16 May 2012

On Being Pregnant

I just have some things I want to get off my chest (or belly).

In case, you haven't figured it out, I'm pregnant. Our little girl is expected to arrive July 13th. We (my husband & I) are very excited to meet her. Over the past few weeks (months?) or so, I have been thinking about the many ways I just feel and act so different than your "average pregnant woman." I think there are just so many stereotypes that we put on pregnancy that come to be expectations, when in reality EVERY PREGNANCY and EVERY PREGNANT WOMAN IS DIFFERENT!

Some stereotypes I'm not following:

  • Weight Gain: I follow an online Pregnancy Bulletin Board full of women due in July and one of the constant topics of conversation is "weight gain"--how much have you gained? how much should you gain? and so on. This is one of the places where I am the most opposite pregnancy "norms." I know this can be quite a sensitive issue for many pregnant women, therefore I am quite shy in sharing that, in relation to my first OB appointment, I have not gained any weight. In fact, I am still below the weight I started at (almost 8 months in)! At first my doctor wasn't concerned, but now sometimes she is and has even questioned whether I am eating. I can assure you that I am eating. I've attributed my lower weight to the fact that I have been eating healthier and I think I had gained a bit of weight prior to finding out I was pregnant (wedding anniversary & 30th birthday trips will do that to you). Also my doctor got me more aware of my diet as I am "pre-diabetic" and am actively working to keep my blood sugar at a normal healthy rate throughout pregnancy. I LOVE carbs, so this means I cut out quite a lot of the bad stuff in my diet (at least reduced the portions). So far, so good.
  • Cravings/Aversions: Pregnant women are always associated with crazy pregnancy cravings like Pickles & Ice Cream. I haven't really had any special cravings or aversions. Food I liked before, I still like. Food I didn't like before, I still don't like. Sometimes, however, I think my sense of smell is heightened--especially when it comes to cigarette smoke. YUCK!
  • Discomfort: This is another thing I'm kind of ashamed to admit. As far as how my body feels, pregnancy has been fairly easy. No morning sickness. No regular back pain (yet). Baby doesn't kick me in the ribs or kidneys. However, I feel that when I tell people I feel "really good," they are almost disappointed that I haven't experienced much pain and discomfort. I do notice that I have to take certain things easy. My sciatic nerve doesn't like when I sit on the floor too long; bending down and standing up takes a little more effort; backs on chairs are pretty necessary; but for the most part I feel just fine.
  • Sleep: During the first trimester I was exhausted quite a bit of the time. I would come home from work and just about pass out. From the second trimester on, I gained most of my energy back, but night-time sleep has actually been really great! I have enjoyed going to sleep earlier (pregnancy is a great excuse for declining late night invitations) and sleeping a full night. Sure, I have to get up once or twice to pee, but I don't know when I've ever slept better.
I'm sure there are other things that I will wish I would have shared, but I can't think of them now. Like this: I've had a few instances that I felt pretty confident in attributing to pregnancy hormones (crying at the pharmacy--I'm sure my husband could share some more), but for the most part I've felt pretty even-keeled. This is just my experience with pregnancy so far. We'll see how the rest goes and if I fall into some more cliché pregnant woman roles. Thanks for reading.