Because every woman’s pregnancy is unique, our Being Pregnant series is a way to share a variety of maternity experiences on the blog.
Today we’re featuring Catherine Gacad of Dear Vixen, a blog born out of an advice column Catherine wrote for the University of Chicago’s newspaper while earning her MBA. Besides blogging about her life in San Francisco and her love of traveling, Catherine voices her opinions on finance, retirement, current events, and faith.
Catherine contacted me about participating in this series because she wanted to share her perspective on being pregnant after dealing with two miscarriages. Read on to learn about how she’s coping with this third pregnancy.
Q. Did you always know you wanted to be a mother? How many children did you imagine you’d have?
For the longest time I thought I’d never have children. Babies didn’t really cross my mind because my whole life was devoted to academics and career. I love kids, but they were never part of my future plan. I didn’t meet my husband until late in life, and it was only then that I came around to the idea.
May 21, 2014
Q. Do you know if you’re having a boy or girl? Do you have a gender preference?
We want to be surprised—which seems to be rare these days. My husband would be happy with either gender, but I prefer a boy because I want a kid to get dirty with. I’d rather run around outside, hike, and collect insects versus coloring, braiding dolls’ hair, or setting up a tea party. If I have a girl, I’m going to raise her as a tomboy.
Q. Do you have a name picked out? What do you consider when picking a name?
We have names picked out for each gender. I have a rare last name, and I believe I’ve benefited greatly from having a unique name, just in terms of people being able to find me and having built up brand/name recognition. So having a unique name was important for me in naming my child. Unique, but not unheard of!
This is my third consecutive pregnancy, but it will be my first child. I suffered two back-to-back miscarriages: one at about 8 weeks and another around 4-5 weeks. I was absolutely heartbroken. I wear two pinky rings every day next to my wedding band as a reminder, not that I can ever forget.
After my second miscarriage, I subsequently found myself pregnant for this third time and have been paralyzed with fear. It’s been very hard emotionally. My husband and I have severe anxiety each time we visit the doctor, and are so relieved with every confirmation that the baby is healthy.
Q. What’s the best thing about being pregnant?
That I created life with the love of my life, that this baby is half me and half my husband. I can’t wait for its arrival.
Q. What’s the worst thing about being pregnant?
Probably the fact that my body is one big itch: acne has pervaded by back, a rash rings the stomach area where I’m expanding, and my scalp is dry.
I’m a junk food addict even when I’m not pregnant, and lately I’ve been craving Ruffles potato chips and dip. I can’t get enough.
Q. How do you dress the bump?
I have a closet full of dresses, but very few fit because of the bump, and I’m not keen on buying expensive clothing to maintain my fashion style for a few months. I’m usually wearing simple basics that are larger than my normal size: black leggings from H&M and t-shirts from the J.Crew Factory Outlet. Very comfortable.
Q. What are the essentials that have gotten you through the pregnancy so far?
A lot of sleep! Although I never had any morning sickness, I’m still very tired. It’s hard enough getting myself to work every day, by the time I come home I’m ready for bed.
My only fear is around the pregnancy. I don’t think I’d be able to handle a third loss, especially now that I’m 20 weeks along [at the time of this interview]. As for being a mother, I have zero concerns or doubts because I was mothered by a great mother. That’s the best training and preparation one could ever have.
If you’d like to share your pregnancy experience on the blog, please send me an email with “Being Pregnant” as the subject.