by sandy (1138 Posts), Tue Mar 30, 2004 12:46 am
Sorry you're having a hard time moving on from your difficult pregnancy and birth. You asked what has helped some of us move on...
For me, time has been the most significant helper. The months leading up to and last June is when all of my things happened. Give yourself some more time...it's all still fresh in your mind because it all happened so recently.
As soon as I felt able to get out, (DD was finally well enough for me to leave for a few hours, it was around 3 months postpartum I think) I found a great therapist and went to some sessions to process everything that had happened. His specialty was working with women and families who experienced pregnancy/birth in ways that weren't expected. It was really helpful. I decided at that point not focus on moving on, but rather to better understand all that I went through, have my feelings validated, and know that my DD's growth and birth are unique and very special.
I joined a playgroup around that time too, where all the moms have had "normal" pregnancies, so it's nice to be around that and have a break from moms talking about things like "adjusted age", "developmental delays", discussions of weight and percentages after each pediatrician visit. And I do have 2 friends who had high-risk pregnancies at the same time as me, so if I feel like I need to talk to someone who understands, maybe just a word or a phrase here or there, that's where I go, and of course, to this website, too.
Also, I started going 2 times per week to a "Mommy and Me" exercise class, which places much more emphasis on "Mommy" rather than "Me" and that that been a good way for me to get back to feeling strong, healthy, and in better control of my life, after feeling so weak and helpless during my pregnancy and the birth.
A few months ago, I started on my DD's baby book and a separate ongoing family scrapbook. I was finally ready, and even then, it was difficult emotionally for me at times. I wrote the words and put the pictures and cards and momentos in place (one page is dedicated to a full-page handout of the Level III NICU description and rules!) and now I have a place I can go look at it all when I want. I guess that was a little "closure" for me, and makes me feel good it's all in once place now.
And even now, 10 months after my DD's birth, I'll think I'm just fine with all that happened and then something will reimind me that I'm still working on things. Last week, we were watching an old "Friends" re-run with Phoebe having her babies, and my husband said to me in a laughing way (and I was laughing right along with him until the end), "wouldn't that be different if after your baby is born it's put right on your chest and you get to hold it and ahhh and ooh over it and the baby goes back with you to your room and then you all leave the hospital together as a family in the next day or two?" and then all of a sudden I got teary. And my DH felt horrible of course! :)
I think it will always be a part of us. What I mostly think about now is what a miracle my little DD is, how lucky I am to be able to watch her grow, and what a unique and special story it is that we share as a family.
I send you thoughts of comfort and wishes of healing as you find your way to feeling more settled about your pregnancy and the birth.
~Sandy/DD born via emergency C at 35 wks/1 day June '03 due to Severe PE/class III HELLP/chronic HBP/asthma