Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Out of Control (With Food)

I like food. I like eating. I hate eating as a chore. Yes, fine, I'm gestating, whatever. I don't like it.

I am nauseous, sedated, in pain, or asleep all day. Some days I can barely eat. I have no control over what I can and cannot bear to eat. I think I had a hypoglycemic episode today: I fell asleep while Bug whacked me with a hardback Where The Wild Things Are.

To add to the joy: I am terrified, terrified of gaining too much weight. Last time I gained 35 pounds, which would be fine, except for the strange, very rare, and distressing complication* at 39-and-1. In and of itself, headache and diplopia are manageable... but not potential blindness.

How rare is it? My midwives work in a group of eight, have all practiced for at least ten years, and deliver 700 babies a year and they have never even heard of it.

The only known correlations are obesity, possibly PCOS, and thrombophilias. I almost certainly don't have the latter two, nor was I obese before pregnancy. That leaves... maybe I caused this by eating too much. And the worst part is, nobody has any evidence otherwise. Of course, neither do I have any evidence that it's so...

So far (16 weeks) I have gained 5 pounds. And I am terrified, because I feel I have no control over this, or anything else. I am so nauseous and miserable, and yet I must eat. I can't exercise, because I can barely walk down the street. I can't prevent this strange thing from happening again.

The illusion is, perhaps, that one ever can prevent strange things.

ETA: Thanks, nobody but me (and my mother) thinks the weight gain caused it, so it's mostly me beating myself up... and yeah, idiopathic: nobody has the faintest clue what caused it...

(P.S. The next person to ask, "Have you tried... ginger, acupuncture, homeopathy, eating more, eating less, eating protein...." will be kicked somewhere painful. Yes. It did fuck-all.)


  1. have you tried kicking people? maybe that's the secret.

    i do not know why "they" -- doctors, media, irritating, holier than thou public health folks -- behave as if pregnancy weight gain is somehow in the control of pregnant women. i have never felt less in control. quite aside from hunger unlike anything i have ever known, my weight didn't even seem to have much to do with what i ate or didn't. i LOST weight over CHRISTMAS, for heaven's sake, while marooned in the midwest, unable to even do my usual walking around. a thousand humbugs to the scolds.

    i hope the rare thing doesn't happen again. meanwhile, 35 pounds doesn't seem like that much to me (probably bc that's what i gained), so maybe it isn't so much you ate too much as sometimes life sucks? humbug to that, too.

  2. Totally agree w/ above. Pregnancy weight gain is not really up to the gestating woman. As you know, there is almost a subconscious push, cravings and other matters that cannot be argued with, that leads pregnant women to eat certain things and certain amounts.

    Your previous weight gain of 35 lb seems so normal! Most people I know gained around 30-35. For me, I got preeclampsia, so around 6 months I started gaining like 4 lbs of water per month. Oy vey. So while technically I gained 40+ pounds during pregnancy, only 15 of those extra pounds remained on me the day after childbirth. It's possible that the cause of your previous complication specific to your case has not yet been identified.

  3. I don't think 35 is so much in the grand scheme of things, no, and I surely lost it all in prompt order due to my boob-nomming, piranha-like baby elephant (20 pounds at 4 months!) And seriously, the weird desires for... now pears! With chocolate sauce!

    The midwives are all very nice about it, and really, I probably know more than them: it's SO rare.

    It was weird for sure.

  4. Ugh. Not feeling in control, and not knowing what caused the issue sucks. I have another of these (at least it doesn't cause blindness!)
    Hoping that, whatever caused it, refrains from doing so again.


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