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Pregnant During The Pandemic

Five years ago I knew without a shadow of a doubt that I was absolutely done having children. I knew that five children to raise alone was absolutely enough for me. Being a single mother is hard! I would NEVER trade the time that I have spent parenting alone; I’ve learned way more about myself, life, and parenting then any book could have ever taught me.

I was extremely hesitant to get into another relationship after rebuilding myself from an abusive relationship in the past. I refused to bring any man around my children; friend or not… I did not want to risk any kind of trauma for my kids or myself. Long story short, I fell absolutely in love with my best friend. He never once pushed for a relationship, respected the fact I wasn’t ready, he respected me not wanting anyone around my kiddos.. He respected me! He did not and does not look at my kids as a ‘package deal’ … he looks at them as a bonus..

Even with the ‘perfect’ relationship, I ‘knew’ I did not want any additional kiddos of my own. Pregnancy was hard on me in the past. I didn’t want to risk doing it alone. (Boy does the past haunt us sometimes) I did not want to raise another child alone and risk him leaving, the PTSD sure is hard to work through sometimes..

In late May, I was not feeling well. I decided to take a pregnancy test.. and to my disbelief.. It came back positive! I was in absolute SHOCK! Disbelief! I had about a week for it to really set in and I was finally accepting it. Before I knew it things started to take a turn for the worse. I ended up having a miscarriage and felt as if I didn’t tell anyone I could pretend that it never happened. Unfortunately, my emotions over took me and it hurt a lot more then I thought it would. I couldn’t just ‘forget’ that it happened and I often thought and wondered about the ‘what if’s’ ….

A couple very short months later, we became pregnant again… I was terrified. I did not want to admit it. I was so afraid of the outcome.. I got established with a midwife group and had just a couple of appointments before my anatomy scan. The ultrasound technician was great, however, I could tell something was a bit off..

We were asked to go into a room and have a video conference with a Maternal Fetal Medicine doctor. He then described somethings they found that were abnormal, but ultimately could be okay. We did additional testing, we had a lot of gray areas as to what/if anything could be wrong with our baby. As comfortable as I was getting with the new office, and absolutely excited with the special permission of a certain midwife going to be delivering the baby… I was called and informed that due to new policy the midwife group could no longer accept me as a patient. I was devastated.

At 27 weeks pregnant, I had no care provider. I struggled with finding someone that was willing to accept me so far along in the pregnancy. At 29 weeks, I was able to get in to see a new provider. The ultrasound came back so much better then the previous ones we had received. At 32 weeks, we had additional testing and some of the previous issues were a concern again. They had me start steroid injections to help the baby’s lungs in the event she is delivered early and scheduled three appointments a week.

The office that I am followed by is a great office with very skilled providers, some of the absolute best in the metro. The downfall: not seeing the same provider in the office more then once or twice, and having many providers in the office that I still have not seen…

With all of that said… it brings me to this….

It’s absolutely no secret that there has been a lot of talk among everyone regarding the Covid-19 pandemic. The disease is making people very sick and even taking countless lives. People have responded in ways that I for one never would have dreamed; from hoarding the toilet paper, licking deodorant to ‘spread the virus’ … People hoarding PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) and suddenly people that wanted to stay home before, are now very upset that they are asked to stay home… for the safety of themselves and others.

I work in the healthcare field and know first hand that this is real. We have shortages on essential PPE to protect not only the patients, but ourselves and our own families. Every day I go into work with the mindset that I can and will make a difference to someone. I put my heart into my job and give it my all, despite the chaos that is going on in the public, in my personal life, and in the media. The fear every night of what germs I may bring home to my family, or even that I may have encountered that could cause health issues to my own baby is real. The fear makes me cringe, pray, and sanitize as much as possible.

I want so badly to be super excited about being pregnant; the truth is, I am terrified! I am terrified of something happening to the baby. I am terrified that I won’t be able to keep her safe throughout this pandemic. I am terrified of so many things….

And now… of all times.. knowing I could deliver in a matter of days to a few short weeks, hospitals nationwide are forcing mothers to deliver their babies alone. Forcing the mothers to go through such an emotional and scary time… alone. I am absolutely terrified that will be the case when I deliver as well.

I was told at my last appointment that currently the visitor restrictions are one (the same) visitor throughout the entire stay, and that visitor must be over the age of 16. I was also told that if the numbers of Covid-19 cases continue to increase, they do expect there to be absolutely no visitors (No support person) aloud.

I do not say any of this to scare anyone. I want people to know that this is effecting more then people may realize.

I am afraid that mothers delivering alone could face higher postpartum depression chances. I am afraid that the attachment for the parents and the newborn may not be as strong as it could have been. I am afraid that the abuse rates for some women and children may be higher due to the man feeling so left out and not bonded with the child. I am afraid of there being a life threatening emergency and the mother not being able to make a decision and that decision being made with out a loved one near. I am afraid of there being a chance that a baby could be in distress and (god-forbid) the baby not being able to pull through and the father not being able to be there with his child and the mother of the baby. I am afraid that there will be higher surgery rates due to the mother not having the support from the loved one..

The reality is, I am terrified of delivering alone. I am terrified of something happening. I have no true connection and relationship with any of the providers. I am not familiar with the nurses on the OB floor, except for one nurse that works one shift a week.. I am terrified to deliver my baby..

When I say that being pregnant is hard, I mean that. When I say that being pregnant after a miscarriage is extremely hard, I mean that. When I say that being pregnant during this pandemic is something I could have never dreamed would be so terrifying… I mean that with all of my heart.

This is my reality of being pregnant during this pandemic…

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Patience… Easier Said Then Done!

Every single day, many.. many times throughout the day we are given the chance to use patience or to be completely impatient. I have learned that sometimes being stronger is a lot harder then I ever want to admit. I have also learned that patience makes for a lot more peace then I ever would have imagined.

Throughout life, we have people we encounter, or live with, that make decisions that we may not agree with. People make choices and do things we may not understand and can completely blow us out of the water when we respond to those choices. The hardest lesson I have learned is that no matter what, we must know that every single decision comes with a consequence.

The whole “practice what you preach” saying truly hits home.

I have struggled with situational depression on and off for many years now. Some days it is so hard to comprehend what exactly someone is thinking when words come out of their mouths. I always try to think before I respond.. which has taken many years of practicing.. One thing I have learned is that the ones you love and care about the most are the ones that have the ability to hurt you the most. Another thing I have learned is that ‘hurt people, hurt people’ …

Patience is so important to have when it comes to communication. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in emotions and we try to express our thoughts without using that patience and it becomes anger. Not all relationships are salvageable. Patience takes a great deal of practice and self control.

You never know who is watching, I for one have many kids around at all times.. Even at work, I am around kiddos. Kids learn by witnessing. If you are expecting others around you (both children and adults) to be patient with their words and chose to think before they speak, you should really be the first example..

One person cannot change the world, however, one person most certainly can change the world of others. You never know what people are going through. Be kind!! Be patient with your words… And for the love of everything holy… if you do not like how someone is acting, do not act like them yourself! Learn and make it a point to become a better person yourself…

My famous saying… Calm your nipples folks! Keep practicing your patience…

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Welcome To My Chaos!

Welcome to my unpredictable chaos! Life is not always a walk on the beach; it is however, all about how we control our chaos. Being the momma of five absolutely amazing kiddos, and expecting a baby girl in just a short amount of time… I am faced with many challenges on a daily basis that the parenting books just never mentioned. I can’t wait to share my journey with you! I can promise, this can get better then reality television.. My famous saying is… I couldn’t make this up if I tried .. So welcome to the chaos!!

Losing Hope During Quarantine

It is no secret at all that the Covid-19 pandemic has caused a whirlwind of side effects that one probably never could have imagined. Depression and anxiety are all being triggered. People are returning to their old habits that they originally had gotten away from. There is a crazy amount of toilet paper and meat hoarding going on. Things are going on that I never really thought would.. like the Baskin Bees that are apparently out and roaming..

In the beginning of the pandemic I was experiencing quite a bit of health issues. Being pregnant with a high risk pregnancy took a toll emotionally and physically. I had a minimum of three appointments a week to ensure the health of the baby and myself was not getting to a life threatening point. Thankfully, I was able to make it towards the end of the third trimester before being induced for medical reasons.

The stress of having medical conditions alone is enough to make ones stress level increase. Knowing that you can be delivering a baby that will most likely need NICU care is something that is nerve wrecking, stressful, and is something you can never mentally prepare for.

Having no interaction with the outside world due to the quarantine is not always easy. Feeling alone and having no one to lean on is HARD.

Everyone deals with things differently. Some people have handled things great.. with minimum or no side effects. While others have suffered from depression, anxiety, going back to old toxic lifestyles, and so much more.

The reality is, we never know what people are going through. We never know what the influences are that may trigger certain behaviors. . People are so quick to assume and jump to conclusions about others. The facts are simple really… Do not be an asshole. People are struggling. People have great days. People have days that simply surviving is a huge accomplishment.

As hard as it may seem when you are in the lowest time of your quarantine (or anytime)… Look for the best. When you can find absolutely no reason to smile, no good in the situation… Search even harder.

I was in one of the worst places I have been emotionally throughout the quarantine. Thankfully, once I searched for the answers… and searched… and searched… and almost decided there was no logical reason that things were the way they were… I finally found the answers I needed. I am finally seeing the light at the end of a very dark tunnel. I am finally able to say that things happen for a reason, and I am thankful for that… even if I may not understand right away…

During this whole pandemic I have had a lot of time to do some massive soul searching. Ultimately, the quarantine sucks! I am just thankful to say that I have learned an extreme amount of knowledge that I never would have if it weren’t for the lock down.

So when you feel like losing hope and giving up… remember that the answers are there. I promise.. There are answers and hope at the end of every struggle. Keep your faith, keep your hope and love like crazy! Control the chaos one messed up situation at a time. . .