Monday, November 26, 2007

Baby Love Handles

Most people join Weight Watchers to lose weight and look good in a bikini - me? I joined WW and ended up having a csection and an almost 8 pound baby! So much for looking good in a swimsuit this summer . . . but I digress.

My first thought was "how did this happen?!" Yes, I know how it happens, but not how it happened to me! You see, my first four children are fertility drug babies. Yes, I took drugs, drugs to help me ovulate so I could conceive because for a very long time, I did not ovulate and therefore, did not conceive. Kind of a nuisance when you are trying to have kids, but a nifty little built in form of birth control when you aren't. Or, at least, I thought it was pretty nifty until I discovered I couldn't count on it anymore not once, but twice and this after more than a dozen years of being exceptionally reliable. One oopsie, surprise you're pregnant baby is funny - two? Well, not as funny, especially when you had dedicated yourself to losing weight. Yes, I long ago gave up any aspirations of becoming a swimsuit model - but I did think it would be nice to be able to fit into my pants and possibly even smaller pants. Things obviously did not go the way I anticipated.

I am not much of a self-motivator, so I joined WW with a couple of friends, thinking we could help motivate each other, particularly me. They were very successful in losing weight - a few pounds every week. Myself? Ha - I was lucky if I could move a pound. We attended meetings, swapped recipes, discussed points and exercise options and yet, I found myself becoming more and more discouraged as the weeks went by. My bottom line (no pun intended) was not getting any smaller and in fact, my pants seemed to be getting tighter! Ah yes, what they say is true, denial ain't just a river in Egypt baby! You see, I could come up with a plethora of reasons why this diet thing wasn't panning out - none of which involved the stork even remotely.

**My thyroid sucks

**I shrunk my pants in the laundry

**I am PMS-ing/Bloated/Retaining mass quantities of water

**I have no self-control and sleep-eat

Then, I started feeling sick. Again, I had another plethora of reasons why I felt yucky:

**The stomach bug the family acquired as a reunion souvenir

**I don't "do" summer heat and humidity

**I'm exhausted from a long string of visitors/traveling/entertaining and taking care of 5 kids all of whom recently were puking

I even went so far as to have my doctor check my thyroid. Well, let's just say, my thyroid was okay. My blood pressure was a little high - but that's not unusual if you are PREGNANT. I was asked that age old question - when was your last menstrual period? I brushed it off - c'mon, I mean, who were we kidding??

But, it did make me take pause. I had a period in May, in fact, I was quite put out by it because not only did it start on a Sunday, that particular Sunday was Mother's Day. Ha ha - yes, I often feel I am the butt of most cosmic jokes. But, no, I could not possibly be pregnant because- my -periods -are -irregular -and -sporadic -and -have -been -for -a -long -time -and -I -just -had -a -baby -last -year- and -am -still -breastfeeding -and -besides -that -I -don't -ovulate. My doctor in all seriousness tells me "you can get pregnant even if you are breastfeeding." Umm, okay, I get that - but in addition to all the other reasons why I couldn't be pregnant, did you not notice the bit about not ovulating? Yes, I did get pregnant with Adam without fertility drugs, but he was a fluke - right? A fluke - an aberrant sort of spontaneous ovulation that didn't mean I was going to spend the declining fertility years of my life popping out a kid every 22 months. Right? Right? Oh . . . My . . . Gosh . . . it couldn't possibly happen again, could it? Well, let's just say it could and that at least this time, I didn't feel the need to take a total of 14 home pregnancy tests to finally convince myself.

So, some sort of intestinal gumbo turned into morning sickness and hypothyroidism turned into gestating. Additionally, I had to quit Weight Watchers. I went to lose weight and ended up gaining several pounds of baby, a 40 pound diaper bag and bigger pants.

My husband, ever the pragmatist, pointed out how much money I had saved us in just fertility drugs alone.

So, here I am now, the mother of six children - four boys (oh my) and two girls. I still won't look any better in a swimsuit than I did last summer but my breastfeeding enhanced decolletage will make great flotation devices.

***Orginally posted April 18, 2007

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