Pits and Peaks of Pregnancy

Peaks and Pits of Pregnancy

Now that it’s almost over, it’s fun to look back on pregnancy longingly, but in reality it was a really tough nine months for me physically from day one. To this day, I don’t believe a single soul who says that they love being pregnant. I felt so sick for 90% of the time that it’s hard to imagine feeling good! In the end, every nauseous day, every night without sleep, and every ache and pain will be beyond worth it, and weirdly the last two weeks have been the ones where I’ve felt the best which has been so nice.

Today, on my due date, I’m looking back at all three trimesters and sharing the peaks and pits from each one. I had actually forgotten a lot of what happened earlier on, but looked back on notes I had written to my mom and sister and it all came rushing back.

First trimester

Peaks: 

Being pregnant. The fact that I actually got pregnant was obviously the biggest perk in the first trimester. The morning I found out (A few hours after I realized Donald Trump was our president… That was a weird day!), I had to keep looking at the test every 20 minutes because I couldn’t believe it. After everything we had been through, it didn’t feel real. Read more.

First ultrasound.  When Anel and I heard our baby’s heartbeat for the first time at eight weeks, it felt like a miracle. We both breathed for the first time in a month and cried at the doctor’s office. The heartbeat made everything seem so real.

Eating dairy. I’ve had issues with dairy for over 10 years so when they practically disappeared with pregnancy, it was like my food fantasies had finally come true! I ate pizza and ice cream like it was my job. Sadly, those days are probably almost over (probably better for my overall health anyway), but I’ve sure enjoyed it while it’s lasted!

Pits:

Fear of losing the baby. There wasn’t one single day in my first trimester that I wasn’t terrified of losing the baby. After two miscarriages in a row, I couldn’t believe that my body was capable of holding on to a baby. I didn’t believe in myself. The best advice I got about this was to just let myself feel fear but also do as much as possible to keep myself calm and stay positive. It doesn’t really make sense on paper but that worked for me. Also Anel’s genuine belief that this was “our baby” helped a lot. He said he just knew it would stick and he knew it was a girl!

Exhaustion. Like most expectant mothers, I was an absolute zombie in my first trimester. If I went to Whole Foods, I’d have to lay down for two hours afterwards to catch back up. As someone who likes to work a lot and is constantly on the go, it was so frustrating. Eventually I gave in and let myself rest when I needed to. It taught me a lot about slowing down, something that I needed to know for the rest of the pregnancy.

Nausea. The nausea I experienced in my first trimester was by far the pittiest pit of them all. In fact, it lasted until my 20th week and then came back in my third trimester (more on that later). It would hit me at some point each day… usually all day… and felt like a literal punch to the gut. I went from eating lots of veggies and gluten free to bagels with butter and ginger ale on the reg. Anything else made me feel awful.

Second Trimester

Peaks:

More energy. Between 19 and 20 weeks I finally started feeling human again. I could run more than one errand at a time and work at my desk for hours in a row without needed to nap. It felt amazing to be back to normal again… Or a new normal at least.

Telling friends and family. At Christmas we told our families about the baby and it was such a joyous moment each time. When Jackson found out, he had tears in his eyes which was so so sweet. Everyone was so excited for us, and doing it around the holidays made it even more special.

Starting to show. During the first trimester I just looked a little heavy around the middle, but a real bump started growing around 22-24 weeks. It was small at first but it was there! I still had issues around body image until the third trimester, but at least I was looking more pregnant and feeling proud of the way it looked.

Feeling kicks. Feeling the baby’s first little flutter kicks made my heart jump. Anel couldn’t feel them from the outside at first, so it was a special thing that just the two of us shared. She’d pop up and say hello on a daily basis, and it felt to get the reminders that she was still in there. Even though the scary first trimester days were over, my fears didn’t really go away and feeling her helped a lot.

Pits:

Hip pain. Halfway through my second trimester, I started getting pretty intense hip pain at night. My prenatal yoga teacher showed me how to sleep to get rid of it, and luckily it just took some getting used to. The pain didn’t disappear completely, but it was a lot better when I slept on my side with more than one pillow between my legs.

FOMO: This is such a dumb one but my FOMO started getting out of control. Everyone I know seemed to be on fabulous trips or doing fun things on weekends, while I felt stuck at home because flying was so hard on my body the few times that I did it. Every time that feeling would come on, I’d tamper it by remembering the reason that I couldn’t do all of these fun things, and that made it all ok again.

Heart burn. While my nausea went away, heart burn reared it’s ugly head. I tried everything natural possible from aloe vera juice to eating super bland foods. I swore I’d never take anything for it but my doctor finally convinced me to take Zantac daily. She assured me it was safe for me and baby, and while I hate taking medication, it was so helpful and I’m so glad that I did it. I could hardly move after I ate and couldn’t even lay down at night… Seriously I had to sleep sitting up for a week! The Zantac changed the game and I have no regrets about that at all.

Third Trimester

Peaks:

Excitement of baby’s arrival. “The baby” was kind of an in-the-future concept until the third trimester. Then it became real. I started prepping for labor, decorating the nursery (will reveal soon I promise) and getting everything we needed for her arrival. The baby concept turned into a real live human that was about to enter our lives and that was exciting in a way that I can’t really put into words.

Learning her personality. Her mini flutter kicks turned into hard core punches, kicks, and flips. When I was in a position that she didn’t like or if I was stressed out, you better believe she’d let me know! I loved that she “spoke her mind” so to speak, and wasn’t afraid to do so. After I ate or when I was calm and relaxed, she’d gracefully move like she was happy. Ugh, it was so cute!

Pits:

Throwing up. I always assumed that morning sickness was just a first trimester thing, but for me that was certainly not the case. It was different at the end but for most of the third trimester (until 37 weeks) I threw up daily. And I mean like on the side of the road, in my car, in Whole Foods, and even in my back yard when I couldn’t make it inside. It was not cute! In fact, I ran into a reader right after one of my street-side barf fests and was mortified. Whoever you were, I hope you didn’t know!

At the very end, the baby dropped and was no longer sitting on my stomach, so it eased up thank goodness. There were a few weeks where I’d go to the doctor and had lost weight which made me feel like the worst mother in the world, but there was really nothing I could do to stop it so I tried to take it easy on myself.

Back pain. At 30 weeks I threw out my back and that moment and the two days following were by far the worst of the entire nine months. I had to crawl to my home office from the kitchen to get my phone to call Anel. That took me an hour! Then I had spasms throughout that night that were so scary, I thought I might be in early labor. Luckily my doctor was able to prescribe me something safe for baby and I found a great chiropractor who got me back in shape in two weeks.

Generally uncomfortable. As I’ve gotten bigger and bigger,  everything just started feeling uncomfortable. The summer humidity makes it hard to breathe, and when I walk she presses down in a way that hurts in my you-know-what. Luckily I’m no longer nauseous and have way more energy so I’m totally down with the uncomfortableness.  A lot of my friends said this is the worst part, but for me the end has been the best.

  • Taylor Cannon

    My husband and I don’t have children yet and we are hoping to wait a bit longer before trying but I have loved reading your posts about pregnancy and being an expectant mother. Thank you for sharing so much and being so open. I can’t wait to read more about you motherhood journey.
    Taylor | http://www.livingtaylored.com

  • I’m with you on not believing that people could possibly like pregnancy but still being so grateful for having been pregnant and having our children (we have five!).

    • Wow! Impressed that you did it five times. I guess once I meet baby girl it will all make sense 🙂

  • Alyssa Thomas

    It sounds like it’s been a true rollercoaster of a journey! I hope your labor is smooth and that you get to meet baby girl soon!

  • leah cillo

    I have truly loved following along with your journey since i am pregnant myself and currently 29 weeks. It is very hard when people brag about having such easy pregnancies because I felt a lot of your same pits. My nausea also came back in the past couple weeks and I had to throw up at the beach and it was absolutely awful! I am hoping it doesn’t stick around for the next 11 weeks. It is also such an amazing experience and something to feel so grateful for, but definitely the hardest thing with all the changes your body is going through! Congratulations and I can’t wait to read about her arrival!

    • Thanks so much, Leah! And congrats to you. So sorry to hear you’re nauseous as well. Taking Zantac at the end helped me a little at least.

  • B

    My baby is a few months old and on Zantac for reflux. I didn’t want him to have to take any medication at such a young age, but the benefits vastly outweigh anything else for us (he was spitting up so much and having pain while eating so it was hard to get him to eat, and thus hard for him to gain weight!). He’s doing great on the medication. Glad you’re feeling better now!

    • Interesting! Do you give it to him directly or do you take it and he gets via breastmilk?

  • Mary Fremeau

    Thanks so much for being so candid and honest about pregnancy! You are a rockstar ! She’s almost here! And I bet when the reader saw you post-puke, you still looked like a million bucks!! So happy for you and your husband. Sending lots of prayers to you!!
    Xxoo
    Mary
    http://Www.belleontrend.com

  • Thank you so much for sharing your experience! I am currently 25 weeks pregnant, and also had 2 miscarriages before this pregnancy. It has been SO hard, and sometimes I feel guilty about that. I am so beyond grateful to be pregnant and excited to finally meet our baby girl in October, but the journey has been tough. I kept thinking I’ll enjoy it and relax after the first trimester, after the 20-week appointment… but those have come and gone and still pretty much stressed. Pregnancy after loss is no joke, and hearing from others that have been through it helps so much. Congrats on 40 weeks! Can’t wait to hear about here arrival 🙂

    • Congratulations Megan! So excited for you. I’m so sorry to hear that you’re still stressing but I think it’s just part of the game for us. It will all be worth it in the end. Best of luck to you!

  • I appreciate how open you are in this post! I’m still so excited that you are finally at this point after waiting and trying, and I keep thinking of you and your husband as your due date approached. Good luck with the delivery!! Hopefully you won’t have to wait too much longer to meet your little girl. 🙂

    Even with the pits you describe, your post still brings me a lot of joy and hope for my own journey. <3

  • Allison

    I sort of love that you haven’t loved being pregnant!! I have three of the most beautiful children and I can’t say I loved being pregnant with any of them!!! I too, was very sick with my daughter until about 22 weeks ~ every day!!! I know that I should have loved creating life and it shouldn’t have mattered what my body looked like but it bothered me and I’m not ashamed anymore to admit it! So, that being said, best of luck to you with the birth plan that you want. Shortly, you’ll forget how unfun ( I know that is not a word) being pregnant was, until the next time, and be grateful to God for giving you the most perfect child!! I enjoy your blog immensely!!

    • So sorry to hear that all three pregnancies were tough for you. I keep hoping my second one will be easier 🙂

  • Michelle

    Agreed with a lot of this! Especially the first trimester fears. At my 8 week ultrasound (sounds morbid) but I was fully prepared for the tech to say there was no heartbeat since I’d had a miscarriage before. Hearing his little heartbeat was absolutely incredible and so uplifting!

    I actually went to Europe for 2 weeks at 27 weeks and it was amazing. The second trimester was wonderful for me! I’d highly recommend a babymoon for those who can travel!

    • Same! I was expecting the worst going into that ultrasound. Such a surprise, right?

  • Thanks Katie! I loved finding out the gender because it helped me feel connected to her for the first time. I felt a strong disconnect before that which I’m pretty sure was a coping mechanism because of the miscarriages. Once I found out the gender, it made a world of difference!

  • Alexandra

    I loved being pregnant with the exception of the first two months which were rough with morning sickness. Other than that, I felt on a high & had tons of energy (more than I had before my pregnancy).

  • Alexandra

    I enjoyed my entire pregnancy with all three of my babies (first two months were a bit rough with morning sickness, but I know that means the baby is growing & thriving) and had so much more energy than I expected. We are expecting our fourth in December and so far it has been smooth sailing as well. Best of luck to you!

  • Britta

    Don’t sell yourself short! It’s 10 months and we should get credit for every week of misery!

  • Sara Vosler

    Just to put your mind at ease- I HATED every second of being pregnant three times other than the day they were born. That’s doesn’t make you a bad mom, it makes you human. I also hated being over due so hopefully you are in labor or on your way. I seriously thought if one more person called to ask if I had her yet, I would lose my mind.

  • I am so with you on not believing anyone who says they loved being pregnant! I hated it both times, though it was different each time, it was still the worst! I felt guilty hating it when so many people can’t even get pregnant but ugh it was the worst! Excited to see this next part of your journey!

  • Elizabeth Kaplan

    I absolutely understand and empathize with the fact that you had a very difficult nine months, and that’s OK! But it’s absolutely just as OK for us women who absolutely LOVED being pregnant to share that with the world. Pregnancy is different for everybody, and it’s unfortunate that you didn’t really enjoy it. The end result, as you say, is the most amazing reward. Women experience childbearing differently, and it’s OK to enjoy being pregnant just as it’s OK not to. I 100% loved being pregnant, and it’s OK if you don’t believe me! 🙂

    • I’m so jealous! I really wanted to be one of those women. I’m hoping that with my second baby, I have a beautiful pregnancy experience like you did. It sounds so amazing!!

  • Mary Fremeau

    I am re-reading this now, and I am wondering: any tips for the horrible nausea?
    thank you in advance, Julia!
    xxoo
    Mary
    http://www.BelleOnTrend.com

    • Hi Mary! I wish I could help. I just drank a lot of seltzer mixed with ginger ale. Even water was sometimes too much for me! Nothing really worked except for that and saltines in my first trimester… Sorry I’m not more helpful!

      • Mary Fremeau

        no, that’s totally fine!! Seltzer water and ginger ale would be a great mix! Thank you so much!! You are a huge help :):)