Local mother and author finds inspiration despite conditionJul 01, 2022 10:03AM ● By Rachel Aubrey
By Rachel Aubrey | [email protected]
South Jordan resident Jayne Osborne is not unlike most mothers. Her days are filled with baking cookies, visits to the local playgrounds and rock hunting. But unlike most mothers, Osborne was diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum, a hereditary condition that left her completely bedridden during her fourth and final pregnancy, beginning in May 2021 until January. As if constant and severe vomiting wasn’t tormenting enough, she found herself unable to do all the things that moms usually look forward to doing with their kids.
“It was the hardest thing I had ever been through,” Osborne said. “I would just lay in bed watching everyone else run my life for me.”
While hooked up to an IV so that she could receive some nourishment and fluids, she had to rely on others to help care for her three young children while her husband was at work. Although not officially diagnosed with hyperemesis until her last pregnancy, she recalled her previous three pregnancies were also incredibly taxing on her physically. There would be times when depression and anxiety would creep into her day, struggling because she was unable to do the things she previously had taken for granted, such as making breakfast, taking kids to school and a host of other tasks that moms do.
“It was unrelenting,” Osborne said. “Nausea and vomiting for 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”
Despite being so sick, Osborne tried very intently to shift her perspective. She focused on the fact that she wasn’t alone and that she had support. She quickly realized most moms experience physical illness at some point during pregnancy and leaned mentally into that shared experience. It was this perspective that led her to these words: “when mommies get sick, and sometimes they do,” which would become the prevailing theme for her book.
As the words to the poem about moms getting sick came to her, she began to sketch out what would become a children’s book. After several months, she had watercolor illustrations to go along with the poem. According to Osborne, “When Mommies Get Sick” is a children’s guide on what to expect and how to help their mommy when she gets sick. The whole process, from start to finish, took eight months. The book was self-published through Amazon in February.
“'When Mommies Get Sick' became a saving grace that kept my mind occupied while my body was going through hell,” Osborne said.
While Osborne would lay in bed, working on the words and illustrations, her children would come into her room and quietly provide input and advice, thus allowing Osborne and her kids to work together during a time that was hard and somewhat scary. During this time, fellow mom, friend and neighbor, Lindsay Bailey, was one of the many who was able to lend a helping hand. Everything from bringing meals over, to picking up kids from school, and simple phone calls to check-in. According to Bailey, Osborne’s story can relate not only to moms going through hard pregnancies, but anyone who is physically suffering.
“She didn’t give up when times were so difficult,” Bailey said. “She found an avenue of therapy to express her feelings.”
Osborne gifted one of the very first copies, which she signed, to Bailey. Bailey said she has read it to her children multiple times.
Osborne’s goal now is to get the book to other moms and their families. She intends to donate one copy for every two copies purchased to patients at the Huntsman Cancer Center and to moms who have been diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum via obstetrician and gynecology offices.
“This is the exact book I would’ve wanted to read to my kids when I was sick,” Osborne said.
For more information about hyperemesis gravidarum visit hyperemesis.org/about-hyperemesis-gravidarum.
To purchase a copy of “When Mommies Get Sick” by Jayne Osborne visit amzn.to/3HIzmX5.