Sugar Fits

by Kat in Whatever

I don’t what has gotten into me lately. I can’t seem to eat enough sugary junk, and I’m worried that I’ll be in for a huge weight gain during this last trimester.

It started with the stomach flu. I was so sick and couldn’t eat for 5 days… but when my appetite came back, it came back with both a vengeance and a sweet tooth.

Now I’m constantly craving cookies, ice cream, cake, or muffins. Substituting a healthy alternative – fruit, maybe? – just doesn’t cut it. I want SUGAR. And I want it NOW!

I’ve been really good with this pregnancy as far as watching my weight gain a little more closely; last time, I gained a ton by drinking strawberry milk by the gallon. (I’m not kidding.) Now I’m afraid that my sensible weight gain during the first and second trimester is about to be blown out of the water by my massive and constant need to eat sweets.

The worst part? I’m so cranky, uncomfortable, sleep-deprived and basically bitchy that I don’t think I even care. Bring on the cupcakes, my friends.

Smuggling a Basketball?

by Kat in Whatever

“Smuggling a basketball.”

That the was the phrase one of my gal pals recently used to describe the look of my 7 month belly. Oh, boy. I guess she meant that I’m carrying a lot in front — which is true — but it’s hardly what most of us women really want to look like.

Said “basketball” is getting huge, and in the way quite often. I believe I am officially waddling now, and simple tasks, like putting on my shoes, putting on my toddler’s shoes, unloading the dishwasher, picking up dropped keys… it’s all made rather difficult by the belly bulge. And of course there’s no getting around it.

I heave myself into and out of the bed all night long, during my hourly trips to the bathroom. I roll in and out of the driver’s seat of the car, awkwardly hauling me and the basketball-baby-belly out of the way.

Ugh. Not only is it unwieldy, but the belly totally aches at this point. The insane amount of stretching required by your insides is extremely… uncomfortable. My skin itches constantly (hello, stretch marks!). And my back, naturally, aches considerably.

For now I’m dealing with all of this with occasional Tylenol and warm baths in the evening. And a LOT of groaning, sighing, and grumbling. At least I’m now in the home stretch.

Public Displays of Emotion

by Kat in Whatever

Pregnancy seems to be an unending series of embarrassing moments.

Today I was in the waiting room at the Social Security Administration, sitting somewhat patiently for hours so that I could request a replacement social security card. Pretty bland stuff, right?

So the waiting room is small, plain, and quiet. A small TV in the corner is the only distraction, and most of us have been watching, or at least staring in the general direction of the television. “Law & Order: SVU” comes on. And I swear, the first thing I see is a 12-year-old pregnant girl, so of course I’m immediately interested. Until Scene Two, where the cops track down the creepy baby-daddy, who proceeds to slam the door on the investigators and locks himself inside with a gaggle of small children.

Here’s where it gets really bad. On screen, a series of gunshots go off, and then the cops break into Baby Daddy’s house. And… slowly… we see that he has killed all the little babies and kids. Ugh!

I turn away, and the security guy at the office comes over and asks me if the show is disturbing me. I tell him that I’ll just turn away and not watch. But of course I found myself peeking back at the TV, where the camera zooms… slowly… at a crib (dead baby!)… and a toddler bed (dead baby!) and a little child on the floor (dead baby!)… and on and on.

I try to ignore it, but instead I start sobbing. Pretty loudly.

Security guy rushes back with a box of tissues, and couple of women in the row behind me start clucking about “poor thing, she’s pregnant!” So the security guy thankfully goes back to his desk and changes the channel.

I’m still hiccuping, and trying not to honk too loudly as I blow my nose.

Then, just to make me feel like more of a dweeb, some cranky old gal in the row in front of me turns around and says “Well thanks a lot. I was WATCHING that.”

Naturally, this is where I run to the bathroom to blow my nose loudly, bawl a little bit (all those dead babies!) and then try to compose myself before heading back to my seat.

I still had to wait another hour before I could take care of my request, and leave.

Ups, downs, and evil sideways glances.

by Kat in Whatever

Holy emotional rollercoaster. Today has been the epitome of hormonal mood swings.

Morning was pretty typical, followed by a cozy, snowy afternoon where my “happy nesting” hormones seemed to kick in. I put my toddler down for his afternoon nap, worked on the computer for a while, cleaned up the kitchen — including emptying the fridge of the scary leftover containers — polished the wood furniture, and even read a book for a bit.

High point of the day: my little boy woke up, and next thing I know we’re dancing around the dining room listening to The Beatles. So sweet! So cute! So happy!

And then it all went south. Toddler started in with the endless whining, dinner didn’t sit well in my stomach, waves of exhaustion came crashing over me, and BAM! I was just plain pissed at the world. Suddenly my cute toddler was less cutie-patootie and more terrible-two-year-old. Hubby was sitting on the couch, totally ignoring both me and our irritating child, not helping at all. Then I started thinking of all the other things I’m mad about – work stuff, physical discomfort, the bad performances on the Olympics, general life drama.

Now I just want to shake it off. I want to go to bed for days, maybe months. I’d love to run away and find a beach. And a cold cocktail! Sigh. I guess I’ll settle for a warm bath and take my crabby fat self off to bed.

At least this day is over.

Hands Off! Mouth Shut. (please?)

by Kat in Whatever

Why do people have to rub my belly? Am I supposed to bring them good luck? I know there’s no genie coming out to give anyone three wishes, or else I’d be skipping the next 4 1/2 months and heading straight to the “bringing baby home” phase.

So. As a general note to the public: hands off the belly, thank you very much.

And while I’m on a roll here, why do people say the dumbest things to pregnant women? Some elderly gal asked me the other day if I was expecting a baby. I, of course, said yes. So far, so good, right? But then she blew it. She asked, “So are you about 8 months along?”

Crap. I look like I’m 8 months? And I’m only at 4 1/2?

Thanks for ruining my entire week, Ms. Random Stranger.

Crying in my Vitamin Water

by Kat in Round Two

Boo hoo.

I should try writing a country song this week, with all the woe-is-me sadness I’ve been experiencing.

It’s been wildly opposite of the happy, glowing image of perfection that pregnancy is “supposed” to be. I’ve been crying over everything, and nothing. Just the other day I had a total toddler-worthy crybaby meltdown. Out of the blue, over absolutely nothing in particular. No cute puppy commercials on TV, no sad orphan story in the newspaper, nothing. I simply felt awful, sad, depressed, and needed to cry it out. In fact, just remembering that feeling makes a little teary even now. Ugh. I hope this particular bout of nastiness is short lived.

On the upside, my 2-year-old is a true lifesaver. During my recent crying jag, he came over, hugged me, and said “It’s okay, Mommy. Don’t worry — I’ve got you.”

That pretty much made it all better. (sniff.)

Oh, My Aching Head

by Kat in Round Two, Whatever

So, you want the good news first, right?

The Good News: I’m at 16 weeks and the nausea is getting better. Not gone, exactly, but I’m moving on from crackers-and-ginger ale and have now added toast, cereal, yogurt and apples to the things I can pretty much always eat. (Unlike the eggnog ice cream that I HAD to have one night. That was it. One night. Now it’s sitting in the freezer, gathering ice crystals, and reminding my poor hubby of the late-night dash to the grocery store for my MUST HAVE craving. But that’s another story.)

So that’s the good news. Now comes…

The Bad News: 16 weeks seems to be the entry point into the magical, mystical land of migraines. Daily splitting headaches are the latest in this super-fun experiment with bodily discomfort. It’s an almost constant dull ache, which spikes into mind-blowing, head-splitting, functionality-ending ragers. The kind that make you dizzy, nauseous — (oh boy! I did say it wasn’t comepletely gone, remember?) — and send you straight for the nearest couch, bed, or cold tile floor. I’m not sure just how many Tylenol are too many Tylenol, but I’ve been doing my best NOT to snarf them like breath mints, tempting as that may seem.

So let’s see. How are we doing, my little avocado-sized belly munchkin? Mommy is a blatant, snuffly insomniac. Mommy has vicious headaches. Mommy is eating better but still occasionally craves wacky things like eggnog ice cream. Mommy is sooo tired, and perhaps a little punchy. Only without the help of any “grown-up” punch.

Mommy’s not quite miserable, but she’s not a happy camper. Or bun-cooker, as the case may be.

The Worst News: I’m already feeling like a total crabapple, and I’m not even halfway there. (sigh.)

To sleep, perchance to dream (not!)

by Kat in Whatever

Sweet dreams are a distant memory. I can’t exactly dream the night away when sleep is already a major challenge. Ay, there’s the rub, right? I’m not even big yet, so it will only get worse from here.

It’s the stuffiness. The sleep-time stuffiness is back with a vengeance. My head hits the pillow, and either I can’t breathe out of my nose at all, or half my sinuses are blocked while the other half is so raw that it burns to breathe. Mouth breathing sucks, and I have the chapped lips to prove it.

What’s a worn out mom-to-be to do? Benadryl doesn’t help the congestion, though it has the benefit of making me a little sleepy (sometimes). I worry, of course, about hitting the medicine cabinet too hard or too often, even though it’s on my short list of “approved” medications.

I just feel exhausted. Between work, toddler-chasing, the endless household chores, and the holidays, it never stops. All I want is a good night’s sleep. Which is SO not likely anytime soon.

But hey, a girl can dream, right?

Here we go again.

by Kat in Round Two

Yes, it’s been about 2 1/2 years since my first was born, and I’m heading down this road again. Happy happy, joy joy! So far the nausea has been far worse than the first time, with a few seriously nasty dizzy spells to go with it. It’s still early, so we’re only beginning to announce the new pregnancy, but a few sharp-eyed friends and family members guessed even earlier. Like the time I told a gal pal about my sudden urge to snarf those waxy chocolate mini donuts? She took one look at me and said, “So you’re not knocked up or anything, are you?” I had to laugh. Yes, the random cravings are kicking in. So is the all-day “morning” sickness, the headaches, dizzy spells, and another round of sober holidays. Whoo hoo.

Let the whining begin.

Yes, it was all worth it.

by Kat in Whatever

Some of you have written to inquire how things all worked out in the end. On March 12, 2007, I became the proud mama to a 10 lb, 14 oz baby boy. No wonder I was so huge, and so uncomfortable! The first few weeks were rather bewildering and I spent a lot of time in a hazy, sleep-deprived state of confused bliss. Now we’ve hit a stride, and I’ve discovered that life has come back to normal — the new normal, where three consecutive hours of sleep is a good thing, and caring for and entertaining a little baby are second nature. But I have to admit, as much as I hated the last few months of pregnancy, I am totally, completely, and brilliantly in love with my darling baby boy.

In the end, it was all well worth the struggles. All it takes is one little sigh from my baby as he snuggles up on my shoulder and then falls limp as he nods off to sleep, and I can’t imagine anything better or more rewarding.

So. Next question: will I do it again? Well… that’s still up in the air. But I can already see how quickly they grow up, and as the bad memories of an uncomfortable pregnancy continue to fade, I may very well miss these days of mommy-and-babyhood soon enough to brave it all again. Maybe.