Friday, January 17, 2014

stuff your body does when you're pregnant

I'm been catapulted into my third trimester.

Suddenly I am exhausted. I feel a bit like I did the first three months of being pregnant - it hits you like a tractor to the face in the early afternoon, where you're so tired you feel dizzy and disorientated.

While just a few weeks ago I had so much energy and felt I could do everything right until the end. (What do you mean  'slow down?' Not me, nuh uh), now I am starting to physically feel the effects of being as massive as a rhino.

I went to bed at 9pm last night. Not that I slept much, but I just couldn't keep my eyes open. I have another 5 weeks at work, how am I going to do this? How am I going to do anything slightly productive?

As I don't plan on being pregnant again, I'm also trying to take stock of the millions of different things that have happened to my body since The Double Insemination. While pregnancy is meant to be the most natural, genetic, predisposed thing in the world, so many weird, fucked up things start happening to your body.

Things I have experienced so far - and apparently there's a bunch of other things I can expect around the corner too:

Itchy skin
So help me God. If only I could lie against a tree like a wild animal in the middle of the African plains and scratch my naked belly and arms all day long. Or find a stump to rub up against.
Now my skin hurts as it stretches over my belly, where I am needing to cream it up with tummy butter and oil twice, thrice a day.
Itchy eyeballs
Your eyeballs change shape when you're pregnant. Well of course they do. So the vision is more blurry than usual, and the eyes are dry.
Bleeding gums
Apparently the hormones inflame your gums, so whenever you brush your teeth your gums bleed, and a lot. It's really beautiful. At the back of your mind you wonder if you do, in fact, have periodontal disease, but then during a hygienist appointment, the dentist informs you everything is fine while what looks like a massacre is happening in your mouth.
Leg cramps/spasms
These are particularly ferocious, where like last night I made the mistake of stretching in my sleep. This made my calf muscle seize up, lightning bolts going through my legs and searing pain that cannot be stopped or stretched out. Usually happens about once a night.
It's like you're 16 again. The hair and skin decide to implode on themselves in a catastrophically teenage manner, and can formally classify myself as a 'sebaceous 33 year old.' Mmm yummy.
Swollen fingers, ankles
All hail ye, the cankle! She is back! My wedding rings are getting toight, soon will have to take them off and look like I'm carrying bastard children. My swelling hasn't been too bad, but I hear it starts to get diabolical around about now.
Indigestion, heartburn and acid reflux
Chugging Gaviscon like water at the moment. The twins are squashing my stomach, so anytime I eat anything slightly acidic or if I eat too much (which I do, like, all the time), I get the burn. Or cough up acid. I have to wash down every meal with a Gaviscon milkshake. Deelish!
I find myself suddenly seething about how shit the human race is, and then marveling about how wonderful it is within the same hour. An ad on the telly about feeding starving children will set me off. There's one screening at the moment to a background accompaniment of "The sun'll come out tomorrow," which makes me wail every time. 
I tried to run to catch a bus this morning on the way to work and almost had a heart attack. Just walking fast or up stairs, or even just talking too much results in panting. That everyone can hear.
Rosy cheeks
Tons of blood is being shunted around your face and belly, so you're always 1) hot and 2) mostly rosy. If not rosy, you're very veiny. Especially around stomach and boobs.

Massive tits
Never in a million years did I think my humble 34Bs would grow into the blossoming and burgeoning 38Cs they are today. My cups runneth over. And are growing still. I might even be a D by the time the milk comes in. This is the best symptom so far.
Lots of hair
You don't malt. Your hair becomes thicker and glossier, which is nice. Heard it all falls out again immediately after birth. Hairdresser told me not to be alarmed when my hair comes out in chunks, it's just because it's not falling out at all right now.
Needing to pee all the time
Covered this. Ad infinitum.
Infinite energy sandwiched by dire tiredness
In the beginning and in the end , you're tired as fuck. They are growth spurting, so are draining me of all my nutrition so that they can develop. But in the middle of pregnancy you are bursting with energy.
Restless legs
You get pins and needly legs, especially when you sleep. And a gammy leg that becomes restless.
Heightened smell
You smell things in Australia.
Brittle nails
Breaking Bad.
Bumping into shit
Walking into walls as you slide past, generally being overly clumsy. Finding yourself off-centre or bashing into things unnecessarily.
Crazy dreams
Really really vivid dreams too. People, faces and places  - it's like you're really there. Many of sexual nature. Or ones where I am smoking a cigarette, drinking a vodka tonic and having a whale of a time, then waking up and thinking I've killed my babies.
Expanding hips
Not only because I'm eating all the time, because that's certainly contributing to the heftiness, but my actual pelvis has started to realign and open up. My Favourite Irish Gay Friend told me I'd 'definitely widened out' the other day. Ready for launch. Gulp.
Linea Nigra
A brown line that forms down your tummy, cutting through your belly button. It's just pigmentation, but I look like a monkey. Or at least someone that has her own Greenwich Meridian. Apparently this goes away on birth too.
Pigmentation in general
Moles, freckles, nipples. They all go darker. Also get patches of brown on the face.
Nothing weird thus far, bar the three weeks I ate nothing but fish fingers. However my sweet tooth is of Willy Wonkarish proportions at the moment. I cannot end a meal without something sweet or I might hit the ceiling. The Brit has an insane sweet tooth, so there's a theory that now his genes are growing inside me, it's filtering down to me craving more sweet stuff. Anything involving potatoes and cheese is good too.
Preg brain
Putting the cereal in the wash basket instead of the kitchen cupboard, forgetting appointments or simple requests, definitely not being able to do maths. I ordered curtains for our bedroom last month. Disaster. I put the width measurements as the length measurements, and now have a lovely set of half size curtains.  You just become super ditzy, very forgetful and a bit dumb sometimes.
In the first three months I got blinding headaches most days. I was also so tired and nauseous I didn't know how I'd get through the day sometimes.
By early afternoon, no chair, or change of seat or anything will help. You really just have to live with it.  

That's all I can recall for now. But it really is a freak of nature.

Anyone else experience other weird anomalies?


Vannessa said...

I pretty much had most of those symptoms. Heartburn was not too bad though in the first trimester I was constantly nauseous (with all 3 pregnancies) and had to eat to minimise the nausea. With my last one I had terrible itchy skin. All over, not just the belly. So much so that I researched all kinds of things and even went for blood tests in case it was my kidneys or something. I was fine just had high blood pressure which I think contributed. The only stuff that helped my skin was Palmers Cocoa Butter Formula for Itchy skin. It really helped. I did not get the dark line down my belly or the 'outie' (belly button) like some do even though I was huge.

I did not have bad cravings though was partial to Avo and peanut butter in general. My husband, however, craved ice cream badly through all of my pregnancies!

I think I still have my preggy brain, sad to say!

Bug Eyed said...

Milk Stout! Craved it desperately. Didn't care what the experts said, NEEDED IT. Something to do with Vitamin B I found out. My son weighed a whopping 2,9 kg at birth. He was 6 weeks premature. Today he's a strapping 6ft plus, not a thing wrong with him.
Sex! post birth was as horny as a nest of hornets. Couldn't get enough. Tell the Brit to start limbering up.
Ginger! Anything with ginger in it for heartburn. If you can get it there, Jamaica Ginger is the best. Very strong and will feel like fire when you drink it at first for a few seconds. After that you're home free. Ginger beer, ginger biscuits, you get the idea.
Bi-carb of soda for the itchy skin. Put a tablespoon in your bath water every night. Lessens the skin's sensitivity. I couldn't stand the feel of fabric on my skin, as a result stayed home naked most of my pregnancy.
Above all else, listen to your body and fuck what anyone tells you is wrong. Your body knows best.

Jade said...

If you can get it, Enos (maybe at one of the South African shops?) is the BEST for heartburn - worked better than anything else for me. Someone recommended licorice, too, and bizarrely it really helps. Good luck with this last bit!

Val said...

Gosh Peas you brought back some memories I had totally forgotten!
(See how one forgets the bad parts?)
I gave birth in the age where smoking and drinking while pregnant was the norm and my daughter weighed in at a whopping 10 1/2 lb!! So much for the smoking/small baby theory - she was the biggest baby in the maternity ward at the time. :) Take care now.

MeeA said...

Yup, that'll pretty much cover it! :)

I had literally NEVER had heartburn in my life before pregnancy. And between that and the violent gag reflex triggered by the taste of Gaviscon, it was great fun.

Wishing you a safe, healthy and easy 3rd trimester and delivery.