I can’t believe we are halfway there!
When we found out back in February, I remember thinking that the end of October seemed years away.
Each milestone has been so exciting to reach, and Tyler and I feel very blessed to be just four and a half months away from holding our baby girl.
It hasn’t all been fun and games, though. This pregnancy has been humbling and has stretched me in ways I wasn’t really expecting (physically and figuratively, Lord help me). The past few months have been a slap in the face to my ego and a roadblock to my need to have control.
I hadn’t ever given a ton of thought as to what pregnancy would hold for me.
I figured it would be the same as what I remembered about my older sister’s two pregnancies: I’d skate by without morning sickness and then go dark during the third trimester while I gained the last of my 50 pounds of pregnancy weight in peace. Simple stuff, really.
What I had forgotten, of course, is that I lived in a different state as Bonnie during said pregnancies and didn’t experience the day-to-day roller coaster of those nine months.
I had no idea that the pregnancy would have such a drastic effect on my energy levels, routine, and even morale starting from the very beginning. And in the face of all of these weird and unexpected (and don’t get me wrong–exciting) changes, I’ve had to accept that I can’t control every hour of my day.
Tyler has had to repeat to me over and over again, “YOU’RE PREGNANT. It’s OKAY if you can’t (insert one: workout today/cook dinner/work on a blog post/stay awake past 7pm).”
Our new thing is–wait for it–taking things a day at a time. I am really trying to accept the changes and focus on what matters most: our baby girl is healthy and we are SO lucky to have her.
I did want to share about this journey and what it’s been like for me to relinquish control and embrace all of the odd and frustrating but joyful challenges that pregnancy has thrown at me.
After we found out I was pregnant, the fatigue set in almost immediately and rudely hung around until about a month ago.
The days seemed VERY long those first couple of months.
I’d tear up in the morning at the daunting thought of even getting through the work day ahead of me. I spent most days trying to keep my eyes open in front of my computer before going home and crashing on our couch in a complete fog.
Working a 9am-5pm job while pregnant should be illegal–who’s with me?
And I didn’t even get morning sickness! I can’t even imagine dealing with that on top of everything else and feel extremely fortunate to not have begun each of those days over the toilet.
I texted Bonnie after two weeks of extreme exhaustion and asked if I would be this tired the whole pregnancy, to which she responded, “U will be this tired until 2026.”
Since Tyler and I are gone most weekends either visiting family or traveling, we typically eat pretty clean during the week. Nothing overly intense, just your standard “green smoothies for breakfast so we can have pizza on Saturday nights” type of lifestyle.
Normally for dinner during the week I’ll cook some variation of chicken and veggies. During the first trimester, the idea of handling raw chicken or even standing up long enough to cook dinner was just not an option for me.
And while Tyler really stepped up and has been so awesome about helping out more (not without his share of bathroom-cleaning dramatics of course), it’s been tough to stay on track.
Tyler still makes green smoothies every morning, as he’s done every day of our marriage, bless his soul, but a lot of times, a bowl of pasta sounds way better and much easier to me than some sad salad.
I haven’t had any bizarre cravings, I just want carbs. And sweets.
A few weeks ago, I complained to my OB about my diet spiraling out of control. She calmly asked, “Can’t you just eat healthy and then have a normal small amount of pasta when you need to?”
I didn’t have the wherewithal in the moment to explain the black-and-white, all-or-nothing aspect of my personality.
So, I’m working on this portion control thing. If anyone has any advice, now is not the time to hold back. I will say that now that I have more energy, I’ve been able to cook more and make cleaner choices for the most part.
I’m sure you know where this is going.
In my not-pregnant life, I try to exercise every day, which means I end up getting a workout in around five times a week on a good week. I usually rotate between sprint/HIIT workouts in the gym with some weights, longer outside runs, and Bar Method classes (my true love).
I have worked out consistently pretty much my entire life, so my ego (and mood) took major offense to the sudden lack of energy to make it to the gym or barre class.
After the first couple of months of barely squeaking out a barre class or two per week, I decided to put myself on a more realistic routine for the duration of the pregnancy.
Sprints are not something the baby has been into and HIIT workouts are just not what they used to be. For example, I tried to do a burpee yesterday and never made it off the floor.
Instead, I have tried to take four or so barre classes at Bar Method a week and am doing my very best to do a long walk or light jog on the other days. This is the goal, anyway. And as a fail-safe, I’ve been answering emails on a walking desk at my work for an hour every morning.
The reason I have loved Bar Method, especially in pregnancy, is that it’s very challenging but still low impact and safe for the baby. The instructors are SO knowledgeable and supportive and have helped me make any necessary modifications as my belly grows.
I grew up taking ballet classes, and even as a little kid I lived for that time where I could shut my brain off and just focus on the methodical barre work. And although barre fitness classes are much different (exercise-focused and not dance-oriented), the class has the same calming, centering effect on my soul and body.
And this may sound weird, but throughout the whole pregnancy, I have felt most connected to the baby during barre class.
Just like with working out in any life stage, the days/weeks which I have managed to get my body moving have been drastically better.
I need to learn to not put so much pressure on myself and be normal about it. And by “be normal,” I mean make healthy choices but give myself grace, listen to my body, and celebrate the miracle that is happening inside it right now.
I’ll just come out and say it. I’ve gained 20 pounds already.
Believe me, I’m aware, I’m ahead of schedule. My jeans have forgotten what a zipper going up sounds like, and I am carrying the weight in every possible place.
“Chipmunk” is a word I can closely relate to, and to be honest, “elephant” doesn’t feel that far off either.
I know, I’m being dramatic, and it will only get worse from here, but I’m just trying to be honest. This was an update post, ok?
I’m fit, I’ll lose the weight with breastfeeding, I’m tall so it’s stretched out more, etc. I know all of this. But there’s something just slightly disheartening about feeling your body changing in such a dramatic way.
Working on perspective and grace here, too.
I’m already in tears.
This pregnancy and the impending transition to parenthood have brought its fair share of challenges to us, but wow. I’m overwhelmed by the weight of the blessing it is to experience it with Tyler.
Watching Tyler prepare to become a father has been one of the greatest joys of my life. He is smitten with Charlotte already and has been my rock through everything.
He’s been over-the-top helpful and has completely spoiled me so far. Almost every day when he gets home from work, he says, “Ok, tonight is all about you, baby, what do you want?” Like I said, over-the-top.
Have I yelled at him over take-out and cried when he once complained about his minor weight gain? Of course. But my mind cannot fathom (literally, does not compute) doing this with anyone else.
Becoming parents with someone is an enormous blessing but also a truly sobering and significant undertaking. We’ve had hard conversations and are working through serious decisions as we get ready to bring a life into this world.
And I know that we haven’t even begun to scratch the surface. I’m sure there are parents reading this post and laughing because of how much more intense our life is about to get.
We’ll cross those bridges when we come to them. Together.
(My favorite necklace trio of all time, pictured in this post, is from Made by Mary).
It’s a pre-weekend pick me up: just a little note with links to the latest blog posts, what I’m reading lately, and products I’m obsessed with. Think of it as a friend dropping off a surprise latte in the morning--you know?