Hi again….I certainly wanted to get back to you all sooner, as it has been a while since Part 1. However, what I am about to put into words needed a lot of thought. In addition, something of this nature is so near and dear to who I am and what my life is blossoming into…I want to get it right. I hope that was a little clearer than mud, but regardless…here we go.
Being pregnant with an eating disorder was many things. First, there is the joy of finding out I was going to bring another human being into this world. The instant I found out I was pregnant I was so in love with this unborn life….honestly, it took my breath away. I wanted to do EVERYTHING right. It is crazy how protective I instantly became over my belly. Whoa….wait a minute…my belly??? My flat belly that is sure to get rotund? What’s going to happen to the rest of me? What about my thighs, my butt? Okay, okay….I can do this. Right????
There was the first trip to the grocery store where I stood in the isle looking at all the food…..tears running down my cheeks, shaking in fear. I have to eat, what do I eat, what is best for my baby, how can I possibly put ED aside…Ignore him? Thank goodness my mom was with me that day … She held my hand, said it was going to be okay…and she filled the grocery cart the best she knew how. Amazingly…eating got easier, and wow…who knew I could feel this good. (It’s called not being malnourished) For the first time since I was a little girl, I was laughing and smiling, and concentration became a non issue. A fairytale…right?
*NOTE* GRAPHIC CONTENT
It was a day like any other. I came home from work, happy, full of hope…nothing could rattle me. Then I went to the bathroom and screamed in an octave I did not believe humans were capable of. The toilet was full of blood, and oh my dear sweet Lord, there was more. I didn’t know what it was, but the first thought I had was that I was actually looking at my baby; a baby only three months in utero. There was like an ocean in my ears; everything went out of focus. I had no breath left in me. I ran to the phone and called my OB GYN. I managed to explain what had just happened. As I waited for a comforting word, it felt as if the world was standing still. My words of comfort were nowhere to be found. My MD’s reply was, “I’m sorry, it appears you have miscarried”. Um, what? No, no, no. I will not listen to you. Do something….do anything. I am on my way to the ER.
Needless the say, that was the longest trip of my life. What had I done? How could this have happened? At the hospital, I was brought into a room, still bleeding like crazy, but God was there with me. He had to be, because somehow I just knew …..this couldn’t be over. The first MD came in and used a Doppler to find the baby’s heartbeat…..nothing. He says, he is sorry. I told him to find me another MD, immediately. They humored me and brought someone else in to listen….still nothing. Fine, then find me someone who knows what they are doing!!!!!!! MD number three came into the room. Once again putting the Doppler to my belly, slowing going back and forth, listening for something…anything. This MD took a little more time. Then…..out of nowhere, my baby’s heartbeat, fast, strong, and alive!!!!!! Needless to stay, the onlookers in that room had amazed expressions on their faces, and I was so relieved I didn’t have the strength to say “I told you so”. The diagnosis was part of the placenta had detached, and with bed rest, this would heal, and all should be fine. Of course they could not give me any guarantees. I left that hospital on shaky legs, but still pregnant.
Bed rest, nourishment, and a lot of prayer I found myself in my fifth month. Again, all was well. Then came my first contraction. Yet another emergent trip to the ER. Scared out of my wits, but hanging on to hope I had my first ultrasound. Wow! Truly a beautiful site. It looked like I was carrying an acrobat performing circus tricks. I would be kept overnight as I was dehydrated, which had brought on the contractions. I had no clue how hydration could be so important. What a way to learn…right?
The next few months went on without incident; however, around seven months I was hospitalized again with early contractions and needing IV fluid. This was becoming a very long and pregnancy, and as I watched the scale creep up it amazed me how I didn’t care. Just get my baby here safe.
It was June 13, early morning. I had been up most of the night as baby was restless and so was I. Something wasn’t right. Contractions….again?? The little one, my son, was not due until July 6. Too early, however, I just knew this was it. No question. I spent the early morning hours at the hospital being monitored with what the MD was calling Braxton Hicks contractions. No…I really don’t think so. You can’t really be sending me home???? Yup….off I went only to be brought back to the hospital that very afternoon, but this time in an ambulance as I was paralyzed with pain. Hmph…Braxton Hicks. Again…. monitoring…they sure looked and felt like contractions to me. My MD came in to check on me before he left to play in his weekly softball game. Really??? He actually said if I did not have my son by midnight….He would send me home again. My water still had not broke and I was not progressing much. Within an hour of my doctor leaving, water broke, contractions hit the roof. 11:58 p.m. my son was literally caught in the arms of my doctor as my son must have overheard the deadline of midnight. Brady, my first born, 5 lbs 13 oz, a month early came into my arms. Small, perfect, and very much alive.
Troublesome pregnancy, right? Here is why. The years of anorexia and bulimia had taken a toll on my young body. Malnourishment and dehydration had left my body unprepared to carry another life. It was only by the grace of God my son arrived, who by the way is about to graduate from high school : ). I went on to have two more boys. The bulimia never came back, but I still struggled with the anorexia and over exercising as my coping mechanisms for life. However, I will say that my next two pregnancies, my body handled very nicely. The fight is not over. ED came back. I do believe ED missed me terribly because he grabbed on, and my life was in danger….again.