Thursday, October 3, 2013

My emotional pregnancy journey {Part 1}

I knew that pregnancy was going to mess with my emotions and hormones.  I've always been a crier and a pretty big baby, I get hurt and I cry, mess up cooking and here come the tears and I cry at movies/weddings/baby showers all the time!  I come from a long line of criers so it's nothing new to me.  But when the pregnancy hormones started to take over me, it wasn't just the crying that was affecting my life, there was so much more beneath the surface. 

I have been really afraid to share these emotions on my blog or with anyone.  I have a lot of "real life" friends and blogger friends who struggled to get pregnant or can't have their own kids.  I know that many of them would give anything to be going through what I am at this very moment.  I also have a lot of friends who aren't to the point yet where they want kids and I don't want to scare them.  But I also know this is my place to be honest and let it all out so that's exactly what I am going to do.

About a week before we went on vacation I really fell into a slump, I was depressed, anxious and just not feeling like myself.  I was anticipating that I would have this "glow" about me and I would feel amazing, happy and excited about the birth of our daughter.  But instead of a glow, terror and full on anxiety attacks had taken over me.  I found myself waking up in the middle of the night, overcome with worry, my heart pounding and unable to fall back to sleep.  

I had to drag myself through the motions each day, praying that our time away would make me feel better.  Vacation was just what I needed, no responsibilities or schedule and no one around to say mean things to make me all worked up.  It was just me, Andrew and the hot Florida sun, it was amazing.  Then one night as we were watching another PBS special (no cable at the condo), he started talking about the baby.  I recall it was a pretty simple question or maybe the mention that it's too bad the baby would be too little to enjoy a vacation next year.
For some reason, it was at that moment that I started to break down.  I really didn't want to have this emotional eruption while we were on vacation, but I needed to let it all out.  I told Andrew how I had been feeling after holding it in for so many months.  I told him how I was scared to death about having the baby, not just the giving birth part but raising a child, how we were going to afford everything a kid needs and how on earth we would keep our sanity working full time and taking care of a kid.  I finally told him that I haven't really been excited about the impending birth of our daughter, no matter how I try I cannot get the worry to leave my mind.  Don't get me wrong, there have been exciting things like the ultrasounds and feeling the baby move around.  Those brief moments seem to ease my anxiety but they are not long lasting cures.

I've been worried about money, anxious about the labor and delivery, stressed out about getting the nursery prepared and baby proofing the house, feeling guilty about having to work and not being able to be a full time mom and most of all about being a terrible parent.  I burst into tears and buried my face into his arm.  Part of me felt like a weight had been lifted off of me and the other part felt like this was only the beginning.

Something wasn't right with the way I was feeling and I felt it was time to tell my midwife.  My next appointment wasn't until the beginning of October so I continued to record what I had been feeling in my pregnancy journal. 

{Stay tuned for Part 2}

I would just like to take a minute to say Thank You to those of you who read this post and that I hope you are kind with your comments.  This has been a very tough struggle for me and I hope that by putting this out into the open, others will come forward and tell me I am not alone.  It's a tough thing to be totally honest with people you don't know in real life.


Erin said...

Oh girlie, you are not alone! I promise! So many mommies feel overwhelmed and terrified of all that comes w/ having a baby. You are right to be worried and to be realistic. You are also right to tell your husband and midwife, don't keep it all bottled up b/c it's not good for you or the baby. I didn't feel a connection with our first until a couple weeks after he was born. Talk about feeling like a horrible person!

As for the money, you're right - it's expensive. Somehow it all works out. I don't know how but it does. Again, I promise!

Hang in there and lean on your husband, you're in this together! Remember that at all times, you're not in this alone, this is s/t you're both going through together!

Unknown said...

You know, I've never been a fan of pregnancy. Yes it's a miracle, but it can also be awful. Personally, I've never glowed.

It's common for you to not connect with the baby until after birth. My mom and I have talked a few times about how she felt disconnected from Kristin until about two months after she was born. And of course, as we all know, now Kristin is her favorite. :) You're not alone.

Kids 'need' a lot less than our culture would have you believe. They need a loving, stable family, food, clothes, and a place to live. Also diapers. Seriously, as long as you have a loving home your kids will turn out fine.

I am often a terrible mother. For real. At the same time, I am often a freaking rockstar mother. We're all both. As long as you're trying, you'll make it through.

Thinking of you! I won't say don't worry, because that's part of parenthood, but I will say don't panic, because you are awesome and you are strong enough to do this!

Stephanie said...

Of course you know I am one of those who struggled to get pregnant, but I would NEVER judge you for feeling the way you do. I think it's a roller coaster of emotion for everyone in their own way. Sometimes I think for people like me, who tried for years to get pregnant, having those negative emotions or fears can feel even worse because you're "not supposed" to feel that way.

But, as much as I am excited to have our son, I am scared just the same as you. I don't really love being pregnant, I just want the end result. :) Just this morning my husband asked "do you love your belly?" and I was like "um, no" haha. I love what's inside but I don't like the giant belly, the sciatic pain, the no alcohol, the fat legs I'm getting... haha you get the point.

I'm sure that you will just LOVE your daughter when she's here. I've heard what some of the others commented, that sometimes that bond doesn't come right away, but it will come. Don't worry. The best thing you can do is be honest!