My 1st Trimester Experience

August 23, 2018

 

I am totally embracing and recording my pregnancy, especially as it’s something I desired for so, so long. Although this is not a fertility/pregnancy/baby/mom blog, I do believe in sharing my personal experiences in life and offering hope and inspiration to women, especially around anxiety.

 

I will eventually be sharing more details about our fertility/IVF journey, but for now thought I’d give personal insight into my first trimester, since I love reading/hearing others’ experiences. I am truly fascinated with how different each one is and the amazing ability of the female body! (I am currently 18-weeks and in my second trimester. I finally have more energy, so thought it was time to share more.)

 

I had no idea what to expect during my first trimester since I had never been pregnant before. As you can imagine, I was paying attention to every little sign of pregnancy as we waited for our IVF results.

 

The first thing I noticed a few days after our IVF treatment was cramping and backache. Yup, similar to period cramps. Super-confusing. I was also over-heating. My husband was surprised that my hands and feet weren’t chilly like usual. And I fell asleep on the couch by 7:30 pm on a Sunday night...

 

I had no idea if these were due to the hormonal medications I had been on for a couple weeks, but I did have a *feeling* of it being implantation cramping and the start of my pregnancy symptoms. 

 

On a spiritual note, I had many signs. Cardinals to dreams to angel numbers and more. These kept me moving forward with hope and faith.

 

After we found out we were officially pregnant (Best day ever!!), more symptoms started to appear. 

 

1. Exhaustion

This was my biggest symptom during first trimester. I have never felt such fatigue besides having mono back in high school. I don't usually enjoy napping, but it became one of my main activities besides working and eating. There were days when I woke up and was exhausted within a couple of hours. Luckily, I work from home more often and make my own schedule so I could try to take downtime some of the afternoons. Cuddling with my dogs was and is the best. (They are on the couch with me as I write this.) My husband was also pretty tired as he was finishing up his clinical hours for paramedic school. We both looked like zombies for a couple months there! But it was all due to positive stuff so I tried to keep that in mind instead of complaining.

 

2. Anxiety

As you probably know, I work with women with anxiety. I have a history of anxiety myself. Of course fertility treatment can cause anxiety, fear and worry. But I thought once I found out I was pregnant, it would be fine. Nope, not the way. I actually found myself having more anxiety and extremely eager for each next appointment to make sure everything was okay. I have many friends who unfortunately had early miscarriages. I tried so hard to be in that trusting place and not think of all the sad stories I’ve heard. This was downright hard, but the support, journaling and rest all helped me get through it.

 

3. Cravings/Weight Gain
If you know me, you know I typically eat vegetables, fruit, meat and some grains due to digestive and blood sugar issues and wanting to lead a healthy lifestyle. However, I only got a little nauseous when I was hungry, so I kept eating. Craving carbs was not surprising and it helped me to gain weight easily on my petite frame, which was exciting since I have struggled due to health issues the past few years. I packed on about 8 lbs, which meant my clothes and bras got tight fast!


Although I wanted food from my childhood, I tried to stick with healthy options instead of mac and cheese, cereal, and pasta. Instead, I ate sprouted cinnamon raisin English muffins with sun butter, gluten-free pizza, and risotto. In turn, I was not excited about eating meat, eggs or vegetables, which was so strange to me. This did create bloating and disrupted my regular digestion though. Fun-times, but I knew to listen to my body and baby.

 

4. Round Ligament Pain/Sciatica Pain

Ouch! I had never heard of round ligament stretching before. Even just a few weeks after finding out, I noticed this stretching pain whenever I leaned on my vanity to brush my teeth or stood up too quickly. A couple times, I was keeled over with discomfort for a moment or so. I'm sure that was just the beginning of all the stretching to come! And for some reason I had sciatica pain down my left side. Luckily, acupuncture and prenatal massage helped ease it a bit.

 

So there you go! A little peak into our first few months of being pregnant with our little one. 

 

Beyond these common symptoms, it's been an amazing journey so far, that I am beyond grateful to be on! We've had so many good tears, laughs and excitement through it all. 

 

I love learning about the baby’s growth every week and journaling about this whole experience, so thought I would also share the books and apps I've been enjoying so far: 

 

The Mama Natural

The Mindful Mom-to-Be

What to Expect When You’re Expecting

•Expecting You: A Keepsake Pregnancy Journal 

The Bump App

HelloBelly App

 

The love that surrounds us is so heart-warming and indescribable. We are enjoying this journey and trying to be as present as possible.

 

I feel so grateful to be able to grow this life inside of me. It gives me even more admiration for women, especially my own mom and grandmothers.

 

And yes, we will be finding out what we are having this weekend at a gender reveal party with our family and friends! My sister is home visiting from San Diego and she got to come to our 18-week ultrasound this week, so the timing is perfect!

 

Stay tuned! Let me know what you think Baby Mahoney is in the comments. 

 

Thanks for being here,

Shayna

 

 

 

 

 

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