Because most philosophies that frown on reproduction don't survive.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Suffering in silence

I find that morning sickness, like temptation, is best dealt with by firmly supressing the idea of it the moment it surfaces. Only by resolutely refusing to give in do I emerge victorious. If I start to waver ("Well, if I get sick now, at least it will be over with..."), it's all over, and I end up feeling disgusted. I can't always keep it under control, especially when I'm at home, but I can put myself a bit out of temptation's way by refusing to step into the bathroom until the urge has passed. The very proximity of a basin seems too powerful for a weakened system to resist. However, giving in doesn't make me feel better -- in fact, I always find myself wondering why anyone in her right mind would get herself into this situation. (I have these same thoughts during labor too, but that can't be stopped by refusing to think about it.)

The most successful strategy for avoiding unpleasantness is to stop talking immediately. This got us through a grocery shopping last week without incident, although it created the mildly odd effect of me having to communicate with Darwin by pointing and mumbling, "Hm." Better by far to look a bit silly than to succumb to the baser urges of nature, what? St. Francis threw himself into a thorn bush to avoid temptation; all I have to do to is stand still and be silent.

As Lent is a penitential season, perhaps I should just offer it up, but it does seem a bit uncalled for to have to give up foods twice.


Sardonicus said...

Do you keep a bunch of soda crackers by your bed? They help with the nausea. Avoiding eating makes it worse, I hear...

If this is old hat, feel free to ignore. :-)

mrsdarwin said...

Frankly, sometimes it seems like no matter what I do it's all bound to come up. I do find that an empty stomach is more likely to cause nausea. However, it's nastier to throw up food than to have the dry heaves. There's no win-win here. :)

Rick Lugari said...

St. Francis threw himself into a thorn bush to avoid temptation; all I have to do to is stand still and be silent.

Poor thing, that's got to be rough. As with most women, I'm sure throwing yourself into thorn bush would be pleasant compared to remaining silent. :D

Kiwi Nomad said...

"As Lent is a penitential season, perhaps I should just offer it up, but it does seem a bit uncalled for to have to give up foods twice."

Maybe you can hear me laughing at this one from over the oceans? It may not be at all pleasant, but this is a 'quotable quote'!

Anonymous said...

Actually, I thought it was St Benedict who did the thorn bush thing. If it is any consolation, I've heard that morning sickness is a sign of a healthy baby. Old wives tale??

John14:15 said...

Mrs Darwin,
Chances are none of this is news to you, but maybe some is:

1. Keep your blood sugar levels even by eating small, frequent meals high in protein and complex carbohydrates.
2. Eat before you are hungry.
3. Eat a substantial bedtime snack, including protein.
4. Try eating before getting out of bed in the morning, then take it slowly.
5. Be sure to get enough fluids.
6. Try small amounts of ginger added to food.
7. Be sure to take your prenatal vitamin, but try switching brands or times.
8. Ask your health provider about trying extra vitamin B-6.
9. Avoid trigger foods and substitute alternatives as needed; get enough protein.
10. Rinse or brush after throwing up, (which is not disgusting, btw, but a critically important protective function of the body.
11. Try Sea Bands, available in any pharmacy.

Probably someday research will discover that the mechanics of vomiting better stimulated fetal development somehow, and the more the merrier ;)

mrsdarwin said...

Thanks for the advice, guys. I'm working on eating even though I feel queasy -- something which works in pregnancy though it's completely counterproductive all the rest of the time. And I've been trying to keep healthy snacks around to make it easier to grab something immediately when I start to feel bad. Mostly, though, I think that after four fairly similar first trimesters, I'm just hardwired to get sick. Blech.

CMinor said...

After my first couple, I found that temporary vegetarianixm actually helped me. My midwives used to recommend their "9-month cocktail" recipe, which is very good for the protein & other goodies and tends to go down fairly easy:
1 C yogurt
1 ripe banana
1 T blackstrap molasses
+ 1 measure Protesoy supplement powder. Dunno if they make this anymore; I haven't seen it in a while. There are probably some similar products out there (I saw some that came in flavors (!) a couple of years ago; perhaps your health care provider could advise. You want the nutritional supplement, mind, not the bodybuilding stuff!

CMinor said...

Oh, yeah--then you put all that in the blender and mix it up. I used to sneak in a little chocolate too. I'm convinced it's essential to fetal development!

mrsdarwin said...


Sounds interesting. I wonder, can you substitute honey for the molasses? I find the smell of raw molasses kind of nauseating even when I'm not pregnant.

I often make banana shakes with frozen bananas, milk and cocoa powder.

Melanie Bettinelli said...

My deepest sympathy.

I'll echo the eating lots of protein. I found that it's not just getting food into my stomach that makes the difference but the right kind of food. If I ate just carbs, or even carbs with some protein but not enough, I'd be sure they wouldn't stay down long.

And I understand completely about not talking. I would get so sick sometimes trying to read Isabella a book. There were some books I couldn't read without getting sick. I don't know why those books and not others.

I hope and pray it passes quickly.

CMinor said...

The blackstrap is recommended because it's chock full of iron and B vitamins (which if I recall lowers morning sickness.) It is, unfortunately, stronger and less sweet than light molasses (which has little nutritional value.) I'm finding it harder to find, though--maybe some health food stores still carry it but it's pretty much nonexistent in supermarkets.

I just checked Nourishing Your Unborn Child re honey:
"Honey contains traces of nutrients, especially B vitamins."
Maybe not quite as high-powered as blackstrap, but not a caloric waste either.

My humble laywoman's opinion would be, heck, if it stays down, it's good! As always, run it past your doc to be sure.