Pregnancy is hard. We all know this. We know this when we decide we want a baby. Do we realize how hard it actually is? No.
But perhaps the hardest part of pregnancy for me (so far) has been the three epic transitions I have been through as my body has attempted to adjust to hormones and physical changes at the turn of each trimester.
While I know that every woman is different and each has a unique pregnancy story, I can break my trimesters down like clockwork. I feel like I have literally been a different person in each trimester.. and as I look back, I feel so enlightened by my journey.. and so educated… and so annoyed…
But then again, if there is one thing that has been consistent throughout this entire pregnancy, it’s the fact that I’ve been annoyed for a majority of it… Sorry world, I’ve been a handful.
Either way, as a future reference to myself, and perhaps to my friends and readers as they enter into their pregnancy journeys (whenever that may be), I wanted to breakdown this pregnancy and explain exactly what I mean by the three interesting characters I became in each trimester.
Note all the laundry in the background that needs to be done…
I can sum up this trimester with one word: Absent.
Once the pregnancy symptoms started setting in, I checked out. I got up, felt sick, went to work, felt sick, came home, felt sick and went to bed as early as possible. Lather. Rinse. Repeat. Fojo loved it because I literally never bothered him. When I wasn’t at work, I was sleeping.. and when I wasn’t sleeping or at work, I was keeping mostly to myself. I have never been so well rested, yet so miserably unwell in my life. I was lucky enough to only lose my cookies once, if you know what I mean… but the constant nausea was tormenting.
The first trimester is also when I gained the most weight, oddly enough. The only thing that eased my nausea at times was actually eating. Weird. Oh, but I didn’t want vegetables or healthy lean meats… no. Chicken McNuggets and fried food were the only things that would appease the nausea gods.
Might I add.. the first trimester weight gain was also the toughest on me. I didn’t look pregnant, but I was expanding… It was all the pains of pregnancy weight gain, but instead I just felt like people thought I had a munchie problem.
Lesson learned? Don’t eat like an idiot, and more importantly, don’t worry about what other people think.
I felt so huge. In hindsight, I wasn’t really that big.
During the second trimester, everything changed. All of a sudden I had energy again, I could breathe and the exciting twists and turns of gender reveals and sonograms made everything feel real. Everyone says the second trimester is the best, and it probably is for a lot of people, but the second trimester for me is when all my psychotic hormones set in. All of a sudden, I became intolerant of everyone. I didn’t want to put up with any crap from anyone. I was very blunt. And I was very, VERY sensitive. I can admit that now, and I certainly knew it at the time. I could literally feel my mood changing and my skin turning green as I transitioned from Glenda to the Wicked Witch of the West. Not to mention, there were days I didn’t even want to get out of bed… I was just plain depressed. Over what? Whatever. If the sky wasn’t blue enough, I was depressed. All my friends sucked. My family sucked. Everything sucked… So I would cry and cry and cry… and then get over it and be perfectly fine. Hormones. They are the devil sometimes.
On top of this, the second trimester was tough on my self image as well. As someone who has always been weight sensitive, I still didn’t look pregnant, yet I felt gigantic. My pants didn’t fit, shirts got tighter, nothing fit right (especially my underwear) and I was paranoid about gaining too much weight. Thank God for awesome doctors who counsel you and keep you in check. I was right on track, but body acceptance is hard when you’re rapidly changing. Per my doctor’s advice, I started tracking my food and exercise to make sure I was making good choices. At the end of the day, logging my food on MyFitnessPal is something many could criticize, but it kept me down to Earth with my eating habits and realistic about my changing body. Knowing I was eating well and doing my best made a huge difference by the end of this trimester.
Oh lookie who decided to actually look pregnant all of a sudden.
Call me crazy, but this has been my best trimester yet. Yes, I waddle. Yes, I can’t breathe well sometimes and there is a little foot that sticks out of my left side on occasion… but the third trimester is when I have really felt the joys of pregnancy. I can feel her in there and I look and act the part now. I’m tired and I can get cranky still, but I feel like a real pregnant person for the first time. Don’t get me wrong, I still get tired, and I still get irritated, but my body acceptance is finally at a peak. I have done a good job managing my weight (I’ve gained 32 pounds, which is normal) and I try to stay as active and healthy as I can. It takes a lot for me to make it through the day, and getting out of bed now requires some assistance and a lot of rolling, but it has all become so vividly real in a very short amount of time.
Everyone has their own pregnancy quirks, but I swear mine are weird. I don’t get food cravings… ever. I don’t like pickles. I really haven’t been that into ice cream… and Fojo hasn’t had to go ANYWHERE in the middle of the night to appease me.
That being said, I have had smell cravings. I swear I have a bionic nose and I can smell just about anything from a mile away… this is both wonderfully fulfilling and disgusting. Think: I can totally tell when someone has bad breath from at least three feet away, and if you burp, I might barf if I get a whiff.
On the other hand, I never realized how good certain things smell. My favorite smells are: Freezers… specifically freezers at grocery stores. I’ve been researching for weeks why I’m so attracted to this smell (thinking there is some terrible gas I’m not aware of or something), but I can’t seem to find a real answer. Actually, just thinking about the freezer smell makes me want to get in my car and drive down to Publix for a fix.
I also particularly enjoy the smell of the air conditioning in my car, shoe departments, my office in Orlando (lucked out with this one) and sporting goods stores (which probably has something to do with their shoe departments).
The smelling thing is weird… but I will miss it once it’s gone (if it ever actually goes away).
As for food, I’ve been a pretty dynamic eater… I have yet to discriminate. However, I have had a propensity to eat Shultz pretzels (which are the super cheap bags of pretzels from Walmart), apples, egg and cheese croissants from Dunkin Donuts, ice and cookies. I love cookies of all kinds, but especially butter cookies… the plainest jane of all the cookie types.
Long story short, this pregnancy has been a wild ride, and I hope as I look back on it I remember the positive things. I have learned so much not only about the human body and its miraculous ability to create life, but about myself and how I adjust to change (not well lol).
Either way, it’s been an amazing journey so far and I’m so excited to welcome our little Cecilia Sunshine in January!