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.

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