HOLY CRAP… sometimes I still cannot believe I’m pregnant. This is our first baby, and we are just overjoyed to be welcoming a little bundle of joy into the world come May 2021. Mainly because I want to remember these emotions and this time in my life, here’s a little first trimester recap. I hope it resonates with you, whether you’re someone who is or has been pregnant, or is wanting to become pregnant someday!
A few disclaimers before I get started… one, this is just MY experience being pregnant. A huge thing I have learned during this process is that every experience is so different. From emotions to symptoms- no one handles it the same. I am speaking for no one but myself in this post 🙂
I also wanted to preface this with the fact that I know posts like this can be difficult for those who have a different journey to motherhood than me. Even though I have never experienced it myself, I have been aware of how heartbreaking infertility/child loss can be on women from a young age, as my mom (an acupuncturist) specializes in infertility/women’s health. I am deeply empathetic, so trust me when I say I never want to come off ungrateful or unaware of how blessed and lucky we are. I am keeping those who have a different journey than me in my heart and sending you so much love on your path to motherhood.
How We Found Out About Baby J
So, how did we find out about this little bean growing inside me?! Well, to back up, I had come off of birth control (got my IUD removed) in March, and used the Fertility Awareness Method (through Natural Cycles) to prevent becoming pregnant. We were *mostly* careful but also knew that if we were to get pregnant, it wouldn’t be a “bad” thing. If you are in a similar situation, I wholeheartedly recommend using the Fertility Awareness Method! It’s a great alternative to hormonal birth control and really allowed me to learn about and embrace my cycles and the power of being a woman- something that is really suppressed by traditional birth control (in my opinion).
Come August, we got a bit too relaxed and didn’t exactly try to prevent pregnancy like we had the previous months, so I knew it was a possibility that we would get pregnant. That definitely didn’t change the amount of shock I experienced when I took that test and saw the word “pregnant” staring back at me…
I think because we weren’t actually “trying”, I was in shock that it happened the first month for us. I genuinely thought it would take us 6+ months of actively trying to conceive, so it was a lot to take in. As shocking as it was, I’m glad that we didn’t plan our timeline too much, because this way, there were no disappointments or expectations… just a very pleasant surprise :).
About a week before my missed period (my cycle was very regular), I could tell I was pregnant. I just felt different. I wasn’t sick to my stomach or anything, but just different. It’s hard to explain! I knew it was too early to take a test, so I waited a few more days and took one 4 days before my missed period… and got a positive!
Mike was golfing that morning (classic), so I had to wait a full 5 hours before telling him, which about killed me! I passed the time by going to Target and getting a little book and onesie to set up with the positive test to tell him the news when he got home.
When he found out, there was a lot of shock but all the happy and excited emotions, too. We were thrilled!
First Trimester Pregnancy Symptoms
I consider myself fairly lucky with what I experienced in the first trimester. Physically, I think I definitely had it pretty easy compared to a lot of women. Weeks 5-9 were HARD, and I was extremely fatigued. Like, a tired I had never felt before. My appetite was definitely different, too, and I no longer craved the nutritious food that I was used to eating.
The thought of a salad and vegetables disgusted me, and all I really ate was carbs for a few weeks. My husband was so helpful and did a lot of the cooking (boxed mac n cheese, whattup) for a few weeks. Luckily, I never threw up or had extreme nausea, it was more just that I was apathetic towards most food (VERY unlike me, as you know!).
The other random symptoms that I experienced were crazy. I feel like most people just think of morning sickness when they think pregnancy symptoms, but that’s just the tip of the freaking iceberg.
I personally experienced a range of other symptoms, like being out of breath almost immediately after becoming pregnant, cramps, stuffy nose (who knew that was related to pregnancy?!), mood swings and super vivid dreams.
Symptoms wise, it’s definitely a wild ride.
How I’ve Felt Emotionally
Emotionally, the first trimester was harder than I thought it would be… I had always wanted to be a mom, but that doesn’t mean it’s all sunshine and rainbows. I think it’s especially difficult because you kind of go through it alone. Your partner and maybe some close friends and family know about the pregnancy, but it isn’t public knowledge, so it can feel really isolating and lonely. Your body and mind are going through so many extreme changes, but you “can’t” openly talk about it.
Also, the anxiety (for me) was real. I was so worried about something happening to the pregnancy and baby, and I really had to push myself to trust my body during pregnancy. Suddenly, everything in your life, from what you eat and drink to the activity you’re doing is impacting more than just yourself, and it feels like a lot of pressure. Now that I’m in my second trimester, I’m definitely feeling more confident, but the fear is of course still there, and I think it’s really normal for first time moms to feel this way.
Second Trimester of Pregnancy
At about 9-10 weeks, my nausea and fatigue definitely subsided quite a bit! I remember thinking, when I was in the thick of it, “am I ever going to feel like myself again?”, and the good news is that I do. I feel like a different version of myself, but I’m happy to report that the second trimester has definitely been easier.
One thing that was a blessing and a curse was that because we found out we were expecting (the same week we were planning on resigning our CO lease!!), we decided to move back to the Midwest to be near family. That definitely kept me busy and preoccupied during my first trimester.
I am SO excited to be moving into our first home this week, and finally have time to chill out and take a deep breath after the craziest 3-4 months of my life.
Physically, things are definitely feeling different in the second trimester. I have quite a bump growing, and there’s a lot of physical sensations that come along with that (looking at you, round ligament pain…).
I’m back to eating all the things, and I’m focused on drinking a TON of water and taking care of myself and baby the best I can.
All in all, we are so excited. I have always wanted to be a mom and am so grateful to be carrying a sweet baby. I’m excited for what’s to come! Now we get to focus on the fun stuff, like decorating the nursery and making a birth “plan”.
Also, I seriously wouldn’t be able to make it through this experience without my husband. I can’t wait to watch him be the best daddy to our little girl.
Thank you all of the love and support over the past couple of months! It was pretty insane to juggle my full-time job, this blog and pregnancy, but things are settling down and I feel so at peace with life right now. Thanks for reading!