So a couple of nights ago we had a little bit of a scare… I’m already deep in the rubbish sleep trenches with this pregnancy so everything started out kind of normal. As the night went on of me tossing and turning trying to get comfortable Mylo finally said “babe, are you ok?” I sat up and said, “no! My back is killing me!” It was the early hours of the morning by this stage and I was getting SO annoyed. The back pain was getting worse and wasn’t just aching in my lower back. Eventually the pain moved into my stomach; not just my lower stomach but up the sides and right up under my ribs. It go to the point where I couldn’t lay down anymore and so I sat on the edge of the bed for what felt like an eternity. At one point I was on the floor on my hands and knees just trying to breathe through the pain. I was desperately trying to work out how much of this “pain” was actual pain and how much of this “pain” was confused with fear. I was trying so hard to remain calm but in the dead of the night everything seemed quite dramatic and with nothing else to distract my thoughts my mind was winning this battle.
So much so that I picked up my phone and started googling (palm to the face)…
As it turned out it wasn’t the worst thing I could have done. I was a little confused as I couldn’t compare what I was experiencing to a contraction in labour with Isaac. I had an epidural from the moment they broke my waters for goodness sake! In any case a suggestion was to take a bath which I did for an hour and a half until Bam woke for the day. This totally helped and allowed me to breathe and maybe even catch a couple of minutes sleep. I was nervous and sore and didn’t really know what to make of it all.
I sent Mylo to work as per normal because I figured that even if something was wrong there was nothing that could be done about it at this early stage and other than the pain which whilst alarming, was accompanied by no other symptoms.
I called the hospital and they told me to take two Panadol and call back in an hour if the pain hadn’t changed.
Alas, the pain did subside back to the regular dull aching “period like” pain in my back and we went on with our normal morning. Up to get coffee, catch up with the gang, eat our porridge and say hi to the locals. All seemed well and the day went on. Mylo and I are currently the parents of 4 children as we are in charge of the whole “community” whilst my sister and her beloved husband are away overseas for three weeks. The days are wonderful but full and in all honesty I can appreciate now how it doesn’t matter what’s wrong with mum, “the show must go on”.
My mum decided she was quite worried about the situation so once she appeared at our house with dinner and to save the day. I did in fact take the opportunity to duck down to the hospital (200m) without Bam and have a sneaky listen to the heart beat. The midwives were delightful and reassuring. They did not make me feel silly despite the fact that I felt so and they took the time to reassure me. As it turns out this is totally normal when you’re pregnant for the second, third or fourth time as your muscles and ligaments are already so stretched and you’re chasing after and picking up constantly a decidedly large toddler.
I put Isaac to bed that night and included in our normal prayers was the most incredible thank you for the healthy, happy family that we already have earthside and the growing addition in my tummy. It’s amazing how situations like these really remind you that even though you (try to) live a thankful and grateful life you do become complacent. Saying the words and understanding them can be different things and I think I had a huge check about how easily things and go wrong and/or change in an instant and how lucky we are to have not actually encountered anything serious thus far on our journey to growing our family. If something was wrong and my body started labouring nothing could be done to stop it other than bed rest and the reality of saving a baby at 20 weeks is not a bright one. I’m in this grey area and for the first time in this pregnancy I found myself “keen as mustard” to reach 24 but preferably 28 weeks so that should my body decide to evict my little mate the wonders of modern medicine would be able to support us through the early arrival of our sweet pea.
We know the perils of miscarriage and have watched many friends go through this and much, much more so it’s not lost on us the risks involved in this incredible miracle for both mother and baby. So for now we are just glad and grateful that all is well and that we are lucky enough to have a strong little heart beat growing steadily in me.
To all the mums out there living the same thing, I feel you. The awareness of every single thing your body is doing and the guilt about everything that you might be doing or not doing to “support” your body and baby through this time just remember as a wise person once said to me; “babies are born every single day in war torn countries and if your little one is going to make it, it will and in all honesty there isn’t a lot we can do to actually effect the final outcome”. So if you’re stressed at work, ate too much cake, had a second coffee, didn’t get enough sleep, woke up on your back, lifted something heavy or enjoyed a sip of wine; whatever it is don’t be too hard on yourself. The baby has got this more than we know!!!