The fact that this is my second pregnancy would make you think it’s easier. My body should know what’s going on, my brain should know how to deal and I should take so much comfort in the fact that I’ve done this before. But it’s amazing to me that I am struggling with so many things this time around. I never had any issues with physical activity when I was pregnant with my son, but now I swear to you that I cannot even climb my stairs without having to stop at the top and sit down to catch my breath. Sometimes I can’t even make it to the top before I need a break….there are 14 steps…we’re not talkin’ tough stuff here. And then you combine that with the fact that I am so completely forgetful and absent minded with this pregnancy, you get a whole lot of walking up and down the stairs to retrieve the things I should have had on my person in the first place. Things like my son’s socks, his shoes, sometimes his pants, sometimes my pants, the family dog needing to be put in her crate which happens to be 14 steps back up the mountain. Now I understand all those crazy people who have elevators in their homes. I totally get that now and I want one.
I’m also struggling with personal space issues. I don’t realize how large my midsection is. I look at a space in between two tables or two people and go to walk right through it only to find that I’m completely stuck or I’ve run into two completely bewildered old ladies. I was at the store the other day buying a couple of things with my three year old who loves to go through the ‘U Scan’ aisle of the store, the one where you scan your own groceries and you put the money into the slot, etc., and we started to scan our items when the machine told me to, “please remove all objects from the scanner and wait before starting again.” I looked down, nothing was on the scanner. I looked at my son, he wasn’t waving anything over the scanner.
I looked at the store clerk and said,
The store clerk, a sweet, young girl, came over to me and said,
I looked down and saw that my belly, now so large that it is hanging over the bar code scanner and somewhat resting on the counter, had set the thing off.
I can’t reach things like I used to, I can’t tell you what anything below my belly button looks like, and I can’t complete simple grooming tasks anymore. I remember when I was 9 months pregnant with my son, my husband had to shave my legs for me. He was so terrified. And it took him 30 minutes. By the time I got out of the tub, I looked like a 90 year old pregnant lady. With this pregnancy, I started having trouble shaving last month…I’m 7 1/2 months along. You do the math. I also can’t reach my feet. Last week I glanced down at my toes only to realize 3 out of the 10 of them still had paint on. Thank goodness for boot weather. I tried to give myself a pedicure and absolutely could not reach that far down. I tried twisting to the side, lifting my leg up to my head, twisting to the other side, nothin’. So I called my mother and asked if she would come over and give me a pedicure. She, of course, had more of a life than to drop everything and drive 10 minutes to paint her daughters nails. So I came up with a much better solution…
Things like this never happened with my first. Back then I had people telling me I was so petite and cute and sweet, and now I’m a big, fat ma’am. My measurements and weight are still the same as they were when I was pregnant the first time, (unless my mid-wife is lying to me to keep me sane), but for some reason I just don’t feel it. Why is that?
I’m also finding myself so completely ready for this pregnancy to be over with, for Winter to be gone and Spring to be here at last. I guess that could be because nothing is really new to me now. I know what’s coming next, I know how this whole ‘having a baby thing’ works, and I remember what labor feels like. Well, sort-of. I mostly remember being in so much pain that I couldn’t stop shaking and then passing out and then waking up in so much pain that I couldn’t move. I’m only hoping that with the birth of my daughter, I will have much more peace. I’m envious of my very good friend, Beth, who gave birth naturally to 2 beautiful children (one of them almost 10 pounds) with no problem. She is my role model, my personal hero, and I am hoping that by the power of positive thinking I can have that too.
And then I feel guilty about wanting this pregnancy to be over with. That can’t be healthy, right? I loved being pregnant with my son and that is just not the case with my daughter. Does that mean I won’t be as attached to her when she’s born? You see, this is what I do. I sit around and stress and obsess over things that haven’t even happened yet. I’m sure everything will be fine and I’m even more sure that I need to just calm down and really focus on how fortunate I am to have the things that I have, (this is my mother talking now…), I need to sit back and enjoy this pregnancy because it is the last one I will ever go through. As Beth told me after the birth of her most recent child, “Don’t worry, one day after this baby is born, you will find yourself wishing she was back in your belly.”
At least my son is having fun with the fact that there is a baby inside mommy’s belly. He wants to talk to her, give her kisses and listen to her. He’ll tell me he hears her inside playing with trucks. It’s the moments like those that make me enjoy this more, when my two boys place their hands on my belly, when I get to see the look on my son’s face as he feels a big kick or the reaction my husband gives me when he feels her rolling around. It makes me feel magical and super human. Those are the moments I need to hold onto more.
So that’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to try to relax more with my boys, try to enjoy my insanely large belly, and obviously avoid the U-Scan.
My cravings have been fairly similar to what they were the first time around, nothing weird, just really good food, heavy on the carbs. This recipe has been one of my favorites, it somehow reminds me of Spring, and I’m happy to share it with you now.
*Abbey’s Rice Pudding
-3/4 cup arborio rice
-kosher salt for the boiling water
-2 cans evaporated, whole milk
-1 cup of low fat milk (may not need to be used, but keep it handy)
-1/2 cup of sugar
-1 egg, beaten
-good splash of vanilla extract
–Bring 1 1/2 cups of salted water to a boil, add in your rice. Once it comes back to a boil, reduce to simmer and cover. Continue to cook on low heat, covered until the water is absorbed.
–Stir in the 2 cans of milk and the sugar, bring back to a boil, then back down to a simmer and cook, uncovered for 30-40 minutes until the rice is very soft.
–Slowly stir in the beaten egg and while stirring, cook for 1 minute to allow the egg to cook.
–If your pudding is too tight, add some of the milk, a little bit at a time, until the desired consistency is reached.
–Stir in your vanilla and taste to check seasoning, it may need a bit more salt to balance out the sweetness.
–This is best served hot, warm, room temperature, or cold out of a very large bowl set atop your belly with a very large spoon.
(note- this actually freezes well!)