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Semi-unplanned pregnancy, getting over your own plans, need your input as a Mom

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

I wrote a really long post, and I deleted it and am going to try to condense it.


Basically, I have chronic fatigue syndrome as it is, but before hubby and I started a family, I reallllly wanted to get surgery to correct my sleep apnea. I have been in the process of planning the surgery, and was thrilled to be getting it, because the apnea really affects my energy during the day, and my quality of sleep (I use the machine but it is not working out). I kept telling hubby, "we just have to make it until after the surgery and recovery" before conceiving. Sure enough, I ended up unexpectedly pregnant recently.


First of all, I felt I "deserved" some good sleep (which the surgery would help with) before the next 18 years of being a Mom, because I am exhausted from all these health issues and exhausted from how the apnea affects my sleep/energy.


Then there's the problem of getting the surgery after giving birth..I don't think I'd get it in the first few months because the recovery is rough (worse than adult tonsilectomy) and involves a liquid diet and painkillers. Then I'll be a Mom of an infant anyways, so will I really be able to "catch up" on my sleep at that point? Then what am I gonna do with my new-found energy? Certainly not start running, like what I was planning. I wanted to get back to running, at least for a little bit, without having to worry about finding a sitter, etc. It was something I was gonna do for me, because I used to run and loved it....but I've been so sick and lacking energy the past few years.


Anyways, I am sure there are a lot of Moms who go through an unexpected pregnancy and have to deal with thinking about all the things you meant to do, but now won't be able to. There are the cases worse than mine, like teen moms who never got to graduate, etc. Of course you can still "do" these things, it just becomes a lot harder, and sometimes you just don't know if you have it in you to do it WITH a baby.


How do you get over having to change your plans? Especially when you are really disappointed, how are you then able to just be happy about the pregnancy and go with the flow? (this from an extreme control freak) I guess those that go with the flow will think this is silly, but I have a hard time adjusting to change and adjusting to my plans not working out.


I just want to be happy...I owe it to the baby. I was so disappointed when I found out I was pregnant and couldn't get my surgery, that I thought about having an abortion. I just couldn't imagine 9 more months with the CPAP machine and waking up feeling like crap, couldn't imagine not killing myself from lack of good sleep. Couldn't imagine being a smiley, happy Mom while STARTING the baby's life with me running on empty. I needed that surgery for my own sanity, I felt.


I dunno, does anyone have advice? Was there anything you had to get over? And when you saw your baby, did that not matter? That is what I'm hoping. I believe in God and I am trying to see this as a gift....maybe there was something I didn't know, like maybe the surgery would have failed anyways. I am just having a hard time staying upbeat. How will I not resent the baby if I am exhausted?


I'm guessing it's normal, when confronted with a pregnancy that changes your plans, to feel like this? How do women get through it? I want to be happy about the pregnancy. I just have a hard time coping with big changes.......  I envy those Moms that become first-time mothers when they feel "ready."  And then they can just beam at their ultrasound pictures, instead of not quite knowing how to feel.


I know no one is truly ready. But just to give you an idea, I woke up the other day, sobbing that I can't get my surgery for another 9 months, sobbing from just pure exhaustion of dealing with this so long, and being so close to a solution. It was after another sleepless night, and then sleep-binging all day and missing hubby's day off. :( I don't want to start my life as Mom like this.


Are there any words of wisdom about dealing with unplanned pregnancies, and not being resentful? Just being happy? How do I roll with it? I'm sure there are worse situations than mine....


I need to be reminded that things happen for a reason. Right now it's hard to see beyond what I wanted....and I feel so selfish saying that......I want to focus on welcoming the baby. I hate talking about this. It's like, "oh, the surgery...again! When will she stop talking about the pregnancy messing up the surgery?" I guess I'm hoping that if I can get advice from other women, I'll be able to better get over it.

Edited by bobcat - 10/23/12 at 1:35am
post #2 of 18
Thread Starter 

Just wanted to say, that it's breaking my heart to end on such a negative note. I can't do it. I can't live my whole life being grumpy about the things that don't go my way. God has bigger plans for me. If I moan about everything that is hard, I will never see the good.


I am going to focus on the positive below, in bullet points. Doing this for my own benefit, but also to get a reality check.


First, a prayer. Dear God, please help me be more accepting of Your will. Please help my health, and help me to do the best that I can with the circumstances I'm in. You wouldn't have given me more than I can handle and I have to trust that you know what is best. Please help the baby to remain healthy and strong and remain alive. I think that is what You wanted. If it is, please let it happen. Amen.


-First off, every baby is a blessing. I was given a gift by God. It is amazing that I even got pregnant, so maybe there is a plan.


-I don't do a good job sleeping on a schedule as it is. The baby will help me get up in the morning and sleep during downtimes.


-My husband will help accomodate my sleep schedule while pregnant and help me wear my mask. If I focus on getting to bed early and wearing the mask, I can get up and exercise even while pregnant.


-I might have had to still wear the mask after the surgery. There is no guarantee of a complete cure....it will always be something to experiment with. I may have to still wear the mask at times, or wear nasal devices.


-I can still run while pregnant.


-I can still organize while pregnant.


-The baby will bring order to my life (no laughing....trust me, my life is disorganized)




Maybe if I can just focus on getting better sleep, I will feel more confident about things. Even with the mask, maybe it's the best way anyways. I just need to focus on my sleep, no matter what I have to wear or do for the apnea. Maybe the baby is coming earlier than expected, but it is forcing me to get my sleep under control. Either way, it would have been a struggle when the time came for pregnancy.

post #3 of 18
Edited by here we are - 11/9/12 at 10:24pm
post #4 of 18
Edited by here we are - 11/9/12 at 10:18pm
post #5 of 18

Congratulations on your baby!!!    I'm so grateful for getting to be a mother to my children, and they have been such a blessing to me in so, so many ways that I never could have anticipated, that I feel complete joy for you even though you are not to the point of complete joy yet yourself. (you'll get there -- may be the first time your baby wraps its tiny fist around your finger)


I had surgery when my older DD was 5 1/2 months old. It wasn't easy, but it needed to be done. Rather than writing off the surgery that you need, I'd start figuring out a plan for WHEN and HOW.


First, I was breastfeeding and continued to nurse after the surgery. I had 48 hours when I had to pump and discard. This is something you'll need to talk to your surgeon about. They have choices about what drugs to prescribed, and they worked my plan around getting me back to breastfeeding as quickly as possible.


Second, we ended up using formula after the surgery (I only had 2 week notice that I needed surgery) but since you'll know from the get go, you can plan for it. If I could have planned, I would have started pumping breast milk after nursing was established, and then frozen it so there would be plenty for my baby while I was taking care of myself. Pumping is a whole skill that I never learned, but its one that you can work on, may be with a lactation consultant. (Actually, you could call LLL now and talk to them about planning for surgery.)


I was very sick and could take care neither of myself nor my baby for several days. It would have been totally beyond my husband to care for both of us, so my mother stayed with us for the first week.  The second week my DH was able to care for both of us on his own, and by week 3, I was easing into being able to care for the baby on my own. 


You can do this. You can be a mother and still take care of yourself.



post #6 of 18

i say plan to get the surgery within  a few months.   I know.  A year is a long time to wait. But it is better than putting it off forever.   This is something you need.  i am having my tonsils out in a couple of weeks so i have been forewarned about how bad it can be and I can not even imagine how much worse it could be for you.  BUT my Dr. said I would be misreable for 2-3 weeks but only need to be on the heavy drugs for 3 or 4 days.    Like a previous poster said, plan ahead, get help, freeze milk.  Talk to your Dr. about pain meds compatible with breastfeeding.  Make friends in LLL and have someone who values breastfeeding come and help you keep that going (I have been so sick that my husband actually held the baby to my breast because I would not wake up).  Perhaps there is even someone who would be willing to  nurse your baby for a few days to keep breastfeeding going....I had a friend or two who would have done this.  The surgery is important.  You have a big job ahead of you and you need restful sleep on the rare occasion you can get it ;)  (I have not slept in 6 weeks because of my tonsils.  The whole reason I am getting the sugery is so that I can have restful sleep).  You are not being a baby about this.  this of course is not ideal but it is certainly do-able.



Running:  Why the heck not?  Start today.  get in the best shape you have ever been in as you prepare for the birth of this baby.  get a good jogging stroller and add a little resistance to your run.  Sure you will likely need to take a break towards the end of your pregnancy but worry about that then.  today, run.


organizing - can't think of a better motivator.  besides if you organized before the pregnancy you would just have to reorganize everything.

post #7 of 18
Thread Starter 

Thanks for all the replies. They mean a lot to me. :) Here we are, I can tell you put a lot of thought, so thank you.


Lilyka, how did you/they come to decide you need your tonsils out? Is the fact that it's interfering with your sleep the main problem (you just wake unrefreshed)? The tonsils were one thing they were going to take out for me, but then a few other things as well (adenoids, and some of the soft palate, then possibly some nasal surgery or something with back of tongue). I stop breathing during sleep, and they are going to try to take out anything that could be impacting it.


I thought I would feel better dumping all my thoughts, but in fact, it made me feel worse afterwards and still today. :( Almost like I opened a can of worms I didn't want to open. I need to just start taking positive steps (as some here have suggested). I think dwelling on not getting the surgery is affecting my psyche, and it is making me hate my sleep apnea mask/CPAP machine even more.....I need to see it as a friend, not a foe.


Then, dumping my thoughts also made me paranoid I am going to have a miscarriage, like all those toxic thoughts are not good for the baby. Does anyone think that could happen? I didn't get good sleep, and today I woke up and my breasts were not sore like they always are, which is scaring me. Reassurance?


Linda, your reply was really encouraging. Thanks.


Has anyone dealt with a pregnancy that you didn't plan? I am wondering if there is a special way to deal with that? I don't really want to go to a therapist, because I haven't found success with it in the past....I think the best thing, in my mind, is just talking to real people who have been through it. I will try to relax too.


Anyways, one last thought is that I may end up deleting this thread, like tomorrow morning? Of course I will read any and all replies first. I just feel that since I created it, it's kind of a thorn in my side, and I don't want it here. :(  Thanks to everyone who has been understanding. Just in a fragile place right now.......

post #8 of 18

Originally Posted by bobcat View Post


Then, dumping my thoughts also made me paranoid I am going to have a miscarriage, like all those toxic thoughts are not good for the baby. Does anyone think that could happen? I didn't get good sleep, and today I woke up and my breasts were not sore like they always are, which is scaring me. Reassurance?



grouphug.gif  I really wish I could give you a hug. It's been a million years since I was pregnant (my baby when I had surgery is now learning to drive) but you might ask the specific part about breast tenderness on the pregnancy board.


Although I don't think that toxic thoughts are good of our babies, I don't think they cause miscarriages.


You could try sending your baby some positive vibes. You could say hello, and tell it that you look forward to meeting it. I think it would make YOU feel better, and that would be good for both of you.


You could look at your husband and wonder what the baby will look like, or get out baby pictures of both you and your husband and try to imagine them merged. My older DD looked just like her father's baby pictures.


You said that you were having a hard time with your plans not working out. Something better than your plans is working out. I had a spiritual teacher tell me one time that when I pray and request something, to close with "all this, or something better" because sometimes I don't know what is best, and therefore cannot ask for it. She said I should always stay open to god giving me something even better than I know to ask for.



post #9 of 18

that's a really hard situation. I understand about deleting the thread- I have done that many times on mdc! You want the help but then it just feels too vulnerable. go ahead and delete it if you want!


So are you trying to decide if you should get an abortion or have the baby? or have you already decided you are keeping the baby and trying to figure out how to make peace with it?


This is a very big issue: the unplanned pregnancy and also it interfering with a very needed health procedure for you. so do give yourself permission to think and talk about this as much as you need to!


I am a sort of new mom to a 2 and 1/2 yr old- very planned- and I have to say that I learned that having a baby completely turns your life inside out. they have so many needs that you as a parent end up having to put lots of your own needs to the side for a while to tend the child. and yet it is also amazing. but it is hard work. etcetera.


I guess I am just honoring your feelings of not being sure what to do and tyring to help you figure out what you are actually deciding, what your options are and what you really want now.

post #10 of 18

hug2.gif I only have a couple minutes, DD2 is begging me to make cupcake with her. And is currently setting up the kitchen to do so, it could be interesting if I don't go in there! My 4th child was unplanned.  This is something that I've found that many parents do not talk about. Often unplanned children happen, but everyone adjusts quickly and life goes on, but not for all of us. In my case, my first 3 children all have varying special needs, I haven't had a minute to myself in almost 10 years. This is above and beyond normal parenting, going to locked mental health units, the Children's Hospital every few weeks. My third child is on the autistic spectrum, I felt and still feel that I basically sacrificed him for my fourth child, a "normal" boy. It was a long pg, a long first years. For me, no the feelings didn't melt away when he was born, isn't melt away when he was 3 months, 6 months, or one year. He is over 1 now, and it is slowly getting better, but it's been like this for two years now....


And screaming for cupcakes.... I will try to come back later tonight.   

post #11 of 18

They are taking them out because it is blocking my ability to breath and swallow normally. I choke easily, drool unexpectedly, can't sleep well and snore while I am awake.  I only have insurance through Dec so we decided not to "wait and see".  I had mono a few years ago and things have just never been the same.  I got very sick about 8 weeks ago and once the swelling in my lymph nodes went down (it was so severe that she ruled out lymphoma first....) my tonsils just kept hanging out there.  I was hoping they would take the adenoids while they were in there but no luck.    


I have been hearing a lot lately about the use of simple dental appliances to position the mouth while sleeping.  Have you looked into this recently?  You probably have but just in case you haven't I thought I would mention it.  It might be an option.

post #12 of 18
Edited by here we are - 11/9/12 at 3:29pm
post #13 of 18

I don't know if a baby brings order to ones life- more chaos and mess really! But they do bring focus- and a kind of focus of attention that takes one away from too much self obsessing which is a good thing! They bring direction and focus but also a lot of mess! But it is also amazing.

Any updates original poster?

post #14 of 18
Thread Starter 

Sorry, I had to spend some time away from this thread. Just to be with my own thoughts.


I just updated some on another thread I created not too long after creating this one awhile back. Funny, the second one is very similar to this one. I really have not clue why I created two. I guess I wanted to hear from others who were currently pregnant??? Or maybe I just really didn't want to come back here yet, after how stressful typing everything was...so I did it all over again? shrug. http://www.mothering.com/community/t/1366383/anyone-had-surprise-pregnancy-under-challenging-circumstances#post_17171306


I guess things are still a little rough, to say the least. I have decided not to have an abortion, but I am just kind of not happy that I am pregnant either. And that feels awful. I think most people would have an abortion in my situation, because I really do feel that the pregnancy is "messing everything up." I have a lot of health issues, to the point that it will be hard to care for the baby. Yet, I really have no guarantee my health will get better either....in a year, things may not be any better, even if I get the surgery. And if that is the case, I think I would regret the abortion for sure. So I think that is one reason I am not having an abortion....because I do want children, and so now may be as good a time as any, and who's to say I'll have another shot, or my health won't get even worse....kind of like when I met my husband, I knew he was "the one," so even though settling down then and there wasn't perfect, I did it because I knew I wasn't going to have a better opportunity, or meet someone I would love more. I realize it sounds like I am seeing every glass as half empty!!!! :/


Linda, I like what you said, "something better than your plans is working out." I think that is what I keep trying to hold onto. That is yet another reason I am not having an abortion....because I feel like maybe my life will somehow, someway, change for the better, even though I currently don't think it will???? But it is still scary. Sometimes I think that if I cared about "my" life at all, I would have an abortion. But again, there are just no guarantees. And again, I "think" I would regret an abortion. Yet I'm still worried I will regret somehow having the child....because at this point, I still feel regret for having unprotected sex, even though we DTD right after my period was over, so you can't really blame yourself much for that, just say that you should have been more cautious.


I think I am just having another hard day. My biggest complaint is that I feel I don't have the help I need. Not from my husband, because he helps as much as he can, but from anyone else. I feel my parents could do more, but aren't. They travel a lot, but they don't come to see me and help out with things I need help with, and they know I need help here because I have asked them to come and told them I need someone helping me during the day with errands, etc. I told them even if my mom can come for a few days, it would help with some big things I can't get done on my own. :( I feel that they help my brother much more financially then they help me. And I can't really tell people how to spend their money, or complain, because I am a grown adult and should be able to survive.... but I feel I am struggling....so it is hard to see something like that go on.


Sorry the update isn't any better. :(

post #15 of 18
Thread Starter 

I updated both of my threads late last night, and today I'm feeling a little better, realized a few things. So I am just going to copy what I put in the other thread, just now:


Just wanted to update that today I am feeling a little better. Sorry to take everyone through the ups and downs. :( It's been hard.


There's not a lot I can do about certain things in my life like my health, but I need to step back and realize that I am still lucky despite everything (gratitude, something I'm learning). There are even some positive things in my life that have happened because I have this ongoing illness. I spoke with someone else with similar health issues as me, and it gave me perspective.


I am going to try to take it easier on myself. Rest more and stress less. That will help.


Today my nausea suddenly got worse, and it reminded me that I am actually pregnant (when you aren't showing much, with hardly any symptoms, you tend to almost forget changes are happening). So that also reminded me that I need to go easier on myself and take care of MYSELF, for the baby and me.


Also, just to add......today a zen-like calm came over me. I am not really sure why that happened, but I hope it is the start of something good. From what I understand, this is a period of time when the placenta is taking over. Maybe the baby is now becoming more connected to me? Or maybe God is just trying to help me relax. Or maybe I realized that I need to take better care of MYSELF (putting it in bold so I don't forget....).

post #16 of 18
This sounds so rough! What an intro to parenthood, eh? One thought I had was to wonder if you are certain that you can't have at least a partial surgery done while you are pg? It might require some research into safe pain mgmt etc, but pg women DO have surgery. Especially if you are under time constraints due to insurance.

If you were able to have the surgery, would you feel better about the pgy and its timing?
Another thought I had (and I may not express this well - it is not intended to be patronizing or condescending at all) is that (at least for me) things can seem bigger/more impact ful when I am pg. Especially with my first. Once I had one kid, it put some things in perspective for me in terms of what was truly meaningful to me, what really truly would have an impact on my life/future, etc, as well as what I could deal with and what I could not deal with. I learned I was a much stronger person as a mother than I was on my own. ...I know I am not explaining this well at all, and I hope you don't feel like I am downplaying your feelings or concerns . Things just felt a lot "bigger" during my first pgy than they have since....

Your concerns about your quality of life and future surgery recovery are quite valid. I would encourage you to explore the possibility of surgery before your little one arrives (and it may turn out that there are risks you are not comfortable taking, and you don't have the surgery til some later time. Or it may turn out that there can be some adjustments made to the surgery/meds that would allow you to go forward with it now, while you still have insurance). Quality of Mom's life does impact a baby, especially when sleep issues are involved. New moms are plenty sleep-deprived, even without pre-existing conditions. I support moms doing all they reasonably can to ensure good quality oflife for the entire family .

Goodluck with the rest of your pgy!
post #17 of 18
Hi bobcat, i just wantee to say hi again , b/c i thought it was strange that i erased all my stuff, that i put so much time into. I mustve spent hours writing you and then i got paranoid that i may have upset you, AND found out i was pregnant, huge news after having trouble concieving for years. So when i started writing youihadnt known yet, but was feeling really compassionate for you, and kindof imaging myself in your position, b/c i also have health issues. I just really related to you in a unique way, the way you think possibly. I got worried you were upset, and didnt want to upset you more, thinking about abortion, and in my mind i was thinking what i might feel if pregnant and health issues increasing. Of course i wouldnt judge you no matter what happens, at least not on purpose. Its hard to.explain all this so quickly, and i am so tired. Taking your advice &going to try &take care of myself. Day by day smile.gif.
post #18 of 18

It is ok to not feel happy about your pregnancy.  I was so missreable when I found out my third.  I was ambivalent for most of the pregnancy.  I knew my marriage was over as soon as the test came back positive. I did not even bother telling my husband.  he read about it here at MDC LOL.  Everything turned out just as it should though.  My husband did leave me.  He stared having an affair while I was pregnant and I filed for a divorce a few months before she turned 5.  I am still fighting for custody every day.  She turned 10 on Tuesday.  He is marrying the mistress.  Hard to loo at that and see a positive but really all the crap was already there.  She just woke me up to reality.  She came at just the right time to help me move at just the right time.  And what a sweet baby she was!  What a joy and a blessing.  and she is a sweet kid. :)  I cannot imagine my life without her.  So go easy on yourself.  grieve what you've gotta grieve.  Take one day at a time.  And remember, sometimes being the best parent you can be means sacrificing being the perfect parent.  You have health issues.  It is important to your child that you take care of yourself even if it means sacrificing some of those parenting things that seem so important.  Everything will work out exactly as it is meant to.

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