I took a poll on my Instagram stories the other day. Basically… I wanted to know if there was any interest in reading “mom life” posts on my blog. I get the random parent-related email from time-to-time, but recently there have been a few in-person pregnancy questions so I thought it would be a good time to ask. With an overwhelming amount of “YES” responses… here we are.
I’ve never been shy when it comes to sharing my passions about food. Cooking, sharing recipes and pleasing people with full tummies is what makes me happy. However, talking about my personal life experiences can be a little intimidating… so please bare with me. My plan is to share our everyday joys (and struggles) in hopes that these posts can help someone out there who might be going through something similar.
For my first post, I’m going to talk about my recent hiccups with our high risk pregnancy.
Currently, we have a son who is about to turn three and I am 23 weeks pregnant (with another boy). I’m more than thrilled to be a boy-mom and am looking forward to NOT having nice things in our house for the next 5-6 years. To say that I am ecstatic is an understatement; this next chapter of our lives is going to be a whirlpool of craziness.
This pregnancy was picture-perfect until my 18-week ultrasound. Like every other mother-to-be, I anxiously watched fuzzy images of our unborn son on the ultrasound TV screen – eager to hear about his growth and development.
“His heartbeat is strong… his progress is on schedule… everything looks… oooh, I need to get the doctor in here”.
As I nervously waited for the doctor’s arrival, tears started to uncontrollably run down my face. After closer examination, I was told that I might have placenta previa and will need to see a specialist.
A few weeks later I sat in the waiting room of The Women’s Institute at CMC Main. (Side note of hilariousness: The man sitting across from me had a sticker that read “I accept tits” on his iPad. What a loser.) It was here where I learned that I did not have placenta previa. Instead, I was diagnosed with a very rare, but severe, case of vasa previa. What the heck is that? My doctor warned me “don’t Google this”, but who are we kidding here? I wanted to see some statistics.
The largest studies report that vasa previa has been found in up to 4 of 10,000 pregnancies. Apparently, I’m just that lucky… where should I go buy my lotto ticket? Basically, if I was to go into labor on my own the baby’s blood vessels could rupture and there would be catastrophic consequences. Therefore, the current plan is for me to be hospitalized at 30 weeks (with a scheduled cesarian between 32 and 35 weeks).
Side note: Should I start a blog series on hospital food? Let me know what you want to see!
So what are the best ways to cope with a high risk pregnancy?
Even though it might not seem like it… life will only place you in situations that you can handle. Since I cannot personally change what’s going on with our 2nd pregnancy, I’m going to embrace it. Is everyday going to be upbeat and cheerful? Heck no… but here are a few things that have been helping me so far.
GET SOME REST: The number one thing your body needs is some good ‘ol relaxation. I don’t know about you, but I think pregnancy naps are the bees-knees! I’ve made it a point to carve out a little “me” time each day (even if it’s just for a 15 minute cat nap). If alone-time is not possible in your own routine, practice some breathing exercises while sitting at your work desk. There’s always an option to help relieve stress; if you need help finding yours feel free to reach out to me in the comments below or via email!
TALK IT OUT: There’s nothing more pressure-building than keeping everything you’re going through to yourself. Don’t feel as if you need to share your story with the whole world (or write a blog about it… haha), but confiding in your partner or a family member can provide a big sense of relief. You can also mention something to your doctor and they usually know a support group you can join!
STAY HYDRATED: I know this is something that should be on your radar regardless, but it’s essential for triggering positive vibes within yourself. There’s no need to limit yourself to plain H20 either, I often add citrus to my cup for extra zing. Other options include hot tea (caffeine-free), soda water, and high water-density foods like watermelon.
EAT WELL (AND OFTEN): Another no-brainer – cravings are a nightmare – so fight those mid-day yearnings with healthy snack options. Pop open my desk drawer and you’ll find dried mangos (the sugar-less ones from Trader Joe’s… OMG so good), Lara Bars, and trail mix. If you’re lucky enough to have a fridge in your office, pack yourself some greek yogurt, chia pudding, an apple paired with a hard cheese (like cheddar), or hummus with veggies for dipping. Finding the balance between protein and carbs is essential. I like to keep my snacks between 200 – 300 calories.
It’s totally normal to acknowledge the pain, frustration and straight up anger you might be feeling regarding your high risk pregnancy. After all, you’re only human.
Please ask any questions or share your personal experience in the comments section below. If you’re not comfortable talking about it on here, feel free to reach out via email and I’ll do whatever I can to help support you.