This a light-hearted look at what to expect when your expecting, and the things you may encounter. Growing a baby is a miraculous thing, but of course, it is also a huge change to our bodies and comes with many side effects that I for one was not expecting. Things that make you feel ugly, things that make you feel bad at times and things that are really lovely.
- Crying A LOT. When you are happy, sad, see a moving advert on TV, you name it. Don’t apologise, go with it.
- Backne, I don’t know why this isn’t mentioned more. I only realised this was a ‘thing’ when I watched a pregnancy film. So many women I know had this, myself included.
- Talking aloud to your baby when you think you are alone, and sometimes when you are not. This is truly lovely and such a magical moment. A human inside you and it’s normal to want to communicate with them. It is a wonderful feeling as it’s almost like a secret relationship, one that no one else is a part of yet.
- Waves of anger towards the other half at more regular intervals than normal. When you shout statements like “you try growing a human being and see how rational you are!”.
- Strangers actually talk to you, and as well as often giving unsolicited advice, people are generally happy and pleased for you and want to talk to pregnant women. It can make the world to seem like a friendlier place.
- Elbows! Suddenly other people’s elbows feel like a potential weapon against your unborn child. Crowded environments mean they can strike at anytime and an elbow in the bump can cause the lioness in the Mother (to be) to come out.
- Sleep suddenly becomes really difficult. If it’s not sleeping because your uncomfortable, then it’s because you need to wee constantly. And when you do manage to sleep, you wake up in a panic in case you are lying in the ‘wrong’ position and causing harm to the baby. Many a night I woke up in a sweat as I had fallen asleep on my back and panicked about blood flow to the baby.
- Being too hot all the time. It’s like an introduction to menopause, I was surprised at this.
- Not being able to fit through gaps. In the second trimester I often forgot about my growing bump, for example, when sliding out in between tables in a restaurant, I would often bump people in the head with my baby bump. Not a great start to parenthood.
- Worrying about everything you eat and drink. I remember spending hours trawling the internet to see if I could eat taramasalata (there is no definitive answer on this. It depends how it is made).
- People commenting on your bump size. I was huge and was asked, almost daily, by strangers and well meaning friends ‘if I was sure I wasn’t expecting twins’. Yet, friends who have carried very differently and had smaller bumps have been upset by the opposite comments about being too small.
- Being scared and excited in equal measure. It is ok to feel this…you have never had such a responsibility before and are bound to be nervous.
There are a million things I didn’t expect when I was pregnant, but whether it was the good, the bad or the ugly, all of it is part of the wonderful process of growing a tiny person.