Welcome back to Risky Baby Business, our Saturday series here at More Cowbell! If you’re new over here, the previous posts in this series can be found here.
Those of you who are regular readers know that the road to pregnancy wasn’t a flowery walk through the garden for me. There were shots in the belly, and worries, and mindsets to be developed.
Several posts back, I talked about:
- The most important thing to know about pregnancy
- The 5 surprising things about pregnancy
- And whether you feel you’re getting good advice in your pregnancy
There are an amazing number of things that pregnant women must learn in a very short time. When you add the words “high-risk” to pregnancy, the amount of things to learn doubles. Or triples.
It’s mind boggling.
I’m of the mindset that god doesn’t cull out the sissies for this high-risk stuff. He or she picks the best and most creative people. People who will find a way to MAKE the impossible work, because they want that baby more than anything.
Most people are pretty crappy at setting boundaries. Women with high-risk pregnancies don’t really have the option of NOT learning to do this.
They must set a 10 foot high barbed-wire barrier around the peace of their pregnancy and protect it with everything in their arsenal.
What was that? *listening* Oh, you haven’t developed “an arsenal yet?” Too bad, so sad…you’ve got a baby to protect now.
The events of the world can be worried about by everyone else. You have to worry about providing a stable environment for your baby to grow.
Remember, God’s in charge of the pregnancy; you’re in charge of your Zen.
At the baby craps table, some women will throw an Easy Eight and some will be praying for the “Oh my God, please let me ‘Pass Line.'” It doesn’t matter that some other mother gets to eat what she wants and do what you think is a crappy job.
- If you want to survive all this high-risk business with your sanity intact, you need to focus on today with YOUR BABY.
- You must focus on breathing and eating right and exercising.
- You don’t need to hear the “what if” stories.
- You don’t need to look down the road.
- You need to breathe and focus on TODAY.
You need to set a boundary around TODAY and protect it. If you’re like I was, you also need to protect yourself for the future.
I’ll never forget the appointment I had with the periodontist very early in my pregnancy. I am a girl that has to fight for healthy gums and, believe it or not, dental health is incredibly important in pregnancy.
I was at the front desk, making my appointment for 6 months down the road, when I was hoping (but not depending) on having a new baby.
Because I was on Lovenox, I’d had to let the dentist know that I was pregnant so they could take the proper precautions. The receptionist gave me a big sunny smile and said, “Oh, the next time you come in, you’ll have the baby with you.”
I responded, “Hopefully.”
Her face fell, and she said, “What do you mean??!”
I said, “We’re hoping to get a baby out of this in April, but I can miscarry all the way into the 3rd trimester.”
She started crying. Hard.
And suddenly I found myself comforting HER.
I walked out of that office, incredibly emotional. By the time I got home, I was hopping mad. It took a discussion with my husband to sort it all out.
I could have kept my news to myself. I could have gone through the entire pregnancy, trying to smooth everyone else’s feelings. What I knew about myself is that if I lost that baby, I needed the space to NOT TALK ABOUT IT. I needed to know there was a safe bubble available to me to deal with my loss.
I don’t really care whether I made others uncomfortable, knowing I could lose my baby at any time. I was uncomfortable every day, searching and praying for a way to GET comfortable with the idea that I could lose a child that I very much wanted.
I had to make MYSELF as comfortable as possible and, quite frankly, everyone else could just deal.
I believe this is a hard concept for anyone to grasp, but for females the idea of distressing others is typicaly very uncomfortable. It’s important that you sit down and think about what YOU need while you navigate a pregnancy where the end game is not guaranteed.
You’re not being negative. You’re eating, you’re sleeping, you’re hoping. In short, you’re caring for your baby. There is nothing wrong with being practical and building a safe zone around your emotions while you keep your focus on the child growing inside you.
In my experience, women worry about the specifics and men (like my hubby, Mr. Disaster Recovery) tend to worry about the “Big Picture” mechanics:
- How will we feed the baby?
- How will we diaper the baby?
- What will you use to swaddle the baby?
- Who/how/what/where will care for the baby?
Moms need to be concerned about growing the baby. That’s all they need to be worried about. Moms need to think about the “brass tacks/today” sorts of things:
- What will I eat today?
- What vitamins/folic acid/fish oil does the baby need?
- Am I getting enough rest?
- Do I need more exercise?
Do you see the difference?
All the people you meet will be focused on the baby. It’s their natural inclination to place importance on the end product…which stresses a high-risk mom out. The high-risk mom doesn’t even know if she can produce an end product!!
The most important thing that you can do for your unborn child is minimize your stress.
People can get excited later when everything else turns out OK. Getting excited early puts pressure on the high-risk mother who just needs to live inside of TODAY, baking her baby to a healthy conclusion.
What are your thoughts? Do you think moms need to set boundaries in general? Did all of the people who focused on your baby make you nervous, or provide you with comfort? We’re definitely curious about all these answers here at Risky Baby Business!