We’re Pregnant! + First Trimester Recap

Lifestyle

I can’t believe we are PREGNANT. If you follow me on Instagram, you know Zack and I are expecting and I’m 20 weeks!

I love reading others journeys so wanted to share my thoughts and answer questions for you guys from the first trimester.

NOTE: For all the mamas and mama-to-bes struggling to get pregnant or in the process of trying to conceive, know I am here for you. I am honored to share this with you but if this is triggering in any way, please focus on your mental health and know you are in my prayers. If you are in a place where reading about pregnancy is not good for your heart, I get it and I am sending you so much love.

HOW WE FOUND OUT:

A good old at-home pregnancy test! I had been off the pill for about 2 years in order to work on getting a ‘natural’ period after years on the pill ‘bleeding’ and disguising my 8+ years of hypothalamic amenorrhea.

5 days after my missed period I remember thinking “I’m pregnant” and I could feel it deep down. My period has been SO FREAKING regular the past 8-9 months (it took 7-8 months after coming off hormonal birth control pills to get my first natural period after 2 years in my food freedom journey already overcoming hypothalamic amenorrhea).

We were going out to dinner with friends to a Mexican restaurant and I really wanted to drink and enjoy the night. So I had a little TOO much to drink. Spent Sunday hungover and vowed to take a pregnancy test on Monday. I had an old test, took it, and it errored out (meaning the second line didn’t show up). I immediately ran to our closest grocery store (walkable from us) to grab another test kit and only grabbed one (big mistake!). I took another test right away, waited the 2 minutes and it showed 2 lines: pregnant! I honestly just sat on the toilet in our powder room sobbing with excitement and overwhelm and just sheer unknown of it all. I took a second test right away and it errored out again! I then ran back to the store, bought 3 more kits and took another 2-3 tests before I finally felt it all come to fruition: I WAS PREGNANT.

After 8 years of amenorrhea (missing period), I really didn’t think this would happen for me SO if you are on your recovery journey, KNOW IT IS WORTH IT.

HOW I TOLD ZACK:

I placed it on our bedroom dresser that exact same Monday night for when he came home from work to change into his gym clothes. I actually got his reaction on film and I still cry every time I watch the video. We also got reaction videos from our friends and family which I hope to share soon too.

REAL TALK:

The first trimester was HARD. Kicked my butt. I was unmotivated, feeling super ALONE, and struggling with feeling like my whole ‘identity’ was changing. From how to handle a growing business as a ‘mother’. From a single couple to a ‘family’. From a wife to a ‘mom’. Wanting to still feel confident and at times – sexy. I wasn’t ever the women who ‘dreamed of being a mother’ and I honestly wasn’t sure when we would have them. Everything was/is changing and sometimes change is just freakin scary. To how my body’s changing, plus feeling just SO unexcited and exhausted each day. I STILL DON’T HAVE ALL THE ANSWERS.

Taking naps and being in bed by 8-9 pm (when my normal was 11-Midnight) was regular. I know this may sound silly but the identity piece really hit me- and it’s why I finally found a therapist to help me walk through it during pregnancy (not waiting).

The best thing I’ve learned is that this can only add to your happiness, not subtract from the person you ARE. You can be YOU and a MOM. It doesn’t replace you. And it may be the best thing that happened to my business as I’ve been busy hiring on, delegating, etc for the future of my company. Of course, we are BEYOND excited and don’t want this to come off wrong, but again, there are just a lot of mental and physical changes taking place in this journey.

EXTREME NAUSEA WAS A REAL DAMN THING that I swear I’ve tried blocking it out of my memory. I was dry-heaving about every other day but only really threw up once. I was the most nauseous I’ve ever been and it was WORSE at night – compounding itself during the day because I couldn’t hold down much else other than Saltines and minimal water. I truly went from chugging water to barely being able to handle it. IMAGINE THE MOST HUNGOVER/CAR SICK YOU HAVE EVER BEEN X 10000 and for weeks on end. Thankful I made it through 🙂

I could no longer ‘wait’ for breakfast like I did before – I usually wasn’t hungry until an hour after waking- and truthfully RAN downstairs in the morning to eat. I hear some people even leave crackers on their bedside.

PREGNANCY CRAVINGS:

Anything salty and cheesy and CARBY   Starbucks red pepper egg bites, avocado on sourdough toast, easy to digest proteins like tofu and tempeh and loved eggs! (most meat and seafood was a no-go), Annie’s Mac n cheese, saltines, chips, Trader Joe’s jalapeño corn puffs or any type of puffy snack like Less Than Evil puffs that sit light on your stomach, Trader Joe’s frozen pasta meals, Simple Mills cheddar crackers, carrots with garlic or jalapeño hummus. 

I tried to eat things with veggies in them (veggie burgers, Otamot sauce with veggies in it, chicken soups with veggies, stirred in spinach to noodles) because veggies were HARD (and honestly pretty non-existent for weeks). As a dietitian, I’m here to remind you that is OK – and being healthy as a mother means consuming nutrients in the form of calories, not just greens!!

FOOD AVERSIONS:

ANYTHING sweet!!, didn’t love peanut butter as much!!!, oatmeal, protein bars or protein powder, broccoli or really most vegetables. Coffee (even decaf sounded terrible). Meat. Also really couldn’t get down plain water?! So I drank a lot of lemon water & iced tea if you noticed that in my IG stories 🙂 You also probably noticed a lot of snacking, sandwiches, pasta, etc. Those were my food groups for awhile! I ate every 2 hours instead of 4-5 big meals which helped with the nausea.

EXERCISE:

I couldn’t do anything super intense but pretty much stuck to my regular routine as my OB noted that could help with the intense nausea. A workout helped me drink more water (water was tough to get down) and also took my mind off of my body feeling just different. It helped me mentally and so I stuck to bodypump 1-2 x per week, lifting a body part or full body 2-3 x per week and a SolidCore class 1x per week and a long walk or two every day still. Definitely no jumping or HIIT for me at this point.

FAVORITES:

  1. PharMeDoc Pregnancy Pillow – the BEST for putting between your legs for extra back relief and stomach support – especially helped with nausea to ease my stomach pains in first trimester
  2. Expecting You — A Keepsake Pregnancy Journal – the cutest journal ever to gift or grab yourself to remember this journey
  3. Vitamin B6 – these REALLY helped me with nausea!
  4. lululemon Align Pant 25″ – these have grown with me and I wear usually 6/7 days a week :). Also love the lululemon Align 6 inch short (love the Water Drop color) for summer!
  5. Bio-Oil Skincare Oil, Body Oil for Scars and Stretchmarks – has felt so good to rub on my growing belly at night! I have Zack do it for me 🙂 Nothing wrong with stretch marks if that’s what mother nature intends for me but have loved this as my skin has gotten drier. Also love using Burt’s Bees Mama Belly Butter with Shea Butter

SYMPTOMS:

Weeks 6-8

Confirmed pregnancy around 5 weeks. I didn’t have any initial symptoms when I took the pregnancy test but began about a week later around 6 weeks with sore breasts.

Week 6- had an ultrasound (vaginally) to confirm I was pregnant and was actually already able to hear the heartbeat. I cried and basically had tears in my eyes the entire appointment. Zack was on FaceTime because of Covid restrictions.

Week 7-10

Extreme nausea, MANY days of extreme fatigue that would ebb and flow. Most days I was able to focus on work, I just went to bed early and needed 9-10!! hours of sleep most nights. Many occasions of feeling like I’d throw up but couldn’t really eat much at a time. The best way I can describe it is the worst car sickness or worst hangover you’ve ever experienced, all day for 4-5 weeks on end. Eating every 2 hours was a necessity. Even if it was a few saltines. 

Weeks 6-8 the worst symptoms 

Week 9: things started getting better during day & didn’t feel as out of it. Nausea worse at night.

Week 13 it finally started to subside and by week 15-16, I truly felt like an ENTIRELY new human. So if you are in the thick of the first trimester, I am cheering so loudly for you and YOU WILL GET THROUGH. Weeks 18-20 (which I hope to do a Trimester 2 recap) really have been THE BEST with feeling the little one move around finally and just getting excited for our big 20 week ultrasound (that we are doing at 22 weeks because of travel).

I TRULY can’t thank you all enough for the amount of love and support we have. This baby is already so loved and I couldn’t be more grateful.

QUESTIONS or thoughts on this post? Please let me know in the comments section so I can support you! 

  1. Ryan Snyder says:

    So happy for you!!!

  2. Kirsten says:

    Would love to know healthy snacks and meals. This is my 3rd pregnancy and I have to eat every 2 hours and have already put on a lot of weight. I usually gain 50 lbs so trying to not let it get to me and focus on nutrient packed snacks and meals and moving my body. Looking forward to getting through the first trimester- I usually feel like myself about week 16 so looking forward to that in the next few weeks

    • Dietitian Deanna says:

      Hi Kirsten! I’ll definitely share more snack ideas. Check out some of the ideas/picture above too! I had to eat frequently too to help the nausea. It was lots of carbs 🙂 but also added on an egg, string cheese, veggies burgers when I could. so honored to enjoy this journey with you!

  3. Angie says:

    This is amazing! I am so happy for you and Zack! Congratulations! 🙂

    • Liz Doyle says:

      First, CONGRATULATIONS! Secondly, I was reading this thinking – wait, this is EXACTLY how I was feeling through my first trimester. Went from night owl to falling asleep on the couch at 8pm. Usually waited a while to eat breakfast, but couldn’t anymore or I’d get severely nauseous. It’s comforting to hear you’re having a similar experience. Again, congratulations & thank you for sharing!

  4. Abby says:

    My husband and I are also trying to get pregnant with our first baby. Similarly to you, I struggled with H.A. after being on B.C. for 5-6 years. Finally got my cycle back after 6-7 months of gaining necessary weight and improving my relationship with food. I have now had a healthy cycle for a year and we are in the beginning stages of trying. Do you have any tips?

  5. Katie says:

    I’m crying! I feel like you were talking directly to me! My husband and I had been back-and-forth on the idea of having kids. I too struggle with identity- my work is insanely important to me and I have struggled with DE. When we finally said yes to a baby, we hit a few bumps in the road. Your honesty and your willingness to share give me so much hope. I cannot wait to follow you on this journey. From one strong, career focused woman to another, I’m rooting for you in every possible way! Congratulations!!!

  6. Marie says:

    Why did you make the decision to wait until you are nearly halfway there to announce ? Just wondering, my daughter has had a long secondary infertility issue and found out she was pregnant about three weeks ago! !!!

    She was afraid to announce but wanted to celebrate by announcing if that makes sense. I don’t think there’s a right or wrong answer just wondering what your thinking was.

  7. Jessica Anthony says:

    So so so happy for you. Congratulations. Excited for you both. Thank you for sharing your journey.

comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *