Camilla Copeman, @camillacrafter, stylist mom and content creator, bravely rehashes the struggles that she went through with Hyperemesis Gravidarum, extreme nausea and vomiting during pregnancy, and gives us some good advice on how to come out on the other side with the proper assistance.
DIFRAX: Tell us a bit about your pregnancy and the hurdles and challenges you faced along the way.
CAMILLA: Pregnancy was really hard for me, and for my partner Mili. Before becoming pregnant I didn't really know one could get as sick as I got. I had something called Hyperemesis Gravidarum which, in a very simplified manner, I would categorise as extreme morning sickness (but I have to say I hate using the term morning sickness because it diminishes how bad Hyperemesis actually can be).
For me personally, I had 8 ER visits, 4 hospitalisations, an emergency surgery and effectively spent 9 months in bed sleeping with a bucket. Besides the obvious challenges of vomiting up to 10 times a day, I really struggled with people understanding that I was really ill and not just 'being dramatic'. Even my first gynie said to me 'you're pregnant, not sick'. I felt so completely undermined by that statement. I cried and changed gynies as soon as I could. I barely have any happy memories of being pregnant, even my baby kicking inside my belly would make me vomit. It was probably one of the most depressing and challenging experiences of my life. This is hard to say because I love my daughter so much and I have always wanted to be a mother but HG took me to lows I didn’t think were possible. If you're reading this and think you have HG, look for support on the Facebook groups available and make sure you get a health care professional who is actually supportive.
DIFRAX: Tell us a bit about you guys as a family and how you've adapted a busy stylist and work life to also juggle being a mom.
CAMILLA: So, because I was so sick during pregnancy it stopped me working almost completely. I physically just wasn't able to get out of bed never mind going to shoots and working like I used to. Since having Sienna, I've tried to adapt the way I work and what I’m working on, spending as much time as possible with her. I've been fortunate enough to be blessed with a complete angel baby who hardly cries and is almost always happy (I know, I'm sorry moms). That in conjunction with my super amazing support system has made working while caring for her possible. Mili and I have also decided that while she is so small we would do what we could to be there and enjoy every moment.
DIFRAX: What is your favourite Difrax product for Sienna and why?
CAMILLA: Little Sienna didn’t take to a pacifiers straight away and I must have bought 10 types to try to find one she liked. When she did decide to give it a go, the Difrax ones have definitely been her firm favourites. She's constantly working on her coordination and pincer grasp, popping it in and out of her mouth. I really approve that the teats are shaped so there is no 'wrong' way for it to go into her mouth. Also let's be real, the colours and shapes are so cute I could die.