This post should be a nice “on the bright side” for all of you nipple slaves (or bottle) when you're up at 2:24 am after slinging diapers and feeding that sweet baby thinking to yourself, “I just want to f*cking sleep”. When you might be reminiscing about carefree days before baby and sleepless nights, I'm here to remind you that your pregnancy was an equally magical time as it was challenging. Whether you reveled in your pregnancy or scrapped by like me, this walk down maternity memory lane should reassure you that no matter how tired you may be, it was all well worth it (even though that cute little baby face is often enough reassurance).
1) Unwarranted Comments: I knew pregnancy drew unwarranted comments, but to what degree literally blew my mind. By the time your waddle and oversized belly give away your situation to curious bystanders, your patience is long gone. Fortunately, my experiences with uninvited commentaries were documented for future entertainment. Some of my favorites include:
- While conversing about my fear of labor and delivery with a patient (and I quote) “Oh don't worry about that honey, it's only the skinny ones that have a hard time with birth”.
- While waiting in line at a local grocery store a middle aged man announces, “Wide load comin’ through!” (7 months pregnant)
- “Yeah, you're looking well fed! When I was pregnant I only gained 4 pounds” said an elderly woman while giving me serious judgy eyebrows.
2) Unwarranted Advice: For whatever reason, complete strangers STRONGLY believe they have a say in you and your baby’s, well, pretty much everything. As if there is not enough pressure on a hormonal pregnant woman, let's throw some gasoline on that fire! Oh, you don't like the names that we’re considering? You don't think I should be eating that? I NEED to do that during labor? Insert me making a fart noise with my mouth. I saved myself lots of awkward conversations by simply not disclosing important decisions to randoms in the grocery store. My favorite response to these questions was a smile and, “we haven't decided yet.” Smell ya later weirdo.
3) Not having to pee every 3 minutes: that baby might not be using your bladder as a squeeze toy anymore but now you need to make sure you are DONE peeing before hopping off that toilet. Get your kegel on girl.
4) Wine. Obviously
5) Looming fear of the unknown delivery: First baby means this mama’s gestation was blissfully ignorant. On the downside, if we decide to make another little human my poor vagina has 9 months of knowing what kind of havoc lies ahead.
6) So. Much. Nausea. I realize this is a subjective symptom of pregnancy and I was one of the lucky ones. The entirety of my first and second trimesters were spent in the bathroom and desperately trying to get any kind of food to stay down. Remedies? NONE. Of course I tried ginger, sea band bracelets, pregnancy pops, all no no avail. Hormones are weird little monsters that turn your favorite foods into your arch nemesis in a matter of weeks (RIP my love for bacon).
7) Absolutely nothing fitting properly: For most of my pregnancy I was able to get away with not purchasing maternity clothes (my staple look is loose fitting shirts and leggings). Sadly at about 30 weeks or so it was likely you would see me in maternity leggings and that complimentary tee shirt from my college intramural dodgeball team. I am crazy envious of stylish pregnant ladies, but for most of my pregnancy I had exhausted my efforts due to number 6.
8) Sleep: Oh sweet slumber, how I miss you so. People love telling a pregnant woman, “get your sleep while you can” which is a ridiculous statement. I am forced to sleep on my (ideally left) sides only, congestion so fierce I sound like a freight train while lying down, and I am up every hour due to crazy insomnia or a hunger so deep I could eat my way through our refrigerator. Sleep has been nothing but a distant memory since October 2016. Is it crazy that I actually sleep better with an infant compared to being pregnant? I definitely did not say more, just better.
9) Pregnancy Brain: It's real. It's science. Sadly, it is immediately replaced with mom brain. Mom brain is worse, and from what I hear, permanent.
10) FINALLY getting to squeeze that baby: I prayed for, wished for, waited for, and barfed for this baby. The moment he was placed on my chest I felt a surreal and insurmountable sense of joy. All that work had finally paid off. He is here, healthy, and we love him so much it actually hurts. Continue to soak in that sense of accomplishment because YOU FREAKING DID IT and now the fun actually begins!