Pregnancy is a strange/awesome/crazy/fun/sick/roller coaster of emotions time in your life. Here are a few things I am happy to have said goodbye to and some things I actually miss from those nine months.
Things I Don’t Miss
Throwing Up and Food Aversions
Morning sickness. Afternoon sickness. Evening sickness. Smelling the produce at the grocery store sickness — all things I don’t miss, not surprisingly. At the beginning, I threw up a lot. In the middle I threw up a fair bit. And in the hospital, on the 5th floor, while in the beautiful labor stage of transition, I threw up again for a final last hoorah. During my pregnancies, I felt like my body was “punking” me sometimes. This food is great. It smells good and you should have a lot. It’s your husband’s birthday. Be fun! Several hours later, I was betrayed and left with a dislike for whatever that cuisine was for the rest of my pregnancy.
I also don’t miss “not feeling” like eating certain foods and having food aversions that don’t make sense to me. Obviously, now, sometimes I don’t feel like eating carrots and hummus for a snack and would rather have a bowl of Reese’s Puffs, but being pregnant, I had much less self control because on any given day, five things that I normally liked to eat just sounded gross or made me sick. Throw up, good riddance.
After delivery, I remember taking a deep breath and feeling like I nearly had endless lung capacity. Following my deep breath, I wanted to look at the hospital ordering menu and find something spicy. Baby out = no heartburn for me. I don’t miss keeping Tums by my nightstand and blinding knocking the container, which is basically a pregnancy rattle, to the ground, scaring my husband half to death. My second pregnancy I discovered heartburn medicine that was more effective, but I still don’t miss the “cool mint taste,” going down. There was nothing “cool” about heartburn. And how about that sleeping sitting up technique? Nobody misses that.
When you’re pregnant, it seems that everyone is entitled to question and notice your body, and it’s usually the weirdest questions. I do not miss the cashier at Walmart asking, “Excuse me, how many are you carrying?” For the record, it was one, but I sure wish I would have told her it was triplets. I don’t miss strangers rubbing my stomach and saying, “Looks like you’re going to pop!” or “You sure look tired.”
I felt so grateful when someone would talk to me about something other than my growing self. I think I almost hugged someone who told me my makeup looked nice and chatted about doing taxes. It was a huge relief to talk about something else.
Things I Miss About Being Pregnant
When I found out I was pregnant, I felt like people cared about me differently. After my first was born, I felt let down that I wouldn’t be seeing my doctor and her team consistently. They helped me get pregnant and see our family grow, and then suddenly after a six-week postpartum check-up, they were out of my life. I felt funny saying I missed my nurse and OB, but it was true! At the doctor’s office I filled out the depression screening, but other than that, nine months of care was gone and I missed the interaction and care I had been getting. After the baby was born, I felt like just a vessel that housed the awesome thing. Being pregnant made me feel different, and I miss being in that unique situation.
The Baby Kicking
I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to say I missed my toddler pulling on my pant legs or whining my name, but I can say I miss feeling my baby kick. It was a fun, mostly gentle, reminder of this new little person who would shortly arrive. I miss the beginning kicks that you think you can *almost* feel that get stronger every day. With my first I felt less aware of my body, but the second time around felt like I could really tune in. I miss lying in bed feeling and watching her rhythmic hiccups while falling asleep.
Knowing My Baby Was Being Taken Care of Without Thinking About It
I miss knowing that my baby had just what she needed. Being pregnant meant I didn’t have to comfort a crying baby and guess why. I had a fairly easy pregnancy and knew that my baby was sleeping, breathing, and moving without me thinking about it or putting it on a checklist. I miss not worrying about SIDS, flat heads and checking for fevers.
The Ability to Indulge a Little
’m not saying pregnancy gave me an excuse to eat for two. Science, your doctor and your pesky, overbearing friend/relative/grocery clerk are probably already telling you that pregnancy is no time to eat 45 tubs of ice cream. That said, I miss the indulgence of eating something I might not enjoy if I’m prepping for an Ironman Race. Which I’ve never done. There is something awesome and liberating about knowing that your stomach is SUPPOSED to get bigger for the next nine months.
I’m a person who likes surprises. I knew the sex of my kiddos, but meeting them was still exciting and kept me somewhat happy while having to go to the bathroom seven times a night and buy increasingly larger elastic-waist maternity pants. Even though you know it’s going to be a baby, it’s fun to have something to look forward to. If I could make it through a hot Texas summer and wade through Christmas with swollen feet, come January, I would get my reward. I’ve got two of them now, and it was worth the wait.