18 Weeks

{ Monday, January 12, 2009 }
I got my waddle the week of christmas. I can feel myself swaying side to side when I walk and, if I really focus, I can make myself stop but it just feels natural now, especially when I'm tired. Honestly, I was really surprised by this--I thought the waddle came in the 3rd trimester when the baby sits low and throws your balance off. Maybe that just makes the waddle worse, but from what I've been told, the waddle is due to my hip joints loosening. Other effects of the "loosening": backaches and leg pains. Both things I was expecting--just not this early.

Apparently, I didn't really know anything about being pregnant before I became that way. I thought it was all nausea in the beginning, strange cravings in the middle, and then some discomfort towards the end. I was shocked the day I learned that I wouldn't be able to sleep on my back past 16 weeks. I guess I could have figured out that I wouldn't be sleeping on my stomach if I really thought about it, but it would have never occured to me that back sleeping was off limits. This has really been one of the hardest things to get used to. I spend most nights rolling from side to side and wake up with sore hips and neck. Its not such a big deal, just unexpected.

Other things that have surprised me about pregnancy: shortness of breath, nosebleeds, the "girls' " growth spurt (I knew this would happen, I just thought that came later too). But most surprising is how differently I feel about the pregnancy after that last ultrasound. My pregnancy book said that at some point I would start to question whether there really was a baby in there. At the time I read it (maybe 6 weeks pregnant) I thought that seemed crazy. Of COURSE there's a baby in there! But as the months went by with not much sign of anything going on, I did start to wonder. Seeing an actual baby-shaped blob, rather than a ball-shaped one, sort of reminded me (duh!) that there's really a baby bean growing in my stomach, even though it still just looks like I ate too much pizza.

Finding out that we're expecting a girl also had a big effect on me. I don't have a preference (other than for a healthy babe, of course), so we seriously considered not finding out the sex. That way, I reasoned, we wouldn't start unintentionally applying gender stereotypes even before the baby was born. I hadn't considered what a big difference it would make to be able to say "she" (or "he," for that matter) instead of "it." Everything just feels more real. In the beginning, we would walk around saying to each other, "We're having a baby!" like we couldn't wrap our minds around the idea. Now, its the same with, "We're having a daughter!"

Its incredible to me to think that we're almost halfway through this pregnancy. It seems like just yesterday we were speechless, staring at a stick of plastic.


Jess said...

Hey there! I saw you from afar last night but never got to go say hi!

I love that you are blogging all of these feelings and changes. What a great journal to someday share with the little bean girl.

I can't wait to meet her.

Val said...

Very honest reflections here. I love it!
And yes, it'll be something for the beanette to read when she's older! :)