On episode 51, we have Sabrina sharing her pregnancy at 41. She was born and raised in Baltimore. She’s lived there her whole life except for the four years she went to graduate school in Nashville. She’s a lawyer and a judge, but she’s also a fitness instructor, traveler, fantasy football fan, and loves to cook. Up until 2020, she taught nine fitness classes a week. Her mom always told her from a young age that their family was fertile. She assumed it was just something ‘mom’s say’ and didn’t put much thought into it. She had never been on birth control, but also hadn’t been in a serious relationship until her current partner. She never thought needed to be on birth control, but she never had the chance to test her fertility. Her and her partner have a two year old son and a two month old son.
At the end of 2019 she had an ectopic pregnancy where it shows on her medical records that she terminated the pregnancy. It was caught early enough that she didn’t lose her fallopian tube. It was two shots, a little bleeding and minor pain. She said she was only halfway trying at the time. Going through the experience made her realize just how much she truly wanted to have a baby. After that she got serious about tracking ovulation. Then, six weeks into the world shutting down in 2020, she found out she was pregnant with her first son at 39. She breastfed for a year. Once she stopped breastfeeding and her cycle came back, a few months in, she didn’t want to get too far removed and give away baby stuff. She spoke to her partner and told him, now was the time if they were going to have another baby. Her cycle didn’t return regularly after she stopped breastfeeding. It was regular monthly, but sometimes it was one day, and sometimes it was five days. She never knew how long it was going to be. She was tracking her ovulation and had just as many pregnancy tests as ovulation sticks. If she wasn’t taking one, she was taking the other. In September 2022 she had an in-person fantasy football draft with a league of women and her 10-year law school reunion. Then the following week she was going to Portugal for a friend’s 40th birthday. She knew she wanted to drink if she wasn’t pregnant. She made it through two of the three events. She was a day late on her cycle when she got the positive pregnancy test. She knew she was going to a place with wine, uncured meat, and soft cheeses. She said she had a lot less of all of those things, but she did have a little. It took her only two months of trying before she became pregnant. Her mom was right after all, she is fertile.
This one was remarkedly different than the first one.
She said she was labeled geriatric when she was pregnant at 39, but this time her records said ‘Elderly multigravida.’ She said it made her feel really angry inside. She had so many sonograms this time. She says every time she opens a book, a planner, or a pocket of an old purse, she finds five sonogram photos. She was getting sonograms every other week. It was a lot of time to go back and forth. She became an expert at things like knowing where the best lunch spot was near the hospital and the best parking area to get in and out the quickest. She even got to know the hospital staff. She got gestational diabetes this time, she adjusted her diet. She believes she was less healthy and not in shape for this pregnancy. The day she found out she was pregnant, she weight 235 lbs. The day she gave birth, she weight 215 lbs, so she lost weight during her pregnancy.
At 12 weeks, she had the non invasive prenatal test done that checks for chromosomal abnormalities with blood work. She gave the printed results to her brother for the gender reveal party. What her family didn’t know is she couldn’t wait for the doctor to leave a note on the online portal to tell her the results and not the gender. She looked. The results said they were negative for chromosomal abnormalities, but the results also had a big male gender symbol with ‘male’ labeled underneath. She’s sad about the thought of a daughter not being in the same sorority as her. Sabrina and her mom are sorority sisters, and she wanted that with a daughter. She was happy she didn’t have to buy an new things after just having a boy. She was also happy she wasn’t going to have a teenage daughter she says through a laugh.
She decided to have a scheduled c-section with this one because she had an emergency c-section the first time. She says she wasn’t going to get any points going through a vaginal birth after a c-section, so why would she complicate something that’s already somewhat complicated. She’s seen every Fast and Furious movie in the theater. It’s her favorite. The new one was coming out the date of her scheduled c-section, so she moved her c-section date. Her child is even named after one of the characters, Roman.
She had the whole week planned out before her c-section. Her last day of work was on a Monday. She had a friend starting her first day at her firm, and she didn’t want to leave her high and dry. Tuesday, she ran last-minute errands. Wednesday, she got a manicure and pedicure. Thursday, she finished up errands and had lunch with her friend Maria. Maria drove herself to the hospital while she was in labor, so she figured if anything were to happen, Maria could help her. Sabrina had raw tuna and a glass of prosecco at lunch. That evening she saw Fast and Furious movie series with her too. She was proud she only had to use the restroom twice during the show. After that she finished packing. At 11:30 pm she had her last meal because she wasn’t allowed to eat past midnight for her c-section tomorrow. The next morning her nanny showed up a little earlier than normal to watch her son, so they could be at the hospital at 8:30 am. She had put on a full face of make-up and an outfit that she wore for a total of 40 minutes. She loved her scheduled c-section experience. She compares it to a concierge service. They helped her to her room, hook up the IV’s and met with each person that would be helping her. She happened to be in the same OR she was in for her first c-section. Then she hit play on her playlist while they walked in to see the nurses dancing to the music. One of the nurses offered to take all the pictures. Her son, Roman was born at 11:26 am. They laid her son on her while they were still sewing her up.
When she got to her room, she thought the recovery was going great. She wanted all the visitors this time because no one was allowed the first time in 2020. She was told she couldn’t lift anything heavy but she found it hard to tell her two-year old son she couldn’t hold him. She picked him up and he stepped on her incision. She said it was the worst pain she’s ever felt. She asked everyone in the room to leave immediately, it was so bad. She stayed at the hospital for three days. She wanted to stay longer because she liked the helped, but her partner was tired of sleeping on the very uncomfortable sofa.
We are marching forward in our Mom bodies.
The first time she breastfed was a struggle. Her milk didn’t come in the same way having a c-section. It hurt for the 6-8 weeks but she kept trying with both breastmilk and formula. Her baby was angry and hungry all the time. Once they had his lip tie cut, it was like she had a different baby. After that she didn’t have pain and she even was able to keep up her supply to be able to breastfeed him for 14 months. For this time, three months before he was born, she made an appointment with a dentist to check for lip and tongue ties. She thought worst case, she can just cancel the appointment. In the hospital she breastfed and pumped to stimulate her supply. Other than a small bottle of formula at the hospital, she exclusively breastfed him. She believes it was her confidence this time around that has helped. She knew what to expect. Her goal is to breastfed for a year. She assumed she had to stop at year, but a friend told her she didn’t have to quit cold turkey. They talked about a way to taper it off and to come up with a plan. She liked this idea. She stopped pumping on New Year’s Eve. She had her supply and what was frozen. She started dropping a feeding here and there. She balanced it with whole milk and solid foods. She got down to a morning and an evening feed when she went out of town for a week. She thought she was feeding him for the last time that night before she left. When she got back, he needed it two more times and that was it. She knows her two sons are different but plans to ween generally the same way this time.
Mentally, she’s good. She feels good. She’s confident she’s in a much better place that she was with her first pregnancy. She thinks it’s better because she knows what to except with a newborn being her second. It doesn’t feel as taxing as it did the first time. This baby was also born in the summer verse the winter like her first one. She can spend more time outdoors and good more places. She can also be more social this time around. She says she cries a lot more easily at things, though.
She is three months postpartum during the recording of the show. She plans on getting a breast reduction and lift she’s been wanting before her 45 birthday.