Nine Months Sober

     Stepping out of the shower I always catch a glimpse of my new “mom bod.” Since my son made his debut three months ago I’ve made a point to not avoid the view but to learn to embrace what I see. After all, these changes came from my beautiful baby boy. I have to laugh, as I often do, at myself as I reminisce on the crazy journey I had getting my firstborn here. To veteran mommas, the beautiful/repulsive quirks of pregnancy are, I’m sure, old hat. But no matter how much you read, study, or in my case, even work closely with antepartum phenomena, nothing touches experiencing it for the first time your own self.
     Sorry I’m not sorry that I just have to add to the plethora of “what-to-honestly-expect-during-pregnancy blogs.” To my friends and family: I’m “fixin’ to get real up in here.” So if you dont want to know some nitty-gritty shit about my body, consider this your official disclaimer. I’ll love you even if you can’t hang. Otherwise, get ready for the lowdown on my pregnancy experience.

Earning my stripes…
     I’ve always been thick with not-so-stretchy skin, so I had made peace with the fact that I was destined to be all marked up way before we even decided to try for a baby.
     Let me just say real quick that I couldn’t see my junk after 4 months nor most of my legs at 6 months due to my ever-growing uterus tenant. Any “landscaping” that I could even reach was done completely from memory.

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    Anyway, the stretch marks, of course came, ignoring my superfluous and obsessive use of cocoa butter. They decorated all of the obvious places: belly, hips, and breasts. What I hadn’t counted on was the one massive one I only  discovered after delivery… exactly midline on my crotch. A centimeter wide, the purple stripe is an everpresent reminder that you really can’t anticipate everything.

Ever get that not-so-fresh feeling?

     If you just found out you are expecting, invest in some pantiliners and wetwipes.

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I didn’t know anything about being hungry…
     Until it was me, I thought pregnant ladies were “snacky” I thought they were “cravey” and I thought I could beat it and stick to the recommended 25-30 pound wieght gain.

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I could kick myself. I kept food by my bed to ward off crippling hunger pangs that attacked me every three to four hours at night. I ate breakfast twice everyday to keep from getting “fainty” or “pukey” at work. All of this made me into a champion weight gainer that I am still trying to recover from. My nursley knowledge of diet and pregancy was no match for the real game. Also if I never have another saltine or granola bar, it will be too soon.

I’m sure you’re sick of me complaining…
     But we have to discuss my “four month hangover.” Granted, many women are horribly sick the entirety of their pregnancy, sometimes even requiring hospitalization. I should be grateful I wasn’t one of them.
     I didn’t puke EVERY day… after I started the wonderful drug, Zofran.
     I refuse to believe any claims that it has adverse effects on the baby because I don’t think I could have made it through the first trimester without it. This “morning sickness” was all day every day.
     Wal-Mart was the absolute worst. Flickering, dim lights, lots of movement, and loud beeps were worse than a roller coaster. The smells were the worst. Who know the yeasty bread aisle, or the sicky-sweet brown sugar smelled so strongly?  Not to mention the deli, yuck. It is quite simply, sensory overload. I once almost puked in a tea pitcher on an endcap. Seriously, I had the lid off and was heaving. I am now acutely aware of the lack wastebaskets throughout the store.

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     There had to be a catch to my newfound friend, Zofran, I suppose, because regardless of my daily overdose on stool softeners, the antinausea pill turned my poo into 5 lb boulders, fully capable of cracking the porcelain on contact. Crapping at work was out of the question because they fire you if you leave your patients for two hours. Go figure.

As if managing your insides weren’t stressfull enough…
     Lets talk about what happens when you combine pregnancy, constipation,  and a genetic predisposition. Imagine hot coals and razer blades spilling out of your tail end and exploding everytime you cough, sneeze, or shift your weight. They always compare hemorrhoids to fruit (kind of like tumors) the fruits I were assigned were grapes and plumbs.

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    I intimately know all about “rhoid rage” and struggled with it off and on for nine months. Its funny, the more pain you have, the less pride you have. I had,  in some of my most desperate moments fantasized about everything from blind self-surgery to stealing lidocaine from my place of work.
     Eventually, the week of my due date, after spending three nights upright with my feet in the floor screaming into a pillow. I had to do what seemed to me more extreme and horrifying than anything else. I contacted my doctor… who is also my friend and coworker… afterhours… in a crying fit of agony… (I’m a nurse so I should have been able to handle this and not bother anyone else about my broken butthole, right?) I was fixed up with a surgeon up the interstate who gave me miracle butt surgery and kept me from going insane with pain. I will also shout out to my husband who drove me there and had to see me cry everytime I saw a bumpy bridge ahead. He was a total rock, God bless that man. God bless everyone who had to deal with or hear about my massvie hemorrhoids including whomever is reading this.

    Well, I’ve discussed the “bad and ugly” that I’ll NEVER forget even though everyone says I will. But I’ll also never forget the “good.” Things like laying in bed talking to my son via morse code through my belly skin, or discussing names for hours with my husband, or savoring every little pirouette and cartwheel he did from the first little flicker of movement until right before he entered the outside world. That stuff is solid gold and worth every bit of the journey.

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