Forgiving Myself

Sometimes things don’t go as planned during a pregnancy. I had this happen to me. I had to work hard for several years to forgive myself for what happened during my last pregnancy.

After about 3 years of trying to get pregnant I finally was pregnant. I went into this pregnancy about 50+ pounds over weight. I knew with my previous two pregnancies that I tend to get high blood pressure when I am pregnant. So, I was worried about not only my health but for my babies health.

For most of my pregnancy I was listed as a high risk pregnancy. I had what we thought was terrible morning sickness my entire pregnancy. I had tons of tests done on me and my baby. My OB did ultrasounds on my about every 6-8 weeks. Which I am not going to lie, it was great watching my baby grow.

At about 24 weeks pregnant my so called “morning sickness” started to reach an all new level. I couldn’t hardly eat anything without feeling nauseous. I finally couldn’t take it anymore at about 26 week and so my doctor started running more tests and put me on bed rest. She checked for everything she could think of.

It was so hard being on bed rest. I had two other children that needed my attention. I felt so guilty for not being able to spend quality time with them. I was too sick to do much of anything. We lived about halfway across the country at this time from our family so I couldn’t even send them to go hang out with their grandparents or aunts and uncles.

My anniversary is on April 28th and my husband had planned an amazing and romantic evening out. He had reservations for us at an amazing restaurant in Austin, TX. However, at about 1pm that afternoon I started feeling really sick and like I was having a heart attack. I called my friend who’s husband is an EMT. He came over right away and checked me. I wasn’t having a heart attack but he told me I should go into the hospital immediately. Knowing my husband had taking the time to plan a romantic evening out and so I blew off my friend’s advice.

My husband and I got ready for our evening and got our kids to this same friend’s house.My friend and her husband were both very surprised we were still going out. Within minutes of getting to the restaurant I was running to the bathroom. I was throwing up. I cleaned myself up and tried to brush it off. I went back out and sat with my husband and within minutes I was back in the bathroom throwing up again. This went on for about 30 minutes. My husband finally had the staff get our food he had pre-ordered packaged up and we went home.

My husband wanted to take me into the hospital right away, but I refused to go in. I was only 30 weeks pregnant and I was afraid of what could happen and what might be going on. So, my husband told me if I was up all night getting sick I was going to go into the hospital first thing in the morning. I agreed and tried to go to sleep, but my body had other plans.

All night long I was sitting next to the toilet throwing up. By 6am I was lethargic and had no idea what was happening. My husband got my two oldest children up and ready and got me into the car and rushed me to the hospital. The staff at the hospital did some blood work and another ultrasound, but this time not only of my baby but of my insides. They found that I had gallstones (my entire gallbladder was basically one big stone), kidney stones, and my liver wasn’t functioning correctly.

How was all this missed in previous ultrasounds? I was pretty upset and frustrated to find this out. I was immediately admitted to the hospital. The staff did everything they could to help me. I was even transferred to the best hospital in Austin. After doing everything they could for me they decided they couldn’t do anymore.

I had been in the hospital now for three weeks and nothing was helping me. I was getting worse and my organs were starting to shut down. My doctor gave me my options. I decided it was time to have my baby. So, my husband rushed to find a sitter and got back over to the hospital. By the time he got back to the hospital I was in the operating room. They had so many doctors and nurses in that room. They had a pediatric and NICU team for my son and then they had my team of doctors, a team in case my body started to crash, and then a grief support team for my husband as well in case things didn’t go well.

I remember very clearly that they nurse said to me and my husband “If your son doesn’t come out crying we will be rushing him to the NICU. We will not be able to show him to you but dad you can run to the NICU with us.” This was by far the scariest moment of my life. I didn’t know what was going to happen with my baby or myself.

When they started to cut me open the room fell silent. You could hear everything. You could hear every tool being picked up and set down. I remember it was like the entire room was holding their breath. My little one was finally here…..and he came out crying!!! The entire room gasped with joy. My husband and I were in tears. He sweet cry was the sweetest sound I have every heard.

My son had to spend two weeks in the NICU. He was a champ. He really amazed all the NICU staff. I ended up having my gallbladder taken out two days after having my son. All my bodily functions then got better very quickly.

Forgiving yourself for how things turn out is so important.

However, I was so mad at myself for not pushing for more answers during my pregnancy. For not being healthier when I got pregnant. For putting my husband and other children through this scary time. I was so angry at myself.

I told myself it was all my fault that this happened. It was because of my actions I almost didn’t live and I could have caused the same thing to happen to my baby. My other children were completely traumatized by this entire experience and yes… it was my fault. We had a lot happening in our lives at the same time this was all happening and my poor husband had to do a lot of last minute changes. And yes… it was my fault!

I felt this way for may years. My family suffered because of these feelings I had towards myself for these things happening. I had told myself while I was in the hospital that I would be the best mom and wife ever if I lived through the ordeal, but I wasn’t doing that.

So, how did I get past these feelings and make changes in my life?

It took lots of positive self talk. I read lots of self help books. I attended church regularly. I was very open with my husband about my feelings. It wasn’t easy and sometimes I still feel guilty for how things happened, but I know there wasn’t anything I could do to change things.

It is so important for women to know that they can’t control everything. Sometimes things happen and yes they my be terrible or hard things to go through, but I honestly believe that there is a plan and that things happen for a reason.

I am not saying I am grateful for the things that happened to me, but I came out a stronger person for going through this experience.

Kim Sabin