Nov 21, 2016

30 Week Pregnancy Update & Thoughts

What's this?  A non-political post?  Yes, friends, I have finally succeeded in thinking about something else.  I know, quite the accomplishment.

So you know what else is crazy?  I'm 3/4 of the way done!  Definitely starting to get excited now and definitely feeling pregnant.  We've had baby movement since about week 22, which makes it both more real and surreal at the same time.  I've had a few of these moments, "Whoahhhh, my body is, like, growing another body."


Clothes

I like my pregnancy clothes and I like looking pregnant (though I feel cheated by my lack of pregnancy boobs - I was quite looking forward to that particular physical change).  I remember the first couple months when I was so sure that I wouldn't be showing up until the end and now I laugh at that naivete.  What did I know?  (For the record, I am 100% sure that the entire process of parenting will include more laughing at my past misconceptions.)

Cravings

There was a solid week where I wanted olives all the time.  I'd eat them first thing in the morning right before starting my breakfast smoothie.  Delicious.  Another week I came home with old bay boiled shrimp even though I normally hate the stuff (old bay, not shrimp).  Ate it right from the package.

What it's Like

Physically I mean.  I'm sure everyone's so different emotionally that there's no point in describing that part.  Mostly I don't feel too much different.  As excited as I was to feel the first few movements, you adjust to that pretty quickly and I mostly don't even notice anymore unless the baby does something weird.  Like every once in a while it'll roll over (or somersault or something) and that kind of feels like someone's shoving a giant marble against my stomach and turning it.  There's other days where I'm achy, inside and out.  Sometimes my skin hurts or is itchy and sometimes my insides feel hollow or scraped out, kind of the way you might feel after a bad period or after puking all night long.  Which is kind of funny considering I'm the opposite of empty!

None of which is to complain.  I realize I've gotten off really (really, really) lightly with the symptoms so far and I am immensely grateful for that (knock on wood that the sciatic pain doesn't resume immediately after writing this).

The Serious Stuff

In another vein entirely, I've noticed that even as I feel "more pregnant," I find my brain moving onto or back and forth between different topics more easily.  It's become more a fact of life than something that needs to be discussed and pondered over.  I've been keeping busy with my happiness project and business projects and generally running my butt into the ground at a time when other people might advise me to relax, enjoy the last few months of non-parenthood, take a babymoon with my husband, etc.

That sounds nice and all, but something's driving me to keep picking up the pace.  I think it's partially an irrational feeling that I need to get as much "done" as possible before the baby comes, since I don't know what life will be like at that point, but I think the other part stems from a fear I've always had about being a parent.

I don't want to lose who I am.

I told my mom this and she laughed at me and I've since (mostly) made my peace with it.  Yeah, my blog might change, yeah I might be a dull conversationalist for a while, and yeah, I'll probably be obnoxious on Facebook with 20 versions of the same picture that I think are all exquisitely unique and special.  But I still don't want to stop living.

I recently needed a photographer for a client.  I'd taken photos for him in the past and, frankly, it was subpar work and I don't want to be responsible for (and charging people for!) work that I'm embarrassed by.  "No problem!" I thought.  I know tons of photographers - previous classmates who'd built their own freelance businesses.  I messaged around and I could not find a one to take on this client, because they'd all gotten married and had kids and didn't have the time.

Now I'm not here to denigrate anyone's choice to stay home with their child (or cut back on their workload), but it still shocked me.  These women chose a field that they loved (or so I thought - I could be wrong) and they poured their hearts into these businesses, and then to give it all up?  I love my business, and I can't imagine myself without it.  I want to think I have room in my heart and schedule for work and a baby.

It reminded me of one of Sheryl Sandberg's points in Lean In.  She talks about women leaning back to make room for family before they even have a kid.  She mentions how incredibly difficult it can be to leave your child to go back to work and if you've leaned back and missed out on opportunities, then there's not a whole lot to entice you to return to a job that is probably less satisfying than it would have been if you'd stayed fully engaged.  She advises you to instead "lean in."

So I guess that's what I've been doing.  Leaning in to life and work and trying to make sure that there's plenty of both still waiting for me on the other side of motherhood.  Both for me and my child, because I want to provide a multi-faceted role model for him/her.

If you've been pregnant, what weird symptoms/cravings/aversions did you have?  If you haven't, is there anything about pregnancy you're curious about?  AMA!


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5 comments:

  1. Ahhh I can't believe you are 30 weeks already!!! It is so weird how you just get used to all the movements going on, isn't it? A few of my friends that have had kids in the last year or two say that get phantom movements every now and then that freak them out. I could see that being a thing. I hope your sciatic nerve pain stays away as long as possible. I have some serious back and hip pain that is back with vengeance right now!!! I seriously feel like my back could break in two at any given time. So ready for her to come on out!

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  2. You look great!

    And I totally get the "not wanting to lose who you are" thing. I had it, and still try to be conscious of it now that she's here. I truly do LOVE being a mom, love seeing my husband as a dad- but in order to be a good role model, I have to be a good and well-rounded person. I need to be the type of woman I want my daughter to become. Yeah some things will change but it's still important to be yourself.

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  3. I can't believe you're so far along either. Eeep!

    I have no plans to have kids anytime soon, but I don't think that'll be true forever. Eventually, I think I do want to be a parent. But the fear you describe is the number one thing that keeps me from falling into baby fever every time I get heart-eyed over babies. (They are cute and fun when they're happy and dry, I can admit that—I'm not a monster.) I have always endeavored to have a well-rounded life. When new things come into it, of course, there need to be cutbacks in other areas to make room for it all. But I hope by the time I am ready to have kids I have a strong enough hold on what I want to remain important that I can make room, rather than give things I love up completely. Who knows. This is all really premature of course.

    ANYWAY. As a non-mother, I admire your approach to motherhood (and, a lot of the time, life in general). I don't read mommy blogs because I can't relate or have no use for that information, but I think you have a cool mind and I like reading your thoughts on motherhood.

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  4. It amazes me how quick time seems to go. I'm with everyone else.. can't believe you're that far along already. I think you are going to be a great mother who will be able to have time for both your child and career. I think if it is important to you, you should keep to what feels right. I have the same outlook at the moment my self. I do plan to have at least one child in the near future, but want to make sure I keep myself through it all. I think you're doing great.

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  5. I admire the woman who seem to be able to balance motherhood, career, and life. I can barely balance career and life and step-parenthood. And, let's be honest, as a step-parent, I had it a whole lot easier than what a new mother with an infant has. I'm not downplaying the importance of my role, I'm just be honest. I can't imagine all the plans and goals that you feel like setting for yourself, your life, your relationship with your child and husband. I applaud you already!

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