• Finding Magic in Motherhood, Part 8: The Fears, the Symptoms, the Uncertainties

    Finding Magic in Motherhood, Part 8: The Fears, the Symptoms, the Uncertainties

    As overjoyed as I was to learn I had conceived so soon after miscarrying and to see such an amazingly dark line, it was quickly tempered by fear, worry, and doubt. This time around was vastly different from the first. Instead of dizziness, I had annoying headaches. Instead of being quite sleepy, I felt wide awake. The line on the pregnancy test was dark and stark instead of pale and almost invisible. I couldn’t help but worry that something was going to go wrong. My friends knew I had lost my first pregnancy and they stepped carefully around me when the topics of kids and pregnancy came up. They knew…

  • Finding Magic in Motherhood, Part 7: I Should Have Known Something Was Going On

    Finding Magic in Motherhood, Part 7: I Should Have Known Something Was Going On

    Despite my husband’s reassurances, I was prepared for the long wait for another positive pregnancy test. The doctor had said to wait 3 months, but we had decided to not follow his advice. Still, there was no guarantee I would ovulate any time soon, no guarantee I would get pregnant again right away, no guarantee that my body was actually ready, or even capable of, carrying a child. After the miscarriage, I had to go in for blood work to make sure my hCG level was going down. Fortunately, it did, and I stopped getting positive pregnancy tests. I was nervous, but it was time to try again. The end…

  • Finding Magic in Motherhood, Part 6: The Story of a Lamp

    Finding Magic in Motherhood, Part 6: The Story of a Lamp

    When I first envisioned my road to motherhood, it was full of sparkles and glows. I thought of my body changing, had even said goodbye to my pre-baby body in preparation for the coming changes. I expected morning sickness, aches, exhaustion, and a growing belly that I couldn’t wait to show off. I didn’t expect the dark days, the days painted black with night even while bright sunlight cornered me. I didn’t expect to have the magic of my motherhood journey sucked out of my life. The week after our miscarriage was easily the hardest 7 days of my life. Women I knew, who already had a child, were both…

  • Finding Magic in Motherhood, Part 5: The Miscarriage

    Finding Magic in Motherhood Part 5: The Miscarriage

    In all the plans my husband and I formulated, we never even considered miscarriage. We knew it existed, but didn’t know much beyond that. There wasn’t a history of miscarriage in my family that we knew of. My mom had never miscarried. There was no reason for me to think it would happen to me. I didn’t know it just happens, and there’s no telling who will miscarry and when. The Early Excitement Our plan worked flawlessly. We used ovulation tests, waited the two weeks, and then tested on a chosen day. We got a faint pink line, but a line was a line. No matter how faint, it meant…

  • Finding Magic in Motherhood, part 4: The Timing Had to be Perfect

    Finding Magic in Motherhood, Part 4: The Timing Had to be Perfect

    The decision had been made. I would become a mother, but I would only become a mother on my terms. I was an unplanned child and, while it created quite a change in my parents’ lives, they were willing to make changes and sacrifices I was not prepared to. So, my husband and I plotted out our lives and made plans for when the best time to have both of our children would be. Perhaps it might seem a little naive. After all, babies come when babies come and birth control pills are not 100% effective. Still, I’m a planner. I can’t help but be anything else. I knew it…

  • Finding Magic in Motherhood, Part 3: The “Do You Want Kids” Question Froze My Brain

    Women typically fall in one of three camps when it comes to having kids: yes, absolutely not, and on the fence. And some can’t decide, so they make their way from camp to camp. Then, I’m hoping, there are those like me: no on the outside, yes in the heart, and on the fence in the brain because that yes-no battle can get intense. Hence why the question of whether I want to have kids froze my brain. “No” Was a Front I Internalized I grew up with a traditional Chinese grandmother whose Americanized Chinese husband passed away when I was 12. She always tried to teach her grandchildren the…

  • I Don’t Know Whether to Celebrate or Grieve Whenever I Get My Period

    As a teenager, menstrual cycles were annoying, gross, and pointless. I had no intention of having kids and just wanted to rip my uterus out. After I met The Husband, they were a cause to celebrate because it meant I was not going to be a mom yet. After having an early miscarriage and subsequent successful pregnancies, I am now conflicted about them. Over the past 5 years, I’ve had only about a handful of periods thanks to pregnancy and enthusiastic breastfeeding on my children’s parts. Having one after so long was kind of surprising and I couldn’t quite remember what to do. But the most surprising part was how I felt.…