Expectations vs Reality- “On Finding Out the Gender”
Before I ever thought about getting pregnant, I always knew that I would have two boys. Two boys, no more, no less, no girls. Obviously I knew that you can’t choose what gender you have, but it was just something I “knew”. I’m sure a lot of you can relate to that.
After finding out that I was pregnant, I knew. I knew deep down that I was having a girl. We bought that “Intelligender” test from the pharmacy and I anxiously awaited until I was 10 weeks along to take it, just like the directions say. After following all of the steps, the cup turned green! It was a boy!
I was happy and told my Richard & my parents while keeping it a secret from everyone else. Giving the usual response of “oh, we’ll be happy with either gender.”
Fast forward to 19 weeks along in my pregnancy when it was time for the gender ultrasound… Richard and I prepared this little card for the doctor to write on and seal in an envelope. Then we were going to take it out to dinner and open it during dessert. Cute, right?
We were stressed out that day, I remember that I had a headache and I was annoyed that the ultrasound tech took so long. We were starving, then we had to wait a long time to be seated for dinner because it was so crowded, which turned into waiting a long time for our food. Not a good situation for a tired, hungry, stressed out pregnant woman.
Neither of us could wait so we opened the envelope while we waited for our food to get to the table. “It’s a Girl!” greeted us. I stared at it blankly for a second, I knew this already, why was I surprised? Richard didn’t say anything because he was looking at me, trying to see how I was reacting. Don’t most girls want to have baby girls?
I was shocked, but not really surprised, if that makes any sense at all. I’ll be the first to admit that I was disappointed, but not over the fact that I was having a girl necessarily, more so, over the fact that I was wrong. WRONG. Everything that I had imagined for my life, pregnancy, parenting, adulthood, was wrong. I would have to “re-imagine” everything, and that was really the only thing that made me sad. I cried, only once, and then I got over it.
Shopping for clothes the next day really helped me to get excited! I hadn’t allowed any clothes purchases until we revealed the gender, so this was really the first thing that I did that helped me “bond” with my growing bump. Within a couple of weeks, I was just as excited that I was having a girl! When the 27 week ultrasound came, I was so scared that they would tell me that I mistake had been made and that it was a boy. I was so attached to my little girl.
Having my gender expectations shattered was probably one of the best things that ever happened to me. Things didn’t turn out how I expected, they turned out to be a million times better!
Next time we TTC, I’ll be able to say with complete honesty, “We’ll be happy with whichever gender we end up with.”
Expectations vs Reality- “On Morning Sickness”
Oh morning Sickness…
I don’t even know where to begin with this one…
When I was 18, I had a co-worker who got pregnant, she was maybe 5 years older than me so we had a lot in common and talked all of the time. This is how her pregnancy went in my mind: Morning sickness, throwing up 5 times, lots of caffeine free Diet Coke, huge belly, swollen feet propped up on a trash can under her desk, maternity leave.
It’s true that you never really know until you experience something for yourself. When I would ask “How are you feeling?” and she would respond “Pretty nauseous this morning”, I would just brush it off as “part of pregnancy” and go on with my day. “Boo hoo”, “That’s pregnancy”, and “Everyone goes through it” are probably phrases that crossed my mind. Oh I was wrong… so wrong…
The first trimester hit me like a train. I could barely get myself up off of the couch for the first 14 weeks if it wasn’t to go to work. I couldn’t stand in the shower for longer than 2 minutes without dropping to my hands and knees, crawling out, and laying on the bathroom floor to keep my nausea in check. Richard did the dishes for 3 entire months without my help, because I couldn’t stand the smell.
One of the things that will always stick with me, is something that my boss at the time said to me while I was at work. (I found out that I was pregnant about a week after I started working there, and subsequently left to go back to my old job after this.)
She said, “I know that you don’t feel well, but I think that you would look great if you made the effort to put on a little make up in the morning.”
Bitch! I wanted to scream at her that she was lucky that I was making the effort to get out of bed, put clothes on, and come in to work every morning. Sorry, I didn’t have time to put on makeup while I was heaving over a toilet. My bad, I’ll get right on that!
Later on I found out that she had never had morning sickness with either of her pregnancies. Her lack of compassion made me return to my old company anyway. At least there I was by myself in an office, didn’t have to put on makeup for customers, and could throw up in a trash can under my desk without offending anyone. Don’t judge, it was paradise for a pregnant woman!
The thing about morning sickness that surprised me the most was that it really was “all day sickness”, and it didn’t magically get better after the first trimester. I was sick constantly, up until about 14 weeks. It returned again around 16 weeks, and I think that I even lost my lunch a few times all the way up until 25 weeks!
Obviously, it’s different for every pregnancy. Some women are lucky enough never to get morning sickness (I not so secretly hate you), and some have hyperemesis gravidarum, which is far more extreme than anything that I had.
This is also the main factor that keeps me from wanting to be pregnant again. I want another baby… but morning sickness? Not so much. I know that we will TTC again, I just hope that I have it a little easier this next time around!
Expectations vs Reality- “On Finding Out”
This is from a previous post that I wrote last year on finding out that I was pregnant
“One year ago today, I received the most astonishing news of my life. It was the day that I first saw those two little pink lines. Something that I wanted so badly, and wished and hoped and dreamed about. Something so terrifying because I knew that our lives would never be the same. The most beautiful knowledge in the world. I was carrying our child. I had been feeling out of sorts for a couple of weeks and my period wasn’t due for another 4 days. I took the first test in the box. Negative. “That’s weird”, I thought. I was certain that I was pregnant. Sore boobs and a little nausea at night were really the only signs though. 6 days later, I still hadn’t gotten my period, I woke up around 6 am and decided to take the other test. I did the deed and tried my best not to stare at the screen for the full 3 minutes. After about 2 minutes I peeked. Holy crap. My heart seemed to be beating loud enough to be heard from the other room. What just happened? I took it in for a minute and then crawled back into bed with Richard. He could tell something was up, I swear that he could hear my heart pounding in my chest. “Is everything okay?” he asked. I couldn’t speak, I was so happy and yet so scared. “Are you pregnant?” he questioned. I nodded my head yes and burst into tears but was smiling and laughing at the same time. He smiled and hugged me close. We were scared of the unknown, but we were in this together.”
It really was scary. When I was younger I had always imagined how I would find out and think of cute ways to announce it to my husband. I had imagined trying for months, or even years before we finally got that positive test. You see, Richard’s parents tried for six years before they got pregnant with him. We thought it would be the same for us, so we decided to “let nature take it’s course” and we didn’t use protection from the day we got married. Naive, maybe. Do I regret it? Not now.
Let’s be honest. When I found out that I was pregnant, I was terrified. That test confirmed what I already know deep down, I was going to be a mother. All of the hopes and dreams that you have as a little girl come crashing down and the anxiety washes in. How in the world do I do this? Am I even capable?
I spiraled downward, not exactly into depression, but something like it. Looking back, I know that it was pregnancy hormones. At the time, I thought that my life was over. I found myself wishing that we had used protection, that we had never gotten pregnant. I’m not proud to say this, and I don’t even want to write it, but the worst thought that I have ever had was hoping that I would miscarry.* That’s how messed up my thinking was at the time. “I didn’t want to be a mother!” I remember myself crying to Richard, even though exactly the opposite was true. He knew this, so he nodded his head while he rubbed mine and consoled me. It took weeks for me to snap out of it. I think that around 10 weeks I started to feel okay, even happy about being pregnant.
First trimester tiredness, nausea, & morning sickness didn’t do much to help my case. I really was excited, I think that I was just more scared than anything else. Thank God that Richard was there to listen and help me through it all. It helped immensely to have someone to be completely honest with who could abolish all of my fears and remind me that in just 9 months, we would have a little baby to snuggle with!
Luckily, experience is the best teacher. This next time around when we TTC, I’ll know a little bit more of what to expect. I know just how crazy hormones can make you! And I’ll know exactly what a blessing pregnancy is, expected or not.
*This was hard enough to admit to anyone, let alone myself, so please don’t judge. I went into this wanting to be pregnant, so it was most definitely hormones & fear of the unknown that made me think that. I know that some people try for years, I know that some never can get pregnant, and I just want to apologize to any of you that want to slap me for thinking that. I promise, I want to slap myself too. I’m just trying to be honest here.
New Blog Series
I am going to start a new mini blog series titled “Expectations vs Reality”. Now that I’ve been a parent for a short while, I feel like I’m ready to process through all of the thoughts and feelings that I’ve had about this entire experience. From finding out that I was pregnant all the way up to wrestling a toddler during bath time.
Are there any subjects that you would be interested in reading about?
Can I give my baby…?
One of the most helpful parenting websites that I have come across is Can I Give My Baby?
If you’re curious whether or not something is okay to give your baby… all you have to do is go to the website and type the item in question into the search bar.
It leads to a response and a thorough explanation. I love it!
*Obviously, this website is not run by a doctor, and is only meant to be a helpful resource. If you have any concerns or doubts, ask your doctor.
Having a baby is like having the plague
Only a small amount of my friends have actually wanted to see me or hang out since I had Emberly… I thought people loved babies??
I only had 2 friends visit me in the hospital, and then 2 more after I was home for a couple of weeks. Seriously? Maybe I’m conceited or something, but I thought (from hearing other moms talk) that I would be bombarded with phone calls and texts from people wanting to see the baby. Nope. Even almost 8 months later, no one wants to hang out.
Honestly, it’s really isolating. I had a huge group of friends before I got pregnant and now I have almost none. I love my husband, and he is most definitely my best friend, but it’s nice to hang around some other people once in awhile, you know?
I posted this on Facebook this morning: “Eggs N’ Things (a local restaurant) for breakfast tomorrow? Anyone want to join us?” 2 hours later… and only my best friend has “liked” the status, and she is too far away to visit tomorrow.
Emberly is really well behaved in public, she loves being around other people and never cries when we are out. The few people that I have hung out with can attest to this. I need to know, what is it about having a baby that people don’t want to hang out with me? I just want some friends :(
Man, I’m lame
I had a dentist appointment today… no cavities!
Okay, so the point of this post isn’t to tell you about my dental hygiene, it’s to tell you that my hygienist talked to me non-stop for over an hour (while she’s supposed to be cleaning my teeth aka I’m not supposed to be talking) about pregnancy and having a baby. Her and her husband are thinking about trying for their first.
Talking about it made me realize just how much I miss being pregnant. I miss the belly, I miss the kicks, I miss knowing that I was growing another human. I miss having a newborn!
Even though Emberly isn’t even close to sleeping through the night, I really wish we could try for Baby Bruhn #2. And it makes me sad that we can’t. It doesn’t make any sense financially or logistically at the moment.
I am not a patient person. When I decide that I want something, I do everything in my power to accomplish it as quickly as possible. This is probably my biggest fault and it’s not something I’m particularly proud of. I’m working on it though…
I’m enjoying every second of having Emberly, she is such a joy! Always happy, always laughing, always just happy to be with me. I absolutely love it! It wouldn’t be fair to her to bring another baby into the family when we are just getting to know each other so well. Not to mention that it would be silly to have a baby just because I miss having a newborn (I would be having babies forever if I did that!)
Things that also need to happen before we think about trying for #2 include: Richard getting a better job & (hopefully) buying a house. There is no way that we can live off of just his income at the moment, and I would love to stay at home (at least part time) with the kids.
I’ll just sit here and be envious over all of your bumps and beautiful newborns
A year ago, this week
- How did I make the most perfect baby in the world?
- My kid will sleep with me until she’s in college
- When will I not be too tired for sex?
- Let’s make ALL the babies!
- I wish I was a stay at home mom
- I’m glad I have the chance to go to work and take a break
- Why does baby led weaning have to be so messy?
- Eat so that you stay full and sleep longer!
- I hate pumping
- I want to breastfeed forever!
- Am I pregnant again? I hope not
- I want 50 more babies
I think I might have a problem… can I blame it on sleep deprivation?
I’ve felt pregnant
But it seems like a lot of moms whose babies are between 6-12 months are feeling the same way!
- Phantom Kicks
- Nausea only in the mornings
- Sore breasts
I would be extremely happy (yes! Let’s get all of these sleepless nights over with at once!) and extremely terrified (omg! Two under two?)
I still haven’t gotten my period back yet, so there’s no way to tell unless I go buy a test. And of course I’m too scared/in denial to do that.
The chance is so slim, we’ve used protection, I’m constantly pumping/nursing… but still… what if??