8 Things No One is Talking About When Pregnant - Let's Get Real
The real talk you have been waiting for, but for some reason no one talks about - all the unexpected side effects of being pregnant, that we need to feel comfortable talking about.
Hey! Me over here - 22 weeks preggo and chugging right along. I was getting my hair cut, with my stylist whom I ADORE. We are both pregs, me with my 2nd and her first. We got to chatting about symptoms, and of course the things NO ONE tells you, or even asks about.
Let me start by saying - I am so happy to bring another life into this world, to snuggle and love forever. There are so many cool things about pregnancy, feeling the little nugget move for the first time, great hair, one day your stomach is massively cute...
Then, there are the struggles, all totally worth it, but 100% real and should be chatted about more.
I have no shame, and neither should you - you're growing a full human being. (PS Im sure there are many more, there are just what are on my mind.
1. Con-sti-pation - Do I need to say more? This is the number one thing about pregnancy i detest the MOST. Probably the only thing I would say affects me all day every day and weighs on my mind. When you go from being a regular pooper, to never knowing if you will have more than a deer pellet going on, it can be pretty disappointing, and uncomfortable. (Anyone else announce to the house when they have a real BM again?) This is super common, and annoying, not only caused by hormones, but it seems some prenatal vitamins can make it worse. Some things that have worked for me : Yogurt, Kombucha, Probiotics (from the refrigerated section), lots of water, squatty potty (this was $5 at IKEA). (Of course talk to your Dr about these options first!)
Thanks to all of this, hemorrhoids are very real - luckily there are "some very easy solutions."
2. Weird Cramping - period like, legs, neck, back, arm, wrists - no one wants to be a complainer, but these is the most random and inexplicable cramping that occurs. Commonly mentioned is in your abdomen - round ligament - as your belly grows those muscles have to stretch. BUT what about feeling like you have the arthritis of a 85 year old? Or the upper arm/elbow cramp that makes me worried I have a heart attack... apparently these are all pretty normal, but no one told me I would wake up daily and wonder why a different part of my body was hurting. Again, if you are worried, always call your doc!
3. Eating for 5, wait no food thanks - I went to my doctor the other day and she asked me of I was eating. With August (my first baby) I gained 50 lbs. But so far I have gained 0 lbs. Every pregnancy is different I suppose. Some days I am an ravenous beast, other days nothing is appetizing. My sweet B made salmon last night and I could hardly take a bite, my brain was like NO WAY. Protein has been tough for me to stomach this time around. Ultimately I try to make sure I am eating healthy as much as possible, even when I am binging on chocolate - at least it is dark and organic, right?
4. Uh, sex - I mean this in the best way possible. Word on the street is coming in to your 2nd trimester your sex drive may be through the roof. I am torn on this, yes I did sense a spike, did I want to get wild when it got down to it, depended on the minute, but not usually. Like having poison ivy break out, but no desire to itch it - except when I'm daydreaming. I feel so uncomfortable in my body most of the time, and being pregnant sometimes makes it hard to get appropriately aroused as not to be in any pain, and harder to climax. I'm more interested in getting as much sleep as possible. Investing in this bad boy (BOB) might be worth your while.
NOTE: some people experience the opposite of above - you GET IT gurl.
Update: 22 weeks for sure kicked up the drive
5. Snot - This has becoming something else I completely fixate on. My nose is always congested. Not runny, but just all blocked up. I feel like I'm about to develop a bad picking habit because I am so desperate. I am sleeping with a humidifier, but don't notice much of a difference. No solutions for this one yet - you have any?
Update: Yes I am an old grandpa and sleeping with those nose strips periodically, they are straight magic.
6. Pregnancy BO - THIS is 100% caused by hormones. I noticed this after I gave birth to A and my hormones shifted. I smelled like a body builder after 3 hours at the gym x 100. Eventually as my body regulated I went back to my regular bo. BUT this pregnancy the BO situation popped up almost as soon as I got pregnant. I was walking around embarrassed all the time, and made my friends swear to tell me if I smelled like Chicken Tikka (YUM). It has definitely gotten more bearable as I entered my 2nd trimester. Personally, I feel strongly about using deodorant with no aluminum, luckily it is trendy now, but not always as effective. Depending on the day I use Arm and Hammer or Native. It is for sure important to use what works best for your skin. If its really bad I do a tiny dab a tea tree oil to fight bacteria - BE CAREFUL if you have sensitive skin.
7. It's ok to not love your preggo body - woof. This is a tough one. I always joke to B that I am getting "fat" - aka im pregnant and my stomach is growing. But weird unexpected things happen to your body when you are growing a human. My skin is so dry is is peeling off my face, my butt has just become part of my thigh, my arms wobble more when I wave (Note: they already did this), my joints all feel rusty. I don't quite feel the glow that I wish I did, and felt more with A. BUT I do LOVE what my body is doing, and am proud of the work it takes to grow this little bean. To help love the way my body physically looks - even though it still doesn't feel great - I have started a self portrait series to document growth and emotion. It has made me appreciate these limbs more than ever. I recommend being ok with not having a glow, and just loving what your body is making you.
8. No sleep. (I should just leave it at this)
I know a lot of people have difficulty sleeping in general. But my mom calls me the "8 Girl." I always slept from 8pm to 8am (I set and rise with the sun naturally, so winter is tough to function), got 88s on all my exams in school, I was born on the 8th... With August I only had issues sleeping when I was well into my 3rd trimester, the snoogle was really helpful up to about 7/8 months. This time around I need a different pillow every week (we have a closet full of them now), I have tried sleepy time tea, no napping during the day, napping, noise maker, sleeping in the guest room. NADA. Again just trying to appreciate my body for doing something amazing, rather than hating on it for being tired but not sleeping.
ONE thing that has helped a little is taking my prenatals in the morning (before noon), they seem to boost my energy so before bed is not working.
Update: My midwife recommended Magnesium powder - TALK TO YOUR DR about this as something that could help with sleep. And as I said before, those nose strips!
Phewwwwww. I am sure there are so many more things that need to be discussed. Please do comment and discuss below! Or always feel free to reach out and chat more.
Peace + Love