Fatigue, Fat Cells, Back-Pain and White Hair

Every time I am pregnant, I tend to get back pain in my third trimester. It is due to my genetically inherited Scoliosis. One of my friends jokingly said, I am sexy only on one side of my body because my waist curves in more than it does on the other! It’s funny because my belly button is not in the center of my tummy when it starts to get bigger. Well, I have lived with being crooked or tilted to one side all my life so I have learned to deal with it.

Unfortunately, pregnancy tends to aggravate my Scoliosis. It can get so painful I can hardly put on pants without struggling. The back pain usually begins around 6 months and comes and goes until I give birth. Saturday night, however, I could barely walk. I had to drag my left leg because I could not lift it. It was partly my doing for having gone on a rampage to clean the house. But normally, this would have caused mild aching versus immobility.

Thank God I was fine the next day but it was upsetting to feel so debilitated at just 10 weeks. I mean, come on! Is this age-related?

I am starting to think that it is. Not just the earlier-than-later back pain but the fatigue, fat cells, and white hair. I found a white hair the other day. White hair?! Me?! Waaaahhh! (Since I began writing this, I have discovered several.)

Elijah, who was sitting beside me at church, saw my white hair and wanted to exam it. He wanted to check its elasticity. That’s my Elijah. I yanked it out and handed it to him. He wrapped it around his finger as tightly as he could and said, “It is white but it is still strong,” with a kind of scientific objectivity. And then I asked him, “Is it really white?” He said, “Yes it is mom,” accompanied by a look that implied that I was, in fact, getting older. “Don’t worry”, he added, “I still love you no matter what.” I laughed because he meant this playfully. And I also thought, “hmm…that sounds like something Edric would say.”

Advertisement interruption: Married women, have children early. It’s worth it. You will bounce back and be your spring chicken self in no time. In your thirties, you have to contend with gravity, metabolic changes, entropy and who knows what else.

I know people say 30 is the new 20. It’s not true. That’s all marketing. 30’s is 30’s when it comes to pregnancy. You can cheat it a little by staying fit. But if you are like me and crazy enough to keep having children, you will feel the difference between 20’s and 30’s when you are pregnant. I was playing beach volleyball at 8 months with Elijah in Boracay. I was playing badminton at a pretty competitive level until 7 months with Edan and Titus. With Tiana, I can’t remember what I was doing. That’s an age issue right there.

Of all my pregnancies, I have never been so fatigued in the first trimester. I wake up in the morning and take a nap again right after breakfast. It isn’t a very long one because the kids need me. But boy do I love that nap and any other moment that I can close my eyes during the day. If I could sleep most of the day, I would! Narcolepsy is the operative word.

Despite the challenges of pregnancy, I am always encouraged by the all-sufficiency of God. He gives grace for every season in a woman’s life. He has helped me birth four kids and raise them (raising them still). And now he is helping me get through a fifth pregnancy in my not-so-prime-child-bearing-stage of womanhood. I am not saying I am old. I am not, okay?! But I am becoming more and more conscious of aging and feeling it with this pregnancy.

How wonderfully God comforts me through his word. While reading my Bible, I read “Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” (2 Corinthians 4:16-18 NASB)

We can sleep in formaldehyde (actually you can’t), bathe in virgin coconut oil (my mom thinks vco is a miracle potion for like, EVERYTHING), use other people’s placentas and put them on our skin (I should have sold all four of mine), undergo surgical and non-surgical enhancing, drink raw vegetables, be all organic and live in the mountains to get away from stress and pollution but this merely delays the inevitable…We will decay physically.

Contrary to the Hollywood notion that prolonging youth and preserving outward beauty is a means to happiness, true life and happiness is the pursuit of knowing God and loving him, the relationships we build with family and friends, the people we lead to the Lord, the godly legacy we pass on to our children, using our gifts and talents to draw people to Christ, redeeming the time for his purposes, living to please Him…These far surpass the unfortunate reality of things like fatigue, fat cells, back-pain and white hair! And the added bonus: these things are the secret to becoming more and more beautiful!

Comments

  1. Roceli Gopez - Pintado says:

    I really love how you write, Joy! Congratulations on this new journey!

  2. dear joy,
    someone posted this on cnn’s ireport. i believe in God, and want to respond, but find myself ill-equipped to respond in a manner that befits a child of God. how do we share the light to people who stop believing?

  3. I can relate… I’m 8 months pregnant now with my 3rd (and hopefully last) child and feel quite old to be having another baby (I’m in my late thirties and the baby was an “accident”, hehe). I have been nothing but fatigued and sleepy for the past 8 months… Some days I wish I could just sleep straight for 24 hours. When I feel super exhausted from tutoring my two kids, I just try to think of how you handle 4 kids AND homeschool them AND be able to joyfully welcome a 5th child to the family. =)

    • Joy T Mendoza says:

      Well, I don’t always do so well. Today, I didn’t feel like homeschooling but I remembered…be faithful. Sigh. It’s hard. But this too shall pass. Congratulations!!!

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Fatigue, Fat Cells, Back-Pain and White Hair