Physical Realities of Pregnancy

Because apparently pregnancy is all I can write about on this blog anymore. Don’t worry fair readers, in about two months I will no longer be pregnant, and we will ALL rejoice! (But then I’ll write about newborns. Look, I’m not forcing anybody to read this stuff.)

Many many moons ago I had a roommate who has a pretty severe form of Celiac Disease. She was awesome a great, but had all of these bizarre side effects from her illness. She would routinely come home and tell us things like “Guys, today I pooped whole broccoli.” (Incidentally, broccoli is one of those words I will never ever ever spell correctly the first time.) I once witnessed her become dyslexic for an evening after she ate a piece of cake (the last piece of cake she has ever eaten, last I heard). It was one of the weirdest things that has ever happened to me. When you live with someone who is that up front about the physical ramifications of her disease, well, it kind of breaks your “this is a thing about my body that is commonly considered socially acceptable to talk about” filter. I’m usually about half way through a “TMI” story before I realize that this person might not want to know this many details about my body, and at that point my foot is already lodged in my mouth.

Which is all a preface to say that if you feel weird about physical realities of things like pregnancy and diseases, this is not the post for you. It’s also a way to blame my friend for breaking a social filter–like I needed one fewer of those! I’m already at below minimum on my number of social filters!

My extended disclaimer is now over.

So. Pregnancy stats, as it were.

Starting weight: 130 lbs
Present weight, 32 weeks: 172 lbs

I anticipate gaining 5-10 more pounds before this is all done because, hey, there are like 8-10 weeks left for me. This has fascinated me, because when I was full term with Ruby, I weighed 165 pounds. I had started at 130, so there was a net gain of 35 pounds. But I also lost 10 lbs before I started putting weight on (thanks over-active pregnancy sickness) which put me at 120. So the gross gain was 45 pounds, which is much more similar to what I’m looking at this time around. I didn’t lose weight this time (thanks to not being as violently ill), so maybe the weight is just coming on differently. Or maybe this is just a different pregnancy, and I’m gaining a different amount of weight because of that. Maybe the baby’s bigger? Who knows.

Incidentally, I would much rather put on 50 pounds and only have terrible nausea and fatigue than put on 35 pounds and be vomitously ill for four months. I will take those 15 pounds with gladness if it means less misery. I also remain interested in whether this will make it harder for me to lose my baby weight this time around. My baby weight last time kind of melted off, which was fortunate for me because I didn’t do anything to help it. Unless you count breastfeeding; apparently you can burn like 300 calories a day breastfeeding, even when you’re sitting on the couch nursing and watching Hunt for Red October at 3 am because baby won’t sleep. It’s about the only thing I did to burn calories.

Heartburn: Yes. The past few weeks the heartburn has been slowly approaching. Fortunately, Tums still help.

Stretch marks: Yesser. In addition to the ones I got with my pregnancy with Ruby, I am now getting even more on my belly, breasts, thighs, hips, and belly button (weird, right?). Because, seriously? Those anticipated 50 pounds have to go somewhere. And my thighs are where my weight likes to come on.

So there’s this TV show called Bones that features an forensic anthropologist who can tell you things about a person’s life just by looking at her bones. Like, she can tell you that this victim broke her arm when she was around 8, probably falling off her bike, based on the age of the victim (also identifiable by her bones), how much the bone has healed, and the type of fracture it was. This character likes to note that our lives are literally etched on our bones. The reality is that our lives are also etched on our bodies, and this is something that I find really cool about stretch marks, scars, and other aspects of our bodies. I still have scars on my knees from when I got peer pressured into taking the training wheels off my bike and scraped up my knees trying to learn to ride without them. Even when I’m no longer carrying these babies, the fact that they were once a part of my body, of what I gave them physically, will forever be sketched into my skin, muscles, and organs. I will forever carry these stretch marks on my belly and breasts. After you have a baby, your uterus will never be the same shape, and I’m pretty sure that even your pelvic bones and vagina are somewhat altered by the experience. You can look at the new contours of your body and tell pieces of your life story from it. I think it’s fascinating that my life experiences can not only shape me emotionally, but they can also be physically written on who I am.

Vomitously ill? No!

For the most part. I’m still nauseous, and it’s actually been getting worse the past couple of weeks (hand in hand with heartburn, baby), but I’ve only thrown up a couple of days this time around as opposed to daily for months on end. I count this as a success.

Fatigue? Uber.

So, so tired. All day, every day. Ruby’s sleeping problems have exacerbated this. I am not yet at a point where I can write an entry about this while also feeling like my dignity is in tact.

Depression? Yeah. Kind of.

Between the fatigue (lack of sleep is a major trigger for depression for me) and the loneliness of Kyle basically working 11 hour days (between the commute and work), well, let’s just say that you can often gauge how good I’m feeling emotionally and physically by the state of my house. My house is a wreck right now. I basically call my mom every day, hang out with Amy as much as possible, and get Kyle snuggles to combat it; these things help.

Wow, this list make pregnancy look awful. I guess you can’t change the truth. I’m not one of those happy, healthy, joyous pregnant ladies. I’m a grumpy, feel-my-pain, curmudgeonly pregnant lady.

Why, then, you might ask, do you have these babies, Eliza? Why didn’t you wait longer before getting pregnant with this one?

Because. BABIES. I need all the babies.

There is no other reason.

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