Holy cow.. unexpectedly pregnant. - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 04-19-2008, 08:27 PM
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I haven't visited these forums in quite a while, but I'm in an.. interesting situation and just I need to get everything out of my head right now in front of an impartial audience. Plus as I recall there are quite a few veg/vegan moms here and I may be needing a lot of guidance in the near future.



So... I found out Thursday that I'm pregnant. (God, it feels so surreal to say that!) Thursday was 18 days post ovulation.. that was enough of a tipoff as I keep track of my cycle and knew something was off for a few days prior, but I took 2 home pregnancy tests anyway, both positive. I've been bloated/gassy, my breasts are really sore, and as of last night I've been dealing with off-and-on mild nausea.. my heart rate's up too, it's not the stress because I'm feeling strangely calm about this whole thing.. it's actually kind of cool to be able to feel my body changing this quickly. According to my calculations, I'm exactly three weeks pregnant. Give or take a few hours.



I'm 21, almost 22, a month away from graduating from college and about to enter a PhD program at an Ivy League school. My boyfriend is a few years older and already mid-PhD program at a different school. I told him in person Thursday night after I found out for sure; he said he'd support whatever decision I made, but we're going to discuss it more later this week, after my undergrad thesis paper is finished and turned in since there's really nothing I can do before then anyway.



I'm so completely and utterly lost right now.. I'm very strongly pro-choice, but I've never been sure that I'd be able to go through with an abortion myself and now that it's actually come up I'm even more clueless.



Both my boyfriend and I are completely funded at our grad programs (tuition, health insurance, and stipends of $28k and $26k, respectively), so while we wouldn't be living the high life with a baby, we'd probably manage financially.



While realistically, an infant is really not conducive to intensive graduate studies, there are things that are making me hesitant to go ahead and end the pregnancy. The whole vegan thing, firstly.. I don't particularly like the idea of killing anything. And I had to have conceived at a time when I was sick, stressed out, not sleeping much, etc.. basically, I'm impressed that this little clump of cells managed to make it this far with the way I've been beating my body up trying to fulfill my graduation requirements while working two part-time jobs. I don't know.. it's probably the hormones or end-of-semester brain failure, but I can't help feeling like maybe it's supposed to happen even though it's not completely ideal. How many times are people ever truly ready for a baby anyway?



For the moment, I've started taking a multivitamin and am trying to get tons of rest and eat really well (although the other half of this PB and banana sandwich looks like it's about to defeat me right now...). Can't hurt anything either way. This week I'll make a doctor's appointment to.. i don't know, have them confirm that I'm pregnant and tell me what to do next. Telling my parents is going to be another fiasco entirely, no idea how that's going to go over.



Sigh.. back to the thesis for me, thanks if you read my stream of conciousness. I'd really appreciate any advice, stories, comfort, congratulations.. anything you can throw my way while I try to sort through all this.
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#2 Old 04-19-2008, 08:36 PM
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That was one of the most well-balanced posts I've ever read by someone who just found out she was pregnant.



You know your options, you're not stopping your life while you're making your decision, you're taking care of your body.



I think you'll be able to handle this situation. What you do, of course, is entirely up to you. I wish you luck.
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#3 Old 04-19-2008, 08:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mskedi View Post

That was one of the most well-balanced posts I've ever read by someone who just found out she was pregnant.



You know your options, you're not stopping your life while you're making your decision, you're taking care of your body.



I think you'll be able to handle this situation. What you do, of course, is entirely up to you. I wish you luck.



I agree with this. Good luck to you!
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#4 Old 04-19-2008, 11:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mskedi View Post

That was one of the most well-balanced posts I've ever read by someone who just found out she was pregnant.



No kidding.



My panic-striken ramblings would have made no sense at all.



Good for you, for being able to keep a clear head about things!!!

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For without it, we would be lost.
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#5 Old 04-19-2008, 11:38 PM
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Well you and he are really the only ones that can make the decision, but since you have such a clear head and it is quite early on in the pregnancy, I would be willing to bet you will be able to make a clear and level headed decision. You should discuss what would likely happen in the future if you had the baby, and see if that works for you. If its not what you want then its obviously not the right thing, but if you look forward and feel that it's right, then you'll be confident going forward.



good luck and congratulations
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#6 Old 04-20-2008, 01:03 AM
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You've clearly got the mental and emotional abilities to consider all your options and the ramifications for you and your boyfriend.



I'll go out on a limb, based on years of phone counselling, and say that what I read into your post is a desire to make and validate a decision to keep the baby. You have changed your behavior and diet. You have told the father, who seems supportive of either outcome. You have started to go down the track of envisioning how you could make a baby work in your lives. You haven't said the kind of things that many pregnant women who want to be reassured that they're not doing a bad thing by having an abortion tend to say ("I can't have a baby right now" and so on). The words you do say and the way you've said them give me the impression that this post is part of a process you're going through to come to terms with the idea that you're going to have a baby (different than being pregnant). Obviously I could be totally off, and please don't take offense if I am, but this was my clear feeling while reading your post.



And in case you think I'm just being subversive, I'm totally a pro-choice person. I think it's far worse to bring an unwanted baby into the world than to have an abortion.



You're doing what you need to do now, which is finishing your thesis, taking care of yourself, and making the dr's appointment. You have a few weeks up your sleeve before you need to make a decision. All the best to you and your bf now and in the future. Keep us posted, ok?
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#7 Old 04-20-2008, 01:38 AM
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I agree with the above post...very well said, although I am a bit biased as I just found out I am going to be a grandma...but you sound like someone who is very mature/smart and I wish you the very best in whatever you decide.
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#8 Old 04-20-2008, 02:21 AM
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Just wanted to send in some GOOD VIBES and I hope whatever decision you two come to is the best thing for you.



Good luck.
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#9 Old 04-20-2008, 06:06 AM
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Must say, those are AMAZING stipends for grad students. I'm getting less than half that (and the school thinks it's really generous). I think you could live with a baby on $50k/yr. Plenty of people do it for less. The biggest challenge would likely be child care and finding time for everything. I'm in a PhD program and sometimes it's rally overwhelming, work wise. Is there any way you could defer a year?



I'm sure whatever decision you and your bf come to will be the right one.

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#10 Old 04-20-2008, 08:35 AM
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Contrary to popular belief, it's really not that hard to have a baby while in college. I had my daughter while my husband and I were both in college. It's a little tricky to work out schedules so someone can be home with the baby but I think it was easier than it would've been if I had another baby now that my husband and I both have pretty time consuming careers.



Also, if you decide that you're not ready to be a mom, there are lots of families looking to adopt. A friend of mine was trying to adopt for years and finally gave up.
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#11 Old 04-20-2008, 03:01 PM
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Thanks everyone... I'm trying to be good and get my schoolwork done, but it's kinda hard to focus with this going on too.



ksfc, you've definitely nailed it. The more it's setting in, the more I find myself trying to rationalize having and raising this baby. I'm still not ready to make a definite choice yet. But I'm also not feeling trapped or scared by the idea of parenthood.



I'll keep everyone posted.. thanks for the support, it's much appreciated
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#12 Old 04-20-2008, 07:06 PM
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i think that if you want to keep this baby, you'll find a way. i know a lot of people who have children while in graduate school--many who do this on purpose--and they always do quite well.



so, for my own part, i wouldn't let school be the tipping factor. also, with your combined income ($54k), depending upon where you live, that can be quite a good income. my husband and i lived on that for many years, until he got this 'surprise' advancement that took him up quite a bit. we'd gotten pregnant before that happened, and felt that we could do fine financially--taking care of ourselves and a baby.



good luck with everything and congrats on your graduation and future schooling!
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#13 Old 04-20-2008, 07:19 PM
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Whew, I was worried I'd come across as a pro-life campaigner.



In your first post you mentioned that probably there's no such thing as truly being ready for a baby. I know for myself, despite the fact that we'd tried for two years to get pregnant, when I found out I was actually pregnant, I had a feeling of "what? we're not ready for this! omigod, what are we going to do now!!??" Your feelings may be more intense because it was one of the last things on your mind, but planned pregnancies also require serious mental shifts.



There's also rarely an ideal time to have a baby. True, they're not conducive to graduate study. Neither are they conducive to establishing a career. Nor moving ahead in a career. As Kristy said, it may actually be less difficult while both of you are in school and have more flexibility with your schedules than most jobs would allow. My point is that unless it is truly impossible to have and support a baby now, this timing-during-school issue should perhaps come behind other considerations like your emotional readiness, the father's involvement and commitment with you and the baby, your relationship with the father, your financial and other support systems (involving the father and otherwise), and your own visualizations of your life after either choice.



You're doing all the right things to keep both choices possible for now and you do have time to make the decision either way. At the end of the day, it's your decision (and possibly to some extent your boyfriend's) and nobody else is in a legitimate position to tell you what is right for you.



Back to work!
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#14 Old 04-21-2008, 07:48 AM
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We had a HUGE discussion last night/this morning... We didn't feel like putting it off because he was basically feeling the same way as me.



We're keeping it and getting married.



It's amazing how life can change so quickly... two weeks ago I didn't think I'd ever want to have kids. Now I'm facing giving up my selfish spending habits, drinking at the bars with friends, being able to fit into my jeans... and I'm so okay with all of it. We're a little scared but it's really exciting at the same time. We're both pretty sure our families will be supportive, but then again I haven't told my mom yet (I'm calling her tonight). Oh man.. I'm an adult. When did this happen??



My next concern... I need to find a doctor somewhere in or between Providence and Worcester. I want to get an appointment ASAP to confirm that everything's okay and give this baby the best possible start. I'm about to start crying again.. I never imagined I'd be this happy about a baby...
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#15 Old 04-21-2008, 07:50 AM
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Oh, wow! Congrats!!! That's awesome!
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#16 Old 04-21-2008, 07:54 AM
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Congratulations!
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#17 Old 04-21-2008, 08:40 AM
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congratulations!
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#18 Old 04-21-2008, 11:23 AM
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congrats!



i'm 5.5 months along and i still fit into my jeans and all of my pants. only my belly in front is getting bigger. everything else is the same or smaller (believe it or not, my butt/hips are smaller! LOL). well, my breasts are bigger also.



i bought a "b-buckle" which you put onto your jeans so that they "stretch" with you as your belly grows. i'm still not using it, and one of my clients who is due any day now told me she didn't use hers until she was 6.5 months.



so, no worries. you'll be able to fit into your jeans, most likely.
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#19 Old 04-21-2008, 02:08 PM
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Congratulations or felicitations or whatever! That's so fantastic. You have a wonderful next stage of life ahead of you.







Oh, and if you thought you got comments about being veg*an before, just wait until people know you're PREGNANT and veg*n. Criticism and nosy-parkering ramp up to an unbelievable level. Hold fast, you can grow and nourish a healthy baby on a vegan diet.



Take care and enjoy the pregnancy.
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#20 Old 04-21-2008, 07:02 PM
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Wow!!!!! I am so happy for you!!!!
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#21 Old 04-21-2008, 07:21 PM
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congrats on everything
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#22 Old 04-21-2008, 09:26 PM
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congratulations!!



i wish you all the best!!
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#23 Old 04-22-2008, 05:25 AM
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Many congratulations!
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#24 Old 04-22-2008, 05:40 AM
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Thanks everyone



Talked to my now-fiance last night. His whole family is excited to meet me and really happy for us. He's really excited now too.. we were pretty scared when I first found out, neither of us would have been upset about never having kids but now that it's actually happening we're thrilled.



Haha.. I spent yesterday crying with my roommates and then crying on the phone with my mom. This is going to be the hardest thing I've ever done and I'm so happy it's ridiculous
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#25 Old 04-22-2008, 08:29 AM
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Yay! I'm so excited for you!!!



It's actually pretty amazing when you're in college how much time you have to raise a kid when you're not doing the crazy college party animal thing.



I can't tell you how many nights I spent cuddling my kids to sleep while studying.
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#26 Old 04-22-2008, 08:44 AM
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Congratulations!!!! It seems like this is going to be a wonderful thing for you Sometimes life changes in the blink of an eye. Again, congrats!
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#27 Old 04-22-2008, 09:02 AM
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Oh, find a doc and get your prenatal care started as soon as you can. It might be a little tricky finding one who'll support your veg*an-ness but get some good veg*an pregnancy nutrition books go in armed with information. Don't throw their nutritional advice out the window, just make it veg.
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#28 Old 04-22-2008, 09:10 AM
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midwifery care is another option!



personally, i'm doing an unassisted birth and pregnancy (no doctors, no prenatal care in the medical sense, and no midwife), but that's because i feel comfortable with it.



women have lots of options; the doctor isn't the only one! choose your own birth process!



and you might like mothering.com's web site and message boards as well.
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#29 Old 04-22-2008, 09:44 AM
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Thanks for the links zoebird, I remember reading a lot about unassisted birth from you on this board a few years ago and it really got me interested in alternative birth options if the time came. I'm planning to go the midwifery care route, the Women and Infants' Hospital in Providence has several CNMs as well as an alternative birthing center that I'm looking into.. I'll be calling them this afternoon to make my first prenatal appointment I admire you for doing the whole thing on your own, that's amazing!
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#30 Old 04-22-2008, 09:59 AM
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that's very cool. i'm glad that you have some good midwives and birth centers near you. our closest is about 45 minutes away on a 'good' driving day! LOL



i'm really enjoying my pregnancy a lot. it's a great deal of fun.



today, the baby and ryan and i played a 'game.' the baby would push out, and then we would poke in, and the baby would push where we poked. we moved all around the belly and did it. it was so engrossing that we left late for work! LOL



it's really a lot of fun.
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