Another Monday, another chance to beat the blues. Did you know that according to science there’s a less chance of it raining on a Monday? Chances are that you already know what to expect on this day. After all, it’s the first or second day of your week, depending on which day you choose to start your day. If you’re like me, then it’s the second day of yet another productive and fulfilling week. The thing is, starting your week on a Sunday is just a good way to minimize any anxiety as you prepare yourself for another roller coaster ride. Life is a funny thing. You have to constantly worry about what is yet to come. Yet, you’re still expected to live and be content in the present. But you know what they say about having too many expectations. I guess that this is also true when It comes to your pregnancy. Perhaps, nobody tells you about the things that you should expect when you’re expecting.
However, I keep on telling myself that I should do a short list of the top 10 things that nobody warns you about when you’re on your journey to motherhood. My friend and I compiled this short list together. Unfortunately, she’d prefer to remain anonymous. But, if you really want to reference her in this post and future ones, you can just call her ” She Who Shall Not Be Named”. She hates the spotlight, but remains an important pillar in this journey. Before I go off-track and talk about other things, you should understand that this is a list that’s compiled from the experiences and knowledge of two very different mothers. Your journey is always likely to be different. Various internal and external factors can influence the way that things take shape for you. However, these are common things that you should expect along the way. They aren’t in any particular order. So, you can just rank them however you may want to. So, here it goes.
This is an obvious thing to expect when you’re expecting. There is high chance that you’re aware of the amount of weight that you might gain. Yet, you won’t know just how much weight you’re likely to gain. Take myself for instance. Before pregnancy, I never went past 65 kg. I enjoyed running and maintaining my weight. But when pregnancy came, it came like a thief in the night and took my beautiful body with it. By the time that I was in my last trimester, I was weighing a whooping 94kg!! Yes, I felt as heavy as I looked. You might guess that this took a toll on my self-esteem. You see, when you’re not used to something, you struggle with acceptance first. Then, you find yourself not knowing how to overcome it. It took over a year to get this body back to where I could appreciate it once again. It’s obviously not where I want it to be, but the journey has been tough. A roller-coaster to say the least.
If you don’t know what imposter syndrome is, expecting your bundle of joy can give you a crash course in this. There is nothing that will make you doubt yourself like expecting a whole person to take over your life. Absolutely nothing! It’s worse when you’re an overachiever, you just feel like a fraud. You find yourself constantly questioning if you are even worthy to take on such a huge responsibility. And your unreliable pregnancy brain can make it difficult for you to overcome this.
The thing is, it’s not just the relationship with yourself that changes. In most cases, pregnancy affects most of your relationship dynamics. for example, your friends can’t invite you to most places that you used to go to. What are you going to do in a club with sweaty bodies and smelly armpits? Firstly, your hypersensitive sense of smell won’t allow it. And you’ll likely spend the rest of your time running to and from the toilet. But friendships aren’t the only thing that changes. Many mothers can agree that the romantic aspect of your relationship changes significantly once the possibility of a child becomes a reality. In most cases, it’s not even about a specific thing. However, a selfish partner who fails to understand the psychological changes that you’re going through can make everything twice as hard. In my mere 3 decades of being alive, one thing that I’ve learned is that men will never miss the opportunity to choose Themselves, despite what that may do to you. In fact, in most cases, romantic relationships change when you’re expecting because your partner isn’t holding your hand through it all. You’re lucky to find a supportive partner who’ll see through his/ her commitment to not only you, but your child as well. It’s also important to know that people change. It doesn’t matter if you feel like you chose the right or land partner. When a person is put in an unfamiliar situation, their first reaction is to run away from it all. Mom, in most cases, it’s really not you who’s the problem.
Your physical changes such as swollen ankIes, a defined belly, and need to constantly pee are some of the things that can make it difficult for you to combine intimacy with your journey. Even though you have these drawbacks, you still have crazy, surging hormones to worry about. For the most part, your body wants sex, but your many new physical inhibitions can make it hard for you to find pleasure. The first two trimesters aren’t too shabby if you have a relatively healthy pregnancy. However, it just gets difficult the bigger your belly and boobs get. And you might also be a tad self-conscious because you can’t even see your nookie. Again, you’re fortunate if you have a partner who can understand these challenges. You’re even more lucky to be able to satisfy your intimacy needs as you go about your journey. Sometimes, the body wants What the body wants no matter what you may think.
The Mindf*ck of Missing Your Body
With all these changes and feeling like a composter who can’t even do something as simple as sex, you’re bound to miss who you were before it all happened. Now, don’t start thinking that it’s regretting anything. It’s okay for you to miss who you used to be, especially that sexy body of yours. Heck, with new stretch marks and boobs that are shaped differently now, you’re bound to want to go back to how your body looked before. Some mothers can achieve this, but for some of us, it takes a lot of acceptance first before starting this journey. The thing is, your body carried a human being for about 40 weeks. That’s just 12 weeks shy of a year. You should give yourself a bit more credit. Take the strides that you feel are necessary to get back to yourself. However, you shouldn’t compare yourself to any other mommy. Easy does it; own race, own pace is the way to go to safeguard your mental health.
Now, you might have realised that this is a list of only 5 things. The list was getting a tad long. To make it easier for you to get through it, you’ll catch the rest of it on the next blog post. Set your reminders, so that you don’t miss out anything on this interesting list of things that you should expect when you’re expecting.