Pregnancy Diary Vol. I: Baby on the Way!
By Ellen SeidmanIt's hard to believe that I'm already 14 weeks pregnant! Now that I'm officially in my second trimester and my energy has boomeranged back, I no longer feel the urge to crawl beneath my desk every afternoon to nap. And I can stay up past 8:00 p.m!
By some stroke of luck, I've managed to escape morning sickness. Sure, I had a couple of queasy moments, but I sipped lemonade and downed potato chips -- my friend Wendy's remedy -- and it worked.
Is there really a baby growing in my belly? This all feels so surreal. I think I haven't fully absorbed this baby thing because I've been distracted by our new house. (Yikes! -- am I qualified to be a parent if I'm referring to my unborn child as "this baby thing"?) We found out we were new homeowners on THE SAME DAY we discovered I was pregnant. The realtor called in the afternoon to say that the bid we had put in on a house in the 'burbs was accepted, and then that night I took a pregnancy test. Dave was away on business, and I was doing it just for kicks. I'd only been off the Pill for a couple of months and somehow, we figured it would take at least six months to conceive. That's been the story for most of my friends.
But, no, the test was positive! I couldn't believe it. I thought I had done something wrong despite the fact that these things are, oh, 99.99999% accurate. I called Dave, broke the news and told him that I was never any good at taking tests and had probably messed up. We decided I'd take another one. The next day I called Dave and said, "What are the chances I screwed up TWO tests?" And so began our baby. Or, "Peanut" as Dave has taken to calling him/her.
We had a scare a week and a half after we found out I was pregnant, when I started spotting. The doctor checked me out, though, and said I was OK. The next challenge was keeping my big yap shut! I wanted to tell the world our news, but forced myself to wait until my second trimester. Careful observers might have figured it out, though -- like when I went to an after-hours office party and didn't have a single drink (not that I'm usually a lush!) or the time we had dinner with friends and I ordered sole and Dave blurted, "Honey, can you eat that?" He's already the world's most concerned parent. When we're lying in bed at night, he talks into my belly button. "Hellllooooooo," he'll say. "Can you hear me?" If we have a squabble about something, he'll lean over to Peanut and mutter, "She's being unreasonable." It cracks me up every single time.
Eating right has been a major challenge; before I got knocked up, I considered Lean Cuisine a food group. I like fruits and veggies, but Dave and I are lazy shoppers so we typically don't have produce around. But now if he catches me eating junk food, he'll grab What to Expect When You're Expecting and start preaching the book's nutrition advice like he's a minister on a pulpit. So, I've put him in charge of buying healthy stuff. Like I told him, "I'll deliver the baby, you deliver the bananas." So far, I haven't had any cravings, although I did develop aversions; the sight of chicken strips at salad bars turns my stomach. Then Dave got me some fudge and I didn't want a single piece. He was like, "What's happened to you!?"
These days, I'm feeling pretty good. I've taken to ogling pregnant women I see on the street; I stare hard at their stomachs and wonder how far along they are and how big I'm going to get. I can't wait to break the news -- we'll start telling people over the next few days -- especially so everyone will understand why I've been gaining weight. Some days, I'm tempted to get one of those shirts that says, "I'm not fat, I'm pregnant." Thankfully, I already own a couple pairs of pants with elastic waists (please don't tell anyone), so I haven't had to deal with maternity clothes just yet.
My friend Wendy, whose daughter is now seven months, has been making long lists of stuff we'll need for the baby, down to how many bottles we should buy. We're going to have to come face up to the financial challenges of having both a house and a baby but, hey, this is one test I'm planning to ace. It's not like I can take motherhood pass/fail. Rest easy, Peanut.
Ellen Seidman is currently editor-at-large (and getting larger and larger) of Glamour magazine. She has written for many magazines, including Redbook, Fitness, Parents and YM.