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The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly (of Pregnancy)

Jul 12, 2008 - 8 comments

Being in my second pregnancy has made me remember exactly how much I can love and hate being pregnant at the same time. Although I adore my son, and wouldn't trade him for the world, I sometimes wonder how I made it through my first pregnancy. Of course, it was my first pregnancy, so I didn't know what to expect and everything seemed like some magical wonder. No matter how bad things may have seemed, I still couldn't believe that it was ALL because of a baby growing in my belly!

Well, he'll be 15 months old on Monday and I'll be 10 weeks pregnant at the time. Slowly, the real symptoms of pregnancy have been starting to come forward. I even have a pooch already! I knew I would show "earlier" the second time around, but had no clue HOW much earlier!

Unfortunately, some of the best things about being pregnant don't come until you're halfway through the pregnancy. Here, I'd like to share some of the best and worst things that I remember about pregnancy. Obviously, no matter how good, bad or ugly, I chose to do it it can't be THAT bad, right?

OK, some of my favorite things were, and these are pretty obvious:

1. Being able to see what looks like an 'actual' baby on an ultrasound monitor during the second trimester. Nothing like the little blob you saw in your first trimester!

2. Actually LOOKING pregnant, not just like a woman who can't lay off the Little Debbies! The "in-between" stage of pregnancy is almost embarrassing. It's like, I want to go to people and say I'm not really this FAT, I'm just in early pregnancy.

3. Feeling the baby move in your stomach. I almost feel sad for the fact that my hubby will never get to know what it feels like to have someone kicking his bladder from the inside, or punching his ribcage like a tiny boxer. Ahhhh...nothing beats that experience! :-)

4. As annoying as it is, I sorta enjoy the extra attention I get when out in public all because I'm pregnant. People are nicer (USUALLY) and they always hold doors for you. When you're NOT pregnant, you can be carrying a box of bowling balls and 9 times out of 10 people will just ignore you and not bother holding a door.

5. Great parking spots at some of the grocery stores. I LOVE this. Whoever thought of creating spots for pregnant women (or "new parents") deserves a medal for that one. Of course, we all know it had to be a woman, because men have no clue what it's like to walk a country mile with a baby pressing on your bladder with each step. Heck, by the time you get across the parking lot and inside the store, you're out of breath and already searching out the restrooms...and we ALL know that when you REALLY have to go, they're always at the BACK of the store.

Now, some of the bad things about being pregnant have already been addressed...the peeing part being one.
A few other things that are slightly to moderately annoying are:

1. Peeing when you laugh. I hate this worse than anything. I actually had to start keeping a pair of extra panties in the dash of my car because I just never knew when I would laugh, cough, or sneeze so hard that I'd pee my myself.
Eventually, I wore pantyliners all the time, but in the beginning it wasn't THAT bad.

2. Heartburn and Indigestion. Protonix ended up being my lifesaver on that one. Too bad I didn't ask my doc sooner about it. I went through numerous containers of Tums Smoothies (although they ARE quite tasty!) during my first and second trimester. By the time I got to my third trimester I thought I was going to die every time I tried to lay down at night.

3. No sleep. Between peeing 50 times a night, heartburn from hell, not being able to get comfortable due to the large watermelon sleeping with you, and not being able to figure out where to put your arms while sleeping on your side (mine kept going to sleep) really have a hard time getting a good night's sleep. Add to that a mixture of toddler waking up in the middle of the night during your SECOND pregnancy and you REALLY have a problem!

4. Constipation. I swear, I sometimes think I need an epidural just to use the bathroom. There were times during my first pregnancy where I would literally sit on the toilet and have hot flashes and feel like I was going to pass out from trying to use the bathroom. Can anyone say golf ball? Maybe this is a taboo subject, but I think it needs to be said. Had my hubby been willing to come hold my hand and count while I did breathing exercises to help me through it, I'd have probably let him. At the end I felt so triumphant that I almost felt the need to share the joyous news and break out the cigars. Could you imagine getting an e-card saying "I did it! I used the bathroom this week!" ??

5. Traveling (long distances) while pregnant. Again, it's the pee thing. Walking around trying to site-see with a bowling ball pressing on your bladder doesn't make for a fun trip. And when you're traveling by car, and rest stops are far and few between...geez, it's pretty tempting to break out the Depends. However, there IS an up side of being pregnant while traveling. A cop who pulled us over for speeding while in NY was VERY nice and only gave us a warning. Not sure if it was because I was pregnant, though. He actually went on and on about my accent more than anything. I guess some of those northerners actually LIKE a southern accent...and I always thought they made fun of us! :-)

6. Hormonal rages/crying fits. Poor hubby...enough said.

As for the Ugly parts about being pregnant, hmmm. Kinda scared to mention them. But this is a journal about all of it, so I guess I'm stuck. Honestly, these aren't things so much about during pregnancy, but immediately AFTER giving birth. It's the things no one ever told know?

1. No one EVER told me just how sore my cha cha would be after giving birth. But now I know why. There are absolutely NO real words to describe just how bad it really is. Soft, cloth covered ice pack or not...that thing swells up like a pair of lips that have been stung by a million gazillion bees. When I wiped, I couldn't tell what I was wiping. I actually couldn't figure out if I was wiping good enough because the darn thing was so puffy and sore. It felt like an alien had attached itself between my legs and therefore I couldn't tell if it was really a part of me.

2. The never ending bleeding. People always told me that one of the things they loved most about being pregnant was that they had no period. Whoop dee make up for all those lost periods the minute you give birth, and the days/weeks following. I was beginning to wonder if it would EVER end. And wearing a pad against that swollen thing that USED to be your vagina is NOT comfortable. I'm almost certain that this contributed to my Post Partum Depression.

3. Again, it's the constipation. I think trying to poop after giving birth was almost as hard as giving birth. And that is NO exaggeration. How is it that something like this NEVER comes up in conversation when the "pros" are discussing all the facets of pregnancy with first timers???? OMG...a few days after I gave birth, I finally used the bathroom. It wasn't pretty. I had to conjure up every breathing technique, relaxation technique and just plain will power to use the bathroom. Can anyone say bowling ball??  I think I was pretty much standing up over the toilet because sitting wasn't helping at all. If nothing else makes me scared to go through birth again, this does.

4. The epidural wearing off and throwing up between contractions. OK, this one was DURING birth, but I had to mention it. Pushing for almost 4 hours and throwing up in between contractions was enough to make me feel like I was going to die. I think I may have had a few weak moments where I WANTED to die.
The question is, was it worth it? Absolutely! I love my little boy and have to admit he was worth every dry heave and every exhausting, pain filled push.

There you have it. My good, my bad, and my ugly of pregnancy (and after).  Of course, everyone's experience is different, which is why I'd love to hear people tell their side of it. I'd love to meet someone who had absolutely NO problem during pregnancy or after (someone who isn't a compulsive liar). But I'd also love to hear from anyone who agrees with even ONE of my encounters. After all, pregnancy is a sisterhood. And if you haven't been through it then hopefully you'll get your turn very soon, because no matter how bad or ugly it may's all good in the end.
Right, moms? :-)

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412969 tn?1224334248
by shadowserpent, Jul 12, 2008
i love this entry, full of humor. truth and a bit of sarcasm! and i agree with every single one of your points!
let me ad an ugly no oen bothers to tell you about...
The blood clots....
I went to the bathroom after my first pregnancy looked in the toilet and started screaming.... luckily my mom was down from florida and when she came rushing upstairs, asked me what was wrong, and had me hystericlly scream....
"I think my livers in the toilet!!!"
she started laughing and calmed me down to tell me no no sweety thats normal!

151668 tn?1239921105
by Hope2OneDay, Jul 12, 2008
LOL...yeah, the clots can be pretty horrific. Plus, I remember sitting on the toilet wiping and wiping and wiping, thinking that the blood was going to get lighter. All I ended up with was a toilet so full of bloody tissue that I was scared to flush for fear of it overflowing! What a mess that would have been! :-)

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by g8r grl, Jul 12, 2008
I remember how awful it was trying to stand and walk for a couple of days after I had him. I had him at 7:39pm and by 11pm I decided that I would get up and go take a shower. The nurses thought I was nuts...and then I found out why...I could hardly stand up straight! I kept leaning back thinking that I had to counter balance my belly, but all of the sudden I didn't have all of the weight in front anymore. I almost fell over backwards in the shower 3 or 4 times and then finally had to hold onto the bar to keep from falling. It took me about 3 days to get used to standing up straight again...I never released how much you lean back when you're 9 months pregnant.

Also...I used the Tums Smoothies too! They worked SO MUCH better than the other Tums varieties...don't ask me why...they just did!

I also hated having to squirt my cha-cha with a water bottle for a week. That was awful! The water had to be a little warm or it burned like all there I was ready to pee my pants and I'm standing at the sink waiting for the water to warm up so I could fill my peri-bottle. Geez! Maybe I don't want another baby!

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by Hope2OneDay, Jul 12, 2008
Oh my gosh...I totally forgot about that whole water thing! That WAS awful, especially because you had to "dry" your cha cha afterwards...which was so swollen you couldn't tell what you were doing. At least I couldn't! LOL
And they gave me that stuff to spray on it to "numb" it, which it DID numb it...for about 10 minutes or so. I forget the name of it, but I know I went through two cans.

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by Heather3418, Jul 23, 2008

After being pregnant many times myself, I found this post to be right on target.  Everything you mentioned was exactly the way it was.  Besides the pushing part.  I was some sort of super woman at giving birth, just a sneeze and my babies popped out with a flash.  The doctor barely caught them, as they flew out...literally...and they were 8 and 9 pounders.

I thoroughly enjoyed this post and just loved your sense of humor throughout.  What we women will endure and then REPEAT, to bring a life into this world.  I am convinced that no man could ever endure what we do.  What makes it all worth it?  That little bundle of softness and warmth you get to hold, after all is said and done. It's priceless...

Oh to be pregnant again at my age of 54.  I don't think so, but boy do I miss it.  It was the greatest time of my life.

Happy Babies Ladies,

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by Cheyenne_08, Jul 25, 2008
This post was very funny! I had a c-section which carries it's own ugly stuff, I found that most of what you was was true for me also!!! I had to use the water bottle as well, and that was horrible trying to lean over far enough to actually hit the target, while trying not to put too much pressure on my incision....NOT FUN!

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by newbiemami08, Aug 14, 2008
lol yes i enjoyed your entry too!  but it also kinda scared me because this is my first pregnancy!  i'm was happy to hear i'm not the only one peeing in my panties!  i have just started about 2 weeks.. i sneeze and cant hold it.. so embarrassing!  i dunno how heavy she is but she's good at kicking my bladder!  i also get numb arms and legs when i sleep at night plus my sinuses act up... other than that i feel like i've had a smooth ride.. only 3 more months *knock on wood*  i'm hoping my labor process is like miss heather bcs i do sneeze a lot!  hehe

151668 tn?1239921105
by Hope2OneDay, Aug 15, 2008
Yes, the sinus problems were something I failed to mention. Humidifier, Breathe Right strips and Simply Saline were my best friends in that dept!

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