I really feel guilty for complaining about being pregnant. I have several dear friends that want children so badly but are having a hard time getting pregnant, and I know I am blessed to be on my 2nd pregnancy.
These women that gush about how much they loooooove being pregnant...what are they on?!
Let's go through the list of fun things that happen during pregnancy...or at least the things that happen to me:
1. Fatigue - I'm not talking about your normal 'I participated in a bar crawl and didn't climb in bed until 5am' exhaustion. I'm talking about not even having the energy to get off the couch to get a red bull from the fridge. When I was pregnant with Morgan, Michael would ask 'what did you do today?' and I would answer 'rotate from one side of the couch to the other and change the tv channel.' I seriously have the energy level of a slug with mono when I'm pregnant, which is horrible because I'm usually pretty high strung / high energy. During this pregnancy I have had a toddler to keep up with. It's been hard! It took a lot of work to train her to get a red bull from the fridge for me while I took up residence on the couch! She needs lots of activity, and that's hard to find during the winter. I would drag myself to the gym so she could play in child care while I got on a bike and pedaled at 5mph while playing on my iPhone or take a nap under the bleachers. Doctors blame my thyroid. I blame the parasite for sucking the life out of me.
2. Nausea - so far I've made it through 1 entire pregnancy, c-section, and 26 weeks of this pregnancy without tossing my cookies. *giving myself a high-five* I HATE throwing up. I will fight it to the death. With this pregnancy I was so much more queasy all day everyday. For weeks I could only eat certain foods, because just even looking at anything else made my esophagus close off. Going to the grocery store was torture. Who know that Krogering could be so miserable? There were certain parts of the store I would have to close my eyes through (meat department) and pray I wouldn't run over some little elderly lady stopping to check out the price of reduced pork.
3. Needles - I hate needles. That and my disgust for gross people is what kept me from going into the medical field. Needles are one of my biggest fears (along with snakes, frogs, worms, fish, drowning, getting burned, darkness, aliens, ghosts, lizards, mayonnaise, germs...) As soon as you find out you're pregnant, be prepared for all of the needles over the next few months. At your first doctor appointment, they give you several bags of information, free magazines, samples, and coupons, and do a huge round of blood work checking for everything from HIV to cupcake addictions. Then if you have a normal pregnancy (which I never have) around 24-26 weeks you have the glucose test done where you drink this horrible tasting syrup, keep it down for an hour and then have blood drawn to test your glucose and A1C level. During my first pregnancy, I had too much sugar in my urine (you get to pee in a cup every single time you're at the doctor...you'll eventually become a pro and not pee on your hand) around 18 weeks so I had to have the glucose testing done early. And then I had the 3 hour test done which means I got to have my blood drawn, then drink the yummy syrup, then have blood drawn every hour for the next 3 hours WITHOUT EATING OR DRINKING anything other than water. Who comes up with this medieval torture for pregnant women?! And those test results came back saying I was borderline diabetic. They thought it was gestational, but it turns out I've been borderline for years and it's never been diagnosed. They sent me to a condensing dietitian ('okay, out of these 3 choices, which is the best for breakfast?' I know I'm supposed to point to the oatmeal and scrambled eggs but I can't help myself so I point to the bagel with cream cream and jam. Sure enough, he closed his eyes and sighed. Mission accomplished). Then I had to go to an endocrinologist (whom I still go to; I love the physician assistant there, she's fabulous) where they sent me home with a glucose meter. They asked if I wanted them to show me how to use it but I figured between 2 master's degrees Michael and I could figure it out. WRONG!!! I was stabbing every finger and we could NOT figure out how to get the blood to go onto the test strip so the stupid machine could get a reading. We finally took it to Michael's common sense country grandma who has diabetes and she showed us how to use it. So for the rest of that pregnancy I was supposed to check my sugar 3 times a day and keep record to turn in at my appointments. Sigh. It hurt!!!! And then the c-section....IV catheters in both hands, and let's not even talk about the needle in the back. Worst. Pain. Ever. The combination of the noise I made and the size of the needle made an intern leave the room before he passed out.
So after all of THAT fun, I decided having another baby was a great idea! And during THIS pregnancy we've had the Little C issue where I have to get my blood tested every 4 weeks to check the antibody levels. The ladies at the hospital lab are getting to know me really well.
4. Waddling - not because I'm trying to balance this weird new belly growth, but because my hip joints hurt so much! During pregnancy your ligaments loosen up, and sometimes it's very painful. For me, of course, it's very painful. If I spend a day moving around a lot (shopping...cleaning house...chasing the ice cream truck down the street...) then by night I am hunched over like a medieval wench, hobbling and shuffling around. I'm usually about 5 steps behind Michael whenever we're out running errands. Between the waddle and the fact that my pregnancy pants keep falling down (turning into MC Hammer pants), I have lost my usual quick stride.
5. Food cravings / aversions - People assume that all pregnant women wake up in the middle of the night and go crazy for something weird like Cesar salad with pickles and hot fudge. Well I've never craved pickles during my pregnancy...at night. It's more like you see something on tv and you want it. NOW. and it's all you can think about until you have it. And it's entirely possible to have a food meltdown as well. During my first pregnancy, Michael and I stopped at a KFC for a healthy dinner. All I wanted was mac-n-cheese. That's it. And guess what? They were out. So I went to the car and cried. Over mac-n-cheese. Forget about all of the suffering in the world. I couldn't get my mac-n-cheese. And food aversions....all of a sudden, normal foods that you eat on a regular basis become the enemy. During my first pregnancy, it was burgers. This broke Michael's heart; he adores burgers and could eat one every single day. I couldn't even watch burger commercials without my esophagus closing off. During this pregnancy I crave fruit and regular soda....which is really weird because I never drink regular soda normally. I usually drown myself in water all day long, but it's been hard to drink during this pregnancy. Don't worry, I don't give in to the soda and I still drink water. But wow...a cherry Coke every so often tastes amazing.
6. Weird body stuff - your skin and hair go crazy, and not always in good ways. During my first pregnancy, my skin erupted like a high school boy hitting puberty. During this pregnancy, my skin is amazing! ....but it's really dry. I get these weird reddish dry patches on my face that I have to drown in Aquaphor and then I forget about it and go out in public with a greasy shiny Aquaphor face and people look at me weird like I've just left the plastic surgeon's office for some treatment. And I get itchy red patches in the bend of my elbows that look and feel quite lovely. Seriously, what's that all about? Sometimes I wonder if I'm allergic to needles...I get the rash in the areas where they are inserted after all. And with this pregnancy...the body hair. It must be from the boy hormones, but all of a sudden I have fuzz everywhere. Yesterday I asked Michael if he wanted to compare belly fuzz and he just kept watching TV and ignoring me because he knew there was no 'right' answer to that.
7. Organ discomfort - yes you read that correctly. A fetus takes up residence inside you and shoves all of your organs out of their normal habitats. My stomach is up so high that I have chronic heartburn and every time I bend over I feel like I could throw up. My bladder is so low (and flat) that any drop of liquid sends me to the bathroom, therefore I'm in the bathroom ALL DAY. Morgan was breech, and so far Deuce is breech as well. He's in the exact same position as Morgan, his head over to the left of my upper organs, his feet stomping on my bladder all day and night. And he's mean!! When Morgan moved around it felt like flutters for a long time, and then I could feel her stretch and move her head around (and see her move her head around under my left ribs, so weird and gross) but she wasn't as violent as her brother. I never felt gentle flutters with Deuce, just stomps!! He kicks and punches like he's playing soccer and the drums at the same time. Sometimes I shake my belly to try to get him to stop, then I realize that might fall under 'shaken baby syndrome' so I panic and stop. Both of my children are night owls, during and after pregnancy. I collapse in bed exhausted at night and Deuce decides it's party time. I can't roll to my left side, because that smashes his head and he punches me. I can't roll to my right side, because that's the perfect position for him to run in place. So I'm stuck on my back with him smashing my organs, until he falls asleep. Most women love feeling their babies moving around inside them. I hate it. It's creepy. It's like having a parasite growing inside you, making you uncomfortable for 9 months in every way possible.
8. Maternity clothing - the most unsexy thing you will ever wear in your life...pants with the full belly band. It comes up over your growing belly and touches the bottom of your bra (which isn't saying much I guess, because your boobs get so big and saggy that your bra hangs lower than usual...) whenever I'm getting dressed and Michael catches me pulling the pants up to my chest, he gets a twinkle in his eye...and it's not because he's thinking to himself 'that's the beautiful mother of my children'...honestly I think he's wondering if he can pull off the full belly pants for tailgating during football season.
9. Weight gain - yes I know, we're pregnant, we're going to gain weight. But I gained 55 pounds with Morgan. After she was born I lost 25 (I was retaining that much water!) but the other 30 took about 15 months of strict diet and exercise. During this pregnancy I swore I would exercise and keep my weight under control. Then the fatigue and nausea and hip pain and bladder stomping set in. I stay active; I have to. I have a 3 year old. And a house to clean. But my hips are already starting to keep up with my growing belly. And my arms and face are getting fluffy. It's stressing me out, but at least I know this is my last pregnancy and after he's born I can work on losing weight and keeping it off. Diet, exercise, diet pills, voo doo, whatever works.
And that's all I can cover today...Morgan has found something with Disney princess babies in it and she's beating me in the side saying 'I want this one and this one!!!'
I think I covered most of the awesomeness of pregnancy...I just really don't enjoy being pregnant. At. All.
I don't know whether to admire Michelle Duggar or wonder what's mentally wrong with her...21 pregnancies....shew.