Motherhood

4 things they don’t warn you about pregnancy

  1. Pelvic pain. It’s rubbish. 1 in 5 women suffer from symphysis pubis dysfunction (SPD) and I am one of those women. To explain the pain would require me to put you on a 13th century rack with your feet in stirrups and then forcibly make you do the splits – it’s like the worst hamstring/groin injury you have ever had and you can’t even take drugs or alcohol to numb the anguish. The pain is worsened by walking, lifting my legs, moving, sleeping, breathing…
    What causes it? During pregnancy, your body produces a hormone called relaxin, which softens your ligaments to help your baby pass through your pelvis. This means that the joints in your pelvis naturally become more lax. The possibility of having an epidural for pain relief in labour is greatly reduced. Yay.

    It’s a lovely little experience that nobody mentions.
  2. Feelings. You’re not allowed them. If you want to express an opinion or an agitation, expect to be treated like an irrational child and told that “it’s just your hormones speaking”.
    Crying because I’m having a hot flush and feel like I might melt is pregnancy hormones.
    Weeping at an animal advert on TV is pregnancy hormones.
    Wanting to start a war because the price of Nutella is too damn high is pregnancy hormones.
    Getting cross at people’s incompetence is simply a human behavioral trait and for people to brand it as anything else is to belittle me and to assume that I have regressed to the mental stages of a toddler. Don’t berate my opinions because you a) think it’s amusing to throw in a pregnancy joke or b) because you perhaps want to save face and think that undermining me will make my opinion matter less. It won’t.
  3. Your partner will be way more loved up than you. Don’t get me wrong, I am excited about meeting Skipper, so excited. But, the process of getting to that point isn’t necessarily making me want to run through fields of cornflowers singing which is why it’s beautiful to see Mr H all ga-ga because it rubs off on me.
    If I’m feeling particularly agitated, I go into the nursery, stand in front of the mirror and hold up one of her baby grows to my stomach…and then get a little emotional thinking about the tiny little miracle that will be wearing it in 12 weeks.
  4. Sleeping. It’s not going to happen. Ever wonder why your mum is always so tired even now that you are in your adult years and you no longer need her help getting changed, fed or taken places? It’s because she hasn’t slept since before she was pregnant.
    And why is it so bad?
    First trimester involves nausea (fortunately I just had the feeling and not the actual action) so good luck trying to sleep through that.
    Second trimester will see you getting up for the loo more times than can ever be humanly necessary.
    Third trimester removes the option of sleeping on your back because of the pressure of your uterus PLUS you get more heartburn lying on your right side so HOORAY, you can only really lie on your left and then wake up every hour with the worst dead arm you have ever experienced.

Mr H likes to ask me, on a weekly basis, whether I would “do this again” and I’ll openly admit that I’m not one of those elated, one-with-nature, pregnant people. But, I can only answer that question once I’ve seen her face because I know that it’s going to make all the above melt into obscurity.

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