How Do You Forgive Yourself When Your Medical Needs Conflict With Your Unborn Baby’s Needs? by Carrie Watts
My first pregnancy had challenges, but I was sure it would be perfect the next time. I entered my second pregnancy with great hope. At first, it was ideal. Then, severe symphysis pubic dysfunction (SPD) kicked in. At week 16, I couldn’t sit or walk without discomfort. At week 19 I was using crutches and hadn’t slept in more than a week. I couldn’t walk and was housebound by week 23.
Every movement was exhausting and excruciating. I had tried all the medications approved in pregnancy, but nothing helped. Following my third hospitalization for pain, the doctors became concerned about stress on the baby and my blood pressure. With great regret, I agreed to use slow-release morphine for the last two months, which allowed me to sleep two or three hours at night and rest a bit during the day.
The meds made it just bearable, but I was tormented with guilt that my failing was putting my baby in danger. There was no perfect solution, which was more painful than the SPD.
I had to make peace with the fact that, as a parent, there is no “perfect.” There is only what we can do with what we have. If we do our best for our kids, with love and consideration, that’s all we can really expect from ourselves.
No guilt required.