Whether pregnancy happens easily or requires some medical interventions, almost every parent shares one thought when the test comes back positive: Is this really happening?
For Chrissy Teigen, despite putting months of effort into the IVF process, she says she didn’t feel completely “ready” for her family’s expansion.
“You know, we did IVF and it’s kind of crazy because even though you do all this planning and preparation, you take progesterone and inject your body and do all this stuff—and when I finally did get pregnant I was like, ‘Oh crap, are we ready?’” Teigen tells The Cut.
Whether with the first, second of sixth child, this is such a common feeling. But some wise words from friends put Teigen at ease. “I think it kind of doesn’t matter whether you do all that preparation or whether it’s a surprise. You still wonder if you’re ready,” she says. “Then you hear from enough people that you’re never really ready, and you just go for it.”
But one thing that did take her by surprise the first time around was her experience with postpartum depression, which she says “came out of nowhere.”
In society, there are some troubling misconceptions that prenatal or postpartum depression are tied to feelings that women don’t want to be mothers. However, in many cases, like Teigen’s example proves, that couldn’t be farther from the truth.
As Erin Barbossa, Licensed Master Social Worker, previously told Motherly, “Becoming a mother is one of the most vulnerable things we do. We grow something inside our body and love something so unconditionally it hurts. Sometimes that hurt literally comes up as physical and emotional pain.”
All she had to do leading up to pregnancy also took an emotional toll, Teigen explains. “You hear stories about IVF working the first try. But you’ll hear a lot more stories about when it takes a few times. Ours didn’t work the first time, and it was devastating,” Teigen says.
“It’s so easy to try to figure out what you might have done ‘wrong’ and do the opposite the next time. The first round I did of IVF, when it didn’t work, I remember thinking, Oh, I was on my feet too much, and that’s why. You just look for anything to blame, especially yourself,” says Teigen.
Teigen adds the whole experience gave her more empathy for others and a deeper appreciation for the “so many different factors that go into being able to conceive a baby.” She adds, “When you go through IVF, it does feel like, Oh it’s not fair I have to do all this. Still, it’s a complete miracle when it works. There are so many people that still struggle, even with access to IVF.”
With her second miracle baby due soon, Teigen says she’s excited—if not completely “ready.” And as with just about everything Teigen says, that couldn’t feel more relatable.