I’ve been having what feels like more than my fair share of scary or awful symptoms lately. I won’t get into defining what’s fair, for the purpose of staying on track here, though. There’s been the usual (dizziness, intermittent nausea, pain rotating through the body, cramping of all sorts, weakness) plus a dash of new, weird, annoying stuff (chest pain, difficulty breathing) so basically it’s been like throwing a bright springtime picnic.
At some point there was a definitive moment, while contemplating all of the weird, that it seemed clear that something had to be different, this wasn’t just the usual “I’m broken” kind of wrong. Amid the usual range of random symptoms that cycle through, it’s usually impossible to tell when a new symptom is actually different.
Despite my typical assumption that I’m just broken, I ventured a test anyway. It was a bit on the early side and so to keep us on tenterhooks, the home test strip (1 line for no, 2 lines for yes) came up: one and a half. Seriously.
It took a blood test and an ultrasound, for me to actually believe: I’m expecting. We’re expecting. There’s gestating going on in what I have always referred to as a non-childbearing *waves hand* midsection. Did you know it’s possible to almost immediately start having symptoms in Weeks 5 and 6? As PiC said, “you can have symptoms this early??” Not cool.
It’s been weird. All kinds of weird. Both from the gestating POV and from being among a lot of blog and offline friends who are in baby stages of life, either having had them or struggling with having them, and I find myself torn. I hurt for those friends who are hurting and there’s a small part of me that’s hesitant to be happy about having a thing they want so much.
Because this is, despite all my practical reservations, a thing that I find myself happy about. Over the years, practical reservations have ruled my thinking: family health and financial history, my health issues, who the hell knows how we’re going to raise a child to be a good thinking human being without any help we don’t hire except for the few loved ones who might be able to come over for a week or handful of days, and BTW the Bay Area is frakkin’ expensive.
You might see where I derail into all of the scary life things and start to forget that this is actually a good thing. It is. I’m grateful that it didn’t require serious intervention and ever so grateful that I’m even able to conceive at all. Infertility, multiple miscarriages, difficult pregnancies and all are common in my family and at my age, with my health … I’m grateful.
And because I’m grateful and happy and possibly even a reserved excited about it (because again, early days), I’m trying to concentrate on what’s in front of me.
What IS in front of me?
Food is a problem. I LOVE food but uhm. This microscopic alien has literally run my life from minute to minute. I eat driven purely by instinct. In a single day, I might be repulsed by the very names of my normal foods, only cold veggies and orange juice allowed, then desperately need a steak. Cravings are normal and I typically ignore them but this level of craving is ridiculous.
I alternate between wanting to do ALL the cleaning and wanting to do nothing at all. Energy aside, my brain has become subject to an ON/OFF switch flipped by who knows what.
The seventeen trips to the bathroom a day have commenced and I’m possibly more annoyed about that than anything else but I suspect something else will top it soon enough.
Even after having it officially confirmed, it still doesn’t feel real. After all, fatigue and queasiness is a normal fibro/fatigue symptom for me. But as it turns out, there is a reason for it and it has a heartbeat. A heartbeat. This is weird.
When I’m fatigued, it’s about as bad as any kind of fatigue I’ve had ever, but as I described to a friend, it’s like I walk around w/50 lbs of bricks on my back daily. What’s another 5 or 10 bricks? They suck but I’m already accustomed to slog through a swamp, bearing lead weights.
All the literature keeps warning me and PiC to tolerate my mood swings but so far they’ve been:
1. If I can’t eat food today, again, I’m going to yell at someone.
2. If I can’t sleep tonight, again, I’m going to collapse.
Those probably aren’t considered moods, though.
This doesn’t in any way mitigate the pain of losing Doggle. However well intentioned, please don’t suggest that it does or it will. In some ways, it’s almost worse, Doggle loves – loved – small children (and really loves – loved – the smell of them); there were few things that could get his attention but concern for a crying child has always been at the very top of that short list, easily trumping anything else.
We had very much looked forward to introducing him to his human sibling to love and grow up with.