I thought that is was a great bonus blog. I’m would share about my pregnancy, birth
story and journey back to my body. I have kept most of the details pretty vague
and focused on the learnings I found. It is sometimes better to hear about the
struggles so people can relate.
I had no trouble getting pregnant, and found out by surprise
after moving into my brand new condo. I was ripping out carpet, laying
hardwood, designing built ins and painting 10 foot walls when I found that I
was disproportionally tired. I did a pregnancy test and congrats to me! I was
having a baby.
Over my pregnancy I found that I was very lucky. I maybe
threw up 4 times and didn’t have lots of symptoms in my first trimester. As you
have seen in my photos I didn’t show into more than half way through my second
trimester, and ballooned out in my third. I gained mostly just baby, and I was
active until the day before I went into the hospital. Honestly… I disliked
being pregnant. I did have some nausea in the first trimester, and I ended up
losing weight. My thyroid went into hyper drive and I have to visit an
endocrinologist and make sure that I didn’t have to take very damaging
medication to my thyroid and my baby. Fortunately, this can happen in the first
trimester. The fetus will help the thyroid out and your body will adjust for it
throughout pregnancy. I was cleared by the endocrinologist and was assured that
the weight loss was ok. They look for weight gain more in the third trimester.
Extreme fatigue seemed to be a constant throughout my
pregnancy. The first trimester was the worst, it did get a little better in the
second trimester but did return in the third trimester. Fatigue has not left my
life since and I am 11 months postpartum right now.
Diet wise I decided to bring everything in my diet. I was
previously gluten and soy free.I ate everything. I did not avoid spicy cuisine,
and I went out of my way to eat different types of foods that I wouldn’t have
previously. I made sure to bring back carbs. My body was craving carbs actually. I do not recommend a keto pregnancy. Your
body needs to feed you and the baby. Fetus feeds of glucose not ketones… please
keep that in mind. No weird or
interesting cravings. I was pretty stable and did not over eat. I was not
overly hungry during pregnancy. That comes with breast feeding.
My exercise seemed like a chore during my first trimester. I
felt like I was forcing myself to go to the gym or go for a run. I found that
running was very hard on my back and I was not showing. I was able to run 5 Km
5 times a week for the first 5 months. I did weights 6 days a week and rested
one day a week. My weight routine drastically changed. I found that I was not
able to lift as heavy earlier than I expected. My 5 km runs took about 35 to 40
mins to complete. By the end of 20 weeks pregnant my back was on fire and I
decided to switch to sprints. I loved sprints, but I had to get used to running
slower than my endurance liked just for comfort on my abdominal ligaments. I
got too big to sprint about 8 months pregnant and switched to different types
of ellipticals. My weights changed as I got bigger as well. I found that I
liked pleaea squats and lunges. Pec flys, curls, and midback rows were all
great. Low back strengthening started to be really hard the bigger I got. It
was comical at the gym, I was pretty big when I stopped sprinting. Many people
probably wanted to tell me that I should sit down and relax, but no one came up
to me, they just stared anxiously.
I decided to go with midwives. My advice is apply early. I
applied to midwives when I was 7 weeks pregnant and I was still waitlisted for
a few weeks. I loved the fact midwives see you more often and spend a lot of
time educating you. They have wonderful resources for you to read and use. I
did find that not all midwives are the same. Thankfully on of my midwives was
able to help navigate what was safe to do during pregnancy and what was
not. I did have to deal with a little
weight gain shame. I was told to gain 15 pounds max based on my pre pregnancy
BMI… That did not happen and I gained 57 pounds, mostly in the third trimester.
Mostly water weight.
Come my third trimester I found that I was not hungry and I
was ready for Theo to get out. I had a scare once with his heart beat when he
was 37 weeks. I was taking some nettles and taraxacum tea for the swelling and
water weight gain. After that scare I stopped them. No one could explain that,
because those are pretty safe in pregnancy. I had peace of mind not taking
them, but the ankle swelling and water weight gain was out of control after
that. Either way Theo was not going to stay in my womb too much longer.
People say that your first baby will be overdue… Theo
decided that he wanted to come out 38 weeks and 5 days. My water broke 38 days
and 4 days at 8 AM in the morning. I waited for 12 hours to go into labour only
to have to go to the hospital and be induced. Needless to say, 25 hours after
being admitted to the hospital my son was born via C-section My C-section
lasted 2.5 hours and was described by the anesthesiologist as one of the most
traumatic C-sections he has seen. My birth story did not go as planned, and I
found it really hard to make the decision to have the C-section rather than
waiting another 12 hours to see if I would pass 5 cm dilated. What got me
through was healthy baby and healthy momma. Anything could have happened in
those extra 12 hours and I wasn’t going to take that chance. I was exhausted
and tried everything under the sun. Looking back on that memory I am happy that
I chose that option. It helped afterwards in a lot of ways.
Theo was born 9 lbs and 22 inches long. His shoulders were
the widest part of his body and I was relieved that I did not have to get stuck
on his shoulders. I found that his head was not in the proper position to push
dilation. It didn’t matter. For some reason I felt like a failure. I was not
able to birth my son. I remember thinking that I would have been one of the
women that died in child birth back in the day. It took me a while to snap out
of this mentality and honestly Arnica 200C.
I was weepy and a mess after birth. I was pale, and weak. After a
C-section they take out the catheter, give you a very painful abdominal exam,
and make you stand up. That was the worst part of being in the hospital. Stand
up 4 hours after your major abdominal surgery….. It hurt, and sucked. This was
only the beginning of motherhood.
Breastfeeding hurt. C-Sections can sometime delay your milk
from coming in. Passing the baby through the vaginal canal will stimulate
prolactin release and you will have colostrum (first type of breast milk)
production more readily than C-section mommas. Fortunately I was producing
colostrum days before I went into the hospital and was ok with milk supply. I
ended up producing over 2L/day of breast milk, and the average is 800 mL to
1L/day. I had the worst time breast feeding. Theo wouldn’t latch… later on I
found out I was basically drowning him with my milk overproduction. That led
him to bite down to stop the flow, compared to sucking the breast properly and
driving a feed. My advice get a lactation consult ASAP they are wonderful. Mine
was too late and I had already committed to pumping.
Pumping was a liberating decision. Everyone says that being
on the breast is the only way to bond with your child. It is not. You are going
to get plenty of skin to skin contact with your little one. Do what works for
both you and baby. I hated Theo being on my breast and I wanted to have a
postitve feeding experience with him. I chose what was right for me. Pumping
comes with its challenges. You have to be religious with the schedule. I was
pumping every 2.5-3 hours night or day. Theo Ate every 3 hours without fail. So
I would get 1.5 hours of a break between rounds if I was lucky. I was able to
stop pumping early because I developed quite frozen milk supply, and I again
was happy with my choice. Controversial or not. If you plan on pumping there is
a lot a research on losing your milk supply early. I did not suffer from this,
but I already said in terms of supply I was not the average. If you are
considering this option talk to your midwife or doctor and look into options to
keep your flow up.
So far if you have any questions please comment or email me
This blog post is a lot longer than I thought it was going to be, and I am
going to split the rest of the recovery part up into another post. I don’t want
to overwhelm or lose anyone with too long blogging. Until next week!