The last few weeks have been quite a challenge! I missed out on writing about week 22 as I had a be admitted for surgery to ensure baby stays happy and healthy inside for as long as possible. Although the surgery was painful and emotionally exhausting, baby and I are doing just fine!

Janel's surgery at 22 weeks pregnant - Three Reasons Pregnancy Isn’t Always Easy

Author’s Personal Collection/Janel Morphy

While I continue to practice gratitude and slowing down as I discussed in my last post, I have been reflecting on some reasons that pregnancy is not always a walk in the park. When I was young and even into my early twenties I had a naïve view of pregnancy. I knew there could be challenges but I always thought, “Oh, it’s only 9 months and then you get a cute baby!” Responses from those that have children (and many that do not) when we share our news often seems naïve or insensitive to the daily challenges of pregnancy. Well into my second trimester, I’m not talking about morning sickness and fatigue, it’s much more than that!

Flowers after surgery

Author’s Personal Collection/Janel Morphy

Although I’m sure this list could be much longer, these have been top of mind for me. Below I’ll share 3 reasons why pregnancy, and especially pregnancy after loss can sometimes feel like a marathon of hurdles.

1. Anxiety and Fear

To anyone pregnant after loss, feelings of anxiety are definitely no stranger. It’s a strange thing that seems to creep in to everyday thoughts. It’s a battle of constantly challenging the “what-ifs” and worst-case scenario thoughts. Initially, for me, it was fear of having another miscarriage. Over time that fear somewhat lessened, but the feelings of anxiety remained, morphing into new fears about what if something else happens to our little sweet pea or to me. Nine months (well hopefully 10!) can seem like an awfully long time when constantly retraining your brain to not fear the worst.

2. The Pain of Pregnancy

Although I knew that pregnancy comes along with some aches and pains, I (again naively) thought that pregnancy was the less painful part, ending with labour and delivery (the most painful part). Over the last month especially I have experienced a whole new host of aches and pains I never even knew existed! Some highlights for me are round ligament pain and back pain. Especially at night, moving in bed or simple things like getting in and out of the car are starting to feel a lot less simple! Accompanied by occasional knee pain, breast pain, and headaches, this last month has been a new surprise almost daily. I guess the best analogy is that I thought pregnancy ended with a sprint (labour and delivery), but really it is a marathon of your body changing and preparing for labour the whole time.

3. Complications of Pregnancy

This is something that (in my experience) is never taught in school or really discussed. It’s almost as though complications are swept under the rug, because usually complications during pregnancy are challenging and frankly, they suck. No one really wants to deal with it or talk about it, so it’s almost as if they are sidelined as long as your pregnancy ends with a cute baby! As I’m sure many people reading this blog understand all too well, there are a whole host of complications that can occur throughout a pregnancy, to you and baby. Oftentimes these are ignored, dismissed, or left untreated making it even more challenging. Personally, it is a fine balance of being aware and informed, while not overwhelming myself with all the things that could go wrong.

"You are llamazing" plant

Author’s Personal Collection/Janel Morphy

While week 22-23 was sure a challenging time, I continue to practice gratitude every day that I am healthy and our little sweet pea is healthy, strong and still growing!

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