Depending on which list you get when you google, on average, I have found that there are 11 common icky pregnancy side effects (in no particular order):
- Frequent urination
- Mood swings
- Gas and bloating
- Itchy skin
- Swollen extremities (edema)
- High blood pressure
- Back pain
I had nine on this list of most common side effects plus a few more to round out my pregnancy.
When I went to my doctor to confirm whether or not I was pregnant, he discovered that I had extremely low progesterone levels. Not a good thing as your progesterone is what keeps the lining of your uterus thick for egg implementation and helps maintain your pregnancy until your placenta takes over. TMI? The next two weeks I received progesterone shots.
In addition, the nausea kicked in. I’m not talking about hugging the porcelain goddess for a few minutes and getting relief nausea- this was all day all night nothing helped nausea. It was awful. Side effect #1.
When I went in for my second progesterone shot at 9 weeks, I informed my doctor of the extreme nausea and thank the lord there was a pill for that! Woohoo! Except the pill made me constipated. Side effect #2.
At this same appointment, I was told that the progesterone shots were not working well enough so I was introduced to a little white bullet called progesterone vaginal suppositories. Without getting too personal (oh wait… I’ve already gotten too personal), let’s just leave it at once inserted I had to lay down for 30 minutes to ensure proper absorption. Do this three times a day. Fun times.
The next week, Walt are I were headed to Hawaii. A trip that I was really looking forward to until I got pregnant. In hindsight, if we had known how easy it was going to be to get pregnant we would have waited to start trying after the trip. Again, yes, I know how blessed we were to have gotten pregnant on the first try. But still. And yes, I know how lucky we were to be able to go to Hawaii, but for someone who gets air sick and her Transderm patch is on the do not take while pregnant list, I was getting quite nervous about the plane ride. Plus who wants to lay down in the middle of the Hawaiian “jungle” to insert her vaginal suppository? This was shaping up to be a pretty interesting trip.
Despite the nausea and constipation, I made it through the trip and it was pretty spectacular.
Moving on. My pregnancy progressed as it should. Frequent urination, including little surprises when I coughed or sneezed. Mood swings, that were so dramatic that one time I got so upset at a baby store, I left Walt just standing in the aisle wondering what happened to the woman he married. Hives, spontaneous gas and a backne explosion. Side effects 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. You get the picture.
Sleepless nights, weight gain, can’t get comfortable, looking fat versus pregnant. It. Was. Awesome.
Oh, did I mention I was diagnosed with sleep apnea in my first trimester? Take that miserable pregnant lady!
However, there were a few magical moments sprinkled in. Seeing Baby T for the first time and I mean recognizing that you’re looking at a real human being and not something that looks like a funky walnut. The “We’re having a boy!” moment to share with your family and friends.
My brother and his wife getting pregnant and being seven months apart. It was comforting to know I had someone close to me in going through the same thing. “A,” if you’re reading this, you glowed! Don’t care what you say! 🙂
And a wonderful baby shower. Spending the day with friends and family, showering me with wonderful gifts for Baby T was in a word spectacular!
At seven months, the real serious stuff started. Extreme high blood pressure and edema. Edema so severe that I was loving referred to as “Chubby Feet.” Yes! Cankles! See exhibit “A” and “B.”
My blood pressure was so high my doctor put me on bed rest for the duration of my pregnancy. I remember that day. On a whim, hunch, soon to be mother’s intuition, whatever you want to call it, I went in to see my doctor. My blood pressure was 180/90. I may be exaggerating a tad, but it was scary high. Strap a fetal monitor around my belly and monitor Baby T’s heart rate for awhile high.
I spent the remainder of my pregnancy working from home on the sofa or in bed with my feet propped up. Counting downs the days until Baby T was here – that story to be told later.
I was, for most of my pregnancy, miserable. I didn’t like being pregnant. I wasn’t excited about being pregnant. I didn’t have any bonding with baby moments. I didn’t take a single bump shot. I was plagued with feelings of “jeez… when will this be over? I’m miserable. Give me another cupcake. Why did you do this to me Walt?”
I started part one of this post saying that I wanted to tell my story to bring comfort to all the women out there that suffered from an “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” pregnancy. To say, that it’s ok to dislike being pregnant and that it’s ok to shout at the top of your lungs “BEING PREGNANT SUCKED!!!!!!”
But my story is also for me. Writing it down and remembering every miserable moment of my pregnancy, reminds me that it was worth every slow second that ticked by. Because now… I am blessed, every too fast second now that ticks by, with the most precious gift that I could ever hope for – Lucas Daniel.
And one last thought… there are no words to express how much I appreciated Walt during this time. I put him through the ringer. Yes, words were spoken, but through it all, he was patient, kind, loving, caring and most of all understanding. He knew I was miserable and he was supportive through it all, including gaining a few pounds of sympathy weight.
Walt… love you mean it… always and forever.