At my son’s 3 week check with the health visitor the husband and I made a point to ask about the risks of having any more children. I still haven’t got round to detailing my birth stories yet but let’s just say they did not go to plan even slightly! But we now have 1 Daughter and 1 Son- the perfect family- Nuclear, but we have always said that we would like 3 children. So when the health visitor said that we could try for another, we let out a sigh of relief, as we were starting to worry that because of all the problems they would say that it was not a wise idea.
But since that meeting I have started to have second thoughts, not for the reasons such as money or security but more for selfish ones about myself and my body. You see, both children have been a lot bigger than average for both my height and weight and have taken a toll on my body. I am no longer the ultra slim figure I used to be, and yes I know, not many mothers ever really get back to their pre-baby size/weight, and I never expected too, but I never expected to get the medical problems I have been left with either.
The problems have really stemmed from the last birth, not to say there weren’t any from the first, but these are far more worrying to me. I think my husband has noticed a difference since having our boy, I won’t let him touch me, I’m very much aware of how disfigured my body has become, the angry caesarean scar, the bedsore scar, the stretch marks and the lump! I have lost all confidence in my appearance.
My son was 10lb 10oz and was born by emergency caesarean due to his big noggin’ getting stuck. Due to his size, my stomach took some serious beating and I have since had to go for scans to find out why I have a large lump. It turns out that I have what is known as Diastisis Recti which is abdominal separation, now this is not that bad, it can be rectified, but at the moment I am putting weight on quite quickly as I am not allowed to do any exercises, even with breastfeeding. To be honest I’m too scared to do anything just in case it makes the lump worse and ends up becoming a hernia due to me doing something wrong. Plus, I also have some scar issues at the moment too, from the caesarean, and they are causing some discomfort too. In my case the gap is so severe between my six-pack muscles it is well over 6cm and the tissue fibres behind have been torn which is resulting in a (small-is what the consultant called it! I beg to differ) hernia (the lump). Subsequently I now have to go to physio and massage sessions to see if the muscles can be drawn as close as possible for them to knit back together and hopefully rectify the hernia. My first session is next week.
So my fears about having more children are 1) that the next baby is going to be even bigger again, even if it’s to be born at 38 weeks (as I can only have an elected caesarean next time) and 2) If this is the case will it result in the muscles tearing again and potentially damaging them so much that it results in full-blown hernia? then will I have to have an operation to fix it or will they just put me on a waiting list as I am not high priority? and have to live with it indefinitely.
and 3) can I even cope with having 3 children???
So many questions, fears and concerns I’m not sure what to say to my husband, as he clearly would like another. Maybe I’ll wait to see how the sessions go, maybe if I can build up the stomach muscles again and pull the six-pack back together I would feel more confident about having another baby