I usually don’t go MIA for too long and in fact, this is my longest online hiatus to date but it’s all with good reason. I’m overjoyed to finally share that I’m going to be a mother and my husband, a father. There is a baby nutty brewing inside of me and he or she is expected to arrive in May 2016. Some of you may be surprised to hear that. In fact, when I told certain people I even got the question “but I thought you didn’t want kids?” This assumption is coming from a previous (and my most popular blog ever posted) called “To Conceive or not to Conceive?” In it, I expressed that my husband and I were undecided on the subject on procreating. We would go back and forth between the decision that we never took lightly. In the post I expressed the following statements:
Unfortunately, I honestly believe people today are choosing to have kids for all the wrong reasons. We are terrified of losing the race against time, the possibility of infertility issues, the fear of leaving this world scared and alone. We feel inadequate next to our friends growing lively little families and we feel constant judgement and pressure from the world. Although I can understand those reasons, I never wanted any of them to be the rationale behind our conception.
The future of our family was put in the hands of the baby gods over a year ago. Would I say we were “trying” for that past year? No. We simply left it up to fate. If it happened it happened and if it didn’t it didn’t. In that past year did I struggle with fertility issues? Were my hormones so unbalanced that it took a while to conceive? I don’t know. I do know that I was working with several holistic professionals to help balance my hormones (and not to conceive just for optimal health). I worked with a homeopath, acupuncturist, and reflexologist. I also studied my diet and made suggestive changes. I focused on cleansing my liver and although I felt as if I was getting nowhere I still tried to remain patient with the journey. My painful periods never subsided and oftentimes it led me to believe I was making no progress at all. I’m left to wonder if this pregnancy a sign of progress or was it just an effortless result of a loving act on that perfect day at the perfect hour? I don’t know. We will never know. What I do know is that we were blessed with this little life thriving inside of me. This is the hand that the baby gods dealt us and we fully accept it with honour and pleasure.
MY FIRST TRIMESTER
I knew very early on that I was pregnant (at 3 weeks) and for one reason alone. There was one particular “effect” (I refuse to use the word symptom as symptoms are accompanied with illness and creating a human is anything but) that could not be ignored. My breasts were throbbing. Let me tell you right now that breast “tenderness” is the most underrated thing I have ever heard. I felt as if each boob had its own pulse.
Fatigue was nothing new for me (thanks to my chronic hormonal imbalances) so my zombie like demeanour was not a red flag for me. It did hit me harder after about a month or so and I found all I wanted to do was watch Netflix and (actually) chill. I had no desire to food prep, meal prep, cook or bake. I never opened my laptop for anything besides watching TV curled up in a ball. No blogging happened, no recipe creating, and definitely no daydreaming about vegetables. How I made it to boot camp during this time is beyond me.
Aside from killer boobs and fatigue I felt fine for those first 3 weeks. I did avid research on preventing morning sickness because as a registered massage therapist, I could not afford to be puking while practicing. I was feeling pretty good. I was feeling so good in fact that I was borderline cocky. Then hit week 6. Fuck. This is what people talk about. Luckily I never vomited, but no matter what I did there were 3 weeks of unsettling nausea. I was taking magnesium supplements to fight the discomfort. I wore Sea Bands bracelets when I wasn’t working. I added ginger to everything I ate and drank. I bought ginger chews and even bought saltines (I haven’t had those in years). My sickness was the worst overnight. I believe this is because I would go so long without eating. I discovered that if I did eat something small every few hours I would feel completely fine but anything longer-the placenta building station got all pissy with me. Therefore I would munch on a few crackers in my bed in the dark after a few of the zillion times I would get up to pee overnight. It helped.
This is where Nutty4Nutrition died. As soon as week 6 hit, baby Nutty murdered mama Nutty. I read that quality sources of protein helped play a huge role in battling the nausea but I unfortunately had no interest in protein. I added hemp hearts in everything I could because I was not feeling animal protein nor was I even fond of beans or legumes. All this baby wanted was fruit and carbs. This was a huge mind fuck for me. As much as I knew that this time was imperative to eat well I just couldn’t help eating the crap that I was craving. My mornings started off well with my loaded smoothies full of nutrients but from there it all went downhill. During my first trimester I ate unimaginable things that Nutty would never consume in copious amounts. Gluten galore, dairy delight, and I think I could have lived off of potatoes (but that’s nothing new). I bought things I haven’t had since I was a naïve teenager. The thought of vegetables made me gag and the only color I ingested was from fruits. I can feel your judgy eyes beaming at me through the screen. Listen, unless you have been here I’m just going to tell you right now that the first trimester is a wild ride and you have next to no control. I would read blogs of fitness queens and nutritionist divas sharing all the healthy foods they ate throughout their pregnancies. They emphasized the importance of eating right and expressed that our babies need us to lead the healthiest of lifestyles yet. At first heir words made me feel hella guilty but they eventually led me to irritation. Listen, obviously some people can do it. If you have been here and managed to maintain a clean diet, congratulations superwoman. Hang tight while I go grab you a cape to symbolize your immortal strength. ..Everybody is different and at the end of the day I was just happy I could eat because I have friends that couldn’t keep a goddamn thing down no matter how hard they tried.
I do suffer with constipation but I knew I would. I knew that a lazy digestive system was a possible effect of baking a bun and I knew that it would affect me without a doubt. Nutty4Nutrition was created as a result of me trying to get a healthy handle on my digestion. Constipation was nothing new to me. Been there, done that. I was thankful for everything I have learned on my Nutty journey in regards to aiding digestion because at least I knew ways to support my gut throughout this slow moving slug of a time. My morning smoothies are packed with fibre (and irish moss) and all I drink all day long is good old water. I snack on dates and plums and other fruits high in fibre and still take my probiotics (and even digestive enzymes on occasion). My bathroom frequency is far from ideal but I do what I can.
Well, here’s another déjà vu. Hi cystic acne that I have missed so much-not. I swear I have this one honker that is still sitting on my face and it’s been there since the beginning (I’m currently writing this at 13 weeks). It is just a hard, stubborn lump of nothing and it doesn’t seem to be parting ways anytime soon. I also knew acne would affect me as well as I have also suffered with it in the past. To be honest, I thought it would bother me more than it does but I don’t care. It is what is and hormones run this show.
All in all
Aside from those major points, I also noticed a few random effects. My boobs and belly started to get itchy pretty early on forcing me to lotion every day to relieve discomfort. Speaking of my boobs, they are ginormous (so much so that they gave my pregnancy away a few times) and my nipples are already starting to resemble something horrific and mammoth-like. I definitely have prego brain. I forgot the pin to my visa a week ago and I still can’t remember even one digit for the life of me. I have a lot of important events coming up (weddings, showers, and bachelorettes) and I’m terrified that I will forget to show up to something in the midst of the chaos (I’m included in them all).
My friends warned me that pregnancy is not fun. They confided that it’s a period of time where you feel sick, bloated, fat, and uncomfortable. And as much as that may be true, I also feel awesome. Yes my boobs hurt but they are getting ready to feed my child. Yes I pee a gazillion times a day but it’s because my hCG levels are off the chain and my baby is growing. No, I’m not eating the cleanest diet but hey, I’m having fun. I missed perogies. Yes I’m constipated but my progesterone is naturally heightened (which is protocol) and this slows down digestion. Yes, I’m bloated but that is nothing new for me and it’s the first time where I’m supposed to be so hallelujah. I’m anticipating the arrival of my bump so intensely that I analyze my profile several times a day. I have been blessed with the gift of growing a child. Unfortunately, not everybody is able to conceive and I vow to always keep that in mind throughout this journey. Instead of complaining about the process I’m going to enjoy it. I always knew I’d love being pregnant. I’m so excited to dress my bump, feel my body change, and embrace this new journey. It’s ironic because most ladies dread pregnancy and get anxious at the thought of labour. I’m totally game for all of that (I’ve got my doula lined up and all), it’s the aftermath-the arrival of our baby into this world that scares the shit out of me. That’s when I need to learn how to change a diaper, treat rashes, and decode moans, whines, and cries. It is when I need to master the rather misunderstood art of breastfeeding, multitasking, and patience. It’s when I, somebody who rarely brushes her hair, will be expected to care for and raise a decent human being. I have faith that we will be ok. Every parent gets by somehow and it’s by simply doing the very best they can. That’s our game plan anyway.
Ladies, what were your experiences with pregnancy? I'd love to hear it all-the good, the bad, and the ugly!