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Pregnancy Confessions

I have always prided myself on my memory and attention to detail, but lately I’ve become incredibly spacey.

And we’re not just talking about forgetting to respond to an email or other innocuous things. In the span of the past week, I have shipped 2 packages to addresses where I never actually lived, forgotten to put up the gate that keeps the dog out of the trash when we aren’t home (which led to a trash-all-over-the-house disaster), and let the dog outside and left him there (omg! Am I going to forget about the baby in the future!?)…along with countless other things that I’m pretty sure I’ve already forgotten that I’ve forgotten. What is happening to my brain? At this rate, I’m afraid I will soon forget my way home. Someone will find me wandering aimlessly through the woods miles outside of town.

IMG 4070The poor, forgotten child

I am no longer a fully rational human being. Instead I cry over the dumbest things.

Like War Horse. And commercials. The other day I had a breakdown about some of the things I mentioned above. Totally blubbered away over nothing, really. And poor Evan had to sit there and tell me what a “good job” I’m doing with all this….as if I’m a little kid who is frustrated that she can’t master a new skill. I honestly don’t know how he doesn’t spend all his time laughing at me these days. I know I would…if I wasn’t convinced that my problems were SO LARGE and my emotions SO HEAVY. And I thought those emo teenage years were bad…

I no longer have any shame.

Okay, so I care about being presentable for work, but most of the other time?? Not so much.

The positive side of this is that for the first time ever, I truly have no qualms about my body. I’m heavier than I’ve ever been in my life, but I don’t change outfits because “I look fat in that” or feel self-conscious about those extra pounds. Most of the time, I’m flaunting the belly. Pregnancy has given me a weird sort of confidence that I can’t really explain.

The flip side is that I no longer have shame about things like, oh I don’t know…going to the store with food stains on my belly. Or wearing ridiculous outfits. My husband has never found me more attractive.

IMG 4074Who needs masks when you have running headbands?? Please note that we were using paint with 0 VOCs…and see point above re: lack of rationality

 I’m craving a good, hard, fast workout.

I don’t know if it’s the hormones, or the fact that this week has been pretty crappy in terms of running, but I feel like a drug addict in need of a fix. You know, because I have so much experience in that area (moving on…). I think I’ve been doing pretty well so far with adjusting to my new speed and getting excited during times when I am able to push a bit. But lately my cravings are getting worse. It’s just been so long since I’ve felt that feeling of flying, you know? And 2014 is still so far away. I’m telling myself that this is a phase…it will pass and the craving will fade. In the meantime, I need to find a way to a way bottle up all these feelings and use them as motivation for next year.

See also: please remind me of all this in 6 months when I’m inevitably complaining about training! 

(Related): I have serious, certifiable, full-blown race envy.

The 100 on 100 Relay came through my town last week, Hood to Coast is going on this week, peak marathon season is right around the corner, and everywhere I look people seem to be gearing up for (or running) another big race.

Yes, I know my “condition” is of my own choosing. And yes, I know I could have timed it so that I would’ve at least gotten in one good spring race instead of facing an entire calendar year(!!) without one, and yes, I also realize that life is about a heck of a lot more than racing. However, race envy does not always respond to logic.

I thought I would appreciate the downtime. That I’d use it as a way to recharge and escape the burnout from constant training. Although I’m sure that’s true to some extent, it still doesn’t change the facts. I miss racing. I miss it even more than I thought I would. I miss the fatigue of training, the dread of a long run or hard workout, the pre-race I-need-to-puke-right-this-second nerves, the sheer utter exhaustion and dark mental battles in the later miles, and of course, the elation of a finish line that makes it all worth it.

Yep…I seriously sound like an addict. Please send help.

Meanwhile, I have become addicted to Googling all things baby — nurseries, cloth diaper reviews and patterns, furniture, accessories, gear reviews, outfits…you name it.

I did not expect to lose myself in the vortex of baby-crazies. I thought I was way too rational and well-rounded for that (but again, see above). I tell myself it’s filling the void left by the race planning and training plan obsessing. But to be perfectly honest, I’m totally into it. I don’t even know who I am anymore.

cheesebaby onesieThe best onesie ever made. Cheese Baby will wear this every single day of her life.

I am not enjoying the “sit down, put your feet up…no! don’t you worry about that!” part of pregnancy. At all.

Well, unless we’re talking about cleaning the litter box. Or doing the dishes at night. I’m perfectly happy to pull the pregnancy card to get out of those chores (not having to go near the litter for 9 months has got to be the best perk of pregnancy). But the rest of it drives me sort of crazy. I know people only say these things out of consideration. And sure, some days I love putting my feet up and doing absolutely nothing…or wish a swarm of fairies would come in and magically clean my house for me. But I’m not fragile. And I really sort of hate being treated that way. Plus, does anyone really want to spend their entire pregnancy thinking about/doing nothing but being pregnant?

(Speaking of which…) I do not love everything about being pregnant.

This is the hardest thing for me to confess. And the hardest thing to write about without sounding like an entitled, whiny brat. But let me try to explain…

I don’t hate being pregnant. From a physical standpoint, I’m very happy that my pregnancy hasn’t been all that bad. I’m thankful that the baby is healthy. I am in awe of the changes my body is making to support life. Think it’s cool to track my growth every week. I get a kick out of listening to her heartbeat and feeling her move. I love sitting really still when she’s dancing around in my stomach and imagining what she’s going to be like.

But there’s this perception that women are supposed to love being pregnant. We’re supposed to be in a state of bliss over the miracle of life, flaunting our womanly bodies that are working hard to grow a future generation. And we must be grateful for every minute, especially because there are so many who would give anything to experience this time of life.

We’re not supposed to talk about how hard it can be sometimes. The guilt that is associated with these feelings of inadequacy — about not being “good” at being pregnant, and (even scarier) at potentially not being a good/worthy parent. The emotional and mental side of pregnancy that can sometimes be harder than the physical aspect. And the dichotomy between these intense feelings of love for your future child and acknowledgement that you really are lucky to be growing a healthy human…and the fact that all this human growing isn’t really the most fun thing ever.

I hope this doesn’t make me sound ungrateful or like I’m miserable all the time. In fact, most days I don’t dwell on the fact that I’m pregnant and I’m able to accept the good with the bad like a normal adult. But sometimes I might just have a teeny-tiny pity party (I don’t know if we can really blame the hormones for that, but I’m going to try), and some days (weeks) are admittedly harder than others.

However, even in the midst of my occasional pity parties, I can still see the light. I read something written by a new mom or think about all the worries I’m going to have once she’s outside the womb and realize — this is only the beginning. And in some ways, human-growing might be a cake-walk compared to all this human-raising stuff.

Puts things into perspective just a little bit…


18 Responses to Pregnancy Confessions

  1. Aww, I was so close to you!

    You can talk about how hard it is all you want, it’s the reality of life :)
    Jamie @ couchtoironwoman´s last post ..I LoVermont Runcation

  2. I love how honest your posts are. I am just starting to think about getting ready to start trying and there is so much about it that scares me. Running is so much a part of my identity that intentionally doing something that will be make me less able to do it, seems crazy. Reading about your journey through pregnancy though has made me feel like I could do it.

    • Thank you for saying that. I know it’s only temporary, but it has definitely been an adjustment. However…I just keep coming back to the hope that all of this will ultimately make me stronger. Even if I’m running less, running with 10+ extra pounds is no joke. Plus, I think it’ll give me a greater appreciation for it when I’m actually able to train again.

      AND – it isn’t really all bad :) There are some pretty cool moments and the feeling of bonding with your baby while you’re running that help make everything worth it.

  3. I can’t tell you how much I love your posts! I love the part about being confident in your body! I have always struggled with that and have wondered one day how I will deal with being pregnant, but after reading what you wrote I really hope I will feel the same way! You are awesome!
    Sara @ LovingOnTheRun´s last post ..My Nightly Routine and New Workout Songs

    • Thank you Sara! I really hope you do! I mean…you can’t really control the growth during pregnancy, so you might as well embrace it :)

  4. Love this post! And I agree whole heartedly on the subject of being treated like I can’t do anything. Seriously people, I’m pregnant – not handicapped, not sick. Pregnant. If I’m uncomfortable or can’t do something I will let you know! Drives me INSANE. I.N.S.A.N.E.

    • YES! Exactly. I already feel like I need to modify/give up enough just being pregnant…I don’t want to be made to feel dainty. And the extra attention to my “condition” just makes me uncomfortable.

  5. For the record, I think it’s ok to cry during War Horse, pregnant or not. :)

    I love your honest writing. I haven’t been pregnant, but I have friends who have been on both sides of “I love being pregnant!” vs. “Pregnancy just doesn’t seem to agree with me.” And I think both views are a-ok.
    Kaleena @ the hopeful triathlete´s last post ..A recovery run and something to work on

    • Haha…in hindsight, agreeing to watch it (especially while pregnant!) was a very dumb decision.

      And thanks for your comment — I really appreciate you saying that :)

  6. Goodmama – serious cloth diaper addiction for the brand.

    • Thanks for the recommendation! I had never heard of them before but after a quick look at the website, I’m already in love!

  7. I disliked (intensely) being pregnant too. (I think it is an athlete thing, all my runner/tri friends despised it). The only thing I missed about it after my son was born was feeling him flutter kick. I have never once hated being a mother. Not once. I can’t wait to have another… but I think we’ll have to find a surrogate this time (kidding… but I really am dreading being pregnant again). You aren’t alone!

  8. Congrats on the pregnancy and great post! Like someone else mentioned, I did miss feeling those little kicks but know few moms who think it’s all sunshine/rainbows. Something to look forward to…passing on your running passion to your daughter. I finished a race recently where the kids got to watch. Afterwards my 5 year old said she can’t wait to do one with me! Something I never even imagined when I was pregnant!

  9. i agree that the mental side can be harder than the physical. aside from getting larger, i still don’t “feel” pregnant. but i often feel crazy, irrational and just not myself. i sometimes feel like i have a split personality! i’m so much fun to be around :)
    kristy´s last post ..halfway done and other updates

  10. As a fellow preggo-fitness-junkie (14 weeks 5 days!) this post could not have made me giggle more. You are not alone.

    1) iPhone “reminders” have become my God-send as well as iCal. I have to put single grocery items on my “list”, which reminds me of a comedy skit I once heard where they say “a list with one thing on it isn’t really a list is it, it’s just a piece of paper with one word on it. Bread.”

    2) I have had recurring dreams where I’m standing on the sidelines of a race finish and jump in just to experience crossing the finish line. How weird is that.

    3) I am still non-stop. Wake up, make food, go to work, work all day, errands on the way home, grab a snack, go for workout, get home, make food, relax on the couch with hubs for an hour or so, go to bed. I didn’t slow down once during my first tri, and I don’t expect to in my second either!

  11. I totally get the pregnancy confidence that is so hard to explain. Last year when I was pregnant, I loved my body more than I ever have in
    my entire life. I couldn’t explain why I had a new found confidence but it was so awesome. And it has weirdly continued. Being a mom does strange things to you! I was once totally body conscience and now I am so focused on my little guy and being the best mom I can be, I don’t have time or want to obsess over my body. It has been so freeing!

    • I love it!! I already look back at pictures from a few months ago (or last year) and wonder why I was so hard on myself for my big legs or other body imperfections. So I’m hoping this newfound confidence carries over for me as well.

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