As I near the end of my second pregnancy, I have been reflecting on the journey that is childbearing. Yes, there are technically three trimesters, but I think pregnancy is better described in more than three stages.
- The “I’m Pregnant! This Room Smells Like Cheese” Phase
You are overwhelmed both with joy and with the newfound power of your senses, particularly taste and smell. You can identify people before seeing them by their scent. Basically, you’re Ben Affleck in “Daredevil,” but you throw up more.
- The “Hard Candy and Public Restroom” Phase
You can’t leave the house without a bag of those preggo-pops—or any candy that doesn’t taste like the stomach acid constantly making its way into your throat. You also spend lots of time in public restrooms upchucking your latest meal, which was probably a saltine and a Jolly Rancher.
- The “Is It Fast Food or A Baby?” Phase
You’re just starting to show, so you could either be gaining weight in awkward places or you’re pregnant. People stare at you for a few moments too long and (most) are afraid of asking, so they just assume you’re going through a life crisis.
- The “Tums are Life” Phase
This phase actually spans the entire length of pregnancy, but it can be defined by those questionnaires your pregnant friends post on Facebook. “What foods are you craving right now?” one survey asks, and all you can think of is the powdery, calcium-rich comfort of those tropical Tums on your nightstand. (Or is it just me…)
- The “It’s Alive!” Phase
Your growing child starts looking at its fleshy prison and decides it wants out. So your ribs are kicked, your bladder squeezed and your stomach contorted into truly horrifying shapes that make your coworkers cringe during quiet staff meetings (or your toddler says, “Mommy’s tummy is ugly!”)
Carrie Taylor is a native Texan and mother of one.