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Week 20 ~ April 14, 2004
~ Worried as usual

I really wish this whole journal could be about how thrilled I am to be pregnant and how excited I am to be buying things, decorating the nursery, etc. But the truth is I want to be honest in my journal because it is about me. My big secret is that I am a worried nut about the pregnancy and find myself getting more scared about something happening. I know it's because of all the failed fertility treatments - it's hard when you had three straight years of very bad news to think that things will be okay. This is supposed to be about pregnancy but the reality is that infertility changed me - it made me very aware of how most things in life are out of our control and that bad things really do happen to good people.

I am still more comfortable reading infertility message boards than pregnancy boards. I understand the infertility boards - I have been there, I know the emotions people are going through and I feel immense compassion for those who go through failed treatments. I don't necessarily "relate" to the pregnancy boards - I don't feel as positive or upbeat and I find myself envious of those who seem so carefree about pregnancy. I don't know how to be a pregnant person but I am trying desperately to learn. How is that I am pregnant but I still get jealous of other pregnant people?

I am truly learning how pregnancy after infertility is a unique experience. I feel like I have been cheated a little bit out of a blissful pregnancy because I am so on guard for something to happen. I have a ton of fear every time I buy something for the babies and I get scared with every little pain or ache I feel. I thought this would get better as I went forward but I just develop new things to worry about. My new worry is pre-term labor which is very common in multiple pregnancies. I expressed my concerns about maybe not knowing what a contraction is if I had one to a close friend and she said "Oh, you will know." Well, I don't think that is the case. I spent years with undiagnosed endometriosis and in tremendous pain that I didn't even realize I was having. To me, pain in my stomach is "normal' because I have always had it. So, I am not sure I will know. In fact, I am terrified I won't know.

Lately, I look like a complete freak tearing through all my pregnancy books trying to memorize symptoms of pre-term labor. I sit for an hour with my hand on my stomach trying to monitor if I am getting contractions when the truth is that I have no clue what I am trying to feel. I really didn't want to be neurotic throughout this pregnancy but I think I am going to be. It's a new thing every day - maybe I am having contractions, maybe my cervix is shortening, maybe I have a UTI that is undetected, maybe the placentas are malfunctioning. It is almost comical how quickly I find something new to worry about.

I never thought I would ever say this but pregnancy is hard. I still think that being infertile and wanting so desperately to be pregnant is one of the most difficult life experiences for a woman but I am also learning that pregnancy after infertility isn't a walk in the park either. The fear of losing what you worked so hard to obtain is indescribable. Maybe it's me, maybe I just make it hard.

So, since I can't call my doctor's office every day with a new ailment or question - I am trying very hard to realize that all my worry and angst is not doing anything positive for me. I am truly happy and utterly grateful that these two little ones are inside me and I can't wait to meet them - I just wish I could try to enjoy the experience. I do love my big, huge belly - when I am not worried it's too big. I do love that these two are inside me - when I am not worried that they are in some sort of distress that I don't know about it. I do love that I will finally be a mother - when I am not worried that I will be a neurotic mess for the next 30 years afraid something will happen to them.

All in all, I would not trade this whole experience for anything. I will deal with the worry and stress - I imagine it will all be forgotten when I meet my little ones.

I woke up today and for a moment I forgot that I was pregnant - I had to remind myself that yes, I am pregnant and yes, I am already a mother. I started my day with a smile (and of course a whole litany of worries).

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