Thoughts on 1st Trimester: Expected and Unexpected

Written by Elena @The Art of Making a Baby on. Posted in Daily, EVERYTHING ELSE, My Pregnancy

I wanted to write this post for my non-pregnant and soon-to-be pregnant readers, and maybe some newly pregnant ones. When I was first planning our  pregnancy and reading a million books that I read, one thing I always wondered about is how my pregnancy was going to go compared to the books. You can read all you want, but books discuss what “usually” happens, and as we all know everyone’s experience is different. The books also don’t talk about feelings or personal experiences ( at least not the ones I was reading, since I opted for more medical and factual books rather than “girlfriend” books).

So here’s my take on the first trimester: my personal experience, the way I had/have it and the way I see it:

PREGNANCY NAUSEA

Expectations:
I always knew I was going to be sick during the first trimester. There wasn’t even a question in my mind. I spent 8 years on the pill and any time I’d forget to take one and have to make it up a little later, I’d spend the whole time by the toilet throwing up. So I knew it wasn’t going to be pretty. In my imagination, pregnancy nausea was something like being sea sick and throwing up after certain meals that didn’t agree with you. I thought of it as a completely physiological thing that just simply happens.
Reality:
First of all, I have mention that I wasn’t AS sick as I had thought I’d be. But what I didn’t expect is that pregnancy nausea is as animal of it own. It’s nothing like the sea sickness or food poisoning nausea. First of all, it’s CONSTANT. I mean it is ALWAYS there, you ALWAYS feel nauseous. Whether you’re hungry or full, or content, you are never comfortable and are always sick. Something that totally caught me off guard was that while usual nausea is almost completely a physiological process ( you are nauseous and throw up), pregnancy nausea is also psychological. I actually discovered that, for me, pregnancy nausea was MOSTLY psychological that would then grow into a physiological process.
Let me explain: It was not THE FOOD that was making me sick, but THE THOUGHT OF THE FOOD, as well as the smell and the looks. It was soooo strange. In the very beginning, I would feel so voilently ill just thinking of food. Nothing sounded good. But since we were determined to feed me a perfect diet even while sick, hubby would still make food and bring it to me, and I’d force myself to eat. The strange thing was that as soon as put that food into my mouth (wincing of course), I’d be fine (relatively speaking). The process of bringing the food to my mouth was worse than actually eating. So I’d sit there and hate the idea of eating, but I’d have to remind myself that I have to and that once I start chewing it won’t be as bad. So spoonful after spoonful, I kept feeding myself despite my utmost desite to stop eating forever. That went on for weeks. There were certain foods the taste of which DID make me  sick: romaine, nuts and sardines. I spent an hour, crying but forcing myself to eat the dang nutritious Romaine salad, it was honestly a torture, and then an hour later I got so sick, I threw up. For the first and last time. I realized that if Romaine is going to make me throw up then I better find other foods that are as nutritious and have the same vitamins and minerals. So I moved onto spinach salads which weren’t so bad. Later cucumber and tomato salads ( tossed in salt and canola oil) saved my bucket nutritionwise.
So I spent about 3-4 weeks mostly in bed or the couch suffering from the constant nausea and forcing myself to eat healthily and nutritiously and a lot of it. After a week or two, the thought of certain foods that I had to eat ( eggs for protein, or sardines for iron and nutrients) would literally make me cry. At my worst , hubby would bring me food ( that I told him to make) and i would just start bawling at the sight of it, because I knew how hard it was going to be to take a bite. In the end I don’t regret one bit making myself eat htrought suffering and tears, because I made sure the baby was given the perfect amount of nutrients but I gotta tell you, it was one of the hardest things I’ve had to do in my life: eating inspite of nausea. While not eating felt like what I wanted to do, I knew going hungry would just worsen it. Sea bands helped a bit on my worst days, ginger almost made me hurl ( i hate ginger). Bananas in the morning, and any fresh fruit or fresh vegetables were the only thing I could eat without sufferring, but I wasn’t enjoying them either.
A little later pregnancy nausea evolved into, what I called, “the fullness nausea”, where I’d feel really sick after every meal, a different kind of sick, the kind of sick that you get when you’ve eaten sooooo much, it makes you want to puke. That was when, I assume, my uterus was moving out of my pelvis and pressing and squeezing my interstines and stomach, while they were trying to rearrange themselves. I also expect it to return as my uterus gets bigger and starts pushing on my stomach for lack of room. (yay!)
To this day, with the nausea being pretty mild, the thought, the  smell or looks of food makes me more nauseaus than I current am, regardless of what kind of food it is. ( as I am writing this I feel sick to my stomach from all the food talk :))

Either way, pregnancy nausea is nothing like any other nausea I’ve experienced, mostly because it’s constant and lasts for so long, you can’t imagine you’ve ever felt normal or will ever feel normal again. Oh and in my case, teh nausea got HORRIBLE in the evening or when i’d get tired, but I’d feel the best in the mornings.

That being said, now that it’s almost gone, would I do it again for a second baby? Yes! But this time, I’d ask my mom to come help me during the first trimester, so that all the responsibilities, including work, cleaning, cooking, weren’t solely on my husband’s shoulders. Having a toddler to take care of while feeling like death isn’t something I’d want to experience without some full time help. Women who manage to work, have a kid, be pregnant while they’re truly sick are real heroes.

This is what the 1st Trimester looks like...

 CONSTIPATION

Expectations:
 I read about constipation in every single pregnancy book. Yikes, I thought, constipation, hemmoroids, this pregnancy thing isn’t fun, huh? So without even thinking about it, I thought I’d get it too.
When I finally got pregnant, a fact dawned on me: I eat a ton of fiber (around 40 grams a day), unintentionally, because most of my foods are fruits, veggies and whole grains. I bet I won’t get constipation for that reason, I thought. I was curious to see if despite all that, the pregnancy hormones would get me.
Reality:
I was actually right on this one. Unless constipation becomes more of a problem during the 2nd trimester, I’ve been lucky enough to avoid it completely. While I expected it, it was still a welcomed surprise to me to see the proper diet work over the pregnancy hormones. Now, I can’t say I didn’t notice a difference in bowel habits. {ok, now TMI starts, so skip, if you’re not interested}. Before pregnancy, both me and hubby would go #2 pretty much after every big meal. It was a relatively new development to us as well, because before he went vegan and I started eating the way I do now, once a day was how it worked with occasional 2-3 day break due to travelling or so. I always thought that  was normal, but after changing our eating habits a year ago and doing some reading, I realized that normal is emptying your colon after every meal (btw, hubby is even more regular than me, since he doesn’t eat dairy). Now I can’t say pregnancy DIDN’T change anything in that department. I can DEFINITELY see a slow down. While before I’d go 3-4 times a day, super easily, now  it’s a twice a day kind of deal and it takes me slightly longer. Another thing I noticed is there’s not much when i go ( i told you it’s TMI), which according to many sources is because my body is working hard right now to extract every possible nutritient, thus not leaving much waste product. That was very good to know, actually, the baby was being fed well :) It is one of the few ways I can tell the benefitial changes are happening in my body to protect and grow my baby.
Update: now that I am going over this, being in the 2nd trimester, since the placenta is taking over the hormone production, it all sped up even more. I also found out drinking lots of water ( which I do and have been) helps the problem, in case you’re pregnant and wondering.

HEARTBURN

Expectations:
I had  NEVER had heartburn in my life. Back when I was eating bad, I was too young to have it ( i guess) and since I changed my eating habits a few years ago, I was just not eating anything that tends to cause heartburn ( fried, oily stuff). So I was sure it was not going to be an issue. I didn’t even count heartburn as a possible symptom, didn’t even think about it.
Reality:
Oh how I was mistaken! IT IS A BITCH! We tend to forget that our body CHANGES completely when we get pregnant. That means things that haven’t been an issue might become an issue. So while dairy, acids, and whatever else causes heartburn haven’t bothered me up until now, that doesn’t mean that the hormonal changes won’t “fix” that. And man, did they! Sometimes it gets so bad, I want to scream. Othertimes it makes it hard to breathe or swallow, either way heartburn sucks, and there’s no good remedy for it during pregnancy ( I try not take Tums, because they’re just “sort of safe” and I try to take it easy with Bi-carb due to sodium.). Also my DHA pills are  causing some of the heartburn, so I try to take them at night. But for now, all I have to do is suck it up and try to ignore it. :( If my heartburn gets worse I might have to do something about it, even if it means taking TUMS. If anyone has any natural solutions, I’m all ears.

MOODINESS

Expectations:
I have heard stories of pregZillas going crazy, snapping at their hubbies, yelling and screaming.  We both braced for the pregnancy hormones and me freaking out over little nothings.
Reality:
To date, all I’ve had are emotional crying spells ( I am not usually a crier). Things upset me a little more than before, but not in a “raging mad” way, but in a “I’m gonna cry” way. Tears come really easily and there a lot of them. I’ve cried over having to eat food, over feeling sad, over missing the sunset, over not getting a peach, while arguing with hubby ( not willingly, of course- it just happens). I’ve not snapped at hubby for no reason, though there were times when  he was overwhlemed by working AND taking care of me and wasn’t the nicest.  It’s possible that’s because I am actively trying to avoid any stress, which would include anger, so I try to relax in situations that would normally get me mad or upset.  Either way, so far the pregZILLA hasn’t shown its ugly head and let’s hope it stays that way.

EXERCISE

Expectations:
I was determined to exercise through the worst of my nausea if I can, do it daily, do my kegels, etc.
Reality:
Hahaha! This makes me laugh now. My nausea filled days consisted of two things: eating and feeling miserable. That is a full time job. In order to keep nausea at bay and get enough calories, I had to eat constantly, which was a torture and took forever. So I basically did nothing but eat and suffer. I was working out daily before 5th week when the nausea hit, and started going for 2.5 mile walks every other morning at 8th week when nausea eased up a bit. I’m really looking forward to exercising again in the 2nd trimester, I feel I’m all fat no muscles at this point. Today was the first true day of actual pregnancy exercises ( walking doesn’t count) and I loved it. But I don’t count on feeling good enough to do it every day. I need to do something to at least get myself to do kegels more often, lazy bum!

SKIN AND HAIR

Expectations:
I didn’t even know skin would be a problem. I don’t think I read about that anywhere, at least not in details, and I didn’t really care, because what’s some breakouts, right? As far as hair, I was looking forward to some nice lush hair.
Reality:
Oh these are NOT some breakouts- this is a full on attack on my face and upper body. I am breaking out in places I’ve never broken out before, little small tiny breakouts, scattered all over. Yuck!
The hair is not there, either. I have big hair as it is, and I see no change. I’d say it’s actually worse, which I attribute to organic shampoos that can’t clean or moisturize for shit :)

DOPPLER

Expectations:
We knew we were gonna get a doppler even before I was pregnant. After I ordered it, it was brought to my attention that a doppler is basically the same thing as ultrasound and I started looking into any possible harm that ultrasound can do. I found quite a few studies that show minimal but statistically apparent damage ( heats up tissue, scrambles brain cells, connected with miscarriage, thought the latter was never shown in repeated studies). Either way, it was more prudent to do as few full on ultrasounds as possible, and use the doppler once and then only in “emergency” situations. In order for the “damage to occur they had to have full strength ultrasound in one place for 30 minutes ( in mice).
Reality:
It was the best thing to happen to expecting parents ( or at least in our case). Having the reassurance of the doppler, when you’re concerned about the baby is priceless. I can see where it can cause unecessary worries if the heartbeat is not found but we’ve been able to find it each and every time and it’s just wonderful. We use it for a couple minutes, and listen to the heartbeat for literally no more than 10 seconds. It helps to just know that it’s there, if I am having unusual cramps, or some of my symptoms disappear and I don’t have the kicks to judge baby’s well-being by and it’s simply just dang nice. You can read about our doppler experience and how we found the heartbeat here

FEELING OF FULLNESS

Expectations:
Don’t remember reading about this one. I think it might be connected with nausea.
Reality:
Oh my God, I think it was a part of nausea or something, but at the time I felt like I was  going to EXPLODE! Like my stomach was a size of a peanut and drinking anything more than half a cup or eating more than a cup meant lying there moaning like after Thanksgiving dinner. It was almost as bad as light nausea and it seemed to come and go. I still have it once in a while, but definitely not to that extend, where I felt like I couldn’t take another bite and not die.

FATIGUE

Expectations:
 It was one of those things everyone knows about: Pregnant women get fatigue.
Reality:
I thought it’d be worse, to be honest. Now granted, the whole point of my pregnancy is make it a very relaxing time, where the main goal is to feed, nurture and take care of the growing baby inside of me. So I had no responsibilities, aside from eating really well, excersising ( yeah right), being calm and doing occasional work when I am able to. So while I felt tired, I was always in a position to rest immidiately upon getting the fatigue. I did notice that as nausea was getting better and I was venturing outside of my bedroom (lol), standing for about 15 minutes or longer was making me really tired.  There were days where going up the stairs ( we have a big steep stairwell) was making me out of breath.

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And I think that’s it. If you think I missed something, you’d like to hear about, by all means, let me know.

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Comments (45)

  • Cathy

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    papaya enzyme tablets worked great on my heartburn. Much better than tums. You can get them at health food stores.

    I think this will be the first in many ways you find that pregnancy and kids aren’t quite like the books describe :)

    Reply

    • Elena @ Art of Making a Baby

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      Oh I’ll check them out! What’s in them?

      And yeah I expected the unexpected! :) I love planning but I always stay flexible in my mind. Now I totally can’t wait to see how my delivery works out and what kind of baby we end up with. It’s all really exciting!

      Reply

  • MAL

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    The heart burn only gets worse, unfortunately. Not because of hormones but because your baby squishes your stomach and the acid flows up into your throat.

    The heart burn was probably my worst pregnancy symptom, the only thing that helped was Nexium. My doctor recommended it and my daughter is completely healthy so it was worth it.

    Reply

    • Elena @ Art of Making a Baby

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      Did nexium completely eliminate it? How often did you take it? I might have to try to pay attention to food that triggers it, though id hate to eliminate any foods- it’s hard to find things I want to eat as it is.

      Reply

      • MAL

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        Once a day, I didn’t really change my diet, it was completely gone and I slept like a baby. It really is the magic purple pill.

        Reply

        • MAL

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          I take that back, I did stop eating overly spicy things (boneless wings mainly). I craved hot boneless wings but it was worth it to give them up and eventually easy to give them up since they aren’t really healthy :)

          Reply

  • Deanna

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    I had heartburn so bad with #1 that water caused it. No matter how small of a sip I took, it felt like my throat was on fire. My hair also didnt get “thick and full” as promised (although my fine hair is now still falling out 9 months after I had #2 which is grosse when taking a shower and you have to rinse off your hand to get the clumps of hair off of it)

    The nausea thing with just thinking about food is normal. My food aversion was fish. Any type of fish. Just the mere mention of fish and I wanted to hurl. I WOHM and I had to ask my coworkers to call me up and warn me if they brought fish for lunch so I could make alternative eating arrangments (because even if normal people couldnt smell it anymore, I could)

    And you skipped “heightened sense of smell” in this post. I could smell EVERYTHING. I could tell you what kinds of spices were in a food it was that good. I could also smell a smoker before I saw them (even if they werent smoking or hadnt smoked in a while) Dont get me started on the cat boxes.

    Reply

    • Elena @ Art of Making a Baby

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      Oh I’m really NOT looking forward to more heartburn- it scares me. I did forget to mention the sense of smell, but I sort of thought of it in combination with nausea (I’ll probably update that). It’s super Human sense- amazing!

      Reply

  • Mo

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    I expected to be super moody during my pregnancy and only had one or two really emotional outbursts. Honestly, for myself and most of the women I know, the extreme moodiness is going to hit you AFTER the baby is born. Of course there is going to be joy and excitement, but the combo of hormones and sleep deprivation are hard to take even for the most level headed lady. I don’t know why I didn’t expect it…but be prepared. Not saying you will suffer from PPD or anything (I did not), but it’s hard to escape at least a little of baby blues.

    Also, the constipation did not hit me until the 3rd trimester. I wouldn’t count on being out of the woods yet on that one.

    Hope the rest of your pregnancy flies by!

    Reply

    • Elena @ Art of Making a Baby

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      Yay! All these things to look forward to- jahaha!!! We’ll see what happens with constipation, I heard most women get it in 1st trimester due to hormones, but I’ll try to hydrate myself and keep eating well as soon as I see a sign of any problem.

      Reply

  • Abby

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    I’ve heard wonders about hazelwood necklaces helping heartburn/ acid reflux. They are completely natural and by just resting on your skin they balance the acidity in your body and can help with acid reclux, eczema, acne, & pain. I just bought one for my 3 yr old son to help with his eczema and one for my 3 month old daughter to help her acid reflux and eventually to help with teething pain. You can buy them online, I got ours from hazelaid.com. Hope you can find relief soon. I didn’t have heartburn with my first two pregnancies but I had it horribly with my daughter and it was pure torture.

    Reply

  • Verna

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    The hair thing always makes me laugh. I’ve never gotten the beautiful pregnancy hair, people always talk about. Mine always gets super dry and brittle. It stopped growing completely with my son. Sigh. ; ) The heartburn is brutal though! As soon as I get pregnant, it comes on full strength! It hasn’t been near as bad this time though, thank goodness!

    Reply

  • Irina

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    Are there any positive, nice things that you’ve noticed? Besides, carrying a baby, obviously :)

    Reply

    • Elena @ Art of Making a Baby

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      That’s a very good question. I had to really think about and the answer would be no, not in the first trimester, aside from occasionally getting hit with a realization that I’m growing our baby. I even asked hubby and his answer was no as well, then he added “big boobs” lol I guess it’s the only semi positive change so far, mostly for hubby cuz for me that means maternity bras and not being able to sleep on my stomach (cuz they r sensitive). Plus I don’t really care about having big boobs, I was always fine with smaller ones.

      Reply

      • Irina

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        that’s funny but I’m with you on the big boobs thing – never cared much for them. I’m more of a sporty, leggy, thin and perky ideal :))

        Reply

  • Elena C.

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    Wow! That’s some really nice and informative post!
    Thank you Heloooon!

    Reply

  • Alicia Sherman

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    I just started reading your blog, and I find these insights very interesting! Love reading personal accounts on pregnancy, especially the expected/unexpected details. Thank you for sharing! :)

    Reply

  • Jessi

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    I never had heartburn in the first trimester. I had it in the late third and was told that if you have heartburn that you’re baby will have a full head of hair. Well, that was true for us. At 38 weeks when I had my growth ultrasound. I asked the tech if she could see any hair. And we did it was swaying in the water she was in. It was so cool, I wish I had a picture of it. I also heard if you have bad breakouts, that it’s a girl because girl’s steal their mother’s beauty 😉 It was true for us too lol. I had the worst breakouts during my whole pregnancy! Just thought I’d share.

    As for pregnancy, you can read up about it all you want, but you really have no clue until you actually are pregnant or have gone through it. Same with being a mom, but it’s fun :)

    Reply

    • Elena @ Art of Making a Baby

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      I’m starting to be super exciting about having a baby. Hey, I noticed you spoke a bit of spanish to Alexis… Are you guys doing the bilingual upbringing? We’re planning on doing the multilingual thing: russian, english and spanish- I’ll be writing a post about it, but I have to say I am very nervious about it. I’ve read a lot about it and it seems soooo hard to sustain.

      Reply

  • Jessica

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    I just have to say that I LOVE that you wrote this blog! I know people who like you (heck, I did too!) had all these expectations of “eh, nausea, it’ll be fine” or “acne, whatever. I’ll just wash my face more” and the favorite “I’ll be just fine to excise!” and I’ve tried to explain that it’s not gonna happen and they DO NOT believe it! and now you’ve put it out there and you’ve said it all just right! LoL you explained it so perfectly! Go team you!

    Reply

    • Elena @ Art of Making a Baby

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      Yeah! Some people are actually lucky and feel good enough. You never know your pregnancy is gonna work out. But so far it’s definitely not the joyous experience many make it out to be. Maybe the second time through when you know that you’ll be getting a baby that will steal your heart, it’s easier to go through it.

      Reply

  • Dana @ DanasPinkRibbon

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    They say that if you get a lot of heartburn, your baby will be born with lots of hair. I know that’s just an old wives tale, but it was true for me! I had terrible heartburn in the 3rd trimester and then my baby was born with tons of thick, dark hair (even though I naturally have thin, blonde hair).

    You seem to know a lot about nutrition and how to keep an amazingly healthy diet. Would you be willing to share some recipes of the things that you eat on a regular basis? I would love to learn how to eat so extremely healthy like you do! That is so great for you and your baby!

    Reply

    • Elena @ Art of Making a Baby

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      hahahah :) i find old wives’ tales so funny :0 Like how on earth would heartburn be scientifically related to hair :) hahaha
      Ok, as far as nutrition, I’d be happy to share, and i’ve been meaning to, but with the nausea I cannot stand the thought of food, so the last thing I want to write about is food :). Plus I really usually just trow things together, almsot never make/use recipes- I just put together what we have in the fridge and pantry.
      I think the first place you need to start at is learning more about what’s good and what’s bad and why. I have a page here: http://prebabyblog.com/get-fit-get-healthy-get-confident-resources/ about nutrition with articles I’ve written for a GET FIT GET HEALTHY challenge my friends and I were doing. Start there, read and try to remember all that. And then apply those principles to everything you cook. Mostly I just put together salads for lunch, fruits for breakfast, fruits for all day snacks and whole grain smth ( like pasta, pizza or rice) with lots of sauteed vegetables.
      Like, today was the first day I was able to help hubby cook, and he isn’t good about coming up with things on the spot. Plus we were sort of out of vegetables. So I defrosted the shrimp we just bought to add some protein for my 2nd trimester, pulled out 3 tomatoes ( the only veggie we had), a bottle of Kalamata Olives ( that we bought months ago), pre-washed package of spinach and peeled some garlic. After sauteeing garlic for 1 minutes, I added the tomatoes, spinach ( i add it to anythign I cook, because it becomes insanely nutritious when cooked and you can’t really taste it in food), olives and shrimp- sauteed it all for max of 6-10 minutes, salt/pepper, make a pre-packaged brown rice and voila I had a perfectly healthy meal. the kalamata olives MADE the vegetables.

      So like I said, i kind of just throw things together :) Sorry I can’t be of better help, but right now I’m not in position to write too much about food. Though I will eventually ( i have loads of picture I’ve taken of meals I’ve made, so it’s coming)

      Reply

  • Michelle

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    “my utmost desire to stop eating forever” hahaha this is EXACTLY how I felt =D I also cried whenever someone bought me food, lol.
    I had constipation really really really bad in my second trimester (I ended up in hospital twice because of it) but I obviously wasn’t eating as well as you are so I think you’ll be fine. The heartburn just got worse and worse the whole way through, both times so I will cross my fingers for you! I ended up having to take medication for it but found that milk helped to ease it a little too :)

    This was a great post! and I love that you managed a miserable nausea selfie, lol. You still managed to look gorgeous though!

    Reply

    • Elena @ Art of Making a Baby

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      Milk helps me too which is weird cuz I read diary can cause heartburn. I’m just really not looking forward to it getting worse.

      I find it funny how miserable nausea is…I thought I was the only one feeling this way!

      Reply

  • Jessi

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    Haha well I know a little Spanish. I mostly know German and English. Shea been getting a lot of German and English and sine Spanish. I wish my grandpa had taught me fluent German, starting when I was little. If I tell her something, I say it in another language too. And I’ve been doing some sign language. I’ll be looking for your post on it!

    Reply

  • Jennifer

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    I couldn’t help but laugh a little when I read this post as it brought back so many memories from my pregnancy especially the heartburn and moodiness. From the 2nd trimester on it felt like there was a flame thrower living in my throat and unfortunately I don’t think it ever went away nor did I find a cure. I also cried quite a bit for no apparent reason which is just really annoying….lol

    Reply

  • Megan

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    I had/have heartburn and it’s TERRIBLE. I’ve never had it either before, in my life. However, around week 14 it started up for me. Yet, I didn’t get out of my “morning sickness” phase until almost week 20 or so, and so my heartburn was oftentimes causing me to throw up. Awful!
    My doctor prescribed me with Zantac, 150 mg. You can also buy it over the counter, and my doctor said that it was completely fine.
    http://www.babycenter.com/404_which-heartburn-medicines-are-safe-during-pregnancy_1440876.bc
    This posting, along with the million of comments below really helped solidify it for me. I still feel weird taking something twice a day (I take 150 mg in the AM and one at night) however, I have been completely assured by my doctor that it is very much fine, and normal. It gets worse when you get further along, by the way, as things are starting to push up and your stomach acid has no where to go, other than up. :-/

    Reply

  • koreen

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    I think it’s awesome that you’re documenting your pregnancy experience regularly. I didn’t, but reading yours brings back mine quite vividly… especially the nightmarish parts. I had nausea for most of the time, sometimes at least as debilitating as yours. Not fun! But hang in there, it eases. The heartburn — something I had almost never experienced before, and never to that degree of severity — was really rough. I finally figured out how to control it, so you just have to keep trying things. I used: spicy food and the hottest chili sauces I could find. Seriously, it was the only thing that cured my heartburn. So you can imagine I ate a lot of spicy food! I still love it to this day (always did actually), and think it’s probably pretty good for me. 😀

    Take care. Thinking about you, and hope you’ll feel better soon.

    Reply

  • Jen

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    Just a note on the heartburn…. I’ve had GERD (chronic acid reflux) for a few years now, and have discovered that diet changes help MUCH more than any mediccation, including Rx’s. While every person has different trigger foods, here are some of the more common ones you may want to avoid if your heartburn gets too bad:

    * Acidic foods like tomatoes, citrus, pineapple, carbonated drinks, and vinegar. One exception is apple cider vinegar, which is actually used as a home remedy for GERD.

    * Foods that relax the lower esophagul sphincter, which causes reflux and heartburn. These foods include caffeine, coffee and tea (including decaf), chocolate, mint, garlic, onions, spicy foods, and fatty / deep-fried foods. Also avoid large meals and eat small meals more frequently.

    I’ve been following this diet for 2 years and almost never have GERD symptoms…. previously, my symptoms were nearly constant!

    Now I’m 9 weeks pregnant and have noticed no changes with my GERD since I’m still on the diet. (Hormones can make reflux worse in early pregnancy.) I do anticipate it’ll get worse once my uterus is big enough to push on my stomach though :(

    My doctor did say some Rx’s like Nexium are safe for the 2nd and 3rd trimesters. However, I took Nexium for 1.5 years already and quit due to the fact that Nexium and other proton pump inhibitors (PPI’s) inhibit your body’s ability to absorb certain nutrients. The FDA has confirmed that they interfere with the absorption of calcium, vitamin D, one of the B vitamins (B12 or B6?), and magnesium. (Plus long-term use can lead to stomach polyps.) So I’d like to avoid PPI’s if possible!

    Reply

    • Elena @ Art of Making a Baby

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      Thanks for the info! My pregnancy heartburn strated around 10-11 weeks, and seemd to have subsided for a bit now. I find that the way you eat influences so much, not only heartburn but headaches, constipation, general aches and pains.
      I would very much like to avoid any kind of medication.
      Hope your heartburn stays manageable throughout pregnancy, but as I am noticing most problems get intensified when you get pregnant.
      Good luck to both of us!

      Reply

  • kgecik

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    Your pic next to the toilet makes me laugh! You still manage to make it look so model-like, there’s just something cute and funny about it to me!! :-)

    And wow, you are so detailed in everything! You guys are high achievers it seems (which I find inspiring). I was like the opposite of you when pregnant. I didn’t take any prenatal vitamins, ate whatever I felt like (and however much), didn’t exercise past 20 weeks, etc. It’s not that I didn’t care, I just knew everything would be ok. Now, I wish I had eaten a little better. I was working at the time for a family (I was a nanny while pregnant) and they ate horrible food..and I started eating it too. I think if I hadn’t been at their house I wouldn’t have gained as much (33 lbs.). I think it would have been more like 26 or 27.

    I had horrible heartburn. It was the worst. I hate taking medications, but I was chewing about 15-20 Tums a day! (And that didn’t always help). Heartburn=hair though…my baby came out with a lot of it and maybe Alexis will too!

    Reply

    • Elena @The Art of Making a Baby

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      Re: picture, I know it’s funny, but at least I look sad. Other shots, i was either head down “throwing up” or just staring blankly into space.

      And Hahahaha, yeah I suffer a bit from overachieving. But at the same time, I do what I can, like we all. So you did what you could at the time too- we are all in different situations at different times and do the best that we can at that moment. 33lbs isn’t that bad actually. I think I’ll be somewhere there too.

      And I totally hope Alexis comes out with lotsa hair- I want pigtails from the get go ahahahaha :)

      Reply

  • Jesi

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    Hello! Let me start out by saying congratulations! And I am very impressed by your photographs. If you don’t mind me asking, what camera do you use??

    Thanks in advance! – jesi

    Reply

  • Irina

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    I know it been a long time since you posted this, but I’m so glad you nausea wasn’t as bad as mine. I only could not stand the smell of food but also I could not eat at all. The first two months of my pregnancy I spent driking berries smoothies and crackers. Anything else I would just throw up. I’m sure all my mood swings during those month were due to hunger and not homones.

    Reply

  • K.M.

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    I know this post is old now but I was really hoping you would have mentioned sore breasts. Maybe yours were not sore? Lucky! I knew they would be sore but I did not know they would be ON FIRE. And people always say they couldn’t bear to touch them because they are so sore, whereas I feel like Im achy and want to massage them all day long ( awkward in public places lol )

    Reply

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