Yay you’re pregnant!
If you are like most new mothers-to-be,you have probably already gone out to purchase the latest and greatest “how to” book on pregnancy.
Because even though women have been birthing babies since the dawn of time, we rarely talk or think about the subject until we actually get pregnant.
Then it’s a mad dash to the bookstore to do a crash course on the ins-and-outs of motherhood.
That’s what I did the first time I found out I was expecting, anyway! Within hours of peeing on an overpriced stick (as well as my hand holding said stick) I stocked up on the requisite prego prep books.
Although I picked up a few facts, I couldn’t get over how dull many of these books were. For how overwhelming a time this is for a woman, you would think these books would at least take an attempt at levity. Besides the lack of humor, they were also incomplete and not very relatable. Why were so few real life situations being documented? Only days before I saw those two blue lines on the pregnancy test, I had been running the beer pong table at a Halloween party. Even though I had no clue I was pregnant at the time, and immediately halted all drinking (and dressing up as a ninja turtle) upon finding out, I still felt intense shame and fear that I had harmed my baby.
I desperately needed to be reassured that these types of things happen, but instead I was left reading about the comparison of the size of my fetus to a peach. It wasn’t until my first doctor’s appointment that I was finally talked off the ledge.
Now that I have had two children, I understand just how many little details most books leave out and, shockingly, even experienced moms don’t openly talk about. For instance, the moment you become pregnant your hormones literally hijack your body leading to all sorts of crazy changes. Night sweats, hair growth, and progression in nipple size are just to name a few. By the time I was four months into my pregnancy, I had sweat through every sheet in the house, was sporting a full mustache, and had nipples so big you could serve dinner on them.
As my pregnancy advanced, it just kept getting worse. I felt like I had turned into a geriatric patient. I was peeing twice an hour, struggling with fatigue and back pain, and forgetting where I put my car keys on a daily basis.
Why didn’t anyone warn me that becoming pregnant meant I would turn into a Golden Girl?
Then came the coup de grâce of bodily surprises… hello, hemorrhoids! Never did I imagine, nor did anyonemention, that I would one day go to wipe and find an unwelcome lump between my tush and my hoo-ha.
Changes to your body are not the only things that you will be faced with. There are many other situations that pop up throughout pregnancy that you may not be prepared for. Like, beware of maternity clothes overindulgence. I wish someone had told me in advance that size small maternity jeans would not be big enough to cover up my pregnant belly by month five.
Speaking of the baby bump, did you know it has magical powers to attract human touch? For some reason, people can’t seem to resist it. I was okay with the occasional elderly lady giving my belly a rub, but by month nine, I was only a few strangers away from investing in a Taser.
Then comes labor and delivery, which isabsolutely nothing like they show on screen! I guess no one wants to sit through a twenty-hour movie.
As drastically unprepared as I felt during my first pregnancy, in the end I made it through. The instant my baby was placed in my arms, the good, the bad, and the just plain gross things I went through during the previous forty weeks (even the fact that only moments ago I pooped myself during labor), were replaced with pure joy.