Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The Blessing of Feeling Terrible During Pregnancy

I am 9.5 weeks pregnant right now, and I have been joking that if the strength of my nausea is any indication, the baby is doing just fine!

My mom and my sister always warned me that they felt terrible, like they had the flu, the entire time they were pregnant. None of this "you'll feel better after 12 weeks". Nope, apparently women in my family suffer all the way until they stop breast feeding. Sigh.

The first two times I was pregnant, which you all know resulted in miscarriages, I waited patiently for the terribly nausea I'd heard about to start. I noticed food aversions, but I never really felt terrible. It worried me because I heard once that nausea is actually a good sign; it means that your hormones are doing what they should be doing. So when 7 weeks hit with my second pregnancy and I felt no nausea, I began to worry that all wasn't right. And it wasn't. I miscarried a week and a half later. (I understand some woman NEVER get "morning" sickness while pregnant, but for the 80% who do get it, it is usually a good sign).

This time around I began to feel nauseous at about 5 weeks. It started with a little "why do I feel bad?" to "Oh I never want to eat food ever again!" (I am quite dramatic sometimes). I don't usually find myself actually throwing up, but I feel like I am going to all day. I have maintained, though, that I am happy to feel terrible. It is reassuring to feel that nausea and know that my baby is growing and most likely healthy.

I went to my midwife last week and discussed with her my nausea issue. I find eating a big chore and most of the time can only choke down a few bites of something. She told me that the key is to keep my blood sugar up. She said I should wake up in the morning and immediately drink some juice. Then eat a small meal with protein immediately after. Then every two hours, eat some protein. This allows me to keep my blood sugar up and keeps the cravings for carbs down.

So I followed her advice and the next day I felt my nausea go away around noon. GREAT! I was so happy to finally feel productive. Then the entire next day I felt great all day too. I knew I was on to something! Then the next day I felt great.....until I was laying in bed at night and realized it had been nearly 3 days since I felt nauseous.... and I realized I needed that reassurance that my baby was ok! Am I crazy or what?

So the next day I messed up my meal schedule on purpose so my nausea would come back, and it did! It came ROARING back! And I was so happy! I knew my sweet baby was ok and growing still.

Now I am back to managing my nausea with protein and doing a pretty good job of it, but I know that until I can feel that little one moving, I'll probably purposefully mess up my diet just to feel that reassuring nausea again. I know the scientific reasoning behind morning sickness in pregnancy, but I like to think it is God's way of letting us mommy's know our babies are ok, especially when we can't see, hear, or feel them.


  1. Oh yes, desiring reassurance (even if by the nuttiest of means) will occur repeatedly. I kept saying, "I'll be less nervous as soon as I feel him/her kick." Then the statements became "Why hasn't he/she kicked in a while? Is he/she okay?" I have never worried like I have during pregnancy!
    I haven't had true morning sickness. Rather, I've called it "post-meal sickness." I haven't been nauseous, but if the belly decides against a food or meal it will reject it. I would have a small bowl of plain cereal like Cheerios when I first woke up (cereal dry & settled, milk is a protein source). I also took protein bars like Luna Bars with me if I was going to be out so I could keep something on my stomach. Protein and keeping something on my stomach at all times has been a huge help. When a meal was lost, I'd grab an Ensure or Boost to try to replenish lost nutrients. I'm now at the sixth month mark and that has seemed to be calming (at least for the last two weeks. Phew!).
    There are inconvenient and less than attractive sides of pregnancy, but those are so insignificant compared to the alternative of not having the baby. I'd go through anything in a heartbeat for this (or future) child(ren). It's a mama's heart. Surround yourself with people who will look positively on pregnancy and support you. (I made the mistake of not choosing my company during this time more wisely. I now have, and it has made the experience so much better!). Hang in there, Mama! You're doing great! :)

  2. I can count on 2 hands the number of times I actually threw up, but the nausea was constant for about 14 weeks and died off around 16 weeks.
    I'm so impressed with your attitude towards being sick, I wish I had been like that.
    I noticed that my nausea was almost a mental thing. When I was home alone (almost every day) and all I had to think about was myself, I wallowed in the fact that I was sick. Yet, every Saturday, when we had somewhere to be or something to do, I was miraculously fine! So, my plan for the next time I'm pregnant (Lord willing) is to work very hard at not focusing on myself so much (which, I really should be doing anyways!) and busy myself with other things.
    So excited for you! Love following your blog.

  3. Have you read this? This blogger claims to have cured her pregnancy sickness after many years of suffering. -

    1. Yes I did read it Joann, and I thought it was very interesting. I am definitely going to try to incorporate more fermented foods into my diet.

  4. While you mention that not all women have morning sickness, the tone of your writing implies that something could be seriously wrong if you're not having it. This is incorrect. Many women have no symptoms during pregnancy and still deliver healthy babies. While I understand this is your blog and you have the write to post what you please, I would hate a recently-pregnant woman who is not having symptoms to panic that there is something wrong with baby.

    1. I don't think the tone of this says that at all. It says what all doctors and baby websites say: if you feel nauseous while pregnant, it is a good thing. I am providing an alternate view of what many women see as a burden.

  5. I was the same way at the beginning of my pregnancy, as horrible as morning sickness can be it was a huge blessing cause I knew it meant good! Praying you won't suffer from sickness your whole pregnancy but at least you know there is a little blessing that will come out of it all!


I love to fellowship with others and hear what they have to say. I would ask, however, that you be mindful of what you write and try to be uplifting and respectful. Thank you for sharing!