Olympic Gold and Silver medalist, Shawn Johnson East is expecting her first child with NFL husband Andrew East, but it wasn't the first time the young couple got pregnant. In an exclusive interview with PopCulture.com, East admits she felt "broken inside" after suffering through a miscarriage.
"I remember going through the miscarriage and being one of those women that I felt very shameful and guilty," she shared with PopCulture.com. "But I also put on the brave face that all of us women do. I was like, 'I'm fine. We're good. Let's move on.' When I was actually pretty broken inside."
East admits it was her idea that she and husband, Andrew post the heartbreaking admission to social media in an effort to connect with others about their journey to parenthood through their YouTube channel, The East Family — a page she reveals was initially her idea, proposed to the football star.
"It sounds kind of desperate, but almost like a cry for help," she said. "I had read so many stories that people shared vulnerable things. I was almost looking for that community of people to share their stories so I didn't feel like I was the only one."
She continued to share her concern on what the response would be, but it turns out it was pretty "incredible."
"I would just sit in front of the computer for hours and read story after story after story," she added. "Because women really didn't talk about miscarriage, it was kind of this eye opening experience of I wasn't the only one, and so many women go through it, and it's normal and painful, but something that we're strong enough to get through."
While she and her long snapper husband managed to find their way to the other side of that difficult and emotional journey, they entered a new kind of challenge after getting pregnant again. While it was exciting news, eventually the sweet couple received concerning thoughts from doctors after they found out their baby had a 2 vessel umbilical cord as opposed to three, which typically only affects 1 percent of pregnancies and means it could lead to a number of complications such as, increased risk of stillbirth, toxins overload and a deficiency in nutrients for the baby.
"Pregnancy is the most humbling thing in the world because you have just zero control... The one thing that we're still facing now is I have a two vessel cord, which you usually have [a] three vessel cord. There's a lot of fear of stillbirths and the baby not getting enough nutrients," she explained candidly. "It's just this humbling process because there truly is nothing you can do. It's just a day-by-day prayer of I hope my body's doing what it's supposed to and [the] baby's taken care of and the baby's growing."
East added that she just celebrates each day that goes by with high hopes. But while the Olympic athlete waits for the big day and her foray into motherhood, she's getting prepared with the help from a plethora of Philips Avent products, aiming to ease her first time into the new role.
"Honestly, the Philips Avent stuff has been awesome!" East admits. "Just because I came into pregnancy and putting together my registry. I had no idea what went on. I honestly thought you needed like a crib and that was about it."0comments
The soon-to-be new mother has learned that she's going to need a lot more than just that to take care of a child though. One product from that line she's looking forward to using is the "Soothie Snuggles," which are pacifiers with stuffed animals hanging off them. East discloses that she's heard from several mommy friends that those are the best.
As if becoming a mom wasn't enough on her plate, East looks forward to a few upcoming projects she and Andrew are working on, including their new merchandise line and coffee shop they intend to open in Nashville, Tennessee.