Ex Pat Mamma

Thursday, December 30, 2004


If there is one feeling in early pregnancy stronger and more consistent than all others, then it is worry. There is, of course, a happiness that cannot be described and a delight in the ever changing body; there is frustration when the physical symptoms lose their novel appeal, but through it all, there is the constant fear of "what if?" Estimates of miscarriage rates are vastly variable because lots of women never know they were pregnant. In almost every case it is not related to anything the mother has done or not done but just a pregnancy that was never going to succeed. Getting from sperm and egg to baby is an immense process and there are lots of tiny but crucial stages. If one fails, usually because of some genetic problem with the embryo, then the pregnany will fail. Its a cruel system. Most of these failures will occur in the first 12 weeks.

So one worries constantly. What if? What if this pregnancy fails? What if I lose this baby? And the longer this pregnancy continues, the more determined I become that I just CAN'T lose this baby.

Not every pregnant woman is anxious and worried in the early weeks but it does seem to be the most common feeling in all the pregnant woman with whom I have had contact. Now, you may indeed ask, how many women do I have contact with who are in a state of early pregnancy? About 40. I have joined a "chat board" for other women due in July 2005 and it is great. Rather than, as you might expect, we all share our fears and make each other even more anxious, instead we share our fears and miraculously manage to say sensible and reassuring things to each other. We are all fantastic at giving advice - and mostly terrible at taking it!! The board is an important source of support for me. Whilst I have friends who have had babies fairly recently and of course family who have had babies many many years ago, I think it is very hard to remember feelings and experiences clearly in retrospect. Once a healthy baby is born, it is perhaps easier to look back on pregnancy and forget some of the most difficult times or even if not forget, assess them differently. After all, there is a human being in front of you telling you every second that no matter what you have been through, it has been worth it.

At this early stage of pregnancy, I don't have that. I don't have the same perspective. Whilst I am starting to believe I will have a baby and even making plans (somewhat vaguely, it must be said) I still do not know if I actually will have this baby. I am scared to be too confident, "just in case." What if? What if I am going through all these changes, physical, emotional and it is all taken from me?

So I wait. And soon, I hope (when I manage to go a few weeks without bleeding, perhaps) I will be able to relax and believe that this new life inside of me will make it. Meanwhile, I stay out of the hottub, eat very carefully, avoid lifting anything, shovelling snow, exercising hard (as if!) not because I really think any of these things are likely to cause a miscarriage but because if I do lose this baby, I need to know that it was not something I could have prevented.



  • At 12:54 PM, Blogger S.A.H.M. said…

    Trimesters of Pregnancy

    Author: Unknown

    The beginning's exciting, I'm pregnant at last!
    But the excitement's soon over and goes downhill fast.
    Instead comes the sickness, the aversion to smells,
    Will I survive months one, two and three?
    I try to remember...My baby's in me!

    The next part is easy, my energy's back.
    Morning, noon, midnight seem good times for snacks.
    I'm hungry, I'm happy, I'm radiantly glowing.
    I buy some new clothes when my belly starts showing.
    It's easy to justify all that I eat,
    I simply remember ...My baby's in me!

    The novelty's fading in trimester three. My ankles are swollen, My bladder's a pea.
    The baby is kicking my insides to bits. Seat belts and shoe laces both give me fits.
    I'm approaching my due date with much jubilee, It won't be much longer till...My baby's with me!

    Thnking of you and sending you all the postive vibes I can.


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