Written 5/29/2016, the day before my first prenatal exam with baby number two:
I am afraid to go to the doctor for my first prenatal check up tomorrow. Not because I fear anything is wrong with the little embryo growing inside of me (It has made me sick enough to be relatively certain that it is stealing all of my energy and doing just fine), but because I am technically obese.
With a BMI of 30, I don’t feel obese. I feel fat. I feel heavy. But obese? It seems like such an obscene word. There is so much negativity loaded onto it. I am obese. I must be lazy and not care about my health and an unfit mother and … whatever else society thinks.
I keep remembering getting my epidural during my first labor. Laying there, in so much pain, without my husband by my side, getting something I hadn’t wanted and hearing the anesthesiologist complain about how fat I was. It was humiliating, and not what I needed before I went in to do one of the most physically difficult things I have ever done.
I am afraid of that, except of all through my pregnancy. I am afraid of the judgement from my doctor. That she will basically say, “How dare you let yourself get pregnant when you are that heavy? You must not care about that baby.”
We’ve already determined that if the guilt and shame starts we will find a different doctor. But what are our chances of finding one who does not shame me for being obese? The shame is not helpful. I definitely want information about obesity and pregnancy. I am all for extra monitoring and a doctor who knows which extra vitamins I might need as an obese pregnant woman. Sure. But just don’t shame me, thinking that will make me starve myself or exercise more during pregnancy (or ever). You know what the shaming does? It makes me depressed- so I exercise less and eat more. Not so helpful in my situation.
Here’s hoping it goes okay.