Tuesday, May 17, 2011


There are things about being pregnant that sound obvious when you say them out loud. Lately, a lot of folks have asked me, "How are you feeling?" And my answer the last few weeks has been, "Pretty hungry."

I'm in the second trimester, which is when the tot goes from being roughly the size of a small lemon to a two-pound mini-baby over the course of three months. That requires plenty of calories (and fat! I've been encouraged to drink whole milk and eat ice cream. Yes, please).

But what I wasn't expecting about pregnancy hunger was what could be called Sudden Onset Starving.

See, I'll have a reasonable breakfast in the morning and head off to work. Non-pregnant Schmei could usually make it to early lunch time without needing much, perhaps a small snack. In my current state, however, I'll get to 10:30 am, give or take a few minutes, and be suddenly STARVING. It happens so fast, and to such an extreme, that it surprises me almost every time. And this is the routine all day. If I go more than three hours without eating something, bam! I'm about to start chewing on furniture (not that I want to, I haven't developed pregnancy-related pica).

This helps explain why a few women I know have told me that pregnancy makes you kind of dumb sometimes. If something happens, oh, five or six times a day, every day, for a few weeks, it should stop being surprising, right? But here I am, wondering, "holy crap, I am really hungry. I could eat just about anything that's not moving too fast." There's just no warning, so it continues to startle me.

One reason this is a paradigm shift for me is that during the first trimester, I didn't feel hunger at all. If my stomach was getting close to empty, all I felt was nausea, so I would just munch on something like crackers or a bagel because it would make me feel less crappy. Food had zero appeal - and most food made me want to gag. This sorry state felt like it lasted a long time - long enough to make me miss food and the relationship I used to have with it. I remember thinking, "I miss just being hungry." Hehe. I guess my wish has been granted.

Now, most any food (with the exception of canned mushrooms and a few deep-fried foods - I think those might be verboten for the duration of this project) sounds beautiful, and though I'm trying not to go crazy on sugars, any dessert is calling out my name. Part of the reason I want to put up this post is so the huge Oreo cookie picture of my last post can move down the page, because every time I see it I want cookies NOW.

This isn't a complaint: I'm enjoying this stage. I'm not huge and lumbering yet. I do have a bump that's starting to appear, and at the risk of being immodest, it's kind of cute. Even if my appetite is a little intense sometimes, I'm glad I have it and most of the accompanying energy back. And we're far enough out from actually meeting this kid that we haven't had to think too much about all the baby flotsam we need to acquire: decisions on cribs and diapers and everything can be quietly mulled or just ignored for a few more weeks while I marvel at my appetite (and think about other things, like my thesis and DH's graduation and moving, etc, etc). And hey, I don't know if it's a "glow" or all the water I've been drinking, but my skin even looks nice.

Second trimester, I like you. And if I need to feed you every two hours OR ELSE, well, I guess you're just preparing me for life with an infant. That's actually kind of considerate.

OK, OK, I'll go make some lunch! Calm down.

Friday, May 13, 2011

God Bless 'Murrica

Since I'm trying to balance long afternoon cravings for chocolate with a very good motivation to eat a healthy diet, this is just terrible news for me. DH's crazy uncle had told me about a rumor that Oreo was coming out with a Triple Double, and now it's been confirmed. They're hitting the shelves this summer.

How can something look so gross and so desirable at the same time? I'm sure that's not just the hormones, right?

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

That other project

So I mentioned that I have another project that I picked up a little while ago, and it's been taking my time and energy. Then I did the predictable thing that happens and disappeared for a while.

So, the project is large enough that it's been producing its own urine for a few weeks, which makes it high time I posted about it.

Dear readers: I'm knocked up.

I've been writing about this offline, but I feel like this is the stuff blogs are made of, anyway: pregnancy is temporary and prone to changes each day. I don't want this to become a strictly baby-centric blog, but at this point I've followed enough blogs that I know what the pattern is:

A) Hip young female writer starts a blog, just writing about LIFE, man!

B) HYFW falls in love

C) HYFW gets engaged and starts planning a wedding. But "this isn't a wedding blog".

D) weddingweddingweddingweddingweddingwedding

E) HYFW gets marrrrrieeeed!

F) long pause

G) HYFW returns! With wedding pictures and recaps!

H) OK, seriously, back to life. HYFW begins posting more of the stuff I liked to read in the first place, with the occasional relationship post.

I) Long pause out of nowhere.

J) I've probably unsubscribed because the pause was months long.

K) I psychically check in to HYFW's blog on the day she announces that she's PREGERRRRS! Often complete with an ultrasound picture. But "this isn't a baby blog"

L) It's totally a baby blog. For good.

Now, to be fair, I have kept reading one or two blogs that have done this to their readers, because they did keep posting interesting content even after having a child. (And YES, of course I think child-related content can be interesting: A child is residing in my midsection as I type). And I know that bloggers have zero obligation to make stuff up for their readers. If I don't like reading about poop and boob juice, I can go elsewhere, and they know that and so do I.

So I'm not going to say "this isn't a baby blog". I am going to say that I'll be writing about what the hey is going on in this body that, up until a couple of months ago, I thought I knew pretty well. I've already been surprised by all this pregnancy stuff in a lot of ways, and writing is kind of how I work through things, so maybe instead of a baby blog we should all just think of this as my really cheap, overly public therapy. Or something.

Anyway, the answers to the usual questions:

Due date: October 21, 2011. DH and I love October, so this is really exciting. Birthday pictures in a pumpkin patch, baby!

So, how far along are you? I'm at 16 weeks, 4 days. 16 weeks in the normal world is 4 months, but in pregnancy world it's 3.5 months, sort of. For reference, full-term is 40 weeks - which sounds like 10 months to me. But whatever. So I'm almost-four-months along.

Gender: Yes, despite my entire family thinking I'm RUINING the surprise, we're planning to find out some time in June. I'll write more about this.

How are you feeling, Schmei? Physically: Better. I think I had it relatively easy, from what I hear, but the first trimester landed me on my ass. All-day nausea (only puked twice so far, fortunately), exhaustion, crankiness, and a sense of smell that could detect a stale cigarette from four miles away... which contributed to nausea and crankiness. The last few weeks, though, my stomach and I have gotten back together. We're making up for those weeks of estrangement by the stomach being constantly hungry and me constantly feeding it. Beyond the occasional insomnia, I'm feeling pretty good.

Emotionally: all over the place. I still can't wrap my head around this being real, most days. I honestly think it's going to hit me when I meet the kid this fall. (Or maybe when I get cankles this summer. That will be a treat.) But then I get worried about the kid, which tells me that the instinctive side of me is pretty aware of what's going on.

Weight gain: 6 lbs so far. My goal, per the midwife, is to gain 15-25 total. I'm not sure if my ravenous hunger agrees with that goal, however. The second three pounds happened a lot faster than the first three - I'm worried it's exponential or something.

Midwife? Are you doing a crazy home birth? No, though I think home birth makes sense for a lot of folks, the idea of all that cleanup is not appealing to me at all, while the idea of having someone take complete care of me for a day or so after I give birth is appealing. We found a really cool midwife group at a nice hospital. I'm sure I'll write more about the midwives. So far I'm very very happy with that decision.

Are you still running? Eh, no. I had signed up for a 5K on May 7 which I planned to run-walk with DH. We ended up sleeping through it, which was the right choice for a lot of reasons. I was so out of it during much of the first trimester that long walks were the best I could manage, but now I'm really in to walking: aiming for 5 miles a day. It's something I know I can do until the end, and afterward, and it really helps me when I'm feeling down, which these damn hormones do more often than I care to admit. I got a prenatal yoga DVD, too, with some intense stretches and squats, and I'm aiming to do that at least three days a week. But yes, running and triathlon-ing are hopefully going to return in 2012 some time.

Do you have a bump? I'm getting the start of one... it depends on the angle and what I'm wearing and whether I just ate. That probably means not really, but my midsection certainly has more density than it used to. Most of my pants are still wearable, especially with a Bella band. I'm enjoying my non-enormity while it lasts.

Where's the ultrasound picture? I don't have one yet - this will likely be its own post soon - and I'm not planning to post it here when I get one. I've found myself feeling very strongly about this kid's privacy, which is pretty silly when you think about an ultrasound picture, since they all basically look the same. I will probably follow in the footsteps of Molly and not post any identifying pictures of the kid, since this is a public blog, and I think I may just start that from, well, the start, and not post the ultrasound picture. I know that's dumb. Blame it on hormones.

Have you felt any kicks? I think I have - it's tough to distinguish, but last night we had root beer floats for dessert, and about an hour later I was relaxing in bed with a magazine when I'm fairly certain I felt two little thumps in my lower-front midsection. Maybe the baby likes root beer? I know I do, so the kid should get used to that.

How is DH doing? Well, he's DH, so he's awesome. He's very in to brainstorming names, going to all the midwife appointments, giving me the occasional belly rub, dragging me out for long, restorative walks, and when I'm pooped, making me relax and drink some water. Menfolk should take note that no matter how horrified I am about some change my body just made, he acts like it's attractive. This is crucial to domestic harmony with a pregnant partner. Honestly, he's excited about the whole prospect, which is darn cute. I'm lucky.

And the question I can't wait for someone to ask me in real life:

Were you trying? Well, we were trying for a puppy. Turns out that's a different process, so... baby! Also cute and will hopefully chew the furniture less.

I am still working on my thesis, which was further delayed by being basically out of commission through late February and much of March, so posting will be light for the next month or so. But not as light as it's been of late - I have a few posts up my sleeve.

I have found that I like answering people's (polite) questions about this process, so if you have one, shoot!