Here are some things I’ve learned about myself, my baby, pregnancy, and life in general. I’m 15 weeks along now, which means I’ve had 3 doctor’s appointments, 1 ultrasound (not including the 2 secret ultrasounds I’ve been able to have at work), lots of blood-work, and LOTS of gas. 15 long weeks with many hours of my day spent thinking about my baby and the future. Here are some things I’ve learned and some things I never expected to happen:
1.) Holy boobs, batman! They’re sore, they’re hard, they’re huge, and they started hurting right away. Totally caught me off guard! Don’t hug me, don’t look at me, and husband, I will kill you if you try any funny business right now. Fun stuff.
Never have I ever felt so tired in my life. I’m serious. Not when I had the flu, not when I pulled all-nighters, not that time I stayed up drinking all night and went to work the next day; never. It’s a kind of tired that seeps into every inch of your body. Suddenly, putting up your hair or walking the dog can drain you of every ounce of energy you had. Let alone a long, stressful day at work. Whew! Wesley sure has a lot to look forward to in the evenings (NOT). I have so much more sympathy for other pregnant women now. It really is a miracle we get through it.
3.) Dreams that make me wonder if I accidentally dropped acid
Like that one time I dreamed that I gave birth to thousands of tiny bug-children that whispered cruel, hypnotic words into our ears all day so we banished them to live in the forest and they tried to kill us. Eventually we caught the forest on fire but that just made them stronger. Weird shit like that.
4.) Worry wart
I’ve already experienced a whole new level of fear. I constantly worry about the baby. It was so hard to wait for the first ultrasound. All the questions clogged my brain until I couldn’t think of anything else–“what if it’s an ectopic pregnancy? What if I have a miscarriage? What if they can’t find a heartbeat? What if there’s some kind of deformity? What if the baby isn’t getting enough nutrients? What if I’m not eating enough? What if I’m eating TOO MUCH?” It was really rough, and I only feel relief now that I’m through the first trimester. In between doctor’s visits I somehow managed to convince myself that the baby had died. It’s pretty torturous.
5.) Crazy joy
To think about what’s actually taking place in my body fascinates me. I’ve never experienced anything like that first ultrasound where we saw our little critter moving and squirming. The 2nd secret ultrasound was even more amazing because I could see it’s spine and jaw and little fingers. When I stop to think of the miracle that’s taking place it brings me so much joy.
6.) I can’t stop comparing myself to other moms
“Am I as big as other moms at this stage? Am I eating more than I should? Is my face getting fat? Did she eat that or did she do this thing” and so on and so forth. It’s been so hard not to compare myself to these supposed “perfect moms” along this journey. When you’re comparing yourself to perfection, you’re bound to feel like a failure. But this time the stakes are even higher–another life is directly influenced by my every little decision. It’s a lot of pressure and it always seems like someone out there is doing it better.
7.) It’ll probably be worth it, but right now it sucks
I wish I could say I love being pregnant. I wish I could say that it’s a miracle and I’m a beautiful vessel for this creature to live and grow. People everywhere say, “oh but it’s so amazing! It’ll fly by. It’s such a beautiful journey.” And all that’s true, but right now when I’m puking every morning and falling asleep at my desk and I’m snapping at my husband because my hormones have turned me into a monster, it doesn’t feel beautiful. The first trimester is hard because you don’t have much to show for the pregnancy. When you feel your worst you can’t tell anyone why and there are no visible signs of the life developing inside you. Plus, I am not naturally good at the whole delayed gratification thing, and this is a looooong delay. Sometimes I just want my body back.
8.) Asking for help is hard
Another thing I’m not naturally good at. I can’t keep up with the household chores, I can’t cook as often, and going to the grocery store? No way! I’ve had to ask my husband to do so many things for me and it’s been so hard! I don’t want to inconvenience him. I want to be the “good” wife that has dinner on the table (most nights) and cleans the house (sometimes) and might even have sex (possibly on weekends), but most of that has been put on the back-burner. I’m trying to tell myself it’s a season and that my body is working hard and relief is coming soon. Thank God I have a kind, supportive husband with very low expectations.
9.) I care a lot about what I look like
To be honest it’s been really hard to lose my figure. I never knew how much worth I found in being skinny until my body started changing. The first few weeks I felt bloated all the time, but I didn’t quite look pregnant so I was caught in the awkward, in-between phase. It’s shallow, I know, but it’s a huge change to go through, especially the first time around. I became very insecure and totally lost my sex drive. I hated my clothes and I felt like I wanted to hide from my husband. All that because I put on a few extra pounds. It’s better now that I’m showing more, and I honestly do feel a new kind of sexy; like an actual woman.
10.) I’m so excited I want to pee my pants!
I can’t wait. I just want the baby now. Even though I have moments of terror and think “what the hell have we done?”, I know it’s the right time and it’s something I’ve wanted for so long. It is a miracle, it is a gift, and although it’s extremely hard, I’m so thankful it’s happening to me. I just want to see what he or she will look like and get to know them. I know I’ll make mistakes and probably put the kid in therapy for one reason or another, but I’m just so excited!