So we’re still in the first trimester holding pattern this week. Tired and peeing a lot and moody and possibly a walking ball of digestive issues and paranoia. If you haven’t spilled the beans to people yet, you’re probably dying to. You may feel more pregnant than you actually look (even though your uterus has doubled in size), and without that nice round belly you might not be getting a ton of “everything is okay” reassurance from your symptoms.
(Of course, as I have learned, all bets are off for a second pregnancy, as my previously stretched-out joey-pouch belly has rejoiced at the chance to totally fulfill its poochy destiny once more.)
Morning sickness typically shows up between week six and seven — it’ll peak within a few weeks and hopefully dissipate soon into the second trimester. You will not hear stories from me about my friend’s cousin’s dog-walker who threw up the entire nine months, because that stuff is just SO NOT HELPFUL and always made me feel particularly stabby. So I will tell you this: the terrible morning/noon/night sickness of my first pregnancy went away after week 13. There was another week or two of some sensitivity to foods and odors, but by week 16 I felt incredibly great and Hulk-level hungry.
If you’re suffering from morning sickness, you’ll notice that EVERYBODY and their friend’s cousin’s dog-walker has the perfect cure-all remedy for it. You have my full permission to ignore them. Every woman’s morning sickness is different. And every woman’s morning sickness for every pregnancy is different.
This time around, the whole “keep food in your belly all the time” thing really does help. If I go too long without a little snack, I get extremely queasy. But I’m also not actually throwing up. Last time, I threw up. A lot. All the time. Stomach full, half-full, completely empty — it did not matter. I choked down just enough food to stay alive and had a 20-minute monologue prepared about how YES, BOILING WATER HAS A SMELL. A BAD, BAD SMELL.
I tried lemon candies and “real” ginger ale and crackers and fruit and hot baths and I don’t even remember what else. None of it worked, although it did really hammer home the lesson to STOP and THINK before I opened my big fat mouth to give another pregnant woman my extremely valuable and 100% awesome advice.
(On that ironic note, Vitamin Water worked MIRACLES for the puking last time. Seriously. Made life worth living.)
If you’re NOT suffering from morning sickness (and have actually read this far — sorry, I couldn’t put you first lest all the sick puking pregnant women go after you with pitchforks), consider yourself lucky. Seriously. I know we all get fed the “morning sickness = healthy pregnancy” thing but it’s important to note that “no morning sickness” does NOT equal an unhealthy pregnancy. It really, really doesn’t.
Some women don’t have a ton of symptoms in early pregnancy. Or any! This doesn’t mean your body isn’t producing and doubling pregnancy hormones at the proper rate. It just means your body is TOLERATING the doubling pregnancy hormones better. Basically: you’re a pregnancy viking! You win and the rest of us miserable saps fail.
If you had symptoms and they suddenly vanish, or if your lack of symptoms is accompanied by steady spotting AND uterine cramping — yes. These are not great signs and you should call your doctor. But a lack of symptoms in and of itself? Pfft. Not worth obsessing over, although I know that’s easier said than done.
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