So, I am 16 weeks pregnant now and I am almost positive that I either currently have, or have experienced, every negative side effect from pregnancy that I could have experienced by this point. I’m sure that as time goes on I will become afflicted with a whole new slew of awful side effects, but so far here is the list:
1. Morning sickness: This was actually all day sickness and despite being told that it should be over by now, I still get extremely nauseous and sick if I don’t eat every two hours. Eating has become a job and I don’t like it. I have to take two lunch boxes with me to work so that I am never caught without food. I carry crackers in my purse and almonds in my car. I feel like a secret fat kid.
2. Acne: I have been breaking out like a teenage boy. It is awful but everyone tells me it is one of the joys of pregnancy. I cannot figure out what is joyful about awful skin.
3. Sciatic nerve pain: I have pain that radiates from my lower back down my butt and into the backs of both thighs. I have been told that this will just continue to get worse, so I’m eagerly awaiting the near future when I can no longer walk. Hopefully I won’t be too fat by then for my boyfriend to carry me everywhere. Maybe I can use those motorized carts when I go to Wal-Mart, really fit in with the rest of the Texas Wal-Mart shoppers.
4. Hives: I break out in hives on my neck and chest almost daily. Apparently there is nothing my doctor can do about this. He did suggest I blow dry my skin after showers but I am still not sure how that helps. I do it however, and get disgusted looks from my dog the whole time. The internet tells me that hives could mean I’m having a boy and my body is reacting to his male hormones in an unfavorable way.Which to me means that the baby and I already aren’t getting along, awesome!
5. Swollen feet: Apparently this usually starts later for most women, but for me it is here now. When I take my Toms off at the end of the day, you can see lines in the tops of my feet from the shoes being too tight, or rather my feet being too fat. I’m not sure if this means I should just wear flip flops all of the time or giant man shoes. Either way, swollen feet are awful. It feels like you are walking around on feet that fell asleep but didn’t quite wake all the way back up. Yuck.
6. Pregnancy rhinitis: Apparently pregnant women can experience a condition exactly like allergic rhinitis with the stuffy nose, post-nasal drip, sore throat, etc., only pregnancy rhinitis isn’t helped by allergy pills. In fact, there is nothing you can do for pregnancy rhinitis aside from resigning yourself to the life of a mouth breather. As a result, I now snore which my boyfriend adores.
7. Bleeding gums: I visited my dentist the other day because my gums now bleed just from brushing my teeth. She informed me that this is normal and happens when you’re pregnant. OBVIOUSLY. Why wouldn’t bleeding gums be caused by pregnancy? Duh.
8. Exhaustion: I come home most days and would fall asleep by 6pm if I didn’t have a dog to walk before bed. The other night I fell asleep on the couch and woke up a little while later convinced that it had to be midnight since I felt so completely wiped out. It was 8:12 pm. Falling asleep at dusk does mean that I am wide awake at 5am every day. I have become my grandmother.
9. PEEING: I have to pee every 10-15 minutes. In February I will be driving from Texas to California to live out the rest of my prego days with my mother and I am contemplating getting a catheter for the road trip. Don’t they make discrete versions nowadays that you can hide in your purse or something? Otherwise I fear the drive will take us 2 weeks. Adult diapers maybe?
10. Boobs: Before I got pregnant I had super small boobs. As a girl with no boobs, I had always wanted them. Now that my boobs are like twice the size of what they were, I hate them. They are sore all of the time and I had to buy new bras. Plus, shirts that used to be fine on me now look slutty. Or gross, they probably look gross considering my new boobs are covered in hives 80% of the time.
Everyone around me tells me that it will all be worth it in the end, and I’m sure that it will. But, for the time being, I hate everything most days and cannot wait to be done with this part of the baby-making process. Until then, I will just suck it up and continue to buy bigger bras, bigger shoes and bigger lunch bags.