Sunday, January 30, 2011

Pregnancy Denial

Pregnancy denial: Refusal to attribute clear pregnancy symptoms to being pregnant.
(aka, "I will not be like the billions of pregnant women who have come before me. I will be exactly the same me I was prior to being pregnant. Except I'll be growing a person. The only reason people will know I'm pregnant is when my belly pops out and hits them in the eye.")

For all the readers who are or have been pregnant, I'll let you catch your breath from the hysterics-induced asthma.

Over the last few weeks, I've begun to notice some odd behavior in myself that I have to question, but refuse to attribute to being pregnant. Probably because I'm pregnant and that makes you insane.

To add insult to injury, these are the exact activities that, in your head, when you met other pregnant women you SWORE you would never do yourself when you became pregnant.

Let me tell you from my new-found experience, intentions v. nature is an ugly fight. Nature will end up winning. But if you're as stubborn as me, I know I won't be able to talk you out of the best to you.

Increased appetite
Pre-pregnancy facts: You only need to eat an additional 300 calories a day when pregnant, not 10 additional meals.

My pre-pregnancy mentality: I will eat how I normally do and not deny myself the occasional snack when I'm hungry. There will be no sending my husband out for food at midnight; I will not live on milkshakes; I will not go to a party and have people see me go the buffet table and think to themselves, "get out of the pregnant lady's way, she has the crazy in her eyes."

Pregnancy A-Ha moments: For the past week, I have woken up at 6:30 AM and before I could pee, before I could let the dogs out, before I could say good morning to my husband, I had to get an enormous bowl of cereal in my belly BEFORE.I.DIED.I.SWEAR.TO.YOU.

Last night we went out to a late dinner (warning signal 1) after I had eaten a salad as an early lunch (warning signal 2). I couldn't be bothered to engage in, politely listen to or even absentmindedly nod at the surrounding conversations. All I could think about is how quickly would my food come and how come those people got their food already and wherethehellismyfoodgoddammit. Once the meals arrived, I kid you not here, I had hoovered in my burger and was eyeing my husband's before he had gotten in three bites of his.

Hormonal shifts
Pre-pregnancy facts: You may experience some mood swings as your hormone levels adjust to being pregnant.

My pre-pregnancy mentality: I will be the same sane, rational person I was pre-pregnancy. There will be no crying at commercials, lashing out at my husband for "not understanding what I'm going through" and there will definitely be no losing one's temper or screaming. I will embody the perfectly serene pregnant woman.

Pregnancy A-Ha moments: The dogs. Oh my God, the dogs. Why can't they wipe their freaking paws before coming in the house. Don't they realize I just washed the floors for the 3rd straight day in a row? And why must they bark at every single thing they see??? (Cue: screaming fits directed at the dogs, the husband, the innocent friends calling to say hi. Followed by bouts of hysterical guilt crying for yelling at everyone. Finished with soft sobbing and rubbing of the belly apologizing for the outrageous way I acted and coos of "I hope to God you don't inherit my crazy.")

This is the most amusing symptom to me because you think you are acting rational, right up to the minute you realize you have just lost your shit everywhere and are prancing around like the Queen of Loonyville.

It's the double meltdown effect. One meltdown caused by some external factor like dirty dogs, no yogurt in the house or the wind blowing leads to a second meltdown about how ill-equipped you are to deal with life and why in God's name did you think having a baby would be a good idea.

Pre-pregnancy fact: You will get tired throughout your pregnancy as your body expends energy growing another human being.

My pre-pregnancy mentality: I will not be the pregnant lady who falls asleep at 7 PM while eating dinner. I will go out and do everything I did before AND get the house ready for a baby. I will not use pregnancy as an excuse to leave parties early or not give 110% all day, every day.

Pregnancy A-Ha moments: I didn't feel an ounce of guilt when I got into bed at 6:30 PM the other night with the intentions of reading a little before going to bed a little earlier than usual and woke up the next morning having only advanced three words in my book.

And the pregnancy excuse to leave parties...yeah...there may or may not be some abuse of that one. Firstly, I am legitimately tired. But secondly, when you're the sole sober person standing around listening to 20 different drunken conversations, going home to clean one's floors doesn't sound so bad. At least you can be in pajamas.

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