How I (Honestly) Feel About Being Pregnant Again
If you follow me on Instagram or happened to catch my Today Show segment last week, you have likely heard my news. If not, here it is...
I'm pregnant. In January 2015, we will officially become a family of four. Gulp.
Yes, I know I am so fortunate, and of course I am grateful for the gift of a somewhat unexpected pregnancy that will (hopefully!) result in a happy and healthy baby to complete our family. But I would be lying if I claimed to be one of those girls who is glowing with the joy of creating a life, energized by the excitement of meeting our new little bundle of joy, embracing every moment of this 'special' time. Because to be perfectly honest, I am kind of a grump.
Luckily, just like my first pregnancy, technically, I feel great. No morning sickness or acid reflux, no weird aches or pains.
But unlike my first pregnancy, subjectively, I feel gross. Like really, depressingly gross.
This time around, I went from being in the best shape of my life to huffing, puffing and reaching for my maternity wardrobe within weeks of finding out I was expecting. Last time, I had no expectations. The baby bump, and oohing and ahhing that came with it's arrival, was new and exciting. The opportunity to eat with no abandon and enjoy the blissful ignorance of now knowing how much weight I should or should not be gaining (or how hard it would eventually be to get it off!) was delightful. Its like my body knew I was on the fence about the whole second kid thing and decided to punish me for not consulting with it more seriously before actually going through with it. All the muscle tone I had worked so hard to achieve, and was so excited to show off in strapless maxi dresses and short shorts, disappeared in an instant. Literally. Looking in the mirror is depressing, to the point that I now have to strategically pick spots in the gym where I can't catch my reflection because it just makes me mad.
And sure, when I got pregnant with Alexa (pretty much exactly 5 years ago to the day, weird...) I was 30 years old, living in Manhattan, enjoying a lifestyle that technically was very sexy and very fashionable. But in reality, while yes, the career and the city, and all it had to offer, were quite fabulous, I was burnt out and quite content to work my butt off, come home, watch TV, go to bed early and wake up at the crack of dawn the next morning. So not being able to drink for 9 months wasn't too big of a deal.
This time around, it is a VERY big deal. Which probably sounds backwards given that I am now 35 and living in a quiet suburb, working for myself and keeping up with a very exhausting 3 1/2 year old little girl. But our life is Westport is a million times more social than our life in New York ever was- in the best way possible. Summer is especially amazing- and I had been looking forward to bottles of wine on the beach and boozy Sundays spent pool side since the sun set on Labor Day 2013. Sure, I could pretend to be all "Oh, I have JUST as much fun being the stone-cold sober person at the party" but truth is, I don't. I mean, I still have fun, but...I could be having much more. I have to suppress the urge to hit many of my most favorite friends in the face out of jealousy as I watch them enjoy a glass of wine at the beach during the evening playdates that used to be the highlight of my summer days. Although it is nice to wake up without a hangover. Our yard has never looked more manicured!
In spite of these gripes, there is one wonderful difference between my first pregnancy and my second, and that is having a very excited big-sister-to-be to share it with. When we told Alexa there was a baby in mommy's belly, she looked up at my husband and I with a priceless expression of wonderment in her eye and just said "Wow!" over and over. When anyone points to my bump and asks Alexa what's in there, she shrieks with unadulterated joy "A BABY! A BABY!". Every night before bed she asks to kiss and hug the baby, and talks right into my belly button- repeating over and over again "I love you, your my best friend." She has watched many of her friends get baby brothers and sisters and waited very patiently for her turn (probably the first thing she has ever waited for patiently, come to think of it) and that helps to make every upper arm jiggle and sober Saturday night just a bit more bearable.