As I mentioned in my last post, I wanted to shed some light into what having HG is actually like, as I’ve noticed a lot of confusion and misunderstanding about the condition. Everyone’s experience of it is individual and I’d love to hear from some fellow sufferers too. The below are my key takeaways.
- HG is like having the worst hangover in your life coupled with food poisoning. But it never stops, it just goes on and on and no matter how many times you throw up, the nausea doesn’t go away and you never feel better.
- HG is hugely, horrendously isolating. At my worst, all I could do was lie in my bed because moving, talking, watching TV made me vomit. I couldn’t tell my friends because I was so early in my pregnancy (although with close friends, I had to) and I couldn’t go to work. I didn’t leave the house for about 6 weeks except to go to the hospital/GP. I had no social life, no work life, basically no life and the only people I saw were my wonderful family who kept me sane.
- The vomiting is crap. Crap is an understatement. The worst are the days when you’re SO exhausted that getting to the bathroom – dizzy, ill, knackered – seems like a mission to Mars and, once you’re there, your stomach heaves with nothing but bile and you can’t hold your head up because it’s too heavy. Vom in hair is gross, trust me.
- The nausea is also debilitating because, on the days when I wasn’t vomiting as much, the sickness was so bad that I physically couldn’t push food past my throat. I was STARVING but everything made me retch.
- Not eating and drinking properly means I was exhausted. I couldn’t stand up or walk around on my own because I was so dizzy and weak.
- My relationship with food became a total nightmare. Every day was a challenge of trying to figure out either (1) what food I was likely to keep down or (2) what I wouldn’t mind throwing up again. I would wake up in the morning and feel a sickening sense of dread that, today, the whole cycle of drama would repeat itself again.
It’s a nightmare. It does, slowly, get better but those weeks when the symptoms are bad are a constant battle of endurance and, also, mental strength. I was very lucky in that my Mum, who lives abroad, stayed and looked after me throughout the worst of it. Between her and my husband, I had people to keep me company, a real lifeline when you have HG.
Today, I am 15+6. The nausea is bad today but I haven’t thrown up for a couple of days. Take that, HG.