Sep 8, 2014

Mom to mom // Krystal Donovan on trials during pregnancy

Mothers, the definition of strength. We are asked time and time again by our bodies, by our children and by ourselves to stay strong, through sleepless nights, tantrums, jobs, teething and the list goes on. Motherhood is filled with moments that call us to be strong, the winds of life blow at us in all directions and we must not waiver, but sail along the sea of life, with grace and flowers in our hair. In reality some days we’re lucky enough to brush our teeth and get dressed before noon. Soon enough, the busyness of the day to day becomes routine and we find our stride, and sometimes that’s just when we are tested the most.

My first pregnancy went along as smooth as pregnancy goes, all day sickness, Braxton Hicks, and heartburn that had me convinced my head would indeed one day burn clear off, all promises of bringing me closer to meeting my little girl earth side. Her birth... I couldn't of asked for anything more perfect, but that’s another story for another time. Though I had the normal fears and worries any expectant mother would have, in hindsight, my first pregnancy and birth were more than I could have asked for. 

Being pregnant the second time around has been easier than my first. Traveling at warp speed, I had to constantly remind myself that I indeed was carrying life once again, until  at my 20 week anatomy scan, when my world, my life, came slamming to a halt. I never prepared myself for the possibility that something would ever really be wrong, I only had the sweet day dreams of bringing another life, a sibling, and more love than I could handle into this world. I remember the moment that, “your baby is perfect,” here are the hands and feet and other various little squishy body parts turned into silence as she scanned the heart. I knew in my gut something was wrong, the lack of words and reassuring smiles fell to the floor like bricks in a storm. Every part of me wanted to scream, cry, yell, and blame myself for doing something wrong. Instead, all I did was smile, while my own heart pounded as the ultrasound technician left the room to grab the doctor, my mother, my daughter, and the genetic counselor. 

Talk of downs syndrome and heart problems swirled the room, echogenic heart focus they called it, and though it’s seen 1 out of 10 times every day, that fact did nothing to comfort my already ratted world. Words that I never thought would be spoken were, as they took vial after vial of blood from me and my unborn child. I was broken, saddened, and scared, though I never said or showed it. I had to stay strong, I had to stay upright as the winds of this life cut trough me like a knife. God doesn't give you more than you can handle, He doesn’t, I can do this, I repeated in my mind, but oh the questions. How would I tell my husband who lost his sister at 12 years old to a horribly painful and debilitating neurological disease she had since birth? How would I protect this child from the harsh words of others who say cruel things because they don’t understand? What could I have done differently? Where would the strength to face this come from?

I took to the night in secret as I waited for test results, reading word after word from other mothers who had gone through the same thing, both with positive and negative outcomes. I knew that this child would be perfect no matter what, that we/I would learn from this little being and grow in strength to be the mother my children needed. Though we would love this child with the same fierceness as our first born, and do anything and everything we could to make this child's life a glorious one, fear of the unknown still swam beneath the surface. My days were filled with silent prayers and hopeful smiles, careful not to draw concern as the days dragged at a snails pace.The phone rang, and I almost didn’t hear her when she said the results came back negative, and just like that, tears flowed, and fear exited, it was as if it had it had never happened. 

Living my life as a open book, especially since I became a mother was the norm for me, but this, this I spoke of to no one. For fear of breaking down, of crumbling, I knew I could not stand in outspread arms, or not quiver as the “It will be alrights,” came pouring in. I would not speak of this because in all truth, it was hard, then I remembered the countless stories I read online of mothers and fathers who went through a similar experiences, I remembered the comfort I found in them, and I knew this was something I needed to share. 

Motherhood can be a lonely place at times, when you think you’re the only one up at 4:00 am feeding your child, that you’re the only one dealing with a loss, that you’re the only one facing a difficult situation. This is why I’m sharing, because you are not alone Mama, we are all right here with you, holding up half the sky, and when you waver, or quiver, we are here for you to lean on, to talk to, not to judge you or ridicule you. When you feel like you have nothing left to give, look at your children, you are so blessed to be a mother, and you will find the strength to pull through. 

1 comment:

  1. Oh wow! This spoke to me. The day Zoe was born (2months early) was nothing like I imagined. All I remember is tge high risk ob gyn coming to tell us the worse case scenario. Oxygen deprivation and they didnt know for how long.... I remember not announcing we had had an emergency csection, feeling so alone and heart broken, blaming myself... Goodness these words help heal a part of me, thanks for that!


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