Since my pregnancy I’ve had a few questions from men and women curious to know what pregnancy feels like. I’ve also patiently listened to a few uninformed misinterpretations of what other people thought pregnancy was like. So here’s my attempt to share a very subjective personal experience.
First off, no two pregnancies are alike. There are patterns of symptoms that pregnant women get, but the overall experience for each woman is very different. Why? Because our bodies are different, the reasons we got pregnant are different, our lives are different, our families are different, and so on.
So my experience is really a speck of sand, a snowflake, a blink of an eye. It is unique but of little significance to anyone other than myself, and my immediate family. So, if you’re here for some profound insight into the universal experience of pregnancy or motherhood, I suggest you look elsewhere. But if you’re bored and have nothing else to do, why not read on.
Getting out of bed in the morning felt like getting off an hour long roller coaster. I was disheveled, disoriented and nauseated. During the day, it felt like I was battling a hangover at work. I shamefully sneaked off into the bathroom every 30 minutes dry-heaving or sometimes full on vomiting my guts out. I strategically tried to avert eye contact with coworkers, loud noises and bright lights. I counted down the minutes until I could go home and crawl into bed again.
My body produced an insane cocktail of hormones. I felt like a lethal combination of uppers and downers was intravenously injected into my bloodstream every 2 hours. Some moments, I felt excited and delighted. Other moments, I felt mournful and depressed. The triggers for these drastic mood swings were unpredictable. While playing with my daughter, I felt excited that she’ll have a sibling in her life. Then a few moments later, while playing with my daughter, I was nostalgic for the present moment, mournful of missing my daughter when baby comes to monopolize my time and attention. Same scenario, completely different feelings and thoughts.
I felt relief from the nausea and random mood swings. I started to feel baby growing. She was growing exponentially. I started to notice baby’s movements, and how she was rapidly rearranging my internal organs. While she was redecorating, I felt my innards shifting and changing.
My stomach was dramatically downsized. I could only eat a handful of food at any given time. If I ate too much, I would instantly feel ill. But because I ate so little, I was constantly hungry. My bladder was also downsized. It shrank to the size of a peanut. It felt like baby’s sadistic little hands loved squeezing on this tiny peanut every hour. And when she squeezed, I ran to the nearest bathroom to pee out a few droplets of the water I drank only minutes ago. This sweet little torment persisted all through the second and third trimester.
I currently resemble a fertility statue. My breast are each the size of my head, and my belly is so huge I barely recognize my flattened bellybutton. None of my bras fit, but my protruding belly does such a great job at holding up my breast, I fail to see the purpose of bras anymore.
Baby is very active now. She is most active at night, when I am most exhausted and desperate for sleep. I can see my belly undulating every time she rolls over from one side to the other. She also loves to wildly swing her elbows and legs around, making my internal organs the walls of her private bouncy castle. Her kicks are sometimes so powerful, I’m thrown off my center of gravity. Sometimes these powerful kicks would jerk me awake in the middle of the night. As I try to fall back asleep, she would play her sweet little game of squeezing my peanut bladder until I’m forced out of bed once again to pee the little droplets of liquid I have left in my dehydrated body.
In earnest, pregnancy is an uncomfortable biological phenomenon, but spiritually and emotionally it is the most rewarding ride of my life. I am awed every single day. I can’t believe a little conscious life is growing inside me. I haven’t met her yet, but I am already deeply in love with her.
Thanks for reading! 🙂