Wednesday, February 26, 2014


I've accepted that this blog might just be turning into a once quarterly thing, but here's an update nonetheless!

You found out here last, but we're expecting! T is getting a baby brother come June, which means I'm about 24 weeks along. They'll be about 2 years and 9 months apart. We're definitely thrilled and had been hoping the timing would work out this way, but I'm learning just how different a second pregnancy is.

This pregnancy has been a bit rougher than T's. My nausea was a lot worse during the first trimester, and my sense of smell turned me into an intolerable German Shepherd. I could be in our bedroom and if Ty opened the fridge, I could smell it and would start gagging. They don't need dogs to sniff out drugs, they need pregnant women. Yikes. I've also been dealing with a really strange kind of pelvic/nerve pain for a couple of months, despite how early on I am. It's quite painful to walk and hold T and change positions, which means I spend most of my time either wincing while I go about my activities or sitting on the couch feeling like a sedentary cow. Fun!

I want this birth to be about as different as possible from T's. I don't mean to be melodramatic, but I think I might have had some mild PTSD or something from his birth. I had dreams regularly, even when T was over a year old, that I was in a chaotic labor and I'd wake up sweating and breathing hard. The sight of babies almost repulsed me, and the thought of childbirth sent waves of chills and nausea through my body. I know that I can't control the speed of this labor, and that this seems to be how Warthen girls deliver in general (did I ever tell you about my sister who had a baby in an elevator? or the other one who had a 20 minute-long labor?). But I hopefully can control how supportive of an environment I deliver in, which is why we're going to a small community hospital in Los Gatos where midwives deliver. Doctors are fabulous at dealing with complicated issues, and they're skilled at showing up just in time to catch. But I need the skill and the watchful eye and the compassionate care of a midwife. So, we'll see how it goes.

I've also had what I know are typical but unfounded worries about what it will be like to have a second baby. I worry that I won't be able to love another child the way I love T. I worry that choosing to have a second child means that I'll have to neglect T and not be the mother to him (or the baby) that I need to be. I worry that he won't be as cute or as happy or as magnetic as T. I know that every parent with more than one child is probably nodding their heads saying, "I totally felt the same way! And then I held my second baby and watched my older child become a big sibling, and those fears melted away." And I'm sure that's true. But right now, I'm still in the worrying stage. I know when it comes time to tuck T into bed on his last night of being an only child, before we go off to the hospital and disrupt his world, I'll probably be pretty emotional!

Any advice? Consolation?


natalie said...


That was the bane of my pregnancy. It felt like my pubic bone was massively bruised.

I ended up having symphisis pubis diastasis, where my symphisis pubis (the place where the two sides of your pelvis connect and form your pubic bone) (I'm sure you know this all because you're a nurse) actually became way more separated than it's ever supposed to. I could not lay on my side, walking was hard, walking uphill was a nightmare, lifting anything felt almost impossible, etc etc etc.

Are you seeing a chiropractor? I would recommend finding someone who does the Webster method ASAP. I would not have survived my pregnancy without the chiropractic care I received. She seriously kept me walking. I started physical therapy after pregnancy to recover, but it might be worthwhile to look into it before giving birth too.

This is all assuming you have something similar to what I had.

Sooooooo sorry you are having a rough go of it. Pregnancy is the WORST. I will validate your complaints about it til the cows come home. Just give me a call if you ever feel like pure, unadulterated ranting. I'm a validation machine over here.

I totally feel you on the PTSD about childbirth thing. I need to find a therapist to help me handle it all.

Dang. Being a woman is HARD.

Kristi said...

I'm sorry you've been having a rougher time. I will just say that a bad second pregnancy doesn't necessarily mean that they will all be unbearable after this. I was so sick for so long with Ivy, and I was afraid that it would just get worse each time, but this time I feel like I got back to a more "normal" level of pregnancy nausea. You just never know. (You know, because you, like all pregnant women, are already thinking about how you'd love to do this again sometime. Oh, wait...)

My second and third experiences with labor were also a lot better than my first. I'm glad you've found a place that you think will be more supportive and helpful with your needs.

I know what you mean about the fear that this next baby can't possibly be as wonderful as what you've got. I've managed to worry about it twice, and then be proven wrong both times. I cried putting Simon to bed on what I thought would be his last night as my "baby" too. I might finally have reached a point where I can imagine a new little person fitting right in with the rest of them. Maybe. I certainly can't imagine a child who isn't cute and vibrant and utterly lovable coming from the two of you, even if he's wonderful in a totally different way from little T.

Hang in there. You can totally do this.

The Mommy said...

YAY! Congratulations! That is such wonderful news. I hope everything goes smoothly for you. :)

I feel like before I had Emmy, I thought I couldn't possibly love another child as much as Kylie, and that she would be neglected when her sister came. Then I read somewhere that my love was Kylie was like a bucket of water, completely full. When Emmy would come, instead of taking water from Kylie's bucket to give to Emmy, Emmy would have her own bucket that would be full. Each child is different bucket that is totally unique, but your love just continues to increase, never decrease.

Hmm, now that I'm summarizing it, it doesn't sound as profound as I remember it being. :) Anyway, it's normal to worry and be anxious. I try to remember with having multiple children that there is a time and stage in life for each of my children. Right now Preston tags along when we go to activities for Emmy, but when he's a little bigger and Emmy is in preschool, he'll be the one that we primarily go to activities for, while the next baby tags along. Just keep being the wonderful mom that you are to T, and everything will work out just how it is supposed to.

Holy cow, this was ridiculously long and babbling. Good luck - I'm so happy for you!!!

Amy Rose said...

Well, I am on child number four now and I was definitely nodding my head in agreement that I have felt exactly the same way, and holding the other babies did help the fear melt away some, but there are definitely days where I question everything I've ever done as a parent. Mostly, I pray alot.

Tess said...

Becca, that book you recommended Natural Hospital Birth was so life-changing for me in my second delivery. I was at a hospital but had a midwife and it made all the difference. So I can't thank you enough for taking the time to help me out, a complete stranger! Congrats on the second baby! I was nodding my head at all of those emotions that you described so well. I was dealing with hard labor when I finally decided to go to the hospital and it was in the middle of the night, so I went in and kissed my oldest in her crib and while I was being strong before, I just LOST it because I knew how much our lives were going to change and she had no idea it was coming. It was intense and yes, sometimes I do mourn those days of just the two of us being over. But the sibling love is seriously amazing and I love having my girls close together in age. You're gonna be great!

Anonymous said...

I am a long-time lurker, also had a birth experience that had lingering negative effects and am due with #2 later this month via planned c/s. (I also commented a few months back complimenting your Roxy boyfriend cardigan!) I recommend thumbing through the book "A Good Birth" by Anne Drapkin Lyerly. Control, trust, sense of personal safety (both emotional and physical) are vital...making the method the baby less relevant. It's been interesting to read the anecdotes of how both natural unemdicated births and c-sections can be both traumatizing AND healing for women. Seconding Natalie above...Dang its hard to be a woman.

natalie said...

Oh, and I forgot to mention. I did hypnobirthing while I was pregnant and it was really really helpful for me. Just a lot of practice in how to become deeply, deeply relaxed and in tune with your body, and good exercises for letting go of fear. It might be worth checking out if there are classes offered in your area. I was having panic-attack level fear about labor when I first got pregnant, and hypnobirthing helped me feel totally ready and capable.

Also, my pelvic pain started early too.... around 14 or 15 weeks. I hope you can get it addressed. :(

Becca said...

Hey Natalie -- so the pain you described is exactly how I would describe my pain. My midwives recommended a chiropractor which I should probably make a priority, but $$$, so... :(

I think I may have perused the Hypnobirthing book when I was pregnant with T but didn't really use any of the methods -- I can't remember why I didn't. My SIL Missy is doing the classes, though, and has been raving about them, so I'm for sure going to get a hold of the book and the CD. The class in our area is $350, which I just think is exorbitant. So... some more self-teaching.

Anon -- thank you for the birth recommendation!!

natalie said...

Augh. Insurance. Boo. Just 3 or 4 adjustments were HUGELY helpful for me, so even if you can just afford a handful, I bet it would make a really big difference. If it is the same issue, it is soooo important (and to find someone who uses the Webster method, specifically).

Another thing that helped me a ton was swimming. Do NOT do any yoga, as it creates a lot of asymmetrical pressure, and the problem is unequal pull on the two sides of your pelvis. But swimming lifted all the weight off my achy pelvis. I could have lived in the pool. Cheaper than a chiropractor too!

If it is what I had, you'll need to do a lot of careful PT and adjustments to bring yourself back together after the birth. (I'm down to one PT visit a month now, 6 months later--but mine was really bad, so not everyone requires that much.)

Does your insurance just not cover chiropractic care? So lame. :(

Michelle Collett said...

I did hypnobirthing with Alice, and I really liked it. That is crazy that the class in your area is so expensive. Wow. I only used the CD at the very end, but all of the knowledge and relaxation techniques were really useful. Bravo to you for finding the delivery environment you want this time around!

Also, I totally relate. I don't really remember my fears melting away, but I spent A LOT of time feeling guilty when my second was born, and then again when my third was born. I still feel guilty sometimes about having my kids so close together. I feel bad about not letting my three year old still be a baby and expecting so much out of my four (almost five) year old when the younger ones are being naughty. And I always felt guilty that I wasn't giving this one or that one enough attention because of his/her siblings.

What eventually made me feel better about that though was remembering that I'm a fourth child, and I never felt like my parents didn't give me enough attention. So I decided that I was just worrying too much, and I let it go.

You'll figure it all out. Most of the time.

I second what Amy said about having days that make me question everything I do as a parent. Today I had to carry Alice and drag Danny out of the chapel. (Jeff is in Virginia, and I am in Ohio.) When we got outside, I picked Danny up, because he still wouldn't walk. He punched me in the face! In the face! A punch! He's never done that before. I looked at him and said, "Danny, we don't punch Mama." And he just collapsed on my shoulder. Poor boy. With all of the change in his life recently and 1:00 church, he just was done. Anyway, parenting is constantly surprising and draining.

Janie said...

Random lurker, sorry. I think I found your blog via Bethany Jackman an eon ago?

Anyway, you should read "Birthing from Within" by Pam England. I had a fairly traumatic birth experience with my first, and a lovely, peaceful, wonderful unmedicated birth with my second. I really feel like this particular book helped me deal with some of my leftover issues from baby #1. Congratulations!