by Kylie Krackenbacken
I’ve always believed pregnancy was a miraculous but mostly gross state of affairs. My feelings didn’t change when I fell pregnant.
If you’re reading this blog for advice about pregnancy, stop reading now. I’ve found that other people’s advice, including mine, is usually crap. However, if you’re reading it to find out about the real deal, then read on, my friend.
Anyway, Bec asked me to jot down my thoughts on pregnancy because:
a) She didn’t write any of her own thoughts down and has now forgotten all about her pregnancies
b) She assured me I would forget all about the worst parts of my pregnancy once the baby was out (FYI, she lied).
So here they are: my thoughts on pregnancy in all its miraculous grossness.
Morning All day sickness
Ah, the nausea that you can’t talk about because no one knows you’re preggas. Fortunately for me it was mostly just feeling sick rather than actually spewing my guts up. Much to the dismay of my friends who had awful first trimester sickness, I could still drink coffee. It helped fend off exhaustion and the desire to randomly fall asleep!
My partner and I were equally fascinated and grossed out by these. They went from my regular dainty English rose colour to looking like enormous cow pats.
My partner found me staring at them in the mirror.
Me: What do they want?!
Him: I don’t know honey but I think they’re trying to communicate with us.
They were MASSIVE. They took over half my boob and grew random spots. I could hail the mothership to Earth with these puppies.
I asked a friend whether they would go back to normal. She said ‘Ummm, yeah, sure they do!’ Very convincing. Thanks.
Let the public touching begin. First there was the saleswoman at DJ’s who gave my belly a rub for luck.
Next up was a strange lady who grabbed me in a shop and said ‘You are strong lady like bull. You will have a crystal baby that talks directly to God.’ She rubbed my belly, kissed me and walked away. My beloved walked over and asked me if the strange lady said we were going to have a crystal meth baby. Uh, no honey and no I don’t know what a crystal baby is but she seemed pretty excited about it. I just hope it doesn’t mean it’s all sharp and pointy!
Blissful! I stopped feeling sick, the tests were over and I just sat about getting bigger but not stressing about it.
Finally I could tell people I was pregnant. The general reaction was rather unexpected: disbelief. People kept saying, ‘No, are you really?!’ Me: ‘Have you ever heard me joke about being knocked up before?!’
Late third trimester
Q: Do you have a birth plan?
A: Yes! It goes like this: get it out! If it doesn’t go according to plan then I’ll trust the people that have all of that medical training to sort it out.
Q: Are you having a natural vaginal birth?
A: Yes! But why do people CONSTANTLY want to talk about my vagina? Seriously, total strangers will ask you about this and it’s super weird. Let’s be honest, it’s unlikely you would have talked about your vagina with your closest friends, let alone strangers. Especially about anything coming out of it, baby or otherwise.
Q: Are you planning on breastfeeding?
A: I thought that this question was straightforward until someone gave me an ENTIRE book on breastfeeding. I’m sticking to my basic flow chart approach to this issue: Are you planning on breast feeding? Yes? Can you breast feed? Yes, good. No? Feed the baby formula. There, easy, done!
Q: Are you keeping well?
This is the third trimester question that people ask you in a VERY serious tone. I don’t know why it changes from ‘How are you?’, it just does.
The Birthing Stories
Other people’s birthing stories: seriously people, WTF? Unless your baby plopped out quickly and painlessly, I don’t want to know! Especially if your cousin’s friend bled to death during a routine c-section.
The Helpful Men
Mansplaining birth: but women have given birth in rice paddies for centuries, it must be a piece of piss and you will forget all about any pain! Thanks beloved man friend, I appreciate the pep talk but I’m yet to speak to a woman who has forgotten the pain, discomfort or marathon duration of their birthing experience.
The Subject of Impromptu Biology Lessons
You become an educational opportunity for young children: ‘Yes darling, that lady has a baby in her tummy and it will come out of her vagina’.
See, again with complete strangers talking about my special li’l lady…!
The Due Date
The day before my due date, baby seemed to be settling in for the long haul quite handsomely. Unfortunately, we had told people the ACTUAL due date. This means that we were completely inundated with calls and texts asking if baby had emerged yet. So, it’s nice that people remembered the due date and called but I’m over answering the question.
Note to self: next time be vague. Make it early, mid or late month or ‘I forgot’ – anything but the actual date!
We had a beautiful baby boy weighing 3.525 kilograms (no, I don’t know what that is in the old money!) called Jack. Well, we eventually called him Jack after I argued successfully that we can’t call the poor little bugger Zorkie (my partner’s naming preference).
My birthing plan of ‘get it out’ worked quite well in the end but that’s another blog…
(P.S. If you want actual pregnancy advice, read Kaz Cooke’s Up the Duff, it’s a godsend and most stuff that you think is weird when you’re preggas is entirely, disgustingly normal! )