At my age—almost 30—I am surrounded by friends who are having babies. Many of my closest friends are on their second or third child. And it seems that every day, there’s yet another pregnancy announcement on my Facebook newsfeed. It’s exciting and wonderful to see all the new families being made and all the wonderful cute and cuddly babies being born among our friends. Baby snuggles are really medicine for my soul, so the more babies, the better, as far as I’m concerned.

 

babyCaptureBut, as happy as I am for my friends and family, there is always a tiny bit of sadness when I see these announcements. You see, for the better part of two years, my husband and I have been trying to have another baby of our own. It hasn’t been two years of trying to get pregnant nonstop, but for two years, we’ve been open to the idea of having another baby join our family, and hopeful that it would happen sooner or later.

 

At first, we were actively trying to get pregnant. But, two miscarriages later, my lab work showed that my Hashimoto’s (an autoimmune thyroid disorder) disease was no longer controlled, so a viable pregnancy was virtually impossible. So, we stopped trying for a while to get control of my thyroid levels. And then my daily headaches started getting worse, and then something else happened, and so now, here we are, two years later without the baby I so desperately want.

 

It seems that as soon as I clear one hurdle to getting pregnant, another one pops up.

 

When you have arthritis, or any autoimmune disease, getting pregnant is a bit more complicated than for the average person. It takes careful planning, medication changes, many more blood tests, and pretty much no spontaneity is allowed. So every time another friend announces their pregnancy, I get a little sad. Every time someone asks us “so when are you going to have another baby?” I feel betrayed by my body. And any time I look at all the baby gear I cultivated for our first child, I feel regret that there isn’t another baby to use it again.

 

And I know that I can count myself one of the lucky ones, because I have one little girl who is the best kid a momma could ask for. And although my pregnancy was a bit more complicated than the average pregnancy, I still have a healthy happy kid to show for my labors. And any time she comes to snuggle against me and calls me “momma,” I get to hug and hold her back. For now, I guess I will have to trust that fate and God know what’s best, and be grateful that I’m still young, so it can still happen. And I get to be grateful for and enjoy the one kiddo I do have, because she’s absolutely amazing. And in the meantime, I will take any baby snuggles I can get from friends and family.

Has your RA caused you to more carefully plan and prepare for a pregnancy?