Some women claim to love being pregnant. I don’t know that I’m one of those women, but I’m not on the opposite end of the spectrum, either. I don’t love it, I don’t hate it. I feel both excitement and terror over bringing a new life into the world. I don’t feel like I have that often-talked-about pregnancy glow (although I wish I did). I’m not all roses and sunshine and daydreaming about the baby’s crib bedding. Come to think of it, this baby doesn’t have a crib (or even a room) yet. But I, digress.
Here are a few things I’ve experienced while expecting Baby #3.
Pregnancy brain has taken on a whole new meaning.
Not even kidding. Allow me to elaborate. Sometime during my second trimester, I was rushing out the door at 7:00 a.m. to head to work. I was running late, had spilled my cup of decaf everywhere, and couldn’t drag my three year old out of bed. Then, when I was halfway to the office, I reached for my purse to grab my sunglasses. It wasn’t in the seat next to me. So I pulled a U-turn (which may or may not have been legal . . . relax, my kids weren’t in the car) and sped home to get it. Not too much of an issue. However, when I got back home, it wasn’t there. I went room to room and searched, although I knew if it wasn’t on the kitchen table, it was gone. I panicked. I re-traced my steps the night before, which was a total joke since I couldn’t even remember what I had eaten for breakfast. Then it hit me. I had left it at the office. Sure enough, I called my co-worker, who confirmed that yes, my purse was in my desk cabinet, exactly where I had left it. Probably not the best thing to forget.
I have always had a problem keeping up with my car keys. Pregnant, not pregnant, doesn’t matter. My husband even bought me a little hook to put them on at home,x but that didn’t seem to help. So, after a major meltdown one morning when I was once again rushing around to get to work and I couldn’t find my keys, we decided I needed a tracking device on my keychain. I got one for Christmas.
This one is my favorite. I think my pregnancy brain is amplified this time for many reasons, but mostly because I’m also focused on keeping a three year old and an 18 month old happy. And alive. Due to that (and extreme exhaustion), I’ve probably gone a bit into cruise control mode doing everyday tasks. Bath time is no exception. A few weeks ago, I had the girls in the tub. As I scrubbed the little one’s hair while her big sister sang a made-up song about penguins and alligators, I noticed something. I had put my youngest in the tub WITH HER DIAPER ON. As I tried to un-velcro the soggy mess (thankfully there was no surprise in there), my oldest asked me why in the world I put the baby in the tub with a diaper on. I couldn’t find an answer.
Emotions are running high. Really high.
I’ve cried more, yelled more, and complained more during this pregnancy than ever before. The littlest things seem to bother me, and I’m not talking about just for a day or so. If something gets under my skin, it festers before eventually boiling over. Definitely not fun (or fair) to those people who love me.
The tears are a-flowing. Over big and small things. For example, when I found out we were having our third girl, I cried about not having a boy. For a week. Another time, during my commute home, I burst into tears when a pickup truck wouldn’t let me merge onto 459 South.
My poor husband. Not that I’m looking to pick a fight, but I’ve noticed myself getting worked up over absolutely nothing. He didn’t empty his pockets before throwing his pants in the laundry. He put the 18 month old’s clothes on the 3 year old. He didn’t fully close the bag of shredded cheese before tossing it back in the fridge. During each event, I got mad as a hornet and gave him the silent treatment for a day or two. Real mature.
My pangs of mom guilt have increased significantly.
Although there are times when I do calm down enough to touch my belly and smile at the thought of holding my third baby girl for the first time, the feeling quickly fades when I look at my two girls. Do I spend enough individual time with them now? How will I be able to be a good mom to three under the age of four when I struggle to do so with two under the age of three? These thoughts usually snowball and I end up in tears. Shocking, I know.
All pregnancies are different. All women are different. I may not have a name picked out or the nursery decorated or all of my supplies purchased for #3. I cry a lot. I yell a lot. I eat a lot. And now, with only about seven weeks until my due date, I worry. A lot. But, despite all of this, I do have moments when I feel a sense of calm. My most recent instance of this was just the other night. I was sitting on the couch and my 18 month old walked up to me, pointed to my belly, and said, “Baby.” Then, she and her big sister proceeded to wave to the baby, talk to the baby, and take turns kissing my belly. My heart melted.
At that moment, I didn’t feel anything but contentment and confidence, that yes, I will be able to handle this three-kid thing.
And if not, at least I’ll be able to have caffeine again.