28 October 2011

the things they dont tell you about pregnancy - part one, week 1-15*

image credit everyeskimo

below is a list of some of the things my friends, peers, family, medical professionals and online resources did NOT tell me about the first 15 weeks of pregnancy. i thought it was about time we ladies had a realistic, real-time account of what pregnancy is actually like.....here goes....

1. you will not know the true meaning of the word tired until you're pregnant. you won't be able to express properly to anyone just how tired you are and more than this, few people will care/understand. you'll feel like your body and brain has been abducted, governed by something else. possessed maybe. and thus ghoul wants you to SLEEP and sleep only.

2. your female peers will lose interest in your pregnancy quickly. about the time you begin to feel shit, probably. sympathy will be hard to come by from anyone, much less women. and don't expect for a second that your boss will care, or be happy to let you go home at 2pm to go and sleep for another 12 hours. the less obvious your side effects, the less people will care to notice that you're a defunct shell of a human being.

3. your breasts will become demonised, they'll hurt like hell and will grow FAST. but this is one side effect that you'll probably love it - you're partner certainly will. don't expect to fit in any one bra for long. they'll change shape, and form a conical like shape, very quickly. this area will be the most pregnant area of your body for some time.

4. you'll turn into a food monster. eating [and sleeping] will dominate your day and if you miss a meal or snack on the wrong thing, you'll feel close to death in seconds. eating will keep you alive, it will see you through your exhaustion and sickness. make it a priority and eat carb and protein rich foods. fuck diets of any kind. cheese, potatoes, beans all got me through the first 10 weeks. keep snacks and drinks in your handbag at all times. you cannot underestimate how important this knowledge is.

5. you'll feel an amazing sense of achievement when you get to 12 weeks and will relax (a little), almost immediately.

6. your first scan is fast. really fast. you're lucky if you get 5 minutes with your on-screen baby. enjoy it. it's amazing and you will love your baby immediately. don't expect that you will cry when you see your baby on screen - you might do but i was too excited/fascinated to cry, let alone have the time to! you'll be excited before the appointment and your partner will be anxious. you will swap roles afterwards.

7. do NOT drink 2 pints of water before your scan. you will burst and you WILL, without a doubt, get told to empty it anyway. drink normally before the appointment and have a wee around 45 mins before. that is more than enough for a pregnant woman as your bladder has been rendered defunct, and you can't look at a glass of water without peeing.

8. your boobs will stop hurting as fast as they started and they'll stop and start probably for the rest of your pregnancy. your body will change almost daily, you'll worry at first that this means something is wrong. it isn't and you'll get used to it. remember that your body is being held hostage and is not working how it used to. second guessing is hopeless.

9. morning sickness comes in many guises and if you're lucky, like me, you won't suffer too badly. BUT it won't happen to you just in the morning and you won't just be sick. but if you suffer, you'll suffer. to widely varying degrees. and i'm afraid to say you'll be expected to just get on with it.

10. giving up alcohol is easier than you'd think but surprisingly you won't necessarily want to.

11. giving up/reducing caffeine is harder than you'd think and you definitely won't want to.

12. the pregnancy glow thing is a fallacy. least it has been for me up till now. expect bad skin, bad hair and bad nails for months.

13. you'll think of nothing else but your baby/pregnancy for possibly, forever. as scary as it can seem, you'll be parenting from day one.

14. for the first trimester all you'll think about is getting that lovely bump. then, when it springs itself upon you, you'll instantly worry you look/feel fat. you don't.

15. your moods will be dangerously changeable. you'll feel invisible and are likely to speak your mind to dangerous degrees. you may find your patience with strangers is tested and that you experience a heightened sense of road rage. people should stay clear of an angry pregnant woman. she's likely to get violent.

16. your pre-pregnancy labour fears will fizzle away to nothing as soon as you find out you're expecting. that or nature cleverly tucks then away in the depths of your mind. after all, you have so many other things to think about now. like being a mommy!

17. hair. you'll get it in strange places, lots of it and it grows fast. sad. but true.

18. despite the incredible effort it takes being pregnant, you'll love it [most of the time]. and will feel love & the strong desire to protect your baby from day one.

19. you're not alone. your husband/partner is likely to really step up to the plate and will take great care of you and your little baby. you're friends, especially the ones who have had babies before, will be a stella support and cannot be underestimated.

20. your parents and in laws will become fascinated with how you are and what you're doing and may possibly hound you daily for updates. it can get a bit much when all you want to do is hide under your duvet all day. try to embrace it though. you'll need them.

*these are just some of the things i have experienced in my pregnancy so far. your experiences may be very different to mine but one that we can all probably agree on is how unbelievably, earth-shatteringly exhausting this gig is. i'd love to hear all about other ladies experiences though... how is it going for you??


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