Soooooooooooooo, everyone. I am full of baby. Yet again.
I decided to let you all in on my pregnancy journey, although in all likelihood, you’ll be reading this a few months behind my actual pregnancy progress.
While I felt it was important to share my pregnancy journey with you, for posterity and as a form of being honest, I cannot in good faith publish it online for everyone to see as it’s happening.
I know you’ll understand. There’s that mythical 12-week-hurdle to get over, after all. And there’s my employer to consider as well as my freelance clients.
And I have a selfish interest, too—having these posts written and ready to go ahead of time will save my sanity when I’m not sleeping at night cause I’ve got a baby hanging off my boob.
So as I am starting this series today, I am 6 weeks pregnant tomorrow. I do hope I don’t jinx myself, but here goes.
Let me tell you about the first month of pregnancy so far.
Because of the way doctors count how many weeks along you are, the first day of your pregnancy is the first day of your last period. It’s confusing, I know. But if you want to know how many months along you are, you need to start counting from the presumed date of conception, which is usually about 2 weeks off from the other count. Even more confusing!
I know for a fact that a few people in our lives have been somewhat curious as to why I wasn’t pregnant yet. To be honest, I didn’t want to get pregnant any earlier than August 2020. And we had 2 bites at the apple in August, thanks to my annoyingly short cycles. Well, the second one took!
I had fully expected it to take me 5-6 months to get pregnant, but I probably underestimated my exceptional health (and thus, fertility) and my sheer will.
You see, the other reason why I waited to try for baby number 2 was that in December 2019, I got so sick that it took me 6 months to recover! I told my midwife that I didn’t want another hormonal upheaval right away. I wanted to spend some time alone with my body to feel great in it, and to use it to do, ahem, all the things it can do.
I ran. I swam. I danced. I lifted heavy objects!
I could still do all those things (minus, perhaps, the lifting) while pregnant, but when the fatigue hits you in the first couple of weeks, you just feel like vegging on the couch for a while.
Do I need to explain to y’all how babies are made? No. You know that you get pregnant about 2 weeks after the start of your last period. What’s funny is, in my last cycle, I was convinced I was pregnant. But then I clearly wasn’t. This time, I was convinced I was getting my period. I clearly remember telling my husband, “But I’ve been wrong before!”
Famous last words. For those of you, like me, who are super regular and who keep close watch on your cycle and what day you’re on, there’s always a time when one day, you could still get your period, but it would be pretty late… then the next day, if it’s not there, you can safely assume you’re pregnant.
That’s what it felt like for me. I remember not being able to sleep one night and it occurring to me that I was probably pregnant. It was the tipping point in my cycle.
I’m not one for at-home pregnancy tests. Peeing on sticks is not really my thing. I feel guilty about another piece of plastic winding up in a landfill. I prefer to just keep waiting a few more days to know for sure.
And it never came. When I was a week late, I called my doctor.
The secretary (always full of rancor) suggested I get a blood test to make sure. I said if it would make her feel any better. Guess what? The blood test revealed that I was indeed very pregnant.
When you know, you know—amiright?
This isn’t my first rodeo, lady. In fact, it’s my third pregnancy. The first one I lost at 11 weeks, and the second one resulted in my daughter C. The pregnancies all felt different, which I find fascinating.
Symptoms this time around. Let’s see. Smells are OVERWHELMING. I feel like a dog. Human and animal waste are nauseating, as is the smell of algae.
I had light cramps every day for about a week, the same week I would have had a period. Probably implantation pains.
And just tiredness. I needed to lie down every afternoon. I couldn’t keep my eyes open. That was enough at first. Now I’m tired pretty much all the time…
… and hungry? I don’t seem to feel like eating a variety of foods anymore. Refined wheat will do fine for now. Anything bland and boring. With lots of added salt, please.
Oh, and is it just me, or does my stomach look HUGE already?! I honestly don’t know how I’ll be able to hide this monster. If need be, I plan on telling people I just got fat.
So after the initial excitement, the first month isn’t all that fun. In fact, it’s that way for much of the first trimester.
You feel the urge to share your excitement and tell everybody and their grandmother, but you know you must resist until you have seen for yourself on an ultrasound that all is well in there.
For this reason, the first 3 months of pregnancy can feel scary, uncertain, and very lonely.
We’ve told a few of our close friends and our parents. People we wouldn’t mind telling if suddenly I lost the pregnancy.
For now, it’s a waiting game. I honestly don’t even feel pregnant half the time. It sort of doesn’t feel real, yet. We’ll see on the ultrasound mid-October!
I’ll be keeping you updated on how this goes (went) at least monthly! Hope you enjoy!
Jessica is an American expat living the dream in Normandy. She is wife to a French hubby and mama to a Franco-American daughter, born in 2018, and one whippet. Passionate about all stages of writing, this Francophile created her blog in 2020 to help others navigate motherhood with a focus on conscious parenting and bilingual parenting. Bonne lecture !