Thursday, January 9, 2014

Pregnancy: Learning All The Things

Guys, I have started several blog posts attempting to re-cap the last 16 weeks of pregnancy that have been saved in my Draft folder for weeks.  Yeah.  16 weeks-worth of pregnancy.  That's how long I haven't blogged about my tiny little human.  I was always sure that as soon as I was pregnant, I'd have blog material for daysss.  Which, I do…  But it apparently never occurred to me that I might have so much to blog about, that I wouldn't bother blogging about a dang thing.  Because that makes sense.

I even took the liberty of taking a picture a few days ago to prove that I have been trying to finish this post - but when I do, Bob's like, "Hey cool, snuggle time!" and parks his ass right on my laptop.  Then things kind of just spiral from there.  So let's just all agree to blame the cat.  Deal?

The post I've slowly been chipping away at is listing each week out separately with different things that happened that week - and it was just giving me a major OCD flare-up with how unorganized it was.  One second I'd be talking about how I couldn't stop farting to save my life - and the next second I was talking about going to the dentist for the first time in a year.  It was allllll over the place.  So, instead of taking you on a ride on my completely derailed brain train - I'm just going to tell you some of the things I've discovered while I've been pregnant - because as idiotic as pregnancy makes you feel, turns out there's plenty of learning opportunities.  Obviously the things I'm discovering about my pregnancy may not be applicable to other women's pregnancies - I promise I realize that pregnancy doesn't turn all of you into emotional gas machines with zits for days.  So when I say, "You will feel overwhelmed" and "You will pee your pants all the time", just keep in mind that I really mean me.  That said, this post may or may not take me 800 years to finish - so, shall we?  

(Also, I have no idea why random bullet headings are different sizes - and it's driving me crazy.  But if I try any more to fix it, I'll probably throw my laptop through the window.  So, my apologies to those of you with OCD.)

1.  Pregnancy glow isn't always beautiful.
Everyone always says that pregnant women have a certain "glow" about them that is just so beautiful.  What these people fail to mention is that sometimes that "glow" is coming from all the massive, bright red, brain-deep cystic zits that your face is covered in.  I mean, seriously?  Growing a human is just about the most womanly thing you can do - so what the hell is with all this 13 year-old boy acne?  I mean, my skin was never flawless to begin with, not by any stretch of the imagination - but this is just ridiculous.  I've put Muppet band-aids on my face to cover these zits, and even those look better.  Even my own husband gets sidetracked when he's talking to me as his eyes glance over and then fixate on these giant creatures living on my face.  And not only there, but they've started to spread to my chest and back and places I've never had acne.  Super sexy.

2.  People will think it's okay to greet you with a hearty, "Hey Fatty!"
And sometimes those people are your grandma - so you can't really get that mad about it.

3. People on pregnancy forums aren't always the brightest Crayons in the box.
Well, people on pregnancy forums, and just people in general.  Either that, or I just become a judgemental asshole when I'm pregnant.  Probably the latter, but still.  You have women asking if mowing their lawn is going to kill their baby.  Women who are so excited that they can finally feel their baby's heartbeat at 10 weeks through their stomach.  Or, my personal favorite, the men who refuse to have sex with their pregnant wives because the last time they did, their kid grabbed their penis.  First of all, can we just take a brief moment to appreciate that mental image?  "Hey Dad!  *Squeeze*"  If the thought of a baby playing Whac-A-Mole with his dad's goods weren't so hilarious, it'd be absolutely horrifying.  Men, your penis will never even kind of get close enough to your growing fetus to touch him/her, let alone for your kid to grab it.  It. just. won't.

4.  It's okay to eat Chick-Fil-A for dinner 3 nights in a row.
And anyone that tells you otherwise can suck it.

5. People will never stop asking you how you feel.
And that's not a bad thing - it's nice that people care.  What I don't love is that the answer, "Feeling good!" doesn't quite seem to cut it for people.  If that's all you answer with, there's a weird pause where you both just kind of just awkwardly smile and nod at each other until you volunteer more interesting information. Like how your tailbone is on fire or how you're super tired all the time.  And I'm sure that's just one of those things that I'm being way too awkwardpants about, but what're you gonna do.

Other questions that fit into this category are:
"Do you feel like it's a boy or a girl?"
"Do you have names picked out?"  (For the record...  No.)
"Have you had any cravings?"
"When are you due?"

Again, not bad questions.  They're just questions you'll likely be asked 92849320843920 times before you give birth.  Because heaven only knows I've asked the same questions to every single pregnant woman I've ever known.

6. "Bump" pictures are a giant pain in the crack.
I seriously have yet to discover the art of mastering the perfect bump selfie.  The first time I tried, I had Shawn take the pictures, and probably made him take 87 before I even kind of liked one.  I remember telling him that I should probably suck in, because I looked too fat too soon - and he responded with, "What?  Isn't that the point of these pictures?"  I don't know how all my Facebook friends manage to look like freakin' pregnant supermodels.  I have my special gifts, but being photogenic sure as crap ain't one of them.

It took several of these:

Before I finally got this halfway decent one at 13 weeks:

This one was at 15 weeks:

At week 16 I was like, hey, maybe I'll look better with a really crappy black and white filter.
This was also the week Shawn decided he wanted to take a bump picture too.

Seriously.  Where the hell are you supposed to put your hand in these pictures?  So awkward.

 I didn't really bother taking one around 17 weeks, so this was about it.

At a glamorous 18 weeks, because once again, I couldn't be bothered to take an "official" picture.  Or change my shirt, apparently.

Week 19 is when I started slacking off because these pictures were way more stress and trauma than I needed in my life.  I hurried and took this one before I got ready for bed..  Wearing the same sweatpants that I've worn for about 80% of my pregnancy so far.

My animals apparently can't stay out of these pictures.  The toilet and Bob's ass are a nice touch on this one, no?  

Fast forward to week 23, when I decided to finally shower again:
I took this one and realized our room was a disaster and instead of cleaning it, I moved the (dirty) mirror to the hall.


This was the last picture I took, when I realized that it just looked like I was grabbing my crotch in all the pictures and gave up.  WHERE THE CRAP AM I SUPPOSED TO PUT MY EFFING HAND?! 

And then, at 26 weeks, I finally figured out the answer to all my "bumpie" problems:


7. Everything leaks.  Seriously.
With the exception of maybe your butt.  If your butt is leaking, you may have some bigger problems on your hands.  (Well, unless it's a gas leak.  That, I understand.)  Everything else?  Fair game.  Boobs.  Vag.  Nose.  It all leaks.

8. "Belly Casting" is a thing.
I've been perusing the 'Kids' section on Pinterest a lot more lately.  And a while back I discovered something called "belly casting".  I had never heard of it until I saw a picture.  And I mean no disrespect to those of you who are into it or have done it, but what. the. hell?  People make molds of their boobs and bellies?

I just.  What?  So they stand their and either cup their own boob, or the baby daddy does - for who knows how long.

But then they paint them?

That's what you choose?  An elephant?  I mean, I love elephants.  But, c'mon.  I guess I don't have much room to talk, mine would just be a smiley face with the boobs as eyes.  And admittedly, there were some pretty decent designs on some of the ones I saw.  But seriously, where do you put that?  I mean, these people look like they just hung it right in their living room:

That's a fun conversation piece.  "So, that's my boobs and my belly.  Oh, and there's a peacock."

I'm probably offending people left and right.  My bad.  I guess what I'm trying to say is that you'll see my ass casted before you ever see me cast my giant belly and notsogiant boobs.  You know how much I hate taking bump pictures, so it really can't be too surprising. 

9. Fetal Fotos is worth it.
Even though I've always thought the name, "Fetal Fotos" was kind of a creepy name for a business - when I learned that my anatomy/gender scan wouldn't be until I was around 21 weeks, I was sure glad that they were around.  I was 17 weeks when my doctor told me they were booked out an entire month for an anatomy scan.  I called Fetal Fotos and scheduled an appointment for that same night.  Suck it, IMC.

I had called PayFlex to see if they'd pay out for a charge from Fetal Fotos, which would make it even more worth it.  I explained to the representative that it was pretty much an elective ultrasounds to determine the gender when you're pregnant.  He was silent for a minute, then finally said, "So, this is like, for a baby, right?"

No.  It's for a squirrel, dumbass.

10. Your kid might be totally modest, even though you and your husband totally aren't.
I was sure that the first thing we'd see on the ultrasound would be our kid's legs spread wide open with bright, flashing arrows pointing to a tiny girl part or boy part.  Between my oversharing personality and how much Shawn likes not wearing clothes - we figured any kid that came from our ingredients couldn't possibly be modest.  But naturally, our kid decided to take after our stubborn genes instead.

Up until this point, we had been calling the baby "he" and "him", so we didn't have to call him an "it".  Whenever I had dreams of my first baby, it was always a boy.  I always just felt like our first kid would be a boy.  I would have been happy either way.  As long as the kid was clearly a boy or a girl, and I wasn't going to have to choose which one.

After 15 of the longest minutes of my life of this kid crossing his legs, having an umbilical cord in the way, being sure that the ultrasound tech was going to give up on us, then having to lay on my side to see if he would move his cute little butt - he finally spread them wide and there was absolutely no denying that he was a boy.  Our son.  And now we have a the best 15-minute long DVD of him squirming around.  He apparently just wanted to make sure we got the best bang for our buck.  Atta boy.

11. "Pregnancy brain" is real.
I got lost in the Scheel's parking lot for a solid 10 minutes and was convinced someone had stolen my car - only to realize I was on the wrong side of Scheel's and in a totally different parking lot.  Lovely.

The nice part about pregnancy brain, is that when you say or do stupid things that you probably would've done anyways, you can just blame it on pregnancy and people totally judge you less.

12. You'll pee everywhere except for in the toilet.
You'll pee when you sneeze.  When you cough.  When you laugh.  And sometimes these things will combine in the worst way, and you'll pee during sex.  On your husband.  Butt. Ass. Naked.  But it's okay, because it'll be your husband's fault for cracking a hilarious fetus-grabbing-penis joke.  Careful if you have people living in your basement though, because they'll probably judge you when they hear you continually screaming, "OH MY GOSH.  I PEED ON YOU." followed by way too much hysterical laughter.

13. Prenatal massages are hella awkward.
I wasn't really sure what to expect when we went in for a massage after I actually had a "bump".  I always just imagined that they'd have a fancy table with a giant hole in the middle for your belly.  And I realize that sounds totally ridiculous - but whatever.  We got there, and they had me lay on my side with a pillow in-between my legs, which was fine - although I'm just about 100% sure my massage therapist saw my baby-maker more than once.  Anyways, she starts beating the life out of my neck and shoulders, and because I'm on my side, both my therapist and Shawn's could see my face (when it's usually in the little donut hole when you're on your stomach) so I think they both felt like they had to shoot the breeze with me the whole. damn. time.  They asked me every cliche pregnancy question in the book.  I had to explain what a donut pillow was.  Then I had to explain that, no, I wasn't "black and blue" from my baby kicking me.  I explained that yes, I still wear heels.  But of all the questions they asked, I think this was probably my favorite exchange:

Massage therapist:  "So, how far along are you?"
Me: "I'm about 20 weeks."
Long pause.
Massage therapist: "So 20 weeks… That's about 2 months, right?"

Yep.  Only 70 more weeks to go! 

14. Registering for baby crap is just about the most overwhelming thing in the history of ever.
We decided that we'd start our registry a little early, so our families could have a good idea of what to get us for Christmas.  (Though, according to the dude at the store, people register for crap for their kids before they're even conceived.  Say whaaaa?!)  Anyways, we registered at Buy Buy Baby, which was confusing to my dad, who asked, "What the hell kind of store is Bye Bye Baby?"  It's a pretty legit question, when you've never heard of the store to know it's not like, an abortion clinic.

So, we walk into the store, and I'm thinking back to how fun registering for our wedding was and feeling totally excited to go laser gun everything in the store.  Let's just say the excitement didn't last long, and this particular visit to Buy Buy Baby ended with one of my signature meltdowns.  How are there so many baby things?  From the strollers and carseats all the way down to the freaking ass creams - there's no less than 800 options for every single baby item, and I'm supposed to know what my unborn baby is going to like and use?  And everyone always says, "He'll like and use whatever you get him."  Which, yes, I realize.  But that still doesn't make me any less overwhelmed with how much crap we have to get for him and whether or not it'd be quality in keeping my baby safe and rash free.

As a result, I've spent countless hours reading reviews on just about every single baby thing you could possibly buy.  In my research, I discovered things like the "Nose Frida" snot sucker.  You literally suck the snot right out of your kids nose.  I watched a YouTube video review, and about threw up when I heard the noise it makes.  But the internet says it's a must-have, so it must be…  Right?

(Speaking of registering for baby things, if there's anything that you or your baby has absolutely loved having, please share.  Clearly I rely on other people's reviews of crap more than I trust my own opinion.  So seriously, all you seasoned mothers, share.)

15.  Insurance covers breast pumps.
Pretty fantastic, right?  It's nice when insurance is actually good for something other than stealing my money.

16. Learning to maneuver a fat belly takes skillz.
When my stomach first started poking out, I ran it into all sorts of things.  One time, I ran into a doorknob so hard that it ended up bruising my stomach, and Shawn was sure that I had knocked the living daylights out of our kid.  These days, I have to remind myself that when I'm trying to get past someone, I can't just simply suck in to get by without touching them.  I usually don't remember this until my belly is grazing the person I'm trying to get past.  So, that's fun.

17.  Tums are little pieces of mixed berry magic.
I've never experienced heartburn until I got pregnant.  I seriously had no idea what it felt like.  I assumed it would feel like, well, like my heart was burning, because… you know.  One Sunday afternoon I was trying to take a nap, when all of a sudden I started choking on all this nasty fluid that was creeping up my throat.  I was instantly on Google, making sure I wasn't dying, only to realize that I finally knew what the hell heartburn was.  And that's when I discovered Tums.  I've always heard people talk about them, and how they're like candy.  Candy to solve heartburn?  Okay!  These days, I drink a glass of water and get heartburn, so those suckers go with me everywhere.  Luckily, it's never been as bad as it was that first time when I was choking on my own stomach acid - but it's still not the most glamorous thing in the world.  But hey, if those old wives know what they're talking about, my kid's gonna have some serious hair.

18.  If you bug your husband enough about nursery colors, he'll finally let you have your way.
I told Shawn I liked light blue and gray for nursery colors.  He said it was too girly.  After two weeks of pestering him and showing him pictures, he finally agreed that it was fine - probably mostly just to shut me up, but nevertheless.  His only stipulation was that it had to be a "manly gray" not a "pussy gray".

Um, okay?

19. You will never not be hungry.
You will rarely hear me say, "No thanks, I'm not that hungry."  You know, unless I hate what you're offering me.  But even if I hate it, I'll probably still eat it.  Because I'm a machine.  I had hanger problems before I was pregnant, so you can only imagine what kind of epic proportions that particular emotion has reached with a mini-me taking residence in my belly.

20.  You will feel all the feels.
You will cry more than you usually do.  Sometimes it's because your belly hangs out the bottom of every single shirt you own.  Sometimes it's because you can't figure out how the damn Pack N' Play works.  And sometimes it's because you can't decide what sounds good for dinner.  You don't have to have a good reason for tears, it's part of the deal.  And as if inexplicable, hormonal tears aren't enough. You will also feel extremely irritable.  You will feel overwhelmed and unprepared.  You will feel frustrated.  You will feel helpless.  You will feel stressed. You will feel stabby.  You will feel like a whale.  And sometimes you won't really be feeling much of anything, but you'll cry anyways.

But even with all the tears and feeling like a giant hot mess - if you're anything like me, you'll also have plenty of the positive feels too.

Even though you can barely turn around to wipe your own ass anymore.
Even though your clothes barely fit anymore.
Even though you're turning into one big giant zit.
Even though your tailbone is slowly piercing a hole into your back.
Even though all you ever want to do is eat french fries and take naps.

You feel grateful that your body is capable of doing something so miraculous.
You feel humbled for the opportunity to carry one of God's children so close to your heart.
You feel joy each time you feel your baby move.
You feel excited as you daydream what your baby will look like.
Most of all, you feel love.  Love for the tiny human growing inside of you.  Love for the man who helped make it possible.  And love for God, for finally answering your prayers to be a mother.

Until next time.  Which hopefully isn't this kid's birth story.  ;)


  1. I seriously laughed so hard a cried at most of this. Having recently lived through what you're living through I can totally relate to about 99.999999% of this post. Love it.

  2. At my 38 week appt, the dr took us off restriction (we were trying to keep baby in!) and said we should be having sex to try to jumpstart labor. However, she then proceeded to tap my baby's head with her finger (seriously - I felt something weird, and she said "feel that? that's me touching your baby's head! he's in position!") So I wasn't too thrilled with the idea of then having sex with my husband. If she could just reach in and touch my baby with her finger ... um ... no.
    Get everything you think you'll need. You'll only probably use half of it, but you'll feel best if you feel prepared. My faves were the Ergo carrier (I had a Moby wrap and it was nice, but so much more complicated for outings - not as easy to get on and off), I loved my velcro swaddle blankets (that I foolishly didn't think I needed, since, duh, I know how to swaddle - whole new ball game with a moving baby!). I loved having a little thing that could play music or do white noise on the stroller or car seat - I actually would connect it to the bassinet at night too. Ours was a giraffe. I would suggest taking a friend who has a baby/little kid to the baby store and having her talk you through all the stuff. It totally helps (I made two friends look at my registry and see if I was missing anything or being dumb with anything).
    Biggest tip for when you have him - find a new mom's group. Invaluable. Some of my best friends now - 2 years later - are fellow new mamas I met through a group the hospital hosted. It's great to know other moms, but to have people who are in the trenches with you at the same time ... it's been amazing. Now we all comisserate on potty training and time outs, but in the beginning, you are so in love and so eager to do the right thing, that to have other people say "Oh yea, mine did that yesterday! And they didn't die!!" Is huge ... you're sure you're going to mess it up. So are they. And none of you do!!
    Good, bad, and ugly ... it's all so very, very worth it.

  3. Since I don't want to explain all the amazing or terrible things I got for my son, I made it easier. Here's my personal baby stuff review page.
    YOU'RE WELCOME. (Also, everything you are feeling is so normal, I had flashbacks. Including cystic butt acne. *shudder*) I'm glad you wrote again. I was worried!

  4. you nailed it with this list! from peeing, to prenatal massages (I imagined there would be a giant hole for my belly too, so i was equally disappointed), not being able to suck it in to squeeze past someone (I would bump into stuff all the time), registering gave me total anxiety, but i do love buy buy baby, and being starving 24/7... and it just continues while your nursing! good luck girl, you look adorable! :)

  5. I'm kind of a lurker reader and have been waiting for this update. And now my coworkers are peeking out of their offices wondering what is going on because of the muffled laugh/cough/cries that are coming out of my body when I'm reading this. THANK YOU for being one of the funniest bloggers on the internet.

  6. I lllllove how you write. SO funny & real & relatable, hahaha. I remember having so many similar thoughts & experiences when I was pregnant. I love all the Friends expressions [best sitcom ever!]. You're going to be an awesome mama!