The First Trimester
aka The Period In Which You Feel Like You Have The Flu
That's exactly what it felt like to me. I'd have hours when I felt ok and then the queasiness would creep up on me. Having an empty stomach was the worst feeling in the world. For the first two weeks that I knew I was pregnant, I pretty much existed solely on Saltine crackers, macaroni & cheese, and ginger ale. Meat and eggs completely lurched my stomach. Slowly, I found that salads were on the list of things my tummy would tolerate, but only with Italian dressing (not my favorite usually). Oranges, however, were not on the list. Smoothies I could do, as long as they were yogurt based, and I had one almost every day. I was amazed at how many of my favorite foods no longer appealed to me and surprised at the things I was craving. As the weeks passed, the queasiness slowly faded and by week 12 I was pretty much done with morning sickness.
I was exhausted in my first trimester. This is a fatigue that goes beyond just wishing for a nap. It's better described as being so tired that you feel it deep in your bones. It's a mixture of sleepiness and fatigue-- think of how you might feel if you stayed up all night long and then ran a marathon. I felt like that every single day. I could not get through a day without a nap and I was sleeping at least ten hours every night. My days were spent on the sofa (or the floor or another sitting/laying location). Exercise? No way. I was too tired to even drive. We saved a ton of money on gas that first month because I didn't go anywhere!
Gassy -- This was horrifying for me because I'm just not a person who passes gas... I'd rather die than pass gas in front of another human being. Sadly, try though I might, I found that I couldn't always control it... Ugh!
Constipation -- More fun.
Cramping -- I felt pulling/cramping/aching in my abdomen almost my entire first trimester, which I read was normal but it still made me anxious.
Headaches -- Oh this was the WORST for me. Sometime Tylenol helped and other times not so much. It was awful because nothing seemed to help.
Sinus stuffiness/dryness - What in the world does this have to do with pregnancy?? It just irritates me because it's just one more thing to prevent good sleep.
Urinating frequently -- Speaking of things that prevent good sleep, this was also a culprit for me. Having always been a good drinker, I tend to normally visit the restroom more frequently than most people so I didn't really notice a difference during the day. At night was a different story altogether.
Moodiness -- Can you say cranky?? It's amazing I'm still married.
Breast tenderness -- One of the first symptoms to pop up for me, I was tender for weeks before I even knew I was pregnant.
Doesn't it sound like fun? It wasn't really all that horrible, but it wasn't super fun either ;)
The First Doctor's Visit
What I want to remember from this visit is the emotions I felt during the ultrasound. The doctor did a trans-vaginal ultrasound and I remember gasping as the image of our baby came onto the screen. As soon as the doctor could see the beating heart, she sent for my husband. Once he came in, the doctor did her best to explain what we were seeing. Whatever she said went in one ear and out the other. I was just glued to that image on the screen. Our miracle. Then the doctor turned on the sound and pinpointed the heartbeat for us. At that sound, the tears just streamed down my face. The baby was healthy and safe- praise the Lord! Finally, the doctor told us that at that point we had a less than 5% chance of a miscarriage and the relief I felt with that knowledge was more than I could hold in. I'd been praying and worrying about miscarrying for two weeks and now I could rest easy. More tears.
The first trimester was a roller-coaster of emotions. I was thrilled to be pregnant, but shocked. I was happy one minute, then I was scared. I was confident, then apprehensive. I remember one afternoon I was just weeping because I realized the effect this baby would have on my relative freedom. I went from being able to go wherever I wanted, whenever I wanted to the realization that those days were long gone.I thought of all the wonderful traveling Bella and I did last year, and I just cried that I wouldn't be able to do that anymore.
There were lots of moments of tremendous joy, though, too. Announcing to friends and family that I was pregnant was one of the most fun things I've ever done. I treasure those memories, those reactions. I particularly like the tearful ones and the screaming ones.. you know who you are! I'll always remember that first trip to Barnes & Noble to look at pregnancy books the day we found out we were pregnant. I stood in the aisle filled with awe as I got my first glimpse of what the baby looked like that week. The baby was so teeny tiny and yet such a little person already!