Growing a Healthy Human
I have always wondered what being pregnant would be like for me. Some women glow and feel amazing while others are totally miserable, so I felt like it was the gamble of the year when I saw that red line.
Thankfully, I never got dreadfully sick or threw up. There was one weekend where I made some impulsive decisions at a bottomless brunch, which did not bode well for me, but other than first trimester fatigue, I have been feeling pretty normal. I joke that I forget all the time that I'm pregnant, but really it's true. I feel a kick in my side or catch my reflection in the mirror and I'm like, "Oh yeah, there's a human!"
I was determined to not let my fitness and health "go" while growing this human.
I approached pregnancy, I suppose, just like I approached every day life. I don't always feel like eating vegetables or getting up early in the morning to work out. Being committed to a healthy lifestyle isn't something that comes naturally to me. If anyone knows me, however, they know that I am a creature of habit. I swear by routines and the power that they infuse into every aspect of my life. And I honestly feel like being in good shape when I got pregnant translated into managing my health while pregnant.
When the first trimester exhaustion hit, it certainly did not feel good to get out of bed in the four o'clock hour to push play and grab my weights. But because I had built my lifestyle around that habit, it felt even stranger not to do it. Whenever I had moments of wanting to skip workouts, I reminded myself of feeling a hundred times better afterwards and how that never ceases to energize me. So far, I've only missed three days of working out. Even when tragedy struck my family or I was travelling or starting the school year, I knew that exercising was one of the main ways I took care of myself, and by extension, my kid.
Eating healthy was more challenging during the first trimester because every vegetable sounded repulsive to me and all I wanted was a bagel with cream cheese for every meal. I swear I became more ravenous than I ever have before. I was so used to tracking my calories diligently every day, but I learned to allowed myself to delete that app from my phone and to allow my body to intuitively eat. It definitely felt weird to lose that "control", so to speak, but as my mom reminded me, I am literally a vessel for growing a human person and it's no longer just about me and my cute calorie tracker. It felt freeing to relinquish control for this season of life. Now that the second trimester is almost over, my appetite has pretty much returned to normal and I don't notice too much of a difference.
It was NOT fun to take prenatal vitamins every day. Two of my irrational fears in life are talking on the phone and swallowing pills, so I literally had to pray my way through swallowing those awful things. I did get some prenatal gummies after a while, but those tasted like something old and squishy from the health food store and weren't too much of an upgrade. Basically taking vitamins is just an annoying part of life for me and I have to suck it up, because again, it's not about me.
It feels so strange to me to be drawing to the end of the second trimester! I feel like this pregnancy went by in the blink of an eye. If this summer has taught me anything, it's showed me that it's a beautiful thing to truly slow down and savor the seasons of life as they come. I'm naturally busy and task oriented, which is totally cool, but it's important for me to remember that life isn't solely about rushing onward to the next season. I'm trying to relish the little baby boy kicks and the evenings with just Garrett and myself curled up on the couch doing nothing. I haven't been one to meticulously plan out this kid's life either. I don't have nursery painted or even set up, and I have no expectations for what parenthood is going to look like for me. I feel totally calm in my conviction that we'll be given the grace to care for this little boy the way he needs us to without us losing our minds over it.
And if pregnancy has taught me anything, it's taught me to simultaneously care deeply for myself while not taking myself seriously at all. I don't care as much anymore about how I look or stress out about the unknown, and I think I laugh a whole lot easier. I also know that my body is a literal badass temple for this tiny human, and it does him no favors for me to be stressing about a number on the scale when I have the ability to sweat it out and feed myself a good meal.
And while it still doesn't seem quite real that I'm a mother, I am so intensely excited for the whirlwind of intensity that's coming for us in mid-November.