Before I get into this, I need to point out that I KNOW every pregnancy is different. I’d be naive to think that I would have a pregnancy as easy as Violet’s the second time around. But nothing/no one prepared me for just how different they could actually be.
I’ve been pregnant for almost
5 years 8 months now, and I’m finally just getting around to writing about the experience of this pregnancy as compared to my first. See third section below (lack of motivation) and you’ll know why.
On gaining weight
My first pregnancy, I felt like a goddess. I didn’t just wear a bikini to the beach, I documented/flaunted it! I also took pictures every month to record the growing bump and my pregnancy style. Overall, I felt really comfortable and beautiful in my own skin. I wore heels up until 38 weeks and even strangers would comment on how well I was carrying the baby. I’m telling you, that pregnancy glow is real and I had it.
This pregnancy, I’m feeling like an overweight sloth that can’t eat enough cheeseburgers or oatmeal creme pies to save her life. While my baby bump isn’t bigger, everything else is, including my boobs. Just yesterday, after moving all day, I was so spent I didn’t even want to loosen my own bra which I had convinced myself was restricting my breathing, so I asked my husband to help. He gingerly replied (knowing I would be furious), “It’s on the last rung…” We can talk about how they’re not called rungs later. But seriously?! I’m already wearing nursing bras that fit me AFTER Violet and I still have two months to go. SEND HELP, please. The weird thing is, I haven’t gained more weight than with Violet, it’s just…spreading out differently.
Part of why I’m probably feeling like an overweight sloth is because my last pregnancy caused me to crave fresh fruit and Chicago-style hotdogs. That’s basically it. I ate salads, cottage cheese and pineapple, and organic, nitrate-free hotdogs every day. I was SO CAREFUL with what went into my body. And fast food? Ew, don’t even come near me with it.
With this pregnancy, I’m craving meat. RED MEAT to be exact. Fast food. And salt. Here’s an example of what a typical breakfast will look like for me. I’ll swing by Dunkin’s after dropping Vi off at daycare, grab a sandwich and two orders of hash browns and sometimes a french cruller and be on my way. Or if I’m making breakfast at home, I’ll toast an everything bagel, add microwaved salami (I’m not about to mess around with listeria) and chive cream cheese. GIVE ME SALT OR GIVE ME DEATH. Or probably both if I continue eating the way I’m eating.
On getting shit done
I was incredibly motivated in pregnancy 1 to have a perfectly clean/organized home to bring the baby back to. Dan was in grad school and I still somehow managed to make sure we went to all the right classes, had a pristine nursery and were fully prepared for this baby—all while in the throws of starting a business and working full time.
This time around…well…like I mentioned before, we just bought a house and are moving from a 2bed/2bath condo to a quad level house with so much space that I just want to lay down on the beautiful flooring we just installed (with Violet’s help) and keep sinking right into it. Not only can I not decide where anything will go in the new house, but I have to stare at the most hideous wallpaper in the world while I do it. I’m pretty sure the previous owners superglued this wallpaper to the wall because no amount of elbow grease, downy, vinegar or wallpaper stripper—and believe me, dan’s aunts/cousins have tried—have been able to get it off!
Like I said…it’s a bit of a fixer upper. <—Frozen reference anyone?
We bought the house because of the space, location and future resale potential, but right now all I see is a floral nightmare, spiders and $$$ flying out the old windows that need to be replaced. To clarify, I’m not regretting the purchase by any means. But I am regretting the timing of taking on a renovation while trying to bring baby #2 into the world. I’m also regretting Dan and I not being millionaires who can hire people to do everything for us.
On being a basket case
With Vi’s pregnancy, I was emotional, yes. My hormones were raging, but overall I felt like I was pretty good at managing my output. I only cried a few times over food and commercials and was mostly nice to Dan. I was confident in my ability to get the baby out and was constantly pinning birth mantras like, “Your body is not a lemon,” and “Every contraction brings you closer to meeting your baby.” I even listened to hypno-birthing CDs because I wanted to be calm in the delivery room (ha!). I knew that I was going to have the natural hospital birth that I so desperately wanted. So confident that I hadn’t even watched a c-section video because I wasn’t going to have one.
This time around? Get. outta. my. way. I’m either crying because someone (usually my doula) sent me an article with babies in it or she’s making me deal with my emotions surrounding having a VBAC (which range from empowered to terrified). I’m angry because things are taking too long to get done—at the condo, at the new house, at my full-time job, with the cider business we’re still trying to get off the ground. Or I’m just disappointed because my favorite taco place KEEPS PUTTING CILANTRO ON MY FISH TACOS and I asked for ice cream and got SORBET. They’re not the same. Not even close. I also don’t have time for people who act like idiots or experts on subject matters they know nothing about. This includes people who think Trump would make a good president.
I could go on and on about what else is different about this pregnancy, but these are the main things I’ve noticed. If you’ve gone through more than one pregnancy, what was the difference between each one? And would you do it again knowing that you could either have your dream pregnancy (like I did with Vi’s) or you could be riddled with hives and morning sickness like I was with this one?
Obviously, Vi was worth the intense labor and resulting c-section. And I know Artie will be worth whatever happens, too. But as I sit here with swollen feet (after being out in the heat for, like, 2 seconds), I have to keep reminding myself that I did this on purpose! Pictures like this definitely help me remember why.