5 Not-So-Silly Pregnancy Questions AnsweredKatlyn Joy |29, May 2013
Pregnancy is both such a personal and a universal situation all at once. Sometimes people can be afraid to ask some questions for fear of sounding silly, stupid or weird. There's no reason not to ask anything, though. It doesn't matter that women have been giving birth forever, this is your pregnancy and even if you've done it before, this time is sure to be different in some ways.
1. Can I be pregnant without knowing it?
Most initial questions about pregnancy are about how soon is too soon to wonder if you're pregnant, how early will you have symptoms and if you're having periods can you still be pregnant?
Some women have symptoms quite early, about the same time they expect to see Aunt Flo, actually and some symptoms can overlap. For instance, you may have tender breasts with your period, but within a couple days of your missed period that tenderness may become all out OUCH. If you usually feel a bit bloated or queasy, guess what? Being pregnant can make you feel pretty much the same way -- only more.
And finally, yes, some women continue to have a light period for a couple months, or spotting. There are even more unusual cases where spotting continued later into the pregnancy. If you have any doubts, get a test and put your mind at ease.
2. Am I ever going to look like myself again?
This is a question many pregnant women wonder as they see acres of fabric hanging in the closet and the mirror doesn't contain your whole rearview. You don't want to ask for usually one of two reasons; you don't want to sound superficial, after all you are growing a new life and becoming a mama or you don't want to hear what you fear.
You will be changed inside and out after giving birth. Some of those changes will end up being a feminine upgrade especially if you were more of the skinny, no hips kind of girl. If you already had your share of curves, it may be a bit more than you want in the curve department now. However, most changes can be subtle and most are not permanent.
You may need to watch your diet and get moving and with a new baby that can be a daunting or exhausting task at times. Don't listen to the naysayer negative "friend" who tells you your breasts will disappear halfway through lactating and your stomach will require surgical tightening or literally need tucking into your jeans. Truth is time would change your figure eventually too. Gravity and time are forces you can't fight, mommy or not.
3. Will my relationship with my partner or spouse suffer?
Again, there will be people who gaze lovingly at their husband and insist nothing has ever brought them closer. Then there will be those who glare at their spouse and hiss, "Sex? What's sex? Plus I don't want anything but a clean kitchen and some folded laundry anyway." The truth for most lies between and again, it's an adjustment and a commitment on the part of the couple. You have to find time for each other that is solely for each other. There are days when you may feel more distant and days when you know your soul mate is next to you. Both are normal so never despair.
4. Will I get mother's intuition, fall in love with my baby on sight or feel like a mom as soon as the baby is born?
Perhaps. Or maybe you'll wonder who this alien creature is clutching at your breast. You may at times frantically look up solutions to why your baby is crying or what is that weird rash on her cheek. Remember that your hormones will continue to screw with your emotions and reality after baby is born. The baby blues can do a number on even the most confidant and prepared mother's psyche. As you settle into your new life with your growing family you'll realize things happen when you're not watching. One day you'll throw a load of laundry in while juggling the cell phone and holding baby on your hip. And you'll realize wow, I'm getting this. Until that moment, hang on, you will get there.
5. Can I still be me and a good mother too?
This is a balancing act every mother must learn and the learning often takes a lifetime of tweaking. You've seen women that appear to do it all effortlessly. Lies, lies and more lies. You are everything you were before baby, plus more. Finding time to be everything you are is impossible. There are seasons to every life so don't overwhelm yourself trying to do and be everything all at once. Give yourself permission to take time outs for you, even if it's a soak in the tub, a weekly lunch with friends or a crossword puzzle before bed. If you have a fascinating career that is time demanding more accommodations will be necessary. You may need extra help at home or need to cut back somewhere. Supermoms are super crazy or super-burdened. Find a way to keep everything in balance and you'll survive and eventually thrive. So yes, you can still be you and be a good mom... but it takes patience and work.Katlyn Joy is a mother to 7 children, and a freelance writer. She earned her Master of Arts in Creative Writing and Poetry, and a Bachelor of Arts in English and was previously an adviser to new mothers on breastfeeding through a maternity home program. She currently resides in Colorado with her family.
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