I drove to the grocery store yesterday and glanced into our backseat and there was a carseat there. And it caught me off guard. Sure, we put it there only a day ago. Chris and I practiced setting it up, installing it, doing all of the things new parents do. But to see it yesterday just sitting there made me think, oh wow there will be a baby in there soon. And then a toddler. A school kid, a teenager, and soon this baby we haven’t even met yet is no longer needing rides from us because they’re old enough to drive. Am I getting just slightly ahead of myself here? Yes, yes I am. But it’s wild the thoughts that pass through your mind when you’re constantly thinking of the little thing inside of you and what they will be like.
You may have guessed this already, but I didn’t know a lot about pregnancy going into this. I only knew what I experienced last time, which wasn’t a whole lot and wasn’t very good, to be honest. I didn’t expect it to be easy, I’ve watched my sister have three kids and nothing about what she does has ever looked easy to me. Not one thing.
But that said, it’s still been rather challenging for me. Rewarding? Oh, absolutely. More than I imagined. But also so damn hard. I don’t know if I’m weaker than most, or just looking in the wrong places, but I see so many other pregnant women who make it look a helluva lot easier than what I’ve been feeling. They get dressed every day? How? In what pants? They’re awake at 3 p.m. in the afternoon? What magic energy dance are they doing?
I also wonder if some women aren’t telling the whole truth here in fear of looking ungrateful or like they’re complaining. I won’t deny I have the same fear. Because I know how many women would gladly take the swollen feet, the migraines, the back pains in exchange for a healthy pregnancy. I know because last year I watched a video of a woman complaining about stretch marks and thought to myself, I’ll trade you stretch marks for the bruises I get at my blood draws. At least you got a baby in the end… It wasn’t fair of me to judge some woman I didn’t know based on a 15 second video, but when you’re bitter, you’re judgy.
I’ve come to realize you can appreciate your pregnancy, be grateful for it, and still acknowledge it’s uncomfortable as hell at times. (And weird, very very weird.) The physical stuff, the mental stuff, it’s all just A LOT. But then you feel the little flutters and kicks and you’re like, yup give me more, please.
Speaking of kicks, let’s get into a few of the things that I didn’t know about pregnancy that I know now.
Kicks and movement. I foolishly thought these were hard to come by, like maybe they were something sporadic you might feel once a day if you got lucky. I can only speak for myself here (obviously) but baby girl is kicking ALL DAY. ALL NIGHT. All the caps because she’s literally dancing up a storm all the time. Sometimes it’s cute and sometimes it just hurts. She was kicking my ribs for five solid days until I had to give her a stern talking to about boundaries.
Bye bye long dinners. Given the state of things right now, long dinners aren’t at the top of our list anyway. But the few times we’ve gone out to enjoy a patio I have about an hour in me tops before things start to hurt and I want to go home. My tailbone is always the first to start throbbing, this happened early on in and I had no idea what was going on until google told me it’s a common pregnancy pain. Then my calves start to weigh 100 pounds each and my feet swell up to the size of sausages. Big ol swollen sausages. And I just want to get home and get on the couch.
Speaking of food… I assumed being pregnant meant I could eat whatever I wanted, in copious, copious amounts. Yeah, not so much. This obviously isn’t healthy for mom or baby, but I really thought I could let loose a little. But when I eat even a bite too much of something I am miserable for hours after. We’re talking headache, nauseous, need to sleep it off like I just ate a Thanksgiving dinner. And this could be from just one sandwich! Instead what I’ve learned to do is take two bites of a sandwich, wait for 30 minutes, then take a few more. My eating habits are random as hell because I have to eat really small portions if I stand any chance of being productive for the day.
Getting dressed is hard. I bought a lot of dresses at the start of this assuming my normal size would stay, just my belly would get bigger. Some of you may be loling at me right now, I know I know, what foolishness, right? I didn’t know everything got bigger- arms, butt, boobs, thighs, feet, etc, it takes a lot to make a human! It also takes a lot to dress the human making the human. Thank God I love Chris’s style because his shirts and sweats have been my go to lately.
“Third trimester is the most uncomfortable.” I heard this so much and never quite understood why. Now I do. And I still have 7 weeks to go. So I think things are about to get even more uncomfortable for me… What hurts: everything. Jk, kinda. My back hurts a lot, like one constant cramp. And at night my stomach feels so swollen and heavy I can barely hurl myself from bed to pee the ten times I have to go. I also wake up to hip and leg pain now from sleeping only on my left side. When I switch to my right side the pain just switches. And don’t get me started on Harlow’s sleeping habits, that certainly doesn’t help the case.
BUT WAIT! (There’s a bright side here!) The bright side is that third has been my favorite trimester in terms of mental stuff. I went from saying to Chris constantly, “I really hope we get to meet this little girl,” to, “do you really think we’ll get to meet her?” And finally, “we’re going to meet her!” After seven months of being so damn anxious, I finally feel really hopeful and excited for what’s to come. I think all of the kicks help reinforce me. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still scared shitless for actually being responsible for another human, but also so excited. 🙂
For anyone still in the, “I hope we get to meet this babe,” oh-so-nervous phase here’s a little practice that helped me. I call it the “1000 Things That Could Go Perfectly Right,” practice. Every night I would lie in bed and play out as many scenarios as possible going exactly as I hoped. Everything from having my hospital bag ready and packed, to driving to the hospital, a smooth delivery, and even the meal after. 😉 Yeah, it sounds weird (most of my mind games are) but it helped get me in a positive thinking mindset. I’d just go through a never ending list of positive things happening, imagining how good it would feel, until I eventually drifted off to sleep.
Maybe this makes sense to some of you, maybe it doesn’t. I’d say give it a shot if you’re a worrier.
And that’s all I’ve got for now (although my above list is far from done, I haven’t even gotten into the fun of having zero control over crazy emotions or hormones.) But Har is begging for a walk and seeing how I’m hyper alert to making sure he’s extra happy right now (I’m even more over the top than usual, because like I said CRAZY EMOTIONS.) I must get going.