Melissa is from New Brunswick, Canada. She is 33 years old and wears a size 24/26. As the owner of Ample Mama Maternity she's able to devote more time to her three children, a seven year old son, a five year old daughter and a one year old daughter.
How much did you weigh when you found out you were pregnant?
I was a bit heavier each time I got pregnant, but within 10 lbs. I put on 16 lbs with my first pregnancy, 11lbs with my second and 9lbs with my third. My doctor told me that he was not concerned about my gaining weight as long as I was eating healthy foods. I actually lost weight with my third child up to the last month and a half. I have had three plus sized pregnancies in the past seven years.
Did you have difficulty conceiving?
I got pregnant after trying for six months with my first, two months with my second and a bit over a year with my third.
Did you have any complications during pregnancies.
My pregnancies were for the most part uncomplicated. My son was born five weeks premature due to my water breaking early (the doctor said it was a fluke that could have happened to anybody) and my third baby was induced early because of a lack of amniotic fluid. I had no gestational diabetes and no blood pressure problems at all with any of my pregnancies. For the last few weeks of my pregnancies, I went for profile ultrasounds first every two weeks then every week so the technician could check the baby's position and my fluid levels as my doctor didn't trust feeling my belly from the outside to establish these things as he would do with a "normal" pregnancy.
Did you have a C-section?
All three babies were delivered vaginally.
Did you have an epidural?
I had an epidural for the first and third (I highly recommend it, wish I had been able to get one the time I sprained my ankle, too). My second child was born drug free. I live about 40 minutes from the hospital and my total labor was under three hours - not at the hospital long enough for an epidural.
Did you have an episiotomy?
I tore with all three, much worse with the first two than the third.
Did you lose your pregnancy weight?
I pretty much lost the pregnancy weight when I left the hospital, now if I could only lose the hundred pounds or so of marriage weight.....
How much did your baby(s) weigh at birth?
My first baby was 5lbs 10oz (35 weeks), second 8lbs 10oz, and my third 9lbs... the same amount I put on in my third pregnancy.
How were you treated by medical professionals during pregnancy and delivery?
My doctor treated me just like everybody else during my pregnancies, apart from telling me that I didn't need to gain much weight. I really appreciated it. His nurses did the same. At the hospital, they were a bit more weird about my weight (having me write it down on the form instead of having to say it out loud) but they were trying to be tactful, I suppose. The nurses in maternity didn't seem to have much experience feeling for a uterus in a plus sized belly when they did their daily checks, but all in all I actually felt that the medical care I received was great.
What was the best part about being pregnant?
The best part about being pregnant was feeling the baby moving and the constant feeling of excitement.
What was the worst part about being pregnant?
The worst part about being pregnant was morning sickness, heartburn and the fact that when you're already large, people are afraid to comment on your pregnancy in case you've just put on weight. That takes away from some of the special treatment pregnant women should get.
What would you have liked to have known then that you known now?
I wish I had known then that every little setback with a baby feels like a huge disaster in your exhausted state and that new moms should always look for support from other moms.
Do you wish you had lost some weight before getting pregnant? Why or why not?
Of course I wish I had lost weight before getting pregnant. I think it would have been way more fun to have a big round basketball belly than one that stayed a bit lumpy. However, my pregnancies were all pretty uneventful (I was more sore the third time but I think it had more to do with being over 30) and I am pleased with how they went.
* Michelle's Pregnancy Interview
* Cynthia's Pregnancy Interview
* Lisa's Pregnancy Interview