When I envisioned getting pregnant, I pictured a my adorable little baby bump clad in cute maternity clothes, glowing skin, and of course, gliding across the earth on pure unadulterated happiness. I would work out everyday, eat healthy foods, and spread my sunshine to everyone I encountered.
I had heard other mothers mention morning sickness, but I imagined that it would either skip me entirely, or I would feel slightly nauseous for an hour or so in the morning. I've been hung over before, so I figure I could deal. Honestly, how bad could it be? I didn't realize that the nausea would haunt me until the wee hours of the evening and leave me munching on saltines in bed like a chipmunk storing up for winter. I didn't realize that the mere sight of an egg, which also happened to be my husband’s favorite breakfast food, would make me bolt for the relative safety of the bathroom with its stomach saving fan and air filter. I did not know that my toothbrush would become my nemesis, and each morning a battle between the minty smell of freshly brushed teeth and vomit breath would occur.
I thought about working out a lot, and if that counted as exercise, I would have had a fit pregnancy. Between the morning sickness that was exacerbated by movement and the bone wearing fatigue created by my own adorable little parasite, my main source exercise was my middle of the night cracker foraging expeditions, which in my defense took me down the stairs and into the kitchen.
I'm fifteen weeks pregnant, and I've put on ten pounds. Instead of the adorable little baby bump of my dreams, I have a decidedly unattractive muffin top, which is about 25% baby and 75% snacks, and I wear a lot of shirts that look like they could second as a blanket. Instead of glowing skin, I have a full body acne breakout that would put the pimples of my youth to shame. Finally, I am a hormonal, nauseous, sleep-deprived storm cloud of pregnant irritation. The end result is my husband frequently stating that he is “sorry” a lot for things like impregnating me and breathing, and my dogs have permanently gone into hiding.
Even though my little human is literally sucking out some of my life force, I can't help but fall in love with my child each time see the adorable little alien apple-shaped body or hear the rhythmic beating of his or her heart. We are intertwined, and this deep physical connection makes me feel more mentally connected to this soul than I have ever felt with another human. After all, since I literally have the cutest little sidekick in the world by my side twenty-four hours a day, I know I can overcome nine months of nausea and a nemesis toothbrush.