My pregnancy is flying by and I can't believe my due date is quickly approaching. It used to feel like I had all the time in the world to prepare for baby P's arrival aka this life changing event, but not so much any more. Being pregnant now for 28 weeks (starting my 3rd trimester) I can say that it isn't really what I expected, or rather I guess the truth is I had no idea what I should expect. I mean I had heard some random things from friends who have had babies- crackers were their best friend (true), tums were the only thing that worked for their heart burn (luckily only had heart burn 1 time), etc. but hearing those things can't really prepare you for the experience you are going to have while pregnant. Partly because every pregnancy is different, and partly because there are frankly too many pregnancy side effects to share each one of them with someone.
Once people know you are pregnant by far the most frequently asked question you get is, "How are you feeling?" Pretty much every conversation will start with this. Which is a very nice, considerate and valid question. But when you respond "I'm feeling good! Things are good!" know that in the back of your head you might be thinking... except for the leg cramps, itchy belly, the 20+ trips to the bathroom per day not to mention those during the middle of the night, aches and general uncomfortable feeling, difficulties sleeping, feeling tired and shortness of breath for no reason, feeling so full you might explode after each meal, and some other things that are probably not blog appropriate. And these are just the things I've experienced, not mentioning what went down (or came up) the first couple of months, because that was just brutal. Though I will say 'morning sickness' was worse than I had anticipated as well.
I don't want to sound like I'm complaining- the truth is from what I can tell I've had a very easy (knock on wood) pregnancy so far and know how lucky I am to be able to say that. These 'side-effects' of pregnancy are minor and completely worth it, but if anyone asked me what being pregnant is like these are the things I would tell them about. Basically any type of symptom you experience during pregnancy can most likely be directly linked to being pregnant. For example, at one point I googled 'heart skipping a beat feeling during pregnancy,' and 'blood in tissue when blowing nose while pregnant,' and sure enough lots of pregnant women were experiencing those things as well. On the one hand- weird, on the other- good thing it's not just me!
There are some perks to being noticeably pregnant. In general people tend to be a little more considerate towards you, especially at grocery stores. I've had cashiers take my grocery basket from me and open a new check out lane for me, despite the many other people clearly ahead of me waiting in line. And I've had the baggers at Publix, who are required as part of their job to offer to help take your cart to your car for you, ignore my "no it's really ok, I can do it" response and just push my cart out for me anyway, one lady saying, "We don't want you doing that." One cashier wanted to help me take a thing of paper towels out from under my cart, which was totally unnecessary. At some points you want to say, "Really, I can do it, I'm not disabled, just large. I'm sure the lady a few lanes down with 3 screaming kids in her cart could use more help than me."
Many years ago I was at a concert, waiting in a very long line for the bathroom, when one lady in line made it her goal to get everyone to let a random pregnant lady move to the front of the line. I remember thinking ok fine, but is that really necessary? Now speaking from experience I can tell you yes, completely necessary and nice thing to do if you are waiting in line in front of a pregnant woman. I will be your best friend if you let me cut ahead of you in the bathroom line.
One plus I wasn't expecting was the maternity clothing selection. Once you get over the fact that you need to shop in the maternity section the clothes really aren't bad. Most everything I have bought so far are things I could see myself wearing even if I wasn't pregnant. And the sooner you allow yourself to wear maternity pants the better- they are the most comfortable pants you will ever wear and they don't even look like maternity pants. I spent over an hour in a maternity store yesterday, can't tell you how many things I tried on and they just weren't the right fit or style. Finally I found the right sized items I liked and at the check-out the lady asked my due date to put into their system and when I told her July 26th she gave me an "Oh girl you look good! That's soon." Since she didn't have to say anything I decided her comment wasn't just to be polite/complimentary, and the fact that she sees more pregnant women than most each day made me appreciate her comment that much more. So thank you check-out lady at Motherhood Maternity for making me feel a little better about myself, despite how large I feel :)