I’m a conspiracy theorist. Oh, I admit that I fully bought into the pregnancy propaganda sold by my mommy family and friends. It was the best time of my life, they enthused. I glowed! I was treated like a queen! My hair/skin/nails/[insert body part here] looked amazing! I really miss it – I wish I were pregnant again.
I call BS.
Now that I’ve been through it, I’m convinced that other mothers purposely, deviously, upsell the virtues of pregnancy to encourage unsuspecting women like myself to take the plunge. So that they don’t have to suffer alone. Yes, I was duped.
Now don’t get me wrong – carrying a life is a beautiful, amazing thing. To think that there is a baby growing inside of you, depending on you for its every need, is incredible. It’s everything else that goes along with it that blows.
So I’ve compiled a list of the 10 biggest myths that I fell hook, line, and sinker for:
- You will Glow. There was absolutely no glowing going on with me. I may have given off a greenish tint, due to my all-consuming morning sickness. Or perhaps this “glowing” they speak of is code for the sticky, clammy sheen of sweat that coats your body pretty much the entire 3rd trimester.
- You will have thick and luxurious hair. I give them the “thick” part. But mine was by no means “luxurious.” It was thick, dry, frizzy, and out of control. It was so thick I couldn’t do anything with it. I wanted my regular old un-thick and un-luxurious hair back.
- You may experience some morning sickness. Understatement of the century. See my other post. ‘Nuff said.
- Crackers will help with Morning Sickness. Give it up already. Nothing is helping. Definitely not some dry crackers.
- You get to “Eat for Two.” This was probably the aspect I was MOST looking forward to. Finally! I don’t have to watch what I eat and exercise like a maniac. I get to let myself go. The bigger the bump, the cuter the pregnant woman. Again, this is a complete crock. Come to find out, the baby only needs about 300 additional calories a day (and even then, not until later in the pregnancy). What’s 300 calories!? A granola bar? A smoothie? Gee. Thanks.
- You will receive special treatment. Sometimes. Sometimes not. I distinctly recall a gentleman on the plane watching me struggle to lift my carry-on bag up into the overhead compartment. I took it down and stood to catch my breath before trying again. He walked over and I fully expected he was going to offer to help the struggling pregnant woman. Instead, he took my rest break as his opportunity to shove his own duffel bag into the compartment (bumping me in the process).
- Your ankles may bloat towards the end of pregnancy. Try your ENTIRE BODY. Ankles on up. And up. Including the face. I looked like I had stepped into one of those funhouse mirrors. And don’t expect any jewelry to fit. My rings all went on hiatus. Even my watches were a tight fit.
- You may have to empty your bladder more frequently. Ladies, be prepared. Once the 3rd trimester rolls around, you’re not going anywhere that doesn’t have a bathroom within a 10 step radius. I literally had times at work that I would return to my desk from a restroom break, only to immediately stand up and head back. I would plan my drives around distance and restroom breaks. Even walking the dog became a test of “holding it.” Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
- You may be more tired than usual. What they fail to mention is that you will become a temporary narcoleptic. It will become a battle of sheer strength and willpower to get out of bed in the morning. And yes, there WILL be times when you’re talking to friends or family and simply – doze off. Don’t fight it. You won’t win.
- Pregnancy hormones may cause mood swings. Um, YA THINK?? Expect to lose just about all control of your moods. Things that would be minor annoyances pre-pregnancy suddenly turn into dramatic rage-filled wars. Television commercials, magazines, even billboards – will throw you into a weeping tailspin. From hysterics to fury to maniacal laughter, you will become an emotional mess.
The bright side is that, ultimately, pregnancy ends. I know it doesn’t feel like it when you’ve got, say, 6 months to go and you’re an exhausted, vomiting, hormonal mess. But it WILL end. I found that chunking phases of pregnancy into days and weeks helped me get through the tough times (especially the first 4 months at which point I was just trying to get through each day).
And the prize is so so sweet. I would do it all again, in a heartbeat, for my beautiful baby boy.
(And I imagine that THIS is how mommies get suckered into #2…)