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Allison’s Birth Story – The Back Story

Telling a story means reliving it. The emotions and the physical feelings, the good and the bad. It all comes rushing back.

For months, I have been reluctant to relive Allison’s birth. It was too hard.

I started talking about Allie’s birth to my friend Julia not long ago. Talking to Julia about it led to talking about it on Twitter and thinking about it more often.

I am finally ready to accept the experience, to lay out the details, to share it publicly.

It happened. I can’t change it.Allison's birth story

It happened, and it’s okay.

It’s about time.

The Back Story

I had heard a thousand times that every pregnancy is different.

Every birth is different.

Every child is different.

I didn’t really believe it.

After my blissfully easy labor and delivery with Grace, I was convinced that any subsequent labors would be a breeze.

Delivering a baby? I could do it in my sleep.

No big deal.

In the moments after Grace was born, the midwife had told me that my body was made for birthing babies.

I thought it was all me. I was so good at having babies that the second one would be as easy as the first.

I was wrong.

The Pregnancy

My second pregnancy was different from my first all the way around.

With Grace, we tried to conceive for months. With Allie, we were not trying to conceive at all.

With Grace, I threw up every day, losing pound after pound as I failed to nourish my body. With Allie, I hardly threw up at all. Quite the opposite, I was famished for months. I ate and ate and ate, especially at the end.

With Grace, I had few restrictions, just a normal, healthy pregnancy. With Allie, I had complications very early on, leading to a slew of restrictions that never went away.

With Grace, my blood pressure was a little high, but never enough to be of concern. With Allie, I was on bed rest from 32 weeks until she was born because my blood pressure was dangerously high for both of us.

I thought bed rest would be great.

It wasn’t.

My bed rest instructions changed several times during the first two weeks, but at the beginning of week 34, my instructions became strict. Lie on your left side except when you’re going to the bathroom or coming to the doctor’s office.

I spent Thanksgiving on bed rest. The entire Christmas holiday season was lost for me, no parties, no shopping, no trips to see Santa. I was still on bed rest on Christmas Eve and on Christmas Day.

My blood pressure was erratic. I was in and out of the hospital. I spent many afternoons being monitored, many days collecting all my urine for protein analysis.

By the fifth week of bed rest, I was hopelessly depressed. I spent very little time online and even less time on the phone. I withdrew from everyone I knew.

By the sixth week, I was crying every day for long periods of time. I was suicidal.

I didn’t tell anyone.

Please don’t hate me, Dear Reader, but I’ve decided to break this story into pieces and make it a birth story series. It was just so long, and the story doesn’t end when the baby emerged from my nether regions.

Part 2 will post on Saturday.

© 2011 – 2018, Tara Ziegmont. All rights reserved.

13 thoughts on “Allison’s Birth Story – The Back Story”

  1. Bed rest stinks, especially when there is a toddler who does not understand why you can’t tend to her or pick her up. Everyone thinks it will be this neat little vacation on the sofa and it is, for about the first two hours. Then the novelty wears off.

  2. Bed rest stinks, especially when there is a toddler who does not understand why you can’t tend to her or pick her up. Everyone thinks it will be this neat little vacation on the sofa and it is, for about the first two hours. Then the novelty wears off.

  3. Awww hon! I so understand. I had no prob getting preg the 1st time around but years later and years of trying,IVF,etc did get preg. At 24 wks with twins the doc told me the 1st twin was pushing the other out and neither might make it. Spent 2 wks on magnesium and morphine (?,still seems odd they would give it to me) then in hospital bedrest all alone until 36 wks. Blood pressure finally caused c section then,followed by a month of NICU.My depression in the hospital was.. I don’t have words. My husband had a job,another child to take care of- I understood, but..

    • Oh my goodness. I can’t even imagine at 24 weeks! How old was your first when all this happened?
      I think it would have been easier for me to have been in the hospital, honestly. At home, I took care of Grace each and every day, lying down. She got frustrated with me, and I was frustrated with bed rest. It was really not a good situation.

      • He was 7 and I agree that it must have been horrible! We moms think we should do it all with a smile,homemade and no sweat or emotions showing. I can ONLY imagine how u felt when looking at her face. It rips our heart out that they can’t understand. Your depression must have been tenfold mine. My husband and I tried the other night to talk about that time and it is still so hard. Don’t ever beat yourself up for the way you felt and still feel. Being Momma is hard

  4. First, I feel SO guilty about posting it in installments! I really wanted to post the whole thing all at once, but the more I thought about it, the story doesn’t end where I stopped writing the first time. Doing it this way will give me more time to write the rest of the story.

    Second, NOBODY knew I felt suicidal. I went as far as to plan it out, and the only thing (really, the only thing) that kept me from going through with it was that I didn’t want Grace to find me. No matter how bad things had gotten for me, I couldn’t do that to her. And since we spent pretty much every minute together, I never had the opportunity.

    I’m glad I never had the opportunity.

  5. I know it has to be hard to relive this…I had a harder pregnancy this time than the other two, too!! I’m following along! Hugs to you, friend!

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