Dear Prenatal Vitamins,

by Kathy on October 20, 2011 · 9 comments

in Abby, Bereavement, Change, Decisions, Family, Healing, Hope, Infertility, Life, Loss, Memories, Milestones, The Future, Transitions

I’ve been taking you for over nine years now. You have been hope in a bottle for me. Every time I would swallow one I would imagine that those extra nutrients were helping to make my body more ready and able to conceive and sustain a pregnancy. During my pregnancies and the times I was nursing Sean and Abby I believed that you were helping my babies to grow and develop into healthy children.

There was only one period of time during these nine years that I stopped taking you briefly, it was right after Molly was born and died. I couldn’t bring myself to have you in my life, as you were another painful reminder of what we lost.

When I stopped nursing Abby, back in April this year, I considered not having one of you each day, I knew it wasn’t necessary anymore. But I would have started taking a regular women’s multivitamin in your place, so I figured it couldn’t hurt to use up the rest of the bottle and would save money while I was at it.  And who am I kidding, there was also a part of me that secretly dreamed that I might *need* to take you again and that it would be better if my body was ready, “just in case.”

However, Bob and I have successfully avoided conceiving again (oh, the irony!) since my post-partum period returned over a year ago. Earlier this week, when I realized this bottle was almost empty, I contemplated buying another one (there’s that “just in case” logic again). But then I realized that a regular daily vitamin is really all I need right now, especially in light of our soft decision to be done trying to expand our family.

So as I marked what is likely the end of an era in my adult life and put your empty bottle in the recycling bin this morning, I thought about all we have been through together. We spent over five years trying to conceive, experienced six pregnancies, mourned three early losses, survived four rounds of ART cycles, carried two babies full term and one to almost 30 weeks gestation and nursed two babies for a total of 33 months.

Thank you Prenatal Vitamins. If we never meet again, I am grateful that you were there for me and my children all these years (both the ones there are living here with me and those that I believe are watching over me). I wish you well on your journey to help others to try to build and nurture their families.

Sincerely,

A Proud, Bereaved and Grateful Mom

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Tina October 20, 2011 at 1:21 pm

It's overwhelming to see your experience described in that one sentence. Lovely post.

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2 Esperanza October 20, 2011 at 3:13 pm

"We spent over five years trying to conceive, experienced six pregnancies, mourned three early losses, survived four rounds of ART cycles, carried two babies full term and one to almost 30 weeks gestation and nursed two babies for a total of 33 months." Wow. I can't imagine. I really, truly cannot.

You are a strong and amazing woman and a wonderful mother.

I have been taking prenatal vitamins for almost three years now. I can't imagine ever popping my last one but it will happen some day. I think part of me is terrified for that closure and part of me yearns for the relief of knowing I never have to worry about losing another pregnancy or baby ever again. Then I can start worrying about losing everything else in my life because as you said, even with what we've lost, we still have so much more we could lose.

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3 HereWeGoAJen October 20, 2011 at 3:19 pm

I wrote a very similar post to this one really early in my blogging life. 🙂

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4 NewYearMum2.blogspot.com October 21, 2011 at 8:35 pm

Amazing to think about a daily pill like that… so so true 🙂 xoxo

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5 Mattie October 22, 2011 at 4:36 pm

I've had a love/hate with these pills for a while too. I'm glad I'm not the only one who has ever wrote a letter to these little pills 🙂

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6 Kathy October 23, 2011 at 9:04 pm

Tina – Yes, it is and thank you. xoxo

Esperanza – Thank you for your kind and thoughtful words, as well as for sharing your experience and perspective. Though the door to our family building days is not completely closed yet, we seem to be moving in that direction and it is very bittersweet after all we have been through.

Ironically, I don't worry that much about losing "everything else" in my life. I should do another post about that someday (and why I feel this way), if I haven't already (I honestly don't recall), as for some reason I do much better with making peace with what might happen after my children are born than I do while I am carrying them. The same goes for not allowing myself to think a lot about how something could happen to my husband or other loved ones.

Jen – Interesting! I would love to read it sometime. Will you post a link here (or email it or the text to me)?

New Year Mum – Thank you! 🙂

Mattie – Thank you for the validation! I appreciate knowing that I am not along in my thoughts and feelings. I would love to read your letter! 🙂

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7 Aramelle {One Wheeler's World} October 24, 2011 at 12:27 am

Kathy ~ This is such a beautifully written post. It's insane to me at times to look back at the "relationships" we develop with the items that help carry us through our journey. I posted a while back about a reunion with u/s machine now that we've conceived. In fact, I am thinking that post will be the one I highlight for this week's Time Warp. 🙂

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8 Kathy October 24, 2011 at 12:07 pm

Aramelle – Thank you! It is interesting and mind boggling to reflect on these "relationships" with "the items that help carry us through our journey," as you said so well. I look forward to reading your old post about your u/s reunion and am so glad that you plan to do the Time Warp again with us this week! 🙂

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9 loribeth November 13, 2011 at 2:43 pm

Great post, Kathy! I stayed on prenatal vitamins for years after we'd officially "given up." Making the move back to a plain ol' multivitamin seemed like a huge milestone at the time. Thanks for giving voice to one of those little moments that might seem insignificant to some people but carries a whole lot of baggage for us.

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