"Yes that's my name in black and white, maybe I'm doing something right..." On March 27th I was extremely excited to see myself on the front page of the newspaper and could not help but think...how did I get here? Exactly 100 days ago today, I was a crying big hot mess cursing the world for putting me into this predicament of confined hospital bed rest. How could this be happening to me? Why can't I just have a normal pregnancy? What did I do to deserve this? Luckily, my dramatics didn't last very long and instead of getting mad or depressed, I quickly knew that in order to survive I had to get my psyche in check.
Initially, my intentions were self-serving because I instinctually knew that I had to talk to others going through my exact dilemma in order to gain some sort of relief. As mentioned in previous blog posts, I reached out to the other women on bed rest here at the hospital and put together a private Facebook group so that we can all talk together. That small act of starting the group morphed into an amazing forum to help not only myself, but all of the other women who were hungry for that same connection. A similar phenomenon happened with my blog since I had started writing it to have an outlet for all of my feelings and to inform family and friends about the latest news regarding me and the twins. Other than the Facebook group, I was also connecting to women on different online support groups where I shared with them my blog website. Little by little, I began to get more followers and women who I had never even met before living across the country and in other countries, were leaving comments and telling me their own stories of bed rest and high risk pregnancy. I started to feel less alone knowing that so many other women out there were dealing with the same issues.
In addition, word started getting around to the hospital administration about my blog and Facebook group. Eventually the marketing director of the hospital came to visit me because he thought that my story was newsworthy and loved the fact that patient morale and well-being had improved in the maternity ward. I was surprised to hear that what I had done was of interest to the media but at first I didn't get too excited since I was not sure what would really come of it. I was then contacted by the hospital's public relations representative so that she could get more information from me in order to pitch the story to the press. Before I knew it, she had lined up an interview with the Ventura County Star newspaper which is a very popular and well known news source where I live. They came by to interview me and take pictures which was very fun and I still could not believe this was all happening. The reality didn't really sink in until I got confirmation of when the story was coming out but I had no clue where in the paper the article would be located. I figured I would be tucked away in the health section somewhere and even told my husband to flip through the paper before buying it to be sure I was even in there. To my surprise, I received a text message from him with a picture of the front page and my jaw dropped. Again...how did I get here?
The bottom line is that we all do extraordinary acts which may start out as just plain common sense in our minds. I had no idea that this seemingly unpleasant experience would change from a negative interruption of my life into a positive life changing event. The newspaper article was a great platform to get my story out and hopefully others who read the article will start their own Facebook groups or blogs if they are in similar situations. It is easy to lose focus and slump back into the "woe is me" frame of mind but it really doesn't help anybody. Once I began to see the positive outcomes that were manifesting, it gave me such joy to know that so many others were happier and felt support because of what I had accomplished. Even though I have done a lot of things over the past 100 days, in about a month, absolutely nothing will compare to the miracle of bringing two new lives into this world.
*The song "So Much Better" is from the 2007 Broadway musical Legally Blonde the Musicalwhich originally started out as a popular non-musical film in 2001. In the song, the character Elle Woods just found out that she got accepted into a very important internship after working extremely hard in her classes at Harvard Law School. She originally went to Harvard to follow her heart and try to re-kindle a romance but then got serious about her studies and overcame some major obstacles. Like Elle, my journey started out in a completely different direction with me just trying to cope and make sense with what was happening. Then I began getting serious about keeping a positive attitude with a focus on helping others. By doing so, I started feeling "so much better than before" and if my lungs were not being smushed by the twins, I would sing that extremely long note at the end of the song!