Now that I have your attention (and have possibly scarred you for life) with my Photoshopped creation of preggers-Ed Koch…let’s talk pregnancy unpleasantries!
I haven’t blogged much about my pregnancy, for a few reasons: 1. It’s been fairly uneventful in the grand scheme of things; 2. I’ve admittedly been more focused on work than the actual workings of pregnancy; 3a. A Green(ish) Life is a blog dedicated to my life/interests in general, and there’s a lot more to that than this one aspect; 3b. The readers of A Green(ish) Life don’t seem to be clamoring for more pregnancy posts; 4. I really really don’t want to be one of those chicks who thinks her pregnancy is THE most important thing going on in the lives of those who know her, and so feels compelled to post minute-by-minute updates of preggers minutiae on Facebook:
Status Update (8:30am): I’M CRAVING PANCAKES
Status Update (8:45am): HUBBY IS NOW MAKING ME PANCAKES – HE’S THE BEST HUSBAND IN THE WORLD (AND THE FATHER OF MY UNBORN CHILD)
Status Update (8:50am): OMG – I’VE NOW EATEN EVERY PANCAKE IN THE HOUSE. THIS PREGNANCY IS SOOOO CRAZY!
Comment on friend’s vacation photo (8:51am): GREAT PHOTO…REMINDS ME OF THE 50 PANCAKES I JUST ATE….BECAUSE I’M PREGNANT!
Yeah…THAT person. Besides, let’s face it – everyone has their own life going on and a random bump photo or humorous preggo-observation every now and then is plenty to keep them informed. If people want to know more about how you’re doing, they will ask!
On that note, I started to notice that the opening line to almost every conversation I have nowadays is “How are you FEELING?” At first I didn’t know how to respond. Was there a correct/incorrect answer? Was this simply a polite question that only wanted a generic response? How much did they really want to hear? Eventually, I found myself delivering a standard-answer of “A little tired, but other than that I’m good!”…when in reality I would just love to UNLOAD the details of my daily uphill battle onto the unsuspecting ears of the asker:
“I wake every morning after an average 3 hours of sleep due to a combination of getting up to pee 50 times and choking on Vesuvius-level acid reflux. I roll my pumpkin-esque girth out of bed only to be greeted by a combination of paralyzing leg-cramps in my calves and sciatic nerve pain shooting from my lower back down into my thighs. After slathering myself with Icy-Hot, I butt-scoot my way down the too-steep-steps of my house (a home improvement project that my husband has been putting off since Feb/March), get ready for work, eat breakfast and make sure to not forget my first of many double-shots of Tums on my way out of the door. Upon arriving at work, I slowly and painfully ascend the stairs with careful footsteps and squeeze myself into the ever-shrinking space between my chair and desk. Then I either sit at my desk all day (which aggravates the sciatica), run around at a Trek all day (which aggravates the sciatica), or perform some combination of both (which aggravates the sciatica). On top of that, I can’t seem to remember anything, am constantly overheating, can barely keep my eyes open and am waddling to the bathroom every half hour. Meanwhile, I still hold myself to the high standards of putting out the same quality of work I always do, at the same rate, despite the baby constantly trying to claw his way out of my womb sideways, much like the fork stuck in that dead guy’s throat in the Beetlejuice waiting room. When I get home (after anything from an 8-12 hour day, of a possibly 8-10-day work week), I slip into my sexiest muu-muu and either weep uncontrollably with frustration or awkwardly perch, slack-jawed, in front of the TV until it’s time to go to “sleep” and start the whole process over again.
For real. Anyone who prances around claiming that they “Just LOOOOVED being pregnant” is either on drugs, was previously on drugs or was pregnant so long ago that they have romanticized the whole thing as being one-big magical, life-changing hippie dance around the friggin’ maypole.
There are a select few who get the real-deal earful. For one, I love lamenting to my currently preggers or recently preggers friends who fire back with sympathy and horror stories of their own. Misery loves company. For seconds, I make sure to also share my pain with my high school-girl interns. Partially because, well, they’re there…but also because I feel it’s my civic duty to scare them away from teen pregnancy (you’re WELCOME, dads!).
Don’t get me wrong – when I actually have a minute to stop and think about it, I am SUPER excited about having a baby and all the joys children will bring to my husband and I. Am I sometimes wishing I had bypassed these unpleasant symptoms and just adopted a baby carried and birthed by someone else? Ermagherd….YES!
Seriously though, I think a lot of my difficulties have come from the combination of these physical challenges and a very mentally challenging job. When I was nearly single-handedly planning my own wedding, I was working at a brainless job….and that was great, because I could focus on my important life event, and direct all my stress into that! I have most definitely NOT had that luxury this time around, which is a little sad. Who knows how much different this pregnancy would have felt if I had been able to sit at home the whole time and reflect on my changing body while painting abstract interpretations of my future birth experience?
But then again, I’m an ambitious working girl. And even though I moved away from NYC to live a more simple, aka green(ish), life, I was not happy when I simplified too much and no longer felt challenged by life. I have since found a happy medium, in life, love and work, and just have to keep reminding myself that these current feelings of extreme discomfort are only temporary….soon to be replaced by all the challenges of parenthood. Now if I can just get past this root canal I have scheduled for next week….