Thursday, April 2, 2015

Managing (some of) the Symptoms of Pregnancy

My go-to line these days during pregnancy is, "I finally have a wonderful reason to feel awful." Honestly, I am no stranger to feeling like a turd on a stick, a sophisticated medical term if I ever did hear one. Anyway, many of my friends who are struggling with medical problems--everything from sinus problems to GI problems--consult me when they feel helpless because they know the medical community and I go way back. Keep in mind that I am not a medical professional, and these are the strategies that work best for me. (I picked up many of the strategies from one of my medical professionals, however.) I feel compelled to admit that, as long as this kid remains healthy, every single uncomfortable symptom is 100% worth it. Truly.

* Nausea lasted about 12 weeks--I ate whatever sounded good first so that I could stomach the stuff I needed to eat. Luckily, I never vomited, but I did feel sick Some days, I wasn't sure I could peel myself out of bed. I just kept rubbing my stomach and saying, "just stay healthy, kid. Just stay healthy. I can power through this as long as you stay healthy."
What didn't work? Seabands and ginger (actually made me gag)
What did work? Going to bed earlier (sounds weird but it made a big difference going to bed at 8 instead of 10) and vitamin B6 (I used Preggie Drops, but Vitamin water also works. I bought Preggie Drops on Amazon, a bundle of 3 for like $20).

*Snot. A lot of it. (the symptom that never ends)--I am not describing this symptom because it's disgusting. I will tell you how I combat it.
What makes it worse? Dairy (WAHHH!), not drinking enough water, not following the "system" that helps
What helps? My "system": Neti pot in the morning, lots of water during the day, and humidifier at night. If I miss any parts of the system, I am wrecked the next day or more. Also, had I not undergone sinus surgery last April, I would feel unbearably miserable right now.

*Hip pain (round ligament/sciatica). This pain started much earlier for me than most women. One, since I am a tiny human, the doctors tell me the shifting of body parts affects me more than it might others. Two, I had previous back problems because of a car accident. Three, felt so sick in the first trimester that I stopped doing yoga, which I need for my back/hip pain.
What makes it worse? Not putting my feet up at some point, wearing crappy shoes (I actually am getting rid of all "bad" shoes and replacing them with better-for-my-feet versions), and sitting too long
What helps? I recently started using the elliptical and stretching again, so I presume that will help. I also started seeing a massage therapist who specializes in pregnancy massages, and I'm going back to yoga when the weather warms up and flu season is gone.

In terms of doctors/medical professionals, I see certified nurse midwives from my OBGYN practice. When my due date gets closer, I'll ask to meet with a few of the doctors. For now, I rotate to the different midwives because who knows if the one I really like will be available the day I go to the hospital? Gotta be prepared for any scenario.

I see a massage therapist through my OBGYN clinic. She specializes in pregnancy massages of all kinds (even ones to induce labor...WHOA). 

I see an acupuncturist whose specialty is actually fertility. He has worked wonders on my headaches and hip pain. I believe in mixing Eastern and Western medicine. Someone in the bunch is bound to get it right. They are all certified doctors, including the acupuncturist, so it never hurts to work with a group of talented medical professionals, especially if insurance covers it. Honestly, much of what they suggest overlaps, so they aren't as different as one might assume.

I am thinking about a doula for our first kid. It should come as no surprise that I love to learn as much as I possibly can. After speaking with one at a Baby Expo, Jeff and I are considering adding this option to our buffet. (No, I will not try for a home birth. Yes, I will ask for an epidural. I appreciate hospitals and what they can offer me. However, if another human can rub my back during the process and coach Jeff and me, then I am open to their presence.) More research required on this front.

And that's all we have time for today, folks. Now, here's the outfit I wore to my nephew's birthday dinner last night (at their house, just family). No, pink is not a subliminal message about the gender of this child, which we find out on Monday.

The Look:
Cardigan: Old Navy
Scarf: Gap via thredUP
Tank: Target 
Jeans: Gap Maternity 
Shoes: Converse via DSW
Sunglasses (gift): LOFT

I am aware that 19-week bump is a tiny thing. However, my mom did not know she was pregnant with me until my brother told her that he "prayed to baby Jesus for a little sister." Lo and behold, my brother was prophetic or something. Here I am. 


  1. Sounds like you are doing a great job figuring out what works for you! Your 19 week bump is a very cute bump!

  2. It's so tricky figuring out what helps and what doesn't help (or makes things worse). Sounds like you have a good team helping you along the way. And I absolutely agree - I keep telling myself that I can deal with whatever pain or discomforts for x more months as long as the baby is healthy! It's nice to have a reason for feeling awful instead of just "my body hates me!"

  3. Well, if it was a subliminal message, you chose correctly! Gosh it sounds like your health problems have just mutiliplied huh? I know bodies change so much during and after pregnancy so maybe some of your health issues will disappear after she's born? Fingers crossed?


Feel free to throw some witticisms my way.