Monday, March 25, 2013

Seasons of Pregnancy

When I was pregnant with Miles, I got a ton of sympathy.  Everyone commented on how hard it was to be pregnant in the summer.  How hot I must be.  How much swelling I must deal with.  As far as they were concerned, being pregnant in the summer had to be the worst luck.

Each time they told me this, I'd just smile and say, "I'd rather be pregnant in the summer.  It seems like winter would be a much worse time to be pregnant."  And they'd smile and nod, all the time believing that I was miserable, but trying to make the best of it.

I was miserable, but not because it was summer.  I was miserable because I was huge, and everything hurt, and I was tired of sharing my body with another human.  Summer actually made it more bearable.

This time around, I will get the joy of experiencing a spring baby.  No worries about the terrible flu going around, or counting the days until she'll be vaccinated against things like whooping cough that can be so prevalent, and devastating to newborns.  Instead, I will be able to take her outside and sit in the sunshine with her while Miles plays.  We will be able to take walks, and play at the park, and spend time in public without worrying every second about whether or not she'll catch something.

However, the flip side of that is that I've been pregnant all winter.  And I've found my instincts were right on - I much prefer pregnancy in the summer.  And of course, I have had the sheer joy of being pregnant during the first winter in ages where it has snowed constantly and spring seems like it will never come.

Everyday, I walk outside and tentatively test the sidewalk with a toe, while holding onto the door.  Is it slick?  Because I have a unique talent for falling even when it's dry, and my center of balance isn't thrown off by a massive belly.  If it is even the least bit icy, it takes me a full two minutes to get down the eight or ten steps outside my front door, as I cling to the handrail.  Miles, meanwhile, is impatient and invincible and hops down the steps two at a time, and then whines because I'm taking too long.  Then, I get to waddle down the drive, start the car, and buckle Miles into his car seat, all while juggling any number of necessary items.

And that's once I've gotten out the door.

Long gone are the days I could wear my warm, adorable wool pea coat   It just won't button anymore.  Now, the only thing that fits is a bulky faux-down coat that's five sizes too big, but barely zips in the middle.  I bought it on clearance because I refused to spend a ton of money on a coat that I'd wear for a few weeks, at most.  So, instead, I bundle into this monstrosity, and a scarf - because this coat doesn't have the collar my normal one does.  And it's not nearly as warm, though it does its job.

Then, there's the anxiety - always worse in the winter, anyway.  Only now, I've added pregnancy hormones to it, and it's outrageous.  Even now, on my Zoloft for almost three months, I have random panic attacks.  And my motivation to get out of my chair sets when the sun does.  I feel a bit like Superman, soaking in my energy and drive from the sun.  The difference is that when the sun is gone, so is everything else.  And my only superpower seems to be getting up the stairs in less than 15 minutes.

So, yeah.  Winter is a sucky time to be pregnant.  I'm ready for spring, and for an outside baby.

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