I was 33 years old, and already the mother of a 11 year old son. Life was as normal as it could be. And then came the big surprise – the unexpected birth of my second child!
Pregnancy is a period during which a woman normally exercises the utmost care. The symptoms of pregnancy can be disturbing sometimes. The constant feeling of nausea can be overwhelming. And the feeling of a new life growing inside you is something that’s bound to constantly weigh upon you.
So if I were to tell you that I didn’t experience any of these – that I went about my life normally without a care in the world, and without a clue that I was carrying a child in my womb – you’re bound to be a bit skeptical, if not outright shocked!
But it’s true. 1 out of every 3700 pregnancies are unexpected. The reasons vary among women. The most common among them is obesity. Others may neglect the pregnancy symptoms by living in denial and trying to convince themselves that they are not pregnant. Well, my case is a little different from these. In fact, I was a little surprised to learn that I wasn’t the only one who’d ever had this particular experience.
I faced no symptoms of pregnancy whatsoever. I took pregnancy tests thrice but all of them were negative. Maybe I drank too much water before taking them, and that affected the results. I slept on my stomach and never felt the baby kicking. As for my menstrual cycle, I still experienced bleeding every month (bleeding on a period-like schedule is highly unusual during pregnancy). Well, this made me and my husband even more certain that there wasn’t any possibility of pregnancy. Even our family doctor was certain that I wasn’t pregnant. She never picked up on it from the routine conversations we had about my health. There were no possible symptoms that would have made me go in for an ultrasound.
Recommended Read: The Common Changes Your Body Might Go Through During Pregnancy
I know what you might be thinking right now. The new life inside a mother makes the mother’s body look visibly bigger, particularly around the belly. How could there be no visible signs of the pregnancy? Well, in my case, I gained only about 15 to 20 pounds during the pregnancy. I weighed only about 170 pounds when I gave birth. I even went swimming in a bikini every week!
Then came the day (as I later discovered, 36 weeks into my undiscovered pregnancy!) when I woke up around 4 a.m. in the morning with severe cramps. I might have been out swimming with ease just a week back, but that morning, I was barely able to walk. My husband and I went to the hospital. The medical staff prepared to give me a CT scan(of my appendix). Even they were not prepared for a baby, and thought that the pain was possibly due to some other reasons. They were expecting a tumor or a problem with my appendix. They tested to see if I was pregnant simply because it was the standard operating procedure. And that was when they discovered the truth of the matter.
That was when I discovered that I was pregnant, had been pregnant for the past nine months, and was just on the verge of giving birth!
Since, the hospital I’d gone to didn’t have staff trained to handle births, a different hospital sent staff over to deliver the baby. It was a difficult situation not only for me, but also for them. In retrospect, it’s a little amusing, how clueless we all were. But at the time, I was positively terrified. I gave birth to a daughter after this one day struggle at the hospital. Well, I suppose one day is better than nine months of conscious struggle! But not knowing you’re pregnant is a very rare, and even abnormal, experience. It’s certainly not something you should actively wish for!
If there’s one thing I hope you take away from my story, it’s to get yourself tested if you have even the slightest hint of a symptom that’s potentially indicative of pregnancy. Childbirth is a very serious matter and you should definitely be prepared for it beforehand.