But… when are you having another baby?

I once overheard my year six teacher talking to a parent. She said something like this: ‘When you get engaged, everyone says ‘when are you getting married?’ When you get married, everyone asks ‘when are you having a baby?’ And, Mrs J, here’s another one to add, when you have a baby, people are already asking you when the next one is happening just weeks after their arrival. Say what?!

It’s a little crazy that women are constantly subjected to questions about their reproductive system all the time. For me, pregnancy was a pretty sacred time, and also, one I didn’t need running commentary on. So now that our bubba is approaching the two year mark, people start asking questions in straight forward or completely vague ways.

Having a baby isn’t really like going to the shop and choosing a dress, sorry everyone.

All being well, assuming we can have another child, my answer is ‘One day, but right now I am enjoying this age’. Pah, I have enjoyed every age, and it really just keeps getting better.

What I actually should say, but won’t, for fear of having Food and Fitness Unqualified Police on my back is that having a baby isn’t an option until I am healthy enough to have one.

Some responses from this: but you’re not sick! I know so-and-so who had a baby and she had this-and-this wrong with her. Bigger women have babies all the time! Mrs Lala had five in five years.

(Mrs Lala, what are you doing with your time?!)

((It’s never fat women. It’s pretty much always big women or bigger women. Not so helpful when one is short and round.))

For me, I found being pregnant while very overweight really difficult.

I was unfit. I became puffed out when I didn’t even do very much. I had no energy.

I was (and still am) so overweight that I was deemed to have a high risk pregnancy. I was under doctor’s care, which in my case meant seeing a different registrar every single visit.

Being overweight also led me to a super scary meeting with an anesthetist who said I was a high risk of complications, particularly in terms of breathing, who then recommended an early epidural.

Being over 100kgs meant I couldn’t labour in the bath. Shame, because I love baths. I would live in my bath like the guy from Mary Poppins.

Early epidural (and I was always planning on having an epidural, because science is our friend) led to interventions. Interventions led to an emergency c-section.

And then, even though I was under doctor’s care, suddenly you have a baby and the hospital isn’t your nice guardian anymore, despite whatever the little booklet says. The little booklet was my Bible. It was called ‘Now that you have had your baby’ and enough contained information to get you through the first few weeks. Every day I reread the book, checking that I was doing as suggested. I rang up the clinic, as specified in the little booklet, only to be told I couldn’t come back and a doctor or my partner would have to check whether I had an infection. Ew, no. Back to the GP.

Two months after Natalie was born I went to my GP with knee troubles. His answer was simple: lose weight, to do that you’ll need to exercise, and therefore aggravate your knee.

Ah, bugger it, the physio will do.

Physios were the best part of pregnancy. I loved my stretch and aqua classes heaps.

Much of what happened could have been avoided. I’m not overweight because I have a medical condition, I just super love food, and many of the foods I love aren’t very good for my body. I also hate most exercise, and I am great at making anti-gym excuses. I also have a weird syndrome called I Could Do This Once-itis, which is basically me trying to relive my glory days and being unable to do the same things I could when I weighed 40 kgs less than I do now.

I’m overweight because I have repeatedly made bad choices. I don’t mean to bashing myself up here, or anyone else. Everyone is different, but internally I know the reason behind my problem, and most of the reason is me.

But, when are you going to have another baby?

When I feel healthy enough to consider pregnancy as an option. That’s when.

Written by

I like books, rubber ducks, 90s pop music and putting words on paper. Wrote a thesis on romance. Tea and learning tarot.

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