So on Tuesday I’m being induced. Despite some other panics I’ve had, I’m actually ok with this, because it means I get to end pregnancy and start motherhood, a transition I am very much in need of. I see people with babies and I get jealous, which is a bit ridiculous considering how I have a full grown baby literally on my person at all times.
Nevertheless, people have (in their lovely, helpful way) decided to bring out the horror stories about induction, which has perturbed my calm over the process/ excitement over the end a bit. Also, my doctor said that sometimes it can be a lengthy process, and a) I could be in hospital for a week and b) I might have to have a c-section. Given these less than optimal conditions, and the fact that I might be a bit stressed out when this little one needs actual care outside the womb, I thought I should write a list of things I will not miss about pregnancy, just to remind myself that whatever the process, this is all worth it, dammit.
- The itching. Dear God, the itching!! My skin is stretching all over the place, thanks to a growing stomach and edema in my calves. Mosquito bites have itched less, and I am a person who gets those mosquito bites which look like they might be the result of a biblical plague. I have scratched my skin to the point where it’s gone raw, and creams and sprays provide some relief but it is only temporary. Soon though. Soon I will have something resembling a regular person’s body. Speaking of edema, another thing I will not miss is…
- The swelling. Everywhere is huge. My chest, my stomach, my legs, my calves. Edema, I have discovered, is incredibly uncomfortable, and if I keep my feet down at all they start to balloon in scary ways. My bra size has gone from large (E) to comically jaw dropping (H) to ‘so mutant they barely make bras in that size’ (J).
- The pressure. Pregnancy comes with all kinds of pressure. There is the literal pressure of a baby pressing downwards, which makes it very uncomfortable to walk or climb stairs or basically move around. Then there is the pressure of people. People seem to feel they can prescribe when a baby is born, and I’ve had several tell me “You can’t have the baby this weekend, there’s x!” as though I had a choice in the matter. That is a bit frustrating. There is also the pressure I put on myself. I’m a person who frets and worries when she learns of bad possibilities, and pregnancy is rife with them. Knowing I had made it to full term with what seems a healthy fetus was an unspeakable relief. I feel so much responsibility for this baby because she doesn’t even exist as a person outside of me yet, but I have so little control. At least once she’s born I’ll be able to look at her and see how she’s doing.
- The poor quality sleep. Oh man, sleep sucks right now. I hate going to bed. I’ve always hated going to bed, but now it’s really terrible because lying down is just uncomfortable. I wake up several times a night because my hips hurt, or because I have to pee, or because I simply need to turn over, and that is an almost Sisyphian task. It’s certainly moving a boulder, I’ll tell you that much. I know that this baby will wake me up several times a night, but at least when I sleep, I’ll be able to sleep comfortably and well. Plus, honestly, I wake up at least 5 times in a seven hour period, and I actually get out of bed at least 3. Unless there is something wrong with her, I don’t think she’ll be getting up more than that.
- The inability to move. Once upon a time, if I was sitting, I could just stand up. I didn’t even think about it. I just did it. I’d be sitting, and then I’d be standing. Easy. Or if I dropped something on the floor, I just bent down to retrieve it. Or if I had to go upstairs for something, I could get up and down quickly without it being a five minute project. I know these things happened, and not even that long ago, but they feel like a myth from a distant past. It’s exciting to think I’ll be able to get around easily again.
- The heartburn. Man, I hate heartburn. I never had it in my life until pregnancy. Now MR says the baby will not be coated in vernix when she’s born (look it up, kids!), but Tum dust. I’m inclined to agree. I’ve learned how to control it with what I eat, but sometimes I really miss jalapenos. Or just a little bit of spice.
- The restricted diet. That brings me to all the other things I can’t eat. Do you know how much I want goat’s cheese? SO MUCH. I salivate over eggs with runny yolks. I’m not the hugest drinker, but dang it, I could go for a cocktail. A nice Kir Royale (since bubbly drinks won’t give me heartburn anymore) or a mojito or a mimosa. To be able to lick the bowl when I make a cake. Sushi. Man, now I’ve gone and made myself hungry for the world’s weirdest meal. But even so, it won’t give me heartburn.
I realize this all sounds quite whingy and wussy. In truth, I’ve had a pretty easy pregnancy, and I’m grateful for that. I’m just…ready for it to be over so I can start the next phase, which is the really cool bit. That’s the bit that lasts forever and yet constantly changes. That’s the part where I have a daughter. So while pregnancy was interesting, certainly, I wouldn’t say it was magical, and this list is to remind me of that, lest I kid myself into believing life was better at 9 months pregnant for whatever crazy reason my sleep deprived, hormone addled brain comes up with.