Humble thoughts on hyperemesis

(I also considered titling this post "Pregnan-see-what-you've-done-to-me", but thought better of it)

Pregnancy is HARD for me. I am not one of the “glowers”. I hug a toilet for 9 months straight. I choose food based on what’s going to be the least offensive when it’s on its way back up.

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My pregnancy journey

First time around, by week six, I was pretty sure that I was dying rather than creating life. I phoned the Gynae’s rooms thinking I probably needed to be admitted and was advised instead to drink ginger tea and eat a salticrack before I got out of bed in the morning. I had half a mind to tell his receptionist to shove it up her salty crack, but refrained.

My husband, very nervous of medicating a pregnant lady, turned down various over-the-counter medications in favour of some horrific sugar syrup, which tasted even worse on its way down, if you can believe that. I should mention that this is the same husband who later threatened to call the local vet to give me a drip if I couldn’t keep down the piece of bovril toast he had made. (I do love this man! I also appreciate that my pregnancies are hard for him too, as he sheepishly suggested one day.)

Round two

But to ensure survival of the species, a woman’s memories of pregnancy are short lived, and two years later we were onto round two. This time, I wanted ALL the drugs. I upgraded to Gynae 2.0 and it was a totally different experience.

I phoned the rooms and was prescribed a powerful anti-nauseant, the kind they give patients undergoing chemo. That little pill saved me! Don’t get me wrong: I was still ill, but it felt more like a nine-month hangover than a death sentence.

Why? (Oh, God, why??)

What causes this intense reaction to pregnancy? This give-up-the-will-to-live style response to creating life that makes us want to stab our husbands with a pointy stick?! There are a few theories. Some suggested it’s the rhesus status of you and your baby;  others say it’s a genetic predisposition, one even said that as the hormone that causes nausea during pregnancy disappears after three months, it must just be reflux (Gynae 1.0, obviously!).

How could I have endured another pregnancy after my first experience, you ask? The long and short answer is, drugs! I understand the hesitancy to take medication during pregnancy but I would encourage women who are struggling to speak to their doctor about what treatment options are available so that they can settle on something they are both comfortable with.

Two gorgeous kids later, I can say with confidence my struggles were worth it!

Mama on the Run

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