Monday, November 16, 2020

First Trimester Recap + Q&A

Thank you so much for all the kind words, messages and texts on the news of Baby W! We are so overwhelmed with all the love we have felt. It's safe to say that this first trimester has been a whirlwind! 

Q: How did you find out?

I woke up early on August 31st and decided to take a test. I had taken lots of tests in the months prior - and had even taken one a few days before - but they had always been negative. It was also super early in the month, so while I hoped that this one would be positive, I was fully prepared for it not to be. I was actually about to throw it away when I saw a faint line pop up. All the other tests I had ever taken were very clearly negative so the faint line definitely surprised me. I'd always thought I would tell Stephen in a cute and sweet way but I literally walked out of the bathroom where he was in bed and half asleep and told him I wasn't 100% but I might be pregnant! We were both in a daze but also so excited, just trying to take it all in. 

I decided to get a digital test later that day and it immediately popped up with the word "Pregnant." It definitely felt more real seeing that test but I think I was still in shock. It was such a happy day! But we also live in a world of pandemic. Our happy day was clouded a little bit when Stephen called me later that afternoon and said, "I hate to have to tell you this, but I have to go get a Covid test because I've been exposed." Thankfully, he tested negative and never showed any signs or symptoms (and neither did I), but it was certainly an interesting few days. We kept our distance in our house, slept in separate rooms, and hardly spent any time together for a week just in case something changed. 

Q: What were your early symptoms? What are your symptoms now?

One thing that did make me wonder early on whether I might be pregnant was that I was cramping. That didn't happen to me a ton, especially that early on in the month, but something just felt "different." Aside from that, after the positive test, I felt pretty normal those next few weeks. But then around week 6, the nausea really kicked in. I've only gotten physically sick once this entire pregnancy which I'm thankful for, but I was nauseous almost all day every day from weeks 6 - 12. I would wake up around 4 or 5am and have to drink ginger ale and eat a cracker while hoping I wouldn't be sick. Around week 12, it started getting better and seemed to just be limited to nighttime. I've also been pretty exhausted and had headaches, which has meant a lot more couch time, very early bedtimes, and a lot less working out. I'm now close to 15 weeks and the nausea is a lot more sporadic. 

My back has also hurt quite a bit - off and on. I've dealt with back pain for years and years thanks to scoliosis but I've definitely had some sciatic issues. 

I'm still pretty tired (I could use a nap every day around 2 if I could!) but I'm just thankful to be feeling slightly more like myself! All that to say, I would do it all again in a heartbeat. I remember telling one of my friends over the summer that even the morning sickness wouldn't bother me if I could just get pregnant. While it definitely wasn't fun, I knew each time I felt so terrible that it would all be worth it. 

Q: When is your due date?

Baby W is due May 12th, 2021! My birthday is in May as well so it'll be such a fun and special month.

Q: Are you going to find out and share the gender?

We are! We found out the gender with our parents last week and it was such a special day. We opted to do genetic testing through Natera, which my OB office offers. We selected to find out gender as well. We can't wait to share later this week!

Q: Were you trying to conceive?

We were. I had always imagined that it would just "happen," but it did take some time and that was disheartening at times. I stopped taking birth control in November of 2019 with plans to just "see what happened." We found out I was pregnant at the very end of August. So many well-meaning people will say, "Just relax, and it will happen!" But sometimes it takes longer than others. We just prayed that the timing would all fall into place the way it should and trusted that God had a plan. I am also very sensitive to the struggle of infertility. While we didn't experience it personally, I understand the heartache of wanting something to happen so I don't take this pregnancy lightly at all. In the last year, I've had so many conversations - all with varying experiences. We have friends who got pregnant immediately, friends who took time, friends who have lost precious babies, and friends who in the heart of infertility. I also never want to be insensitive to those who are walking that journey.

Q: What are you craving? Any aversions?

In the beginning, all I wanted was carbs. I ate a mini bagel almost every morning and would also eat one before bed in hopes to help with the nausea.

I haven't wanted much meat (except a thin cheeseburger...) and in the beginning, basically wanted anything that wasn't healthy. Lots of pizza and fries. I've been trying to eat more well-rounded meals now but I really love cereal! I could eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner - specifically Frosted Flakes! Stephen has also been super great and just going with the flow for my random dinner requests - which are often cheeseburger or Hibachi (fried rice) take-out. 

Q: How is it being pregnant during COVID-19?

Honestly, it's hard. I've suffered from a lot of pandemic-induced anxiety but had worked through a good part of it over the summer. A lot of it resurfaced after I found out I was pregnant. It didn't help that we had a COVID-scare that exact day. Some days, I honestly feel like I'm in a little bubble and that aside from the mask-wearing and washing hands religiously, things feel relatively "normal." Then other days, it hits hard about how NOT-normal all of this is. Because this is my first pregnancy, it's been hard to differentiate what's normal vs. what might be a sickness. I have had regular allergies and congestion for years and have been congested off and on this entire pregnancy, but every little symptom makes me question whether or not it's pregnancy or COVID-19. I can also walk 5 miles but get short of breath walking up the stairs (I've been that way since pretty early on this pregnancy) and that's not a super great symptom to have right now - ha! I've just found that its best for me to stay away from the news and even some social media. My family and friends have also been super helpful in this. I check in with my mama-friends who say "Yep! Totally have that symptom!" And Stephen has helped me with just trying to relax and to focus on positives and truths. I've found that the best way to calm down and is snuggle with Soph and watch Hallmark Christmas movies. 

Q: What is something that has surprised you about being pregnant?

A lot of things. But honestly, how long I have to go between appointments! We found out pretty early, when I was around 3.5 weeks - my first appointment wasn't until 8.5 weeks. It was the longest month (more than!) of my life, and it honestly hasn't gotten any easier! I would go in weekly to check on the baby if I could! It's hard to just trust that all is well but it's something I am trying to work on. I did decide to sign up for a local private ultrasound center and it's been nice to check in from time-to-time.  I do love our doctor's office though and feel like we are so well-taken care of there. 

Q: How are you feeling now?

Physically, I'm tired! But honestly, I'm just so excited and thankful and grateful. I feel so honored to be this tiny little one's mama and I can't wait to see who he or she will be. I don't want to rush pregnancy away, especially since this is my first pregnancy, but I just am so excited to watch this little one grow. I also just can't wait to see Stephen become a dad. He's going to be the very best.
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