By Carrie Vittitoe PHOTOS BY MELISSA DONALD
My Family/YOUR FAMILY
Struggling to get Pregnant Kathleen Lewis and Liam (21 months) Much-Wanted Baby — At age 37, Kathleen was thinking more and more about having a baby. She found out she had low ovarian reserve. She didn’t want to use a donor egg or go through IVF, but she decided to use Clomid and undergo artificial insemination using an anonymous sperm donor.
Emotional Much? — Kathleen says, “I seriously felt like the luckiest person alive, like I’d won the lottery, and I knew without a doubt the moment I found out, that I would do whatever it took to protect and care for my son.”
Pregnancy Style — A long-time runner, Kathleen ran almost every day right up until she delivered Liam. She had very mild and short-lived queasiness. She says, “I felt calm and content and beautiful and peaceful.” Unfortunately, the relationship she was in at the time of her conception ended during her pregnancy, so she also experienced sadness over that loss. The Birth — Kathleen says, “The birth was really fun. Liam was
The Early Days with a Newborn — Being a physician, Kathleen thought she would have a leg up on postpartum adjustment, but that wasn’t the case. She experienced crippling postpartum anxiety a few weeks after delivery. She nursed Liam on demand, but was unable to co-sleep with him because he was a very noisy sleeper. She says, “I thought I would die from the sleep deprivation.”
I Get By With a Little Help — Kathleen’s three sisters took turns helping her following the delivery, and she also had a postpartum doula to assist her.
Challenges of a Toddler — One of the biggest challenges is setting boundaries for Liam. Kathleen says, “I’m so blown away that he has the ability to throw a rock, that it occurred to him to throw it, that I forget that he shouldn’t be doing it.” Daily Life — On days that Kathleen is at the hospital, Liam goes to daycare. On her off days they do some kind of fun activity, like visiting the park or taking a mama/baby music class. Taking Care of Momma — When Kathleen has an offweek from her position as a hospitalist, she uses Liam’s time at daycare to run and do errands by herself. Her sisters also watch him so she can get out.
breech, and I knew I would have a c-section, but my water broke two days before it was scheduled so I got to experience part of labor.” 38 June/July 2012 www.todaysfamilymag.com 444 todaysfamilyeveryday.com 444www.facebook.com /todaysfamily 444 @todaysfamilynow
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