I wrote this post a couple of weeks ago and it has been sitting in my draft folder and I wasn't sure if it was one that I would hit 'publish' with. After writing this post I realized I needed to write it for me. I needed to work through some of the guilt I have had with my pregnancy. Writing about it was the best therapy for me. I have decided to publish it because I think so many of us as mommies have guilt over some aspect of our life as moms; our pregnancy, our delivery, postpartum depression, going back to work, feeling we don't spend enough time with our children, and the list can go on and on. I hope we all can move past this guilt we feel because we are all awesome moms when it comes down to it!
Recently on my twins group we shared pictures of our last days pregnant with our twins. I thought it would be fun to pull pictures of the last day of all three of my pregnancies. And then I started really thinking about each one of my experiences of having a baby bump. I am not by any means a cute pregnant person. I don't carry small but that is hard when I had a twin pregnancy, a 9lb6oz pregnancy and a quadruplet pregnancy but I loved being pregnant. I love feeling life growing inside me. I love day dreaming about whether I am carrying a boy or girl. I love preparing to add another one (or 4) to our family.
I do feel I got jaded with my pregnancies though. I never had a pregnancy that wasn't full of worry. There was always something that was more than the average pregnancy worries. With the twins I never felt that I would carry both to term. We had already suffered two miscarriages and every single appointment I went to I was worried that I would not see two heart beats. Then with Drew the pregnancy started out well. We had not planned on becoming pregnant so soon after the twins and never thought we would get pregnant on our own so once the shock wore off we were good until his 20 week ultrasound where it was discovered he had a cleft lip. We declined further testing to see if there were any chromosomal issues and we would not be 100% sure if his palate was involved until the day he was born. The rest of his pregnancy was spent looking at pictures of baby's with clefts and it was hard and very discouraging because of course we only found the bad ones on google. Then we got pregnant with the quads and that was by far no where near a normal pregnancy. Some days I long for a pregnancy where I would take a hpt and see a + and nine months later deliver a beautiful baby without the worries of a multiple pregnancy or anomalies but even with the worries of all 3 pregnancies I was given 7 perfect in every way children.
Since the quads have been born I have dealt with a lot of guilt with how their pregnancy ended. The delivery was awesome and everything worked out great. Family got to come into the post op area which we had been told would not happen. All the babies got wonderful care. I got 1 of the 2 doctors that I really wanted to deliver me. But I still felt let down every. single. time. I thought about their birth. I have spent a good part of 8 months trying to figure out why I couldn't let go.
So the other day when I pulled out the pictures of my pregnancy belly with the other kids I started thinking about their births and both of those days were so amazing. I am not a person who only remembers the pain that came with labor. I can remember how the room was set up. The feeling of the contractions. The shakes I get when I am transitioning. I remember my mom and sister who would have taken the pain of the contractions away form me if they could have. Both of the older kids births were everything I could have imagined and this is where I think the guilt with the quads birth lies. Everything I had imagined for their birth did not happen. I had planned on spending weeks in the hospital on bed rest. Getting to know the nurses and the staff well in the weeks that I would spend there. I had imagined we would know the date of delivery and Paul & I would spend the last night together before welcoming our little ones with a great dinner for two in my hospital room. I wanted to write to my unborn children one last letter before I got to meet them. Family would come up to the hospital in anticipation of the moment they would learn how many girls and boys we had. The "plan" that I had didn't play out as I thought it would and this is were I have felt let down. Because my other two pregnancies were inductions I have never had the moment were the "water breaks" and one is in labor. Mine were always planned. My "water" broke quickly the night the quads needed to come when Rylan's heart rate was down. Everything ended up working out perfectly; it just wasn't planned like my other births were.
I have kept a journal of all of my pregnancies and the following are the letters I wrote the night before the "planned" induction of the girls and Drew:
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
Oh my gosh. Tomorrow is the day and I am just giddy. I can not believe it has been over nine months since we found out we were expecting you. I can not wait to find out who you are and give you names. Today I have had mixed emotions. I am so happy that you will be here but I am sad at the same time because I will no longer be pregnant. I will no longer feel you inside of me. I have found such comfort and joy always feeling you two move around inside of me. It is such a neat feeling and if one or both of you are girls, I can't wait for you to expereince that joy some day. Daddy spent the day working outside and I went for one last pedicure and then went and stocked up on groceries. We are just going to sit down and have dinner for the last time with just daddy and I. We have to call the hospital at 5:30 tomorrow morning to make sure it isn't too busy and then we will head there around six. I don't think either of us will sleep well tonight because we are so excited. Grandma Pat and Nicole are also thrilled and are coming to the hospital bright and early to spend the day waiting for your big arrival. We then will have lots of calls to make because everyone is so excited to hear who you are. We have lots of prayers being said for your safe delivery. Mom is going to try and rest tonight but I am so excited. I am going to enjoy feeling you move around for the last time. I love you my sweet children.
Sunday, June 20, 2010
Tonight is the last night that you and I get to spend together just you and I because we are getting induced tomorrow morning! We finally get to meet you!! Today was Father's Day and we had a wonderful day as a family of four. It was the weirdest feeling to know that tomorrow I will be a mother of three beautiful children and that Natalie & Aubrey will be big sisters. We have told them over and over that grandma will be here when they wake up and then Katelynn, our babysitter, will come over and play with them and then after nap daddy will come and get them so they can come and see mommy and Bop-Bop at the hospital. They always say "and hold her" when they go over the day. I can't wait for you to meet your sisters. I have been having frequent contractions today more than any other day so if you want to come sometime tonight that would be just fine. This evening I took a bath and realized I only have a couple of hours left of feeling you inside me. This is something I know I will miss after you are born. I want you to know how much I already love you and I can't wait to meet you in a couple of hours. You and your sisters mean everything to me and you all are my greatest joys. I pray that your delivery goes smoothly and that you are healthy. I love you my sweet child.
I didn't have a chance to write an entry the night the quads were coming but I know if I would have the entry would have been full of joy and anticipation as we would soon be meeting our little ones for the first time but it is also would have included worries for the health of our preterm babies.
I will move on and be grateful that I got to spend my entire pregnancy
at home. That all of our family was able to make the birth. And that I
delivered 4 healthy babies between 10:24 & 10:28 on the night of
August 9. The sadness I feel when I think about the quads delivery needs to be replaced with joy and I am working on it. It just has taken longer than I thought it would.