i hated being pregnant
I recently received a message from a sweet girl with whom I share a mutual friend. We don't know one another very well, but she is going through a difficult first pregnancy and wanted to talk to someone who openly admitted to hating being pregnant, and if you read any of the blog posts I wrote when I was pregnant, it won't take you long to see that pregnancy and I do NOT get along well. Being pregnant with my sweet babies brought along with it about four months of throwing up every day, sometimes multiple times a day (18 weeks during my first pregnancy, 24 weeks during the second). I had anemia that left me exhausted, week, and light-headed, my back and hips hurt so horribly that sometimes I could hardly lean down or walk without crying out in pain, and during my second pregnancy I was crazy-bitch emotional.
It is hard admitting you hate being pregnant, especially when people act like you should think it is a beautiful, amazing thing and should enjoy it. I have yet to find a woman who has gone through extreme morning sickness and says they "loved" being pregnant. I hated being pregnant. Hated. Being pregnant and dealing with extreme morning sickness, anemia, aches, pains, exhaustion, hormones, depression, anger even... I understand that all. There is nothing "beautiful" or "amazing" about that shit!
The truth is that what your body is doing is amazing, but that doesn't mean it feels all butterflies and sunshine, or that you even have to like it. You should certainly have more respect for your body when all is said and done. It is amazing to see what your body went through and what your body is capable of. But it's okay to feel "victim" to the pregnancy. On top of feeling like a pile of crap, the hormones and emotions make processing everything ten times harder. When I was pregnant with Austen, I cried practically every day. I am not kidding. I was so emotional during that pregnancy, and then that roller coaster went down hill at full-speed as I dealt with postpartum depression. We expect to feel better after birth, but our body is trying to go back to normal, and the hormones are just as out-of-whack as they were during pregnancy.
Then the daunting part was that when I was pregnant with River, so many people told me that it was going to be even harder when the baby arrived, that I would wish I was pregnant again. I remember sitting through my birth class and my midwife explaining how birth is a labyrinth, and then raising a newborn is the way out of the labyrinth. That it was be difficult and that I would feel confused and lost sometimes, but that I would find my way out. I was disappointed, because I wanted to be done with all the confusing, scary stuff after labor.
There are difficult days. Many times parenting confuses me and I feel lost. If anyone says differently, I'm just going to throw it out there that they are probably lying. But when my babies were born, it felt so right, and was so much better than being pregnant. It's challenging in an entirely different way than a difficult pregnancy. Don't hold me to it, but if you are going through an incredibly difficult pregnancy, I think you are going to feel the same. I am going to guess that the women telling you differently had pretty easy pregnancies. Until someone has spent four months puking their guts out every day, not being able to eat because their esophagus is torn and bleeding, not being able to catch a whiff of anything without gagging or throwing up... they have no clue what you are going through.
I was relieved. I would trade puking my guts out and damaging my esophagus for those long nights with a crying, wide-awake baby any day. ANY DAY! I can imagine that if I'd had easy pregnancies, maybe I would wish I was pregnant again on those difficult early days. But nothing has been harder than being pregnant with morning sickness for months. Nothing. Not even labor. Not even my excruciating labor with Austen. After both my babies, I said I would much rather give birth again than have morning sickness.
Hating pregnancy does not make you a bad mom. You hate what your body is having to go through... not your precious baby. Emotions may make you feel bitter toward the little person inside you who is causing all of this, but your logical mind knows it's not your baby's fault. When you are pregnant, it is okay to indulge in your emotions. It's okay to just sit there and cry your eyes out and think WHY ME?!! It really is. Look at your emotions straight in the face, even while the logical side is saying, "I know I'm just feeling like this because I'm hormonal... I know this will pass." Don't feel guilty. Guilt never does a mother good. You will find plenty of other things to feel guilty about as your child grows!
Every woman experiences pregnancy differently, and every emotion needs validation.