9 Things I Wish I'd Known About Pregnancy
There are so many pre-conceptions about pregnancy, the tit-bits that everyone comments on, wether good or bad. The morning sickness, the fat ankles, the irrational pickle cravings... But what about everything else? At this point, I could write a book on the qualms of pregnancy, but instead, I'll stick to the 9 things I wish someone had warned me about before I fell pregnant.
1. You will shop irrationally: Or at least, you will want to shop irrationally. No matter how good you are with money, or budgeting, or how tight your finances may be at the time, you'll always be able to convince yourself on that 40th baby-grow from Next. The urge to buy all of Baby Zara is insane. I am a big shopper as it is, and whilst everyone has told me not buy anything pre-baby-shower (which makes complete sense), I can't stop. I definitely need the 10 pairs of baby blue dungarees he'll know doubt have grown out of by the time I get round to trying them on him. The Ralph Lauren booties he can't even walk in are completely justified. Don't even get me started on the knitwear. And do you know what? I'm allowed to. Because I'm pregnant. There, I said it. Just prepare yourself.
2. Your toilet habits are as unreliable as your shopping trips: Prepare to pee 400 times a day, at this point I spend more time waddling to the office toilet and back than I do sat at my desk. Your bladder is permanently pressed on, peeing is inevitable, if not a bit annoying. Prepare to either be constipated or to poo for Britain: no in between. And there's absolutely nothing you can do about it.
3. Not everyone get's a glow: I don't have a glow. I don't even have a glimmer of a glow, not by any stroke of the imagination. Some folk thrive during pregnancy: they look the best they've every looked, not me. My skin is dull and an odd colour. The foundation I've worn for the past year relentlessly no longer fits my skin shade, and I can't seem to brighten up my complexion, no matter how much highlighter I pile on. While on holiday I couldn't tan at all, my skin wouldn't even burn, which was an odd experience, but either way left me feeling drab and pasty. My skins not all that's suffered, my hair has taken a hit, it's all just a bit lack-luster. Limp and lifeless, with no response to product. I think I just have to accept I'm one of those unlucky folk that just don't look very nice while pregnant, but then again, what's 9 months of dodgy appearance for a little bundle of joy?
4. You don't have to be happy about your pregnancy ALL of the time: For me, this is the most important one, and it is such a taboo subject. When you tell anyone your pregnant, I can almost guarantee that an 'Oh, how exciting!' comment, or something along those lines, will be passed in seconds. Pregnancy is an amazing thing, it's a blessing, but it's not always expected, or wanted, and it's OK not to be over the moon all of the time. When I fell pregnant, I cried for a good few days. Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't change my situation for a second, but initially, my world did crumble. It's ok not to feel ready, and to be upset about the things you will have to give up. A baby is life changing, and whilst you may welcome the new life with open arms, your still entitled to time to mourn your old life. An uncomplicated easy relationship, spontaneous outings, last minute holidays... Small things, but it's easy to focus on them at first, and that is OK. You won't always be happy about pregnancy ALL of the time, but it doesn't make you any less of a good mum. The sooner I realised this, the better my pregnancy got.
5. Your relationship will change: It won't ever be the same: sounds excessive, but it is true. That's not a bad thing though. For me, I've never appreciated my partner so much as I have during my pregnancy. I don't show my emotions all too often, and I've never been overly affectionate, but pregnancy has definitely warmed me up a little, and our relationship is in the best place it ever has been. Let's see how happy we are though following the night time feeds....
6. Everything gets bigger: When I say everything, I mean everything. I'm speaking to my own personal experience here, but so far, just about everything that could have gotten bigger, has gotten bigger. My stomach, my boobs (no complaints there), my ankles... all to be expected. No one told me it wouldn't just stop there though. My nipples are growing with every week, my bum is now equal to that of a Kardashians (an exaggeration albeit, but I've definitely gotten a bit rounder there), your lady bits also swell, much to my horror, and let's not forget about the ever-growing appetite that you can't actually take advantage of... which brings me to my next point.
7. You don't get to eat for two: I always said I couldn't wait to be pregnant so I could eat for two... no one told me that it might not actually be physically possible. I'd love to eat more, but my stomach literally won't allow it. I get full so quickly. Long gone are the days of a 3 course meal; the main is a struggle as it is right now. And the worst part is that I still want to eat everything under the sun, I just can't fit it in...
8. Being a hermit is OK: I'm tired. I don't like the way I look. I hate dealing with the same questions from strangers the minute I'm in public. I don't want to go out a lot. And that is OK!
It's perfectly normal to want to spend a hell of a lot of time on the couch; pregnancy is a valid excuse. I don't know why I had this pre-conceived notion that pregnancy would involve an abundance of lunches, coffee dates, family visits - little did I expect that much of my time would be spent in the comfort of my own home. Provided your not falling into the trap of isolating yourself, alone time is perfectly ok during pregnancy.
9. You might feel alone: This last one was the biggest surprise for me. I'm well supported - I'm in a stable, happy relationship, I have an amazing family and I've had the same 8 best friends since I was in high school, all of whom have claimed an auntie title. Yet, I still felt so alone. I'm the first of my friends to fall pregnant, at 22, I am still young, no one else in my close knit group is at this stage in their life yet, and that is scary. It's easy to feel isolated and like no one understands. This is where I've found the blogging world a bit of a safe haven. I've never used twitter so much in my life! Reading the posts of others who are in similar positions is reassuring, and I'm sure I'll continue to use the blogging world when my baby arrives. Feeling alone is alright, as long as you know that you never really are.
Well there we go, my 9 things I wish someone had told me before I got pregnant. Even with those 9 things, I've never been more excited for a chapter in my life, and I am ready to embrace motherhood with open arms (even if I'm not ready for the sleepless nights...).
Let me know what would be on your list if you could know anything before pregnancy, I'd love to hear someone else's perspective!.