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Journey into the world of hyperemesis gravidarum...
29Sep 16

TALKING PANTS with Carol Smillie

When I was pregnant I wet myself almost every time I spewed up, which was A LOT... there I've said it, on the internet for all to see. And quite frankly, after pushing three kids out of my vagina, my day to day continence isn't what it once was regardless of the hyperemesis. So, imagine my delight when I saw Carol Smillie's pants last year... they are made for women like me. But over to Carol the Knicker Queen to tell you about her own run in with pregnancy sickness and her fabulous undies for leaky ladies... 

TALKING PANTS with Carol Smillie MD, DiaryDoll

 It sounds ridiculous, but one of my biggest fears of becoming pregnant , wasn’t the birth, but the morning sickness.

From a very young age, I had a phobia of being sick, and even today, as a 54 year old woman, I can still remember a couple of incidents of other kids vomiting at school and being utterly traumatised by the sight of it.

I always wanted to become a mother, so I hoped I might be one of the 25% of mothers who sail through pregnancy without the slightest gag.

How wrong I was.

It was as if mother nature was trying to ‘cure’ me of my phobia, or ‘normalise’ what became a daily event, I went through three successive pregnancies with my head down the loo every morning, and several times throughout the day, just for good measure!

I kept telling myself it would pass, and that I should pull myself together. How the hell was I going to cope with sicky babies or poorly children, if I couldn’t cope with my own nausea?

Of course, that was all a long time ago, as my kids are now 17,19 and 21, but I’d still do pretty much anything rather than revisit those feelings now.

After a lengthy career in television, I am now less about Changing Rooms and more about Changing Careers, as I have my own company ‘DiaryDoll’ , making pretty, clever pants with a secret waterproof panel for life’s little leaks.

I’ll let you digest that for a moment. 

Yes, I have inadvertently become a warrior for leaky ladies of all ages.

Heavy periods, pelvic floor weakness and post maternity all mean we , as women, are subject to leaks at some point or another, and if, like me, you have morning sickness, the sheer effort of retching when pregnant, may give you more problems than one, if you know what I mean! Remember that Bryan Ferry classic ‘Both Ends Burning?’

For a select few however, mother nature has reserved a very special extra bonus. Exclusive membership to an elite club for women with the most severe nausea and vomiting , who are unable to care for themselves or their families for weeks, sometimes months at a time.

Some of those may be unable to eat for long periods, even losing up to 5 - 10% or more of their pre-pregnancy body weight.  It’s exhausting enough becoming a new mother, but this extreme fatigue, can even lead to depression.

I’m always amazed at how reluctant we are to ask for help, or to even admit that we need it. There is no shame in putting your hand up, motherhood is a hard slog at the best of times,  but we mustn’t forget that our role as mothers is vital, and sometimes the handbook doesn’t have all the answers, we need to call upon professional help.

If you’re reading this, then I am probably preaching to the converted, and you already know more than I did about hyperemesis, but I’m learning every day.

Our DiaryDoll customers are very vocal, about a whole range of topics, from laughter leaks in the gym, worries about our daughter’s first period, to living with Endometriosis.

Come along, join the throng, we have a wonderful team spirit, and we’d love to hear from you!

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The Book

Hyperemesis Gravidarum - The Definitive Guide by Caitlin Dean

The Kids Book

Hoe to be an HG Hero by Caitlin Dean

About Me

I am mother of three beautiful children and wife to a fantastic and supportive husband. I am a nurse, a farmer and a trustee for Pregnancy Sickness Support. I love working hard and spending time with my kids.

About this blog

Information and support for pregnancy sickness and hyperemesis gravidarum. Views are my own and do not represent those of any other organisation. Information provided here should not be a substitute for medical advice. My aim is to raise awareness and encourage sufferers to know they are not alone.

Previous award nominations

MAD Blog Awards UK 2015