Today my boss emailed me, offering a team lunch tomorrow to celebrate a busy and successful few weeks.
"My treat," she said in an email. "Whatever you're craving!"
I replied and told her it's likely we'll be eating candy orange slices for lunch. Or pizza. Or ice cream. Potato chips, maybe.
So this is how pregnancy is going during week 16.
I am eating total shit. To be fair, I'm not eating total shit 100 percent of the time, but a good 73 to 77 percent of the time. I want everything in my body that is of no nutritional value. Taco John's? ALL DAY. Pizza, yes. A 1,500-calorie slice of gourmet cheesecake? Sure, yes, more.
The good news is I get full much faster. So while I may crave and eat pizza at regular intervals, I'm eating far less with each meal. Probably because there is slowly becoming NO MORE ROOM.
I've reached the "fat stage" of pregnancy that I've heard so much about. I'm too uncomfortable in my regular jeans, yet maternity wear is absurd at this point, but my midsection is clearly larger, however it's not obviously baby weight to the untrained eye. I'm just plain uncomfortable and self-conscious. It's like reliving my teenage years all over again with less zits. Thank fucking god. I was a pimply adolescent.
My hair, though. It's undergoing a physical transformation and I am here for it. I wouldn't say it's growing any faster, but it's... healthier. Less oily. Remember the teenage pimples? My face grew out of it, but the oil never left my hair. But then people have told me my hair will actually fall out en masse after the baby comes, so I'm in pre-mourning.
I wish I could report the hormones were making me less rage-filled and anxious and tired, but that is a lie, a lie, and a lie. All lies. Lies forever. I feel, perhaps, a little more in control of my emotions, but even that is skewed because even some control is barely a thing considering how out of control they've been the last few months. But hey, I'll take this small win. Emotions!
I'm more than four months pregnant (how is this a phrase I am typing right now?) (this still regularly blows my mind) and still doing some running, which feels good. It's normalized some. Some runs are great, others are AWFUL. So, like any other day of running in the history of the world. But my body's been doing some tugging and stretching in places that I just have no desire to feel tugged or stretched, so that is a new discomfort I do not support. Have you ever gone for a run while the muscles around your uterus are pulling like taffy?
But running is important to me. I need to be making room for it for as long as my body cooperates. This isn't exercise. It's an outlet. It's self care. I am my best me when I take the time to relieve the stress of the day and pump my new, uncomfortable body full of endorphins. If I'm not my best me, I am my worst me, and right now it feels like there is very, very little in between. If I can't take care of me properly, I'll never be able to positively and properly care of my family.
Which brings me to postpartum. What is going to happen to me once this baby is born?
I am not unaware of the very real threat of postpartum depression. With how rough my body has handled pregnancy hormones, what the hell is going to happen afterward? I know it is a world of change, but I'm clinging to the hope that, once recovered and settled into a semi-normal, running will still be there for me.
There are very few things that simply, quickly, and effectively ease my mind, shut down my overactive brain, relax my body, and envelope me in an absolute state of temporary calm. One of those things is running. The other is couch and TV time, but I am not here to discuss the complete opposite nature of these activities. I am just here to do them.
Please don't take those things away from me, world.
Speaking of the world, who's watching The Handmaid's Tale? As a pregnant woman in a horrifying America, it's the worst thing to be watching, but please immediately go watch it. Besides, Elisabeth Moss and Alexis Bledel and Samira Wiley? YES, WORLD.
In other news, I gave up the coffee strike. I allow myself a small cup when the mood strikes. Just one a day, if that. Relax, fearmongers. I also bought my first batch of maternity clothes that are still too awkward for my shape-shifting body. Todd and I also celebrated one year together by planting a cherry blossom tree in the front yard, which is the most delightfully symbolic thing I've ever done. I mean, we'd already checked off "move across the country," "buy a house," "get engaged" and "get pregnant," so a tree felt like the next natural step.
Look, I don't make the rules.
And so this has been an update. Another one about pregnancy. Am I becoming that person? The pregnancy person? I mean, partially I feel bad because I don't want to be the person who has nothing else to say, but also, have you ever been pregnant? This shit is crazy and I want to remember it all.
Now you have to remember it all, too.
Here's a picture of my dog to help you get over it.