Wednesday, February 15, 2012

First Trimester woes.


The first trimester is rough. I am filled with gratitude and excitement, but it feels like every fiber of my being is fighting against that joy. I am nauseous all day long, dog tired and down in the dumps. I am tempted to say it's harder this time around, but honestly? I think I just forgot. Which makes me nervous. I have only positive feelings towards my last pregnancy. What else did I forget? And that blissful, perfect birth I remember? It probably wasn't so blissful and perfect.

Every morning for the past month, my first thought when I wake up is when I can crawl back into bed, be it for a nap or for the night. Every morning I lay in bed and think of taking Meredith to the park knowing that feat will probably be more than I can handle. Before even getting out of bed, I am resigned to staying in our pajamas all day, watching more TV than my conscience wants to allow and eating whatever crappy, processed foods I can microwave in under a minute.

Laundry, cleaning the house, fixing dinner and calling friends seem like an insurmountable mountain.  So many days it feels like sitting on the living room floor is all I have the energy for. I hate it. I hate that the things that bring me joy- like taking care of my family- feel so impossible. I hate that for Valentine's Day all I could stomach was buttered pasta and not the delicious meal Chris had planned for.

One part I do remember from my last pregnancy- the part where I wonder why God does pregnancy this way. There are so many incredible parts of pregnancy- the initial flutters and eventually the big stretches and kicks, the knowing someone is always with you, the whispering to your unborn child, the playing with pokes and prods. It's wonderful. But this part isn't. Why? Why, when all day long my senses assault me and my stomach churns and my eyes just beg to shut, can I not feel this sweet baby moving and playing inside?

This time around I have a theory. Have you read this article, To the Mother With Only One Child? Oh, this article cut me to the heart and spoke to all that I've felt. Two lines stood out to me the most and I've thought about them often over the past month: "To become a mother, I had to learn how to care about someone more than I did about myself, and that was terrible." and "You’re suffering now because you’re turning into a new woman, a woman who is never allowed to be alone." She articulated so well what I've felt so often over the past 19 months. Becoming a mother shatters your ability to live a fully selfish life. Can I still be selfish at times? Of course. But most of the time, someone else's needs come before my own. Her poopy diaper before my bathroom break. Her cut up food before my first bite. Her morning wake up, not my sleeping in. Her outdoor exploration before my watching Ellen. Some little things, some big things, but in almost all things I put her first.

So my theory with this challenging part of pregnancy is that I am once again being stretched. Once more, my heart is growing to love even more, my selfishness is being scraped away and my desire to have control over everything is redirected. A second baby is going to change life again. I know there are going to be hard days. And while I hate this stage right now and question why it has to be so hard, I think it's preparing me. It's preparing me for the days when all I can do while balancing a newborn and toddler is turn on the TV. It's preparing me for when the meals brought my neighbors stop coming and all I can do is throw a frozen pizza in the oven for dinner. It's preparing me for when I am exhausted and spit-up-covered from a rough night, but still have to face the day with two sweet little faces. It's preparing me for the constant contradiction that is motherhood- frustration, exhaustion, impatience in one moment and then in the next- absolute awe and wonder that life could possibly be so grand.

Life is grand. The blessings that are poured out over me are never ceasing and I honestly can't believe that God could be so generous to  one person. So while I struggle through these days that feel so dark, I take comfort knowing that this too shall pass and that I am being prepared for some special, special days ahead.

13 comments:

Kristin {Sea Cow Circus} said...

Love, love, love this post. And thank you for sharing that amazing article! You perfectly articulate so much of what I feel as a mother of one. I feel like I'm always facing the struggle to be more, do more, and yet can be aware the next minute that things couldn't be better.

I remember first tri as being super hard, from hormones to nausea. I hope the last few weeks speed by for you and you're able to fully enjoy this pregnancy more, soon, without the distractions of fatigue or aversions.

Jessica said...

I can't believe I missed your announcement!! I'm so excited for you and your family, what an amazing blessing!! I hope you start to feel better soon :)

Anna {dear friend} said...

Very true, my friend. You are lucky. You are loved. You are amazing.

I can't even begin to imagine what it's like to be without selfishness. Here I am waltzing through my days, doing whatever I please. But I do hope one day that I'll have the chance to give that up. To be a mom and to give out my heart. And being your friend has made me excited for it. :)

Joy said...

Hi Claire - hang in there! It can be rough, but despite the feeling that it is never ending, it will get better soon. Wish I could help out in some way.

colleen said...

this was such a fabulous post. and as someone who isn't a mother you painted such a fair and clear picture of the downs and the highs. that's something you've always been so good about on your blog. thanks for sharing this.

Jodi Ann said...

Claire, what an amazing post. I needed to read this today...not that I'm pregnant, but your push through the hard time and your outlook on the Lord's blessings really gave me perspective today. I love your honesty! I hope you get lots of rest and no sickness today and that it only gets better!

grace said...

eloquently stated, my friend.

Em {orange + barrel} said...

You can do this! I have so many friends that are pregnant right now and going through the same thing! I hope you start feeling better soon.

Kate (This Place is Now a Home) said...

Oh Claire, what a beautiful and honest post. Someday you will look back on these days as easy and calm and wonderful like you do the first tri with M. It's all about the perspective. Hang in there -- you are almost through the roughest part.

Imogene McAnulty said...

Claire, I sympathize with you as I felt awful when I was expecting. But as you know I am so grateful to have the our two sons. Bur being nausea all the time and so tired and sleepy are things I have not forgotten. However, it will pass. i am so happy for you and Chris. god bless you.

I love you,
Mom

Bridget said...

claire, this was so beautifully written. when i first married steve, that was hard for me to do--become selfless. especially for four kids that i didn't CHOOSE to have. i thought of it again when i read that article.

anyway, hoping your days become brighter as spring nears. you're a beautiful soul.

accidentally, kle said...

I'm bookmarking this post because one day when I'm hopefully prgnant with my second, I just know that reading it will help. Sending love x

accidentally, kle said...

I'm bookmarking this post because one day when I'm hopefully prgnant with my second, I just know that reading it will help. Sending love x

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