You’ve struggled. It’s been months, or maybe years. You’ve watched friends and family blossom and glow and give birth. You’ve snuggled babies that weren’t yours. You’ve listened to friends complain about difficult labours, sleepless nights and the terrible twos.
You wished every single day that it was you. And now it is. Your time has arrived and you are pregnant. Maybe it happened as a surprise, maybe you went to a fertility clinic, maybe your OBGYN prescribed medication and that is what worked in the end. Regardless of how it happened, you are now on your road to parenthood.
So why aren’t you overjoyed?
Pregnancy after infertility can be a terrifying place to find yourself. In some ways, after years of being in the same place, being suddenly thrust into change can be frightening because you no longer know what to expect. Every twinge and cramp makes your heart drop. If you aren’t nauseous, you worry it is because there is something wrong. If you are extremely nauseous, you are terrified you are harming your baby.
There is no such thing as “relaxing” into your pregnancy (anymore than relaxing is what helped you get pregnancy in the first place!). In some cases, your care provider will monitor you more closely because your pregnancy is considered high risk. This can be reassuring, or it can keep you on edge. You may need more support than your doctor or midwife can provide.
That’s where a doula comes in.
Doula support for a pregnancy after infertility is invaluable. You can email your doula with your concerns and fears. She will be able to provide you with a listening ear, and more importantly, resources that help reassure you throughout your pregnancy. She can help you formulate questions to ask your doctor so that your inquiries are answered clearly. You might want extra prenatal meetings to discuss concerns. You may need more support as your birthing time approaches. Your doula is there for you, to help you work through those fears.
And when you give birth to your baby, she will be there with you and your family. To celebrate.