Photo by Jonathan Borba from Unsplash
It feels like it was just yesterday when I was pregnant with my first child, for the first time. I kept looking at the mirror and feel my baby’s kicks from my belly. It was mine and my boyfriend’s favorite thing to do when we’re in bed—talking to our child, thinking of names, and basically imagining our new life together with our child on the way.
Of course, the way I say it, I make it sound like pregnancy is such a dream. But it’s not. It’s far from perfect. It’s an eye-opening journey to womanhood. It’s truly life-changing. Despite the rollercoaster ride of emotions and surging hormones, my pregnancy journey was one for the books. It was the most surreal, humbling, and raw experience that’s ever happened to me. I made sure to enjoy every stage of my pregnancy, even during the days when I used to do absolutely nothing but to eat and sleep.
Now that I’m no longer pregnant, I’m proud to say my pregnancy has taught me to endure through the pain so I can learn to embrace the overflowing joy in the future when my baby comes.
I’m super excited for this blog post because I want to share with you what I went through in full detail. I want to be as real with you, guys. Here is my pregnancy roundup for the three trimesters.
I found out I was pregnant when I was still 5 weeks. But I had my TVS (Trans vaginal ultrasound) in my 7th week. This was the most difficult time for me, emotionally. This was about the time I was still grieving for my grandmother who passed away when the baby was still 1-month old. I took care of my grandmother as a nurse since she got admitted and that meant shifts of no sleep— all while taking online classes and finishing my poetry book. Long story short, I had a lot on my plate during this period of my life (and that was before I knew there was a human being inside me.) Also, I’ve been crying a lot.
This was also the time I had to tell everyone about my big news. That was without a doubt, the hardest part of all this. I remembered I almost fainted when I was about to tell my mother; I could hardly breathe. My heart was pounding so fast and I kept farting. I get really terrible gas when I’m nervous. It was a battle between the fear of telling my parents, being overwhelmed by the surge of hormones in my body, fear of the future, and intense emotions I felt towards my boyfriend. My breasts were so full, engorged, sore, and sensitive to the touch. I was also new with the whole mood swings, nausea, and slight food aversions. These things take a lot of time to get used to.
Click here for a more detailed explanation as to how I found out I was pregnant.
Some mothers find their 2nd trimester of pregnancy the easiest and least miserable. For some, these 3 months are when they feel like their old selves again. This is the time when they regain their energy, good mood, and overall physical relief. Well, good for them. The 2nd trimester was the most difficult time for me physically. My body just kept on surprising me with all sorts of reasons to just stay in bed and eat unhealthy. I loved to eat a lot of sweets and carbs when I was pregnant, so my diet was something I had to be very careful about. Morning sickness was still there, as well as the occasional vomiting.
The highlight of my 2nd trimester was definitely the 3-4 straight days of literal physical torture. Severe body pain. Muscle fatigue. My limbs were so hard to move, it felt like I’ve been doing extreme workout for days. The sole of my feet were sensitive to the touch, I could barely walk. My bones and joints were numb and painful– I thought I had arthritis. Literally every time I make a step, the sole of my foot hurts so much. Moreover, I got really bad leg cramps during these months. Every night, the pain in my legs and back would wake me up at night. I also got really terrible, creepy, and violent dreams during this time.
During the 2nd was the time my belly started growing big really fast. My baby bump became rounder and more prominent when I wore fitting clothing. Some say it’s uncommon but I started feeling my baby move in my 4 months. It was the most amazing feeling, it’s like he’s saying hi to me and I’m the only one who can feel it.
Finding out the Gender: 6 Months
My boyfriend and I weren’t really hoping for a specific gender that we like. As for me, I was fine with either as long as it’s a healthy baby. When the date of my anomaly/anatomy scan finally came, I had mixed feelings of excitement and nervousness. Most of my family and friends kept on telling me it was a girl because of my supposed cravings while some people told me it was a boy because of how big my nose got lol.
All I was thinking at that time was to see a normal, healthy, moving baby on the screen with complete limbs, fingers, toes, a pair of eyes, ears, and no cleft and lip palates and other physical abnormalities. Turns out, it was a boy. The sonographer even asked me if I wanted to know right then and there or if I wanted it to be a surprise. Well, I couldn’t resist. I had to be the first one to know.
One of the most interesting parts of this trimester was the intense lightning crotch. Every night I would feel sharp shooting pain down there like a literal lightning just zapped me in the crotch. It’s as painful as it sounds, and the worse part is you won’t even know when it’s going to come.
At the beginning of the 7th month, I still felt very sleepy and tired most of the time. Nausea was still there but not to the point of vomiting and feeling dizzy, unlike the first trimester. I felt so heavy and full and engorged (plus, it was getting really hard to breathe considering all of my organs are just pushed aside by my baby haha). My tummy just got bigger and bigger, and all the weight was pushing down to my bladder. Embarrassingly, I kept wetting my underwear every time I laughed, sneezed, or when I walk up and down the stairs.
My nesting phase was crazy. Hormones were crazier. It was during this trimester when I felt a very strong urge to clean every inch of the house and declutter everything. I even packed my hospital bag way too early and kept putting more and more things inside (but what do you have to lose, right?)
This was the most difficult time for me—mentally. I had a lot of worries in my mind knowing that it was almost the end of my pregnancy. The thought of giving birth started to sink into my mind, and it was freaking me out. Preparing my room as a nursery, buying all the baby stuff, trying to find the balance between sleep and exercise— it feels like time is rushing and I’m hardly catching up. Not to mention the anxiety of experiencing labor for the first time at 22 years old.
The visits with my OBGYN became more frequent as the months passed. My OBGYN says I’m about to pop. She gives me my first internal exam at 36 weeks and I was 1cm dilated. IT WAS SO PAINFUL I COULD HARDLY WALK AFTERWARDS. During that time, I had been told to continue taking primrose oil to soften the cervix faster, so that’s why I did. I couldn’t imagine what labor would feel like after that. Mind you, my OBGYN was very calm, gentle, and empathetic but it still hurt like hell.
Also, during this trimester, I’ve been researching like crazy. I read a lot, researched every bit of question and symptom I was feeling at the moment, and watched a lot of videos on Youtube about pregnancy (both educational and vlogs). But the nesting mama in me got even more intense as I was getting closer to my due date. I watched many birth vlogs as I could, studied them, and tried practicing their breathing techniques. I started to move a lot during my last trimester. I walked around, did indoor exercises, did some stretching—basically anything to induce labor.
Throughout the wait, I was just really trying to be a student and taking down notes for my sanity. Knowledge is very reassuring to me. Even if I won’t know exactly how my labor and birth experience is going to turn out, knowing a little bit about what to expect gives me peace of mind.
Thankfully, with God’s grace, my whole pregnancy was healthy, safe, and happy. It has been an incredible journey for me, and I’m more than happy to share my first pregnancy experience with you, guys. I hope you found my blog post helpful. I wanted to go into full detail so I apologize if this was such a lengthy post.
To all mama’s are pregnant right now or who are expecting, know you are not alone. We’re all struggling and exhausted, but we never give up. And by the way, I suggest reading as much as you can. Filling your mind with information not only prepares you for the worst but also helps you get through the anxiety. So, read, read, read, and pray A LOT!
“A baby is something you carry inside you for nine months, in your arms for three years, and in your heart until the day you die.”Mary Mason