Wednesday, April 19, 2017

A look back at my pregnancies


Every pregnancy is so different, just like every child is so unique. My pregnancy with Maya was completely contrasting to my pregnancy with Veda. 

Both my pregnancies were complete surprises. Maya's resulted from 3 months worth of weddings that we had, and I didn't even know I was pregnant until I landed myself in the ER for severe vomiting and found out I was 8 weeks along. With Veda, we waited for her for so long that I gave up. And then she surprised us, and made us to happy and grateful. I knew I was pregnant with Veda within the first week just by how I was feeling, and tested positive the day before Maya's 4th birthday party.

Pregnancy is a very magical time for a woman. You're the first person to truly get to know your baby as you carry them inside you. It is also a very hard experience. It is hard on the body - physically, mentally and emotionally. It is a journey of transition. As much as you might have a supportive and helpful partner, it's a path that you have to walk alone. It takes a lot of bravery and courage to be pregnant and give birth to a baby. It takes a lot of mental strength and intuition.

Both my pregnancies served up major life lessons for me. With my pregnancy with Maya, I had to pull out of university and stop working because I was so sick. A little inkling of just how unpredictable and chaotic life with kids would become...and how much life can twist around despite making plans! I was also very anxious, but pulled it together by the end of the pregnancy and I finished it by being very centered and focused going into labor. My due date with Maya was wrong, which I knew from the beginning - it was two weeks off. My original due date was June 13, 2012 and she arrived on June 7, 2012 and was a 41 weeks old baby!

With Veda, I was very moody, short-tempered and reserved. The pregnancy started out beautifully and was much easier than Maya's. We had so much life stress with my parents' illnesses and my mother-in-law's heart surgery that most days I forgot I was even carrying a child. But I used to stay up at night and look at the ceiling, deep in thought. I was also very private about my pregnancy. Most people didn't know I was pregnant until the very end. I did not flaunt it or make a big deal about it, because I felt there was too much going on already. We didn't tell Maya until the 4th or 5th month. I was not anxious at all, until the very last moment. I was worried about Maya and the transition for her. Going into labor, I was very distressed but once it started, I found my focus. Veda was born at 38 weeks/5 days.

Here's a little look-back at my pregnancies, in pictures. I didn't take as many with Maya's as I did with Veda's. I felt really crappy with my first pregnancy and waited until I had on full make-up to take pictures. With my second pregnancy, I hardly wore make-up and just gave zero f*cks about my appearance!

My pregnancy with Maya

30 weeks: This picture was the first time I felt okay in well...30 weeks. Most of the pregnancy was spent being miserable with my head in the toilet bowl. But I was finally able to feel okay enough to attend my cousin's baptism/baby shower. I got all dressed up, so of course we had to take a picture. It was a lovely spring day and the cherry blossoms had just bloomed.

34 weeks: This was a picture of me at my baby shower. We had it at my mom's house and we had about 50 friends and family attend and give generous gifts. Unfortunately, I hardly heard from 99% of them after Maya was born. My "village" essentially disappeared. It was a nice party though, and at least they gave me nice outfits for the baby.

37 weeks: Back to feeling crappy. There was so much pressure on my pelvis at this point and I just wanted to get it over with. We took this picture right before we went out on one of our long walks. I did a lot of walking and swimming late in the pregnancy.

39 weeks: I could no longer see my toes, so I had to take a picture of that strange experience. I felt enormous. I ate a grilled cheese sandwich every day and that was my last meal before delivery. Maya was 9lbs 4oz because of that cheddar cheese!

My pregnancy with Veda

5 weeks: This was at Maya's 4th birthday party and I had just got a positive pregnancy test the day before. My tummy was swollen and my boobs were swollen so I wore a loose dress. I was terrified if someone were to ask me if I was pregnant - what would I say - would I lie? It was too early to tell anybody although I really wished I could share the good news.

8 weeks: We did a lot of swimming that Summer because it was just too hot. It was the only thing that would kill the time and get Maya tired out. I had some nausea at this point, in the afternoons, which was hard. The only thing that seemed to help my nausea was a caramel frappucino from Starbucks.

11 weeks: This was the picture that we used to announce our pregnancy to our desi family on our Whats App family thread. My tummy was getting huge and it was getting more difficult to hide, and we also wanted to share the good news. We took this picture when we were on vacation in Penticton. Everyone was totally surprised that we had kept it a secret for so long!

13 weeks: This was my father-in-law's 60th birthday dinner. We went for Italian food - thank god - because the only thing I felt like eating was pasta and noodles! Still no make-up. I wore this dress like a nightgown every day until my belly got too big!

24 weeks: Canadian Thanksgiving. The weather was miserable and this was my one maternity dress. I wore this dress so much that husband-ji started to get embarrassed of me!

25 weeks: At Disneyland. It was an exhausting trip, but we had so much fun. It was a special last hurrah we did for Maya as an only child. I thought I would just watch husband-ji & Maya get on the rides...but I ended up being a total badass and riding on all of the rides! I had to wear husband-ji's shoes because none of mine fit anymore!

26 weeks: When the sibling bond started...

27 weeks: Dressing up for Diwali was fun. It was my only time wearing a saree while pregnant during this pregnancy. I was actually feeling very depressed here, although you wouldn't know it because I put on a brave face. I do love this picture of me and Maya though. My little queen...

35 weeks: During Christmastime - my favorite season. I was feeling so good here. I spent the past month really giving myself some TLC and getting weekly massages and acupuncture and mentally preparing myself for labor. At this point, I knew I only had a month left in my pregnancy.

37 weeks: This was right before I was hospitalized for the stomach flu that I picked up from Maya's school. The following week sucked - big time!!! 

38 weeks: A few days before I went into labor with Veda. I had finally got home from the hospital and I was only able to eat mashed potatoes because of my poor stomach! I was posing this way to try to hide all the bruising on my arms from the hospital IV and constant prodding of blood work. I was relieved that the baby was unharmed throughout the whole illness. I was already 3cm dilated here so I knew it wouldn't be much longer. After looking at this picture, I noticed my stomach dropped and changed shape.

Even though pregnancy was hard on me physically, it was a privilege to be able to carry both of my children inside me full to term. And it was lovely to get to know them before everyone else did!

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Dear readers, how about you?
Have you had different experiences with your pregnancies?
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2 comments

  1. Awwwww it's amazing and beautiful pictures you have to remember this time even if it's not always easy. I like the way you are writing about your pregnancy. It's blessed time but also very hard for every woman, it's not road full of sweetness and flowers! You are inspiring woman, Alex!

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  2. What an amazing and interesting journey. :)

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