The first trimester like a three month hangover
Finding out you’re pregnant is amazing. Especially if it’s the first time and even more if you’ve been actively trying for a while. There’s just nothing like seeing that positive pregnancy test in your hands. The shock, the excitement, the self-doubting over whether that’s a line or not, and then you do 9 more tests just to be sure, until you finally accept you’re expecting.
Yes, generally speaking, it is one of those truly joyous moments all mammies can recall.
I’m pregnant for the second time and have just ‘sailed through’ the first trimester… if by sail you mean stagger like a one legged, seasick banshee then yes… I sailed.
Of course I’m delighted to be expecting again and as wonderful as it all is is, I’m going to be brutally honest with you… the first trimester has been like a three month hangover from hell.
Honest to Christ, for pretty much the first seven to 10 weeks, it was like I went out and boozed all night on pink gin and cheap prosecco and woke up with the world’s worst headache. I shit you not, some mornings I thought I was going to rip my own head off it was so bad... in fact some mornings I wondered had I hallucinated the whole pregnancy thing, and I was in fact out boozing on Pink Gin all night, but I had blacked out?
And let’s not forget the dry mouth… a mouth like the actual Sahara desert and a throat like sandpaper that brought me right back to my college smoking days. Add to that a washing machine dizziness in my head that just wouldn’t go away, no matter how much water I drank.
But for all these familiar hangover symptoms, the really shitty thing was that I hadn’t actually been out boozing on Pink Gin! Truth be told, I was probably asleep by 9.00pm on the couch, feeling like I had just come off two back to back red eye flights and ran a marathon! Yes that’s right, I got none of the enjoyment of getting myself into this state of pseudo hung-overness, to even console myself with!
And then there’s the nausea. Dear Jesus the nausea. Last time around, I was so anxious in those first few weeks of pregnancy, that I didn’t really register any nausea. I think I might have suffered a wee bit, but nothing like this time. I was actually a bit smug about it to be honest. I’d hear accounts from other mums who told me of their days spent flung over the toilet, barfing their guts out, while I seemed to avoid it all together.
This time though, I think karma has decided to give me a kick in the arse… or gut as it happens.
While I haven’t actually thrown up, I have been very, very close a number of times. But barfing aside, it’s the actual feeling of nausea that is beyond revolting. It’s this awful sick feeling that churns your insides making you feel like you’ve done a Chumbawamba and drank every shot in the bar and are ready to spew everywhere, but you don’t actually hurl… instead you just feel like pure dogshit, as your stomach does flip flops all day and the thoughts of food of any kind, make you dry heave.
But the weirdest thing, is that I feel hungry and nauseous at the same time… it’s the ultimate cruelty.
My day would go something like this…
Me- Oh god I’d love a huge cream cake with an extra side of cream.
Stomach – Did you say cream? BARRRRRRRRRRF
Me – Jesus Christ, I’m going to throw up… no wait, I’m not actually, phew. Oh no wait, I am.
Stomach – Feeeeeeed me….
Me – Tea, I’ll have a cup of tea and a plain cream cracker, nice and easy on the stomach, that should settle things down.
Stomach – Tea? Milk? Cracker? No. Bleuuuuughhhhhhhh
Me- Water then, nice cold, water.
Stomach – No, no, no, it’s a big mac we need now, not water.
I literally couldn’t not keep up with my cravings for naughty food and battle the simultaneous nausea…
Also, I cannot leave out the other hangover staple… tiredness. The sort of crushing tiredness that rolled in like a cement truck and flattened me at 10am in the morning, leaving me wondering how the hell I was going to get through the rest of the day, as my toddler started to wail like an Antichrist over his cereal… to be honest, I joined him on the floor on more than one or two occasions, in the hope I might nod off. It never happened though… and I somehow managed to survive like a hollowed out zombie, with a faint line of drool coming out of my mouth and bags the size of craters under my eyes….
But yay, I’m pregnant! Joy abounds and I know, in the months to come, when I’m trying to look after a toddler and a newborn, I’ll look back at this first trimester with all of its ups and downs with a sense of longing and realise it wasn't so bad after all.