Flower: I have not made a deliberate choice not to have children due to my AVM. I did not know I had an AVM but I did know that I had seizures of unknown cause and that I easily became very fatigued.
I was therefore naturally worried about how I was going to be able to go through pregnancies, childbirth and motherhood because of it. I did get more seizures during my pregnancies and had to learn how to listen to my body, to relax whenever i felt exhausted etc.
Since I do not know how it feels like having children without an AVM it is difficult to tell if my fatigue was more than “normal”. All I know is that I did manage to go through with three pregnancies, two homebirth and being a single mother part of the time.
Yes, it was very exhausting at times, I had to sleep whenever I could between breastfeeding, nappy change, delivering to and from school etc, (and doing my own homework, being a student at the time) but I did manage it somehow.
I guess it helped me when I got my seizures that I did not know about the AVM, since I am sure I would have worried much more if I had known about it and all the possible complications!
Possible it helped me to be young myself during the time when the children was very small.
Recently I have been much more tired and exhausted. Especially after I got my AVM diagnosis three years ago. Today I sometimes feel it is a challenge to be able to go through a whole ordinary day, getting up early in the morning, preparing my children to school, shopping for food, making supper, bedtimes stories, and definitely taking the children out for fun etc.
Having children means that you have to be a mother all the time, unless you have close family or a husband that understand you and can give you the support and rest you need, you have to always be around.
That is obviously something to consider if you chose to have children or not. I think it very important and mature to realize that having children demands a lot of energy and that maybe you do not have enough of it!
Some days, like today, I really do not know where to find the necessary energy, I just feel like sleeping and more sleep. Hopefully tomorrow, when my children come home from winter holliday, I will get my energy back. Somehow the energy always come back in a miraculous way
If I could turn the time back, knowing what I know today…about my AVM, the risk of getting a hemorrhage, being paralyzed or even die young, I do not think I would have made a different choice, …but I am not sure…maybe I would?
It has been tough and a struggle when I could not explain the family why I could not come for a bicycle ride or long trips or simple things like cooking after a long day, because I then definitely would get a seizure or two…
Even so, it has all been worth it, I get so much back in return, I love my children.(I guess everyone with children would say that). I am lucky that my children seems to understand that I sometimes need extra rest, they are really supportive
I hope that I will be around for many more years to come, to be able to follow my children through their lives as long as possible.
That is maybe what is worrying me and the children most. That this AVM one day will burst.
Flower, if you chose not to have children because you know that that will cause more stress, pressure, noise, fatigue, seizures etc I think it is a very good reason not to have children.
Do not worry about what the society expect but listen to your own intuition.
I am sure people will respect your choice and it is only you that know what is the best for you and therefore only you that can make the right choice!
Love Hanne xxx