Tuesday, February 28, 2012

26 weeks

I thought I’d check in to say that I’m 26 weeks and my baby is 14 inches long – the size of an English hothouse cucumber. I don’t know about you, but that’s always been my favorite of all the oddly named cucumbers. (?)

So this is probably about the point in the pregnancy where I could start complaining if I wanted to. I’ll allow myself a handful of sentences: 1) I am big and it’s getting difficult to bend over or get up off the couch. 2) Constipation continues to stump me, and it hurts. 3) According to the scale, I’ve gained 8 pounds in 3 weeks – of course I’d like to believe that half of this is poop. 4) I’m nervous about how many weeks I still have left and how much bigger I am going to get.

I’ve also been having a large amount of anxiety about taking care of a baby. This is unexpected, because I’ve never doubted myself in this area before. I’ve always loved babies. My first year out of college I worked at a daycare with 6 week-14 month olds, so I have a ton of experience with babies and I’m not scared of them.

It usually goes like this: I put in a full day of work. I get home and I’m starving so I eat. Then I can hardly motivate myself to get off the couch to eat (every hour) and pee (all the time). I feel like a lazy piece of shit, when honestly what I’m experiencing is normal fatigue. But I beat myself up about it.

And then the doubt creeps in… “How will you take care of a baby? How will you have enough energy and patience? You’re going to be terrible at this. You don’t know the first thing about babies.”

I really, deep down, don’t feel this way about myself. I know I’ll be tired and impatient a lot, but I feel like motherhood is what I’m supposed to do with my life and I know I’ll figure it out. After all, I’ll be off work and I have 12 weeks to devote every minute of every day to figuring it out. I think I know I can do it. But that doesn’t mean I don’t get really, really scared sometimes, or pretty much every night.

Any advice, mommies? I know it’s not easy, but I can do this, right?


Mrs. H said...

I think your energy will pick up a bit after the pregnancy. Don't be so hard on yourself.

Elphaba said...

All the hard stuff is so totally worth it. Once baby is here, you'll reserves of energy you didn't know existed. You'll be JUST fine.

Alex said...

You can totally do it! First, woohoo! 26 weeks - fabulous!!!!

Second, yes, I found that I was much less tired after pregnancy than during. Well kind of. The first six weeks just suck when it comes to being tired. I was tired like I can't even recall. But I was so excited to have my baby girl that it all seemed to be ok. And it's all a big blur now... After you make it past the first six weeks, it becomes much easier, you start to sleep for longer than 2 hours at a time, and you start to feel more like a human. MUCH better than my last trimester!

Allison said...

Yes, you absolutely can do this.

My first two months of motherhood sucked ass. It takes time to get to know each other and figure out a rhythm.

My kid didn't smile for the longest time. He was a good newborn, really, but he looked pissed off ALL the time and I took it really personally after about 3 weeks.

Plus, the first couple weeks are hard because you're recovering from birth and your hormones go completely insane. If you're worried about PPD, make sure you talk to your doctor before delivery about your concerns; s/he will tell you what signs to be aware of and when to call. Or maybe you'll start on something right away - there are things you can take that are safe during breastfeeding. I was blindsided by PPD, and it was hell.

Anyway, the energy appears. Partly because growing a person is exhausting and you won't be doing that anymore, and partly because you're doing stuff for your baby, and that's way different from doing stuff for yourself.