Tales from the first trimester
The first trimester of pregnancy is a funny thing. You're elated that your body was able to conceive this wonderful miracle, yet terrified something will go wrong or you'll do something wrong — all while feeling nauseous and tired at the same time.
This is my first pregnancy, and this whole "growing a baby" thing is not only new for me and my body, but for my husband as well. There are things no one tells you about that first trimester, and though it's different for everyone, I'm sure a few of you moms and moms-to-be out there can relate to my experience. (And if you can't please just smile and nod to make me feel better.)
"My body is falling apart"
My first trimester I dealt with horrific seasonal allergies, sciatic nerve pain, a dental filling coming loose and nausea with food aversions to the point where practically all I ate was mac and cheese and applesauce. I naturally concluded — like any reasonable person — that my body was falling apart.
Realizing that your body is not your own and that a small alien has taken over was something difficult for me. Not being able to take certain allergy medications, eat certain foods or even get a dental X-ray was really cramping my style. I made about three phone calls to my OB before my first appointment because of these various issues and not knowing what was appropriate during pregnancy, which leads me to my second thought:
"I have to wait HOW long to see the doctor?"
Well, you've gotten that positive home pregnancy test and you call your OB to schedule your first appointment, which is in what feels like about seven years. I found out I was pregnant at four weeks and most doctors' offices prefer to do the first appointment around eight weeks … which meant we had to wait a month before seeing the doctor!
Thankfully, I have several close friends who are new moms that I could get the low-down from about what foods to avoid and other general guidelines before that visit. I also called the nurses in the office and they were super helpful to me and even mailed me some information I would be getting at my first appointment just in case I needed it.
I always wondered how women who truly don't know what to avoid manage in that time period before their first appointment. Are they just walking around eating raw sushi and drinking wine? If so, I'm envious of that life.
"I really don't want to make the 879 phone calls to all my friends and family to tell them I'm pregnant. Can't we just send an email?"
As insensitive as this sounds, I promise you I'm normally a very conscious communicator. When it came time to start telling extended family the news, the thought of calling all our family was horrifying. Ok, really it was my husband's family because there's about a gazillion of them all across the country. I knew everyone would be excited, but having to repeat the same types of things over and over wasn't appealing.
It made me envious of the GEICO® commercial in the late 90s where the name of the new father and collect caller from the pay phone was "Bob Wehadababyitsaboy" and that's how they told everyone the news. (Please tell me you remember — or just do the smile and nod thing again.)
In the end, we had my husband tell his extended family and I told mine. It felt equal that way, but I think I got the better end of the bargain. We told some family members while they were in groups to lighten the load, which I would recommend if possible for your family, followed immediately by "please don't post this on Facebook."
Susan is a first-time mom-to-be, communicator and frequent Google-er. She resides in Plano with her husband and fur-baby, Lucy. Follow her as she navigates the uncharted waters of pregnancy, motherhood and all that comes with it.