Phew! Let's just say I am ever so grateful to be in the 2nd trimester as I write this post reflecting on the first- ha!
This first trimester was not fun... not in the least... I've had numerous, thoughtful people ask me how the I felt during that time and I am just not sure there are words to adequately describe just how awful it was... however, I am going to attempt it today and also make a point to note the parts of it that I am thankful for!
As you might have already read here, we did share the news with the girls right around 6 weeks... I am so very thankful for this as they were very aware that Mommy was not her typical energetic, fun-loving self right at that 6 week mark. Not to mention, they had no qualms about asking me why my tummy looked bigger than normal- ha!
At that point, my bed was my bestie, the toilet and I spent more time together than I care to even think about, everything smelled 100% more potent to me and therefore made me feel more sick and migraines became the norm.
I barely got out of bed and certainly didn't leave the house much between weeks 6 to 12.
At a girls' night earlier this week, I was sharing with some friends how I attempted to explain to our girls what it's like to be pregnant and not feeling well... this seemed very necessary as they kept thinking Mommy would feel better after a day or 2 of being down and out :)
I pulled out some mixing bowls from the cabinets as well as a spoon and shared that just like how you have to add ingredients to make a yummy dessert and take lots of time stirring, next baking and then cooling- pregnancy is a process for a Mommy's body. And, she can feel a lot like that recipe being thrown around in a mixing bowl, then being poured into a baking pan and enduring the heat and then having to be patient while cooling.
Thankfully this visual illustration seemed immensely helpful in their understanding of this being a process!
The other big thing this trimester that I don't recall much with my last 2 was how emotional and just kinda crazy I felt- yikes!! Matt was- and still is- a saint!! There were multiple times I felt like I was just snappy or short with him for absolutely no reason. And, then there were times where I'd just start crying uncontrollably.
It seemed like the crying spells typically happened on Sunday afternoons... I think it would hit me that another week had come and gone and I still wasn't feeling better. The crying, as you can imagine, didn't help with the migraines either so those were then exacerbated. I believe that most of the time the root of the crying was the feeling like I couldn't do anything- and as a result I felt like a crummy wife, mom, coach to my clients, etc.
While crying typically made my head hurt more, I also know that it did help me to express how I was truly feeling with Matt and allow him to support me and know how to pray for me.
The above being said, knowing that I believe gratitude changes everything and I really try to be a "glass half full girl", I am truly thankful for the following during the first trimester:
-My willingness (sometimes albeit begrudgingly) to ask for help and/or be honest about how I was feeling and the simultaneous sensitivity of family... we had some various plans with my parents during these weeks and I just had to be honest about my level, or lack thereof, of energy/ability.... we also traveled to Nashville to share the news with Matt's family and spend time with them and, again, I had to be upfront about my needing to lay down often.
-In regards to the one above, I had a girls' weekend in Charleston planned with one friend and then the girls and I planned to go to Jacksonville to spend time with another dear friend- all of which was to happen around weeks 9-10... I had to cancel both and come up with Plan C, D and E and my friends were so supportive- for which I am so thankful!
-Matt stepped up in such big ways on the home front and with the girls. He is always willing to help and steps in but during these weeks, he really just took it to another level... and there were multiple times that he cared for the girls and entertained them, loved on them, etc. while I just laid in bed. I felt guilty about this a few times but I also just sensed the Lord reminding me that it was a sweet time for the 3 of them to continue bonding. And, that it was and is at such a foundational time for the girls before Baby C arrives... a time when they can continue to be so very clear and secure in how much Daddy Matt and I both love them and do not plan on Baby C "replacing" them in any way.
-Lastly, I am thankful for the growth I've experienced as an individual and knowing what I can and cannot handle. And, generally not beating myself up over not being able to "do it all". Matt and I went on a trip (it should read vacation but honestly with how I was feeling, it felt like more of a trip) to CA in early July and on our flight home I sensed myself getting very anxious. As I forced myself to get really quiet and honest about what I was feeling and thinking, I realized that I was anticipating feeling very overwhelmed caring for the girls every other week, keeping myself + Baby C in good shape and serving my clients in the best way...
I began praying and thinking through the best way to handle this and landed on reaching out to my current clients (at that time) and asking them if they'd be okay moving to an every-other-week schedule just for a few weeks until the girls were back in school. This required me to let go of my pride and cover myself in grace, and yet at the same time, given how awful I was feeling there wasn't much of a choice. Thankfully, my amazing clients responded with nothing but congratulations on our news as well as complete understanding regarding my need to revisit our schedule.
As I look back, I really am thankful for that part of the experience as it highlights the growth I've experienced, due to God's grace, over the last 5 years or so. The "old Katie" didn't listen to herself well and that resulted in loosing herself in many ways and certainly not being the best for her people... how grateful I am for the Lord's restoring, renewing and rebuilding!!
All in all, I have to say that while I am happy to shut the door on the 1st trimester, I am thankful to have these lessons and reminders to hold onto... and, I am excited for what's to come as we continue to prepare for Baby C (I have yet to buy a single baby item), find out/share the gender (especially given how different this pregnancy has been so far for me) and more!
I'd love to hear what your first trimester(s) were like- were they rough? Any migraines? Did they vary a good bit from one another if you've had multiple children?