Tuesday, July 23, 2013

My First Two Weeks of Pregnancy

***A little disclaimer before I begin: Now that I am into my second trimester and we have told people our news, I feel comfortable putting some of my thoughts before my pregnancy was public out in the open.  I realize that there are many wonderful people in the world struggling to get pregnant or struggling to find a perfect person to start a family with.  I wish I could give everyone happiness and peace of mind and the magic ability to make those things happen.  To you, the statements below might seem selfish or make me a bad mom already, and for that I apologize.  That said, I wanted to put my honest feelings out there because I think as women it's easy to act like things are easy (wedding planning on a budget, pregnancy, dieting, great hair like Kate Middleton, a perfect figure, etc.) and that we have it all together when really we're drowning trying to keep up.  Sometimes I believe the most helpful and refreshing thing can be finding something or someone you can relate to to make you feel like you're OK after all and not crazy or "bad" for having a hard time, even with things that you know are a blessing.  My intention here is just to be honest, and if one other pregnant woman (or person who will someday be pregnant or at some point was pregnant) feels a tiny bit relieved reading it, well than it was worth it.  I am so grateful to get to start this phase of my life, and I feel so blessed everytime I hear a heartbeat or see an ultrasound.  However, that doesn't mean I don't have days when I'm exhausted, or frustrated, or feel totally alone.  There you go, disclaimer complete.***

For me, I thought the hardest things about the start of pregnancy would be giving up coffee and wine.  Coffee has been my reason for getting out of bed for at least the last ten years, and on the very rare occasions that I have missed it, I've usually had a massive headache by the afternoon.  Wine is my reward for a long day, or a great treat with a nice meal out at a restaurant.  It makes me feel like I'm on vacation.  It makes my shoulders unclench and it makes me feel like I can breathe more easily.

So far, I couldn't have been more wrong.  In just over two weeks of knowing that I was pregnant, I haven't really missed wine at all.  I'm down to a cup of coffee that is 1/2 half caff and 1/2 decaf, and I haven't really had any headaches.  I've been working out a lot, drinking a lot of water, and trying to eat like a healthy mother-to-be, so I'm sure that has helped, but overall it's been OK.

The hardest part for me has actually been the total loss of control over my life and my body.  Pregnancy is like eating a couple of raw eggs and just waiting to see how your body reacts.  Will I throw up?  Will I feel fine?  Will I spend the next 2 weeks burping?  Who knows? That's the "fun" of the game!  I have no idea how I'm going to feel.  One day I am so exhausted that I literally can't keep my eyes open (that was last Monday... I came home, ate an orange, fell asleep for an hour and a half, and only woke up because I was drooling on my pillow).  Then Tuesday, I felt fine.  One day I will be ravenous, the next totally normal.  It's like hormone Russian roulette.  

For a crazy, planning, control freak like me, it's a nightmare.  I have no idea whether I'll wake up one day with morning sickness, or whether I'll be one of the lucky ladies who avoid it all together.  I don't know whether I'll be OK to make it through big work meetings.  I have no idea when my clothes will stop fitting me, or when it will suddenly become obvious to everyone that I'm pregnant.  I don't know when to tell people, and not having any women to talk to about this has been hard.  We have a doctor's appointment next Monday, so hopefully we'll get confirmation then that the baby is healthy and A-OK, and maybe down the line we'll feel more comfortable about telling people.

Until then, I do think about what would happen if I had a miscarriage.  I wonder when other people had theirs.  I worry about how I would get to the hospital from work.  I worry that our child could have down syndrome, or a heart defect, or cystic fibrosis.  I worry that I won't be able to handle pregnancy or motherhood.  I read a lot of blogs and try to match my symptoms and weeks up to theirs.  I guess the blogs and "What to Expect When You're Expecting" are my version of a crystal ball... my only way of trying to see into the future.

Every day I feel like I'm just trying to stay on this side of sane.  I'm trying not to get overwhelmed.  I'm worried about finances, about work, and about how my relationship with Mike will change.  I'm worried that I'll drive him nuts by only talking about the baby for the next 9 months.  I worry that I'll never get my body back, that I'll have to say goodbye to all of the clothes that I love, and that I'll never feel attractive again.  It's all very intimidating.  Sometimes I feel like I'm the only person that has ever gone through this, and I have to remind myself that every single person on Earth is a result of this process.  

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