For the most part, I'm a girl who loves being pregnant. I had a fabulous first pregnancy with Oia. I had not a day of morning sickness, but a little fatigue which I attribute to working full time, not to pregnancy. I continued my workout routine with a trainer well into the sixth month and still remained very active until the day I delivered. I was an easy patient. Boring really, as everything progressed perfectly. My days were easy and full of giddy anticipation as we spent our free time trying to imagine who was growing inside of me. The gender was a mystery as my belly grew and grew and after a smooth, textbook delivery 40 weeks and 5 days later, our sweet Oia made her grand entrance into a peacefully quiet delivery room. It was the best nine months of my life.
The subsequent 9 months, however, were not. We felt brutally thrusted into a foreign world where we were expected to live forever. We landed in a world laced with scary vocabulary, fear, dread, anger, despair, tears and broken-hearts. I blame those subsequent 9 months for the fears and anxiety that have robbed me of the sheer bliss I'd like to be feeling again during this pregnancy. But for me, pregnancy will never be the same.
Am I thankful to be expecting a second child? You bet I am. I'm over the moon excited. But, the diagnosis of Cerebral Palsy secondary to Schizencephaly that will forever be a part of my daughter, and therefore this family, has stolen my innocence and permanently changed my naive ways. I feel vulnerable to what may be waiting for us around the corner... a healthy baby or another angel with needs?
Only time will tell and I'll count it as a blessing either way but the wonder never leaves me. For the sake of the child, every parent remains hopeful for optimal health and well-being and I'm certainly no exception.
This time pregnancy has been wildly different than my pregnancy with Oia, not only emotionally but physically as well. Oddly though, this is where I find some peace and comfort. Today, I am 16 weeks pregnant. There has not been a day in the last 16 weeks that I have not had at least one pregnancy symptom or another. I've prayed for pregnancy symptoms this time around as a sign, a way to assure me that this time things would be different. Crazy, I know, but it is what it is.
That old saying Be careful what you wish for holds true here. My face is a wreck, my back hurts, headaches frequent me and all patience have left me. I'm still so fatigued, unmotivated and my husband would chime in that I'm a bit irritable aka hard-to-live-with, and for the first 12 weeks I was on the edge of nausea around the clock while eating us all out of house and home. But through it all, it is what I asked for. It's become my peace, my sign, and I'll take it. It's not a guarantee by any means, but it is an answered prayer thus far.
Photo of Oia on her birth day, only a couple hours old. Since then, we've been forever changed.