Now that our news is out, who’s ready for a little recap of my first trimester experience? I’m 15 weeks now, so a few weeks into my second trimester, and I’ve had a lot of thoughts and feelings these first few months.
Before we dive in, I want to start by saying that I feel so incredibly lucky to be embarking on this journey into motherhood. I know (personally and virtually) so many women who struggle with TTC, miscarriage and more and for those ladies, I want to just say this: I see you. My heart breaks with you and my spirit cheers for you as you grieve and try to move forward in whatever your path may be. What I can say is that I appreciate your vulnerability and I think the conversation around the tough issues of infertility, miscarriage, post-partum depression, etc need to continue. I’m not a big hugger, but I’m sending so much love and understand if you can’t/don’t want to hear about my journey here. <3
First Trimester Feels
- Swollen and sore boobs, which I’m feeling pretty lucky to say that has been my main physical struggle
- On top of the sensitive ladies, I’ve had some significant acne. I’ve been struggling with hormonal acne for the past few years and had finally found a topical medication that helped…which I couldn’t take while pregnant. Fun.
- Exhaustion. Like zero energy to workout, do the dishes or do anything besides sit my butt on the couch. Right around 11-12 weeks I started to get my energy back so I feel a bit more like myself.
- I’ve been lucky to have little to no morning sickness. One day around 7 weeks, I began dry heaving while on an early morning walk with Annie, our dog. The day after that, I threw up in my mouth while driving. Sorry, that’s gross…but it happened. From weeks 7-9, I experienced on-and-off nausea, mostly in the afternoons and especially during car rides. I actually felt guilty (and sometimes nervous) about not experiencing this common symptom!
I have leaned toward all things dairy pretty much this whole pregnancy–lots of cheese yogurt and milk. I’ve also been enjoying lots of carbs, mostly in the form of cereal. Life cereal has been my jam! The only true “cravings” I’ve experienced were short-term cravings for orange slices (the gummy candies covered in sugar) and Sour Patch Kids. I had aversions to pretty much all veggies at first, then slowly added in spinach and other “bland” veggies. Eggs and avocado (usual staples for me) have also not been my favorites.
Pretty much immediately, I had to adjust and completely redefine “working out”. Long walks with Annie were about as much physical activity as I could get in as my body was just exhausted. This was an interesting time for me, as I noticed I was feeling guilty over lack of workouts and lack of intensity. I started questioning if I’ll ever feel like myself again. I actually had quit my CrossFit box a week prior to finding out I was pregnant…talk about the universe having my back! Not only did this save us some $$ in the short term, but it also saved me some frustration. With this newfound exhaustion, there was no way I could keep up my workouts in the way I was used to. This would have led to feelings of comparison, wasted $$, etc.
Since gaining some energy back, I still try to walk Annie for an hour in the morning and again at night. I’ve also gone on a few runs, done some yoga and signed up for BirthFit training (an online CrossFit-focused prenatal plan). To be honest, I haven’t followed it as much as I’d like, but I’m hoping to get some more regular training in soon. I like that this program is specific to prenatal women and focuses a TON of pelvic floor strengthening, breathing and truly training for the birth. Stay tuned!
Overall, I have felt really good emotionally but there have been a few moments of spontaneous uncontrollable crying (like while watching this video of a pitbull mama bringing her babies to the owner). The baby definitely doesn’t seem “real” to me, though all mamas I talk to say that it won’t feel real until we’re literally holding the babe in our arms. My biggest emotional struggle has been adjusting to this new season of life. I definitely don’t feel like myself, due to the changes in my energy levels and exercise routine. More on that in the “real talk” below…
Pregnancy and the ensuing changes to my eating and body that come with it have been pretty triggering for me.With my food choices, I have caught myself falling into old habits of “shoulding” on everything, questioning my hunger levels, struggling with body image and neglecting my non-judgmental curiosity. I’ve experienced guilt over going days without a single vegetable (shouldn’t I be providing my baby with nutritious food!?), but luckily I have been able to follow many Intuitive Eating RDs on their pregnancy journeys before me, so as always, I was able to learn from them. Intuitive Eating is a process for everyone and for me pregnancy has thrown a big ole wrench into that process.
In addition to food choices, pregnancy has stirred up some body image issues for me. Though I know plenty of truths about pregnancy, like my body is supposed to change/gain weight or that every pregnancy is different, so some people show earlier than others, etc…it’s been hard not to fall into some negative thought patterns. It’s also hard when others constantly feel a need to comment on your body. I’m sure I’ve done this in the past, unknowingly, and gosh I apologize. With regards to body image, I’ve done some work (and will continue to work on) refocusing on what my body is doing rather than what it looks like. Ya know, reminding myself that the whole creating another life thing is kinda more important than the size/shape of my body, which is inevitably going to change…pregnant or not. 🙂
In general, it’s been super helpful to talk to others about their journeys and it’s my hope that my vulnerability in sharing this will help anyone else experiencing similar things during this incredible transition phase in life. Pregnancy is a huge change, physically, mentally, emotionally and I’m trying to embrace all of that. I want to be open to what I experience and what will come next.
So that’s all for now! We have our first “centering pregnancy” (aka group class/appointment) tonight and I’m interested in meeting other mamas that are due around the same time as I am. Stay tuned for periodic pregnancy updates as things progress!