If you've ever suffered from hyperemesis gravidarum (HG), aka hell on earth, you're well aware of what real misery actually feels like. Throwing up all day, every day is nothing short of disgusting and isolating and exhausting. When you risk projective vomiting every single time you open your mouth, communication becomes not just difficult, but nauseating. That's why the texts women with hyperemesis gravidarum send feel more like a lifeline than a simple "hello," because there really is no possible way to accurately explain to someone how you feel. Well, I mean, at least not without throwing up again.
Having suffered from hyperemesis gravidarum myself, I know the struggle all too well. I wish that I wasn't so familiar with its many burdens but, well, here I am. At first, I though I was just feeling the standard nausea and vomiting associated with that notorious pregnancy side effect, morning sickness. However, as my vomiting became more frequent and severe, I realized that I was throwing up way too much during my pregnancy for it to be considered even close to "normal."
I was eventually diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum, and though I was relieved to know that I wasn't actually dying, that didn't prevent me from feeling like I was. Even trying to have a simple conversation with people sometimes made me want to vomit (and not because it was something the other person was saying, I promise), but I was absolutely miserable and I needed a distraction from how I was feeling, so I shared my misery via the following text messages. Because an estimated 60,000 cases of hyperemesis gravidarum are reported, I have a feeling I'm not alone.
When You're Already Planning On Using Your Illness As A Negotiating Point Later In Your Child's Life
If ever there comes a day when I need to be in the care of a nursing home, I hope that my kids will thank me for my struggle and at least put me in one that allows gambling and alcohol since I suffered through seven nauseating months while pregnant with them. It's only fair.
When Your Body Punks You
While leaving the grocery store one day, I felt like I had to sneeze once I got in my car. Turned out, I did have to sneeze, but the reflex of doing so caused me to also projectile vomit onto my steering wheel. If anyone near my car saw what happened, they probably think that an alien exploded in my driver's seat.
My Babies Were Gestational Jerks
My doctor always told me that the hard part wouldn't start until after I had my babies and as they got older and more needy, but I've got to say; throwing up every hour, on the hour, for months really put what I consider "difficult" into perspective. Toddlers can be absolute jerks, sure, but I'm much more equipped to handle their sass when I'm not hugging a toilet and throwing up tacos.
When Your Food Aversions Ruin Breakfast
Scrambled eggs are light and fluffy, and easy on the stomach, so I assumed that they could be one of my safe foods when I was suffering from HG. Wow, was I wrong. Turns out, throwing up scrambled eggs feels like what I would imagine having hundreds of tiny bugs crawling up your throat feels like. Pro tip: if you have HG or morning sickness, just stay away from scrambled eggs or they'll be ruined for you forever.
When Literally Everything Sounds Disgusting
I'm admittedly difficult to dine out with. I can never decide where I want to go or what I'm in the mood to eat, and I change my mind 17 times every single time my partner and I attempt to go out to eat. As if that wasn't already bad enough, adding a debilitating sickness to the mix only made it worse. If there was a restaurant that served nothing but crackers and Sprite, I would have been all over that. However, outside of bland crackers, basically everything deterred me.
When The Dramatics Kick In
Life just isn't fair sometimes.
When Your Sickness Makes You Reconsider Your Budget
I love brunch and all, but spending $15 on a plate full of french toast that I will inevitably throw up on my way home seems financially irresponsible. #adulting
When You Begin To Question Your Karma
I'm still convinced that my HG was the result of me being a jerk on the playground when I was in the first grade. Some boy told me I couldn't play kickball because I was a girl, so I kicked him square in his gonads to prove a point. He cried and threatened to tell on me, so I bribed him with candy.
In other words, I was Tony Soprano that I was in the first grade, and HG was my karma.
When You Have Flashbacks Of The First Time You Ever Drank Alcohol
The best way I know how to describe hyperemesis gravidarum is equating it to the worst hangover of your life, which is also what I imagine hell to be like. You know the kind of hangover I'm talking about; when the room never stops spinning and you swear you'll never come within sniffing distance of alcohol ever again for as long as you life (which usually ends up being about a week). Sounds super fun, right?
When You Develop An Addiction To Crackers
Saltines and goldfish crackers were the only foods I could even think about holding down. For this reason, my partner had our house stocked full of both at all times. I'm not positive of their nutritional value, but I'm still here, so they must not be too bad for you.
When You Get To The "Blame" Stage Of Grief
Nope, pretty sure Adam and Eve did this to me, but whatever.
When Words Just Won't Suffice
There are no words to accurately describe the torment of HG. Thank you, emojis.
When You Change Your Life Plans Based On The Amount Of Times You Throw Up Every Day
I swore that I would never get pregnant again when I had HG during my first pregnancy. I couldn't imagine ever feeling so miserable again. I couldn't eat, but I also couldn't not eat. I could only lay on one side of my body to feel decent, and I couldn't ride in a car for more than five minutes. It was awful, and I thought my proclamation to never procreate again was more than justified.
My kids are 15 months apart though, so you do the math.