and help support you through this, and I can’t wait to hold that little blessing (yes there will be tears 🙂 )

Congratulations again

laura

PS- I told Rob, I hope that is okay. I told him not to tell anyone else.

Date: 8/16/2013 10:45 AM
Subject: RE: hugs for Melissa

You are beautiful!!! I am so glad you are my friend!

Maybe it’s the hormones….yes….I’m sure it is…but you sent me to tears!

I love you, Laura! Thank you.

Melissa

Date: 8/16/2013 7:15 PM
Subject: RE: hugs for Melissa
That’s okay, I was crying when I was typing it :)Got the call from the girlie dr- not pregnant (darn) but I DID ovulate 🙂 I told her that we are going to take a break from trying for a while and she asked if everything was okay. I told her we had been going and going for two years and our relationship was starting to suffer and that we wanted to take time to rebuild us before adding another family member. She said she thought that was great and that after we strengthen our relationship we can come back and make it even stronger with a baby and to call her if she could do anything. She also said she is praying for us.

It’s weird how much more mentally stable I feel after hearing that we are not pregnant. I’m disappointed because I do still want to be a mom, but so relieved that we can take the time to fix us and rebuild our relationship.

Thinking of and praying for you 🙂

Laura

Sad Relief

Yesterday actually was a very eventful day. Mom and my little sister Taylor (age 7) came up to visit me and the plan was that Taylor and I would go to a local children’s science museum while mom did her own thing. They got here a lot earlier than I expected and since the museum doesn’t have a food court we decided to walk to the local toy store and snoop for a bit before going to lunch together and then going our separate ways. The toy store was the first time I had been around people since I had my melt down, and I started to unravel. We stopped by the library on the way home so I could pee, and I also got to talk to Robby. It was so great to want to turn to him and not feel afraid to. To actually see him as a source of comfort was wonderful. We talked a bit and I decided to ask mom if we could change the plans and have all of us do something together that wasn’t the museum. Mom completely understood and explained to Taylor that being around so many kids and babies was going to be too hard on me (Mom had explained to Taylor why I was having such a hard time). Taylor was a little bummed but I promised we would reschedule our museum day, and when I suggested we go play with puppies at the puppy store she cheered right up.

I dropped the car off to Rob (I forgot to tell him I was doing that so soon and I kind of threw him off. I felt bad that I didn’t communicate that I meant I was bringing him the car NOW, but I’m glad he mentioned something so that I know how he felt) and Mom, Taylor and I headed to the puppy store. I was still calming down from my panic and accidentally sent us the wrong way (mom was driving) but we just took a detour and it all worked out.  We decided to each pick a puppy to play with. Mom chose a teensy Yorkie who trembled the whole time he was with us. Taylor picked a dachshund who was a little sweetie pie. She was the color of butterscotch chips and had the biggest ears and the tiniest little legs, I don’t think they were more than an inch and a half long. Her tail was wagging the whole time and she had so much energy! I picked the Rottweiler that I had played with last week but he was very wound up and Taylor was a little scared of him because he was so big, so we didn’t play long. I really think puppy therapy is one of the most effective ways to feel better.
We went to lunch, stopped by Hobby Lobby, and then went to the theater to see Planes 3D (pretty much the same basic movie as Cars, but still good. Taylor was SO EXCITED that it was in 3D and she was amazed at how big the theater was and that we had it all to ourselves. About halfway through the movie Dr M called me, so I went out of the theater to answer (reception was horrible and my phone was (of course) dying). She said that the blood work did show that I ovulated, and she was getting ready to give me instructions for the coming month when I told her that we had decided to stop trying, at least for now. She paused and asked if everything was okay, and I told her how we had been trying for 2 long years and our relationship had started to suffer and we wanted to take the time to rebuild before adding another family member. Dr M said that she thought that was a very smart move. That when we strengthen us we can come back to her and strengthen our relationship even more with a baby. She asked if there was anything she could do for us, and that if we needed anything then to call her. She also said she will continue to pray for us. I was so touched by her genuine concern. Through everything we have been through she has been so personally invested and has shown that she truly cares about her patients. I am so glad she is my doctor.
Well, we aren’t pregnant. Actually, the dr said there still is a small chance since the blood test was done so early, but Rob and I have decided not to test unless my period is very late. But the point is that Rob and I can actually take the time to rebuild our relationship. For once, we got the simpler option (yay). We talked a lot yesterday about how we feel about that news and we both agreed that we are sad but relieved. Sad because we do want to be parents, but relieved that we can give our full attention to us.

I want…

I’m trying to hold it together. I know that everything will eventually work out, but right now everything is a mess. I want to be happy for Melissa, and I am, but it still just hurts so much. I want to enjoy today with Taylor. We have such a fun day planned and I’ve been looking forward to it for so long, but I’m just so shaken by everything that is going on that I don’t feel emotionally stable. I don’t want to break down crying in the middle of the museum. I don’t want to get that call saying we aren’t pregnant and want to hide and cry but have to keep it together. I want things to be good. I want to be able to live my life. I don’t want all of this to knock me off my feet like it’s trying to do. I just want to be happy.

What do I have left?

How much more of this can I take?

It feels like I’m losing everything.

I can’t have a career. We lost Jamie. Pretty much right after that I lost Robby. He has been distant ever since then, and I desperately want him back, but to be honest, I don’t have him yet. Now we are losing the chance to have a family, and everyone else is getting a family. This is killing me. I really feel like my soul is dying.

I hurt so much. All I’ve done my whole life is try to be a good person and I keep getting the worst-case-scenarios. What did I do to deserve this much pain? I don’t understand why God is letting me (making me?) go through this. I need something good. Anything.

And Robby has started to slip and that scares me. This morning he slept through his alarm, and tonight he was going to do dinner because I had a meltdown over Melissa’s news, and he decided to order pizza instead of cooking. He ended up changing his mind, but that really scares me. Am I going to lose him next, for good? I can’t take that.

The girlie dr still hasn’t given me my results yet. I thought I would get them Tuesday or Wednesday but I’m not going to get them until tomorrow. To be honest, I kind of doubt that I will get them then. I want more than anything to be pregnant. To have one good thing in my life. But I’m sure that it will be negative. And I don’t know how I will handle hearing that, especially given that we aren’t trying any more. I want to try, I want a family, but Robby and I just are not there. I can’t even imagine kissing him, let alone having sex. And that means that we won’t get to have a family for years, if ever. I keep holding out hope that maybe this time we got our miracle. But I have been hurt/burned/disappointed so many times that I honestly have no confidence that this time our miracle will happen.

Now one of my best friends is pregnant. She and her husband (Bob) have two kids and they weren’t even trying and now they get to have another baby. Melissa gets to be pregnant and I don’t. We have been trying for so long and have been going through so much. She was so sweet about how she told me. She was so upset. She said that the first thing she thought after “How am I going to tell Bob” was “How am I going to tell Laura”. She has been one of my rocks through everything this past year, and now she is unwillingly a source of pain. She kept apologizing. I don’t want her to be sad that she gets the miracle of having a baby. I just want that same miracle.

She said she wanted me to be one of the first to hear and that she wanted me to hear it from her, not by some other means. She said she knew how hurt I was when I found out about Beth’s pregnancy. The other reason she said she wanted to confide in me was because if things don’t turn out and she loses the baby she knew I would be good support. And I will. I will be there for her during the pregnancy, and I will be there for her if she loses the baby. She pointed out that she is 37, so there isn’t a great chance for the baby, especially since she has miscarried before, but she said that the further along she has gotten the more she believes that it’s going to stick.

I do not want her to lose her baby. She is an amazing mother. But it’s just not fair that I don’t get to be a mother.

It’s not going to happen

I should have known.

I don’t know why I got my hopes up.

I feel like an idiot. It never turns out and I’m starting to feel like it’s never going to.  And I’m starting to think I should stop trying. I really think if next month goes like this one then I’m going to call it quits. I can’t keep going through this.

I just can’t.

I don’t want to give up. I don’t want to not have children. But I’m getting to the point where it hurts too much. There has to be limit, and I think I’m at it.