Behind The Scenes Of Starting A Family – Chapter 6: The First Trimester

If you haven’t started at Chapter 1 of the adventure, I recommend that you check it out–if nothing else to get to know me a little bit and figure out where we’re at on the journey to starting our family. Now that your caught up, let’s continue on.

The First Trimester – You Never See It Coming

Having a career where I am literally swimming in all things pregnancy, birth & baby All. The. Time. you’d think I’d know exactly what’s to come and what to do about it. Nope. I mean, there are tons of things that I’ve heard other moms talk about, but trekking along the adventure for yourself is a whole other ballgame.

The Nipples

You expect to feel bloated and your boobs to swell, but nothing truly prepares you for the sheer pain that your nipples will experience in those first few weeks. That feeling of searing pain when your bra accidentally tugs at them when you readjust, and finding out the hard way that ditching the bra is worse, yeah–nothing prepares you for that! Especially when they start frikken molting–that’s just great–and they become the most itchy you can imagine! And of course the more lanolin you put on, the more peely they become, and then itch more. Ugh. When will THAT stop!?

The Nausea

I even put strawberries in my salads!

You expect to feel nauseated, but it’s all the friggen time–and it’s this super shitty feeling where you can never tell if it’s just that slow hum of yuckiness, or if you should stay in the vicinity of some sort of sturdy receptacle. And to whoever decided to call it “morning sickness” is kidding themselves–it does not discriminate based on the time of day; that ball in your throat is just there, all the time. Oh, and then add heartburn–Hurray! And when the people who DO know about your pregnancy tell you to feel “lucky” because you aren’t “actually sick” every day is bullshit–just because there isn’t something physically exiting my body does not make the uncomfortableness or verge-of feeling any more bearable. Yes others have it worse, but that doesn’t make my experience any better. Let’s agree to let that one lay.

The only thing that seems to help at this point is to literally have a never-ending stash of strawberries on hand. For breakfast, snack, lunch-dessert, another snack, in dinner, bedtime snack, and sometimes I even need to go sneak a few in the middle of the night when the heartburn gets really bad. No matter how healthy or boring I eat, the heartburn never escapes–so I decided to keep eating my spicy foods and yummy snacks (still healthy) as I please and it certainly hasn’t made it worse so I call that a win. Also, cheese bread has entered the picture due to it’s magical properties of keeping nausea at bay when it gets really bad, which has kicked me out of my keto lifestyle, so I figured I might as well give that up while I still have the stamina to ‘recover’. BUT it means I get to eat other fruit again and drink orange juice, and indulge in parsnip, so there’s that. Excited about eating healthy foods? Another win for me in my books! But damn those prenatal pills make it difficult to process it all. My advice, make sure you have a book or a fully-charged smartphone in the bathroom with you cause you’ll be spending quite a while in there from hereon out. Between the frequent visits to pee, the lengthy visits to try-to-poop, and the in-between visits that shall not be named… Ugh.

The Sweat

Stephanie hard at work, with twins!

Onto the next thing that nobody likes to talk about: the sweat. I am not saying I am a leaky faucet or anything, but I am not exactly comfortable when my husband comes too close to me for fear of embarrassment. Turns out I just think it’s way worse because of the whole heightened-smell part of pregnancy, but god I feel like I smell so horrible. And it is so much worse while I am working. So much so, that I decided to opt out of the natural deodorant and take the risk for using my good ol’ functional antiperspirant. I do all of the healthy eating, walk a fair bit, and don’t eat the dangerous things (and gave up wine!), so a little ani-stink is my vice at this point and I am going to take it! My husband says he hasn’t noticed, and that I smell great, but I just think he really really loves me. It seems to have tapered off near the end of the first trimester, so I might revisit the natural route–maybe.

The Flab

Another fun tidbit that I have discovered about the first trimester, is that you just feel and look fat the entire time. No glow, no rounded belly, just enough flab to outgrow your pants… Combined with the rest of the goodies that come with it, this hasn’t exactly started out to be a fun experience. Especially when not everyone knows yet, you just have to hide your looks-like-a-food-baby-cause-not-quite-a-baby-bump-yet belly and yearn for the days where you can wear comfortable maternity pants instead of skinny jeans with an elastic holding your button done up. Yikes. I am already up two sizes, and I was definitely looking forward to when all of the important people knew, so I could crack out the yoga pants and maternity jeans. At least my husband still thinks I am sexy… (and I can tell when he is lying!)

The Fatigue

And by golly, the fatigue is almost worse than everything else. Seriously though, I got tired even drafting out this darn post. It makes doing everything so much more difficult than it needs to be. Going up the stairs, feeling like its a frikken mountain, only to forget why you actually went up there–really discouraging. And sitting at a desk for hours on end is dreadful on a regular day–pregnancy makes it feel like that much longer due to all the other things, but I find myself staring at my screen a lot wondering what I was supposed to be doing. Oops. Even the non-desk part of my work–aka cuddling babies!–has become more challenging and hard on my back. But nothing a good massage from my husband, some magnesium, and my chiropractor can’t fix! I am sure there will be more discoveries as I go along, heck the constant fatigue and memory issues have probably made me forget some already, but that’s the gist.

The Joy

People tell you all the time that you will feel so happy, and that all of the negatives will be oh so worth it, and will fade away once baby arrives. While I want to believe them, my joy is certainly accompanied by annoyance, frustration and fear. But, as an official graduate of the first trimester, I was treated with an ultrasound–complete with a dancing skeleton who waved at us–to commemorate the achievement, and to keep the encouragement alive as I grow this beautiful tiny human. Yeah, that creepy little thing is real, and the joy is starting finally starting to overcome.

The baby will be worth it. The baby will be worth it. The baby will be worth it. 

Ready for the next chapter? Here’s to continuing on the roller coaster of parenthood! Read on to Chapter 7

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