I’M PREGNANT! My First Trimester Experience
As I’m writing this, I’m 18 weeks (+ 5 days) pregnant and Trimester 1 seems like a distant memory. It’s kind of crazy to me because the first three months of pregnancy were some of the loooooongest months I’ve ever experienced. I think a lot of the reason why is because we had to keep such a big secret. If you know me, you’ll know that I’m terrible at keeping secrets! Now that I’m well into Trimester 2 and everyone knows we are expecting, time seems to be FLYING by!
I wanted to share my First Trimester experience with you, along with some of the remedies that seemed to help.
I found out I was pregnant around week 5, although part of me knew a week earlier when I started to get cramps and thought “Aunt Judy” was on her way. I’ve been cycle tracking for a while now, so when she didn’t show up when she was supposed to, I had a pretty good feeling. But I waited a week before taking any pregnancy tests because I was concerned about getting a false negative.
The cramps continued daily for at least a month. I recorded that they finally went away by the end of week 9. My heating pad came in handy!
Another sign that I was pregnant before actually confirming that I was pregnant: extremely sore and swollen boobs! This painful symptom also lasted about a month.
Around week 7, I woke up with a large red patch under my left breast, which is one of the reasons why I wanted to write this post. A victim of panic Googling, I couldn’t find anything that said it was a typical pregnancy symptom. So naturally, I was worried!
It’s a bit hard to explain without showing you (and trust me, I’m not going to do that)…but it was just a large red…spot. At times I was convinced it looked purple…almost like a bruise. There were no little tiny bumps. It didn’t itch. But it did hurt – specifically when sleeping at night. And it was often hot to the touch. A couple of weeks later, a similar red marking appeared on my right side.
I tried not to worry, invested in a couple of stretchy maternity bras, and ditched anything with an underwire. If I could, I went braless and let the puppies breathe.
When I finally met with my midwife at 12 weeks, she examined me and confirmed that I have perfectly normal pregnancy boobs and will probably have a good milk supply. Turns out, it’s just a result of hormones and blood circulating.
Sidenote: WOW I feel slightly uncomfortable writing about my boobs (and using that word) so many times to share publicly online. But you know what, it is what it is…
Although the red spot remains to date, the pain I felt in my chest during Trimester 1 (you guys, it was bad…I threatened Dev many times if he ever tried to come too near)…is gone!
BLOATING + SLOW DIGESTIVE SYSTEM
I definitely noticed feeling full faster and my body taking longer than normal to digest food. Eating smaller portions more often seemed to help.
I consider myself very lucky to have experienced very mild nausea. Everyone I talked to who knew I was pregnant early on told me to stock up on ginger ale and soda crackers. But they really weren’t necessary. Now that’s not to say that I didn’t feel sick some days, because let me tell you…I knelt over the toilet bowl quite a few times! But I was never actually sick.
Getting up in the morning and taking the dog for a walk in the cold fresh air seemed to be a good distraction. If anything, the morning sickness hit me more in the evenings and got especially bad if I overate.
INCREASED URGE TO PEE
I used to be able to sleep through the night without getting up until morning, no problem! As soon as I found out I was pregnant, I was waking up two, sometimes, three times each night just to pee! At weeks 12 and 13 I experienced some serious bladder discomfort, which I believe was a result of round ligament pain. It felt like I was getting a bladder infection and luckily it didn’t last longer than those two weeks. I’ve been very careful to drink lots of water every day, but also try my best to cut myself off of any liquids around 2 hours before bed so I can sleep soundly through the night.
Speaking of sleeping soundly…let’s chat about insomnia because oh baby, this one was a biggie for me!
I dealt with a lot of fear and anxiety during my First Trimester, as I’m sure many women do. Most nights I would lie in bed for a couple of hours, mind racing, before falling asleep. Also, I was so paranoid about sleeping on my stomach or back (I’m a hardcore back sleeper) that any time I ended up in either position, I would wake up. I was told not to worry about it too much during the first trimester and to just sleep however I was comfortable, but I couldn’t help but keep telling myself to “train my body”. Plus getting up to go pee so often through the night had me all out of sorts!
To cope, I listened to sleep meditation playlists and tried to do 10-20 minutes of yoga to decompress before bed (on days when I was feeling up for it).
TIRED + UNMOTIVATED
Naturally, this insomnia made me extremely tired throughout the day, which in turn, left me extremely lazy and unmotivated.
One word: NAPS!!
I’ve also invested in a pregnancy pillow – something I debated for many, many weeks until the lack of sleep drove me nuts. My nights have been much better and now that I’m in my Second Trimester, the energy and motivation have returned.
HEIGHTENED SENSE OF SMELL
I first noticed smelling men’s cologne. Then the dog’s food. Then onions. Oh gosh…onions! I could eat them no problem, but the smell of them…gag. Aside from this, however, I never really developed food aversions. There are definitely some things I’d rather eat over others, but we’ll get to that in a moment when we cover all things cravings.
Without making this blog post too long, and without wanting to sound too much like a Whiney Wendy, some other symptoms I wrote down that I noticed during my First Trimester include:
- acid reflux
- racing heart
- chest pain
- bad B.O.
- dull headaches
- head rushes
- dry skin
It’s a lot, I know…but I like to think that I’m pretty aware of my body and take note when something feels different. And holy heckenmabob, pregnancy is a wild ride of changes.
Now, I know many of you may be wondering…
Have I been dealing with any weird cravings? Sorry to disappoint, but no. I’ve just been drawn towards more carbs and sweets. I ate a lot of cereal (specifically cheerios topped with banana), oatmeal with cherries on top, buttery bagels, and grapefruit broiled with cinnamon during my First Trimester.
Oh, and everything I can’t have. What I would give for an assorted sub and some sushi!
As for food aversions, I couldn’t (and still can’t) do eggs. Not because the thought of them makes me nauseous, but because I simply don’t feel like them.
Anyhoo, I am so excited to share my pregnancy journey with you and I promise, my Second Trimester recap will not take me as long to write ;).
Are you currently pregnant? Or have been pregnant? Can you relate to any of these symptoms? What’s one thing that helped you throughout your pregnancy? Let me know by leaving a comment below or reaching out with a DM on Instagram (@beauty_by_birdy).