Your first pregnancy, no matter how hard at times it can be, will be the most precious. I know you fear the unknown and for now lack the education to understand what is happening to your body. Do not be scared and trust me that I wish you would not let those fears overtake your mind. Currently, you are in graduate school, sitting for a minimum of eight hours per day. Don't we all? Whether we are working a full time job or attending school. It's time for you to get up, stretch, and WALK. Walk a lot! Did you know that you don't have to give up working out? I know how important that is for you, especially going with your friends to the gym. You can MODIFY workouts. Even if you feel nauseous and tired, just get yourself to the gym for half an hour, it's good for you. You CAN do it!
Did you know that there are support groups, prenatal yoga, ginger chews to help with morning sickness, acupuncture, and prenatal massage? I know you go to a prenatal Chiropractor weekly but some massage wouldn't hurt. Actually it would make your growing hips feel so much better!
I know you are surrounded by good friends near and far, but mostly people who don't understand you because they are at a different stage of life. Don't resent them. They don't and WON'T understand what you are going through until they will go through it themselves. One of my friend's sent me ab workouts two weeks after birth. I know they meant well, but instead of helping it made me feel worse. Ignore the comments about "well your breastfeeding and your supposed to automatically loose weight." You won't. It doesn't work for everyone. Exclusively breastfeeding will only make you even hungrier. Know that breastfeeding was such an amazing experience that you wouldn't have it any other way. When your son weans himself right when he turns one, don't be worried you two will still have a bond. Oh and those friends that all of a sudden walked away slowly. Ignore them. You will be gifted with such caring ones soon. Lucky you.
Weight loss will be your biggest challenge.
Don't listen to the Kaiser ObGyn that doesn't want to answer your list of questions; especially the one about the newly found stretch marks in your chest area. She made you feel like a passerby. She has no care in the world to provide you with great prenatal care which leads me to wonder why did she ever become a doctor and did she fail her bedside manner class?
"If you would stop eating so much and gaining weight so fast maybe you wouldn't have those there"-Kaiser Obgyn
She told me that on my fifth month of pregnancy when I was finally over my morning sickness (aka all day sickness) and could keep some food down. Say goodbye to your size 2 clothes and embrace your new closet filled with lots of yoga pants, leggings, and black tops.
And look at that man beside you. Isn't he amazing? I know you want him to understand what you are going through a little bit more but he's trying to be everything for you. He took over the position of best girlfriend. He will hold your hair during morning sickness, become a shoulder to lean on, and most of all be a supportive husband. Hormones are kind of blocking your vision of that at this point but hopefully it will soon clear.
GUESS WHAT? Those teachers that harass you because of your pregnancy will soon loose their jobs. Slowly one at a time, but it will happen and you will be there to watch. Karma does exist. That one professor that didn't let you eat in his class when you were pregnant and hungry all the time so much you had to hide it under the table. Yes, the same one that won't let you do "makeup work" when you request only a week for birth, yes he will have to under law do it for you. Just ignore him. You will laugh at that teacher that didn't let you go to the bathroom during a final because you had to throw up due to morning sickness and offered you to throw up in front of the entire class instead. You will wonder why you didn't throw up on her Louboutins. Pulling out TITLE IX (which is now enforced in school) in front of the entire President's board will make you feel empowered. Know that you made a change in that school and under law no other pregnant women will get harassed like you did. That's a huge WIN!
Invest in a pressure cooker NOW (aka instant pot). It will save you not only money but TIME (which is so precious and non-existent when you have an infant). DO NOT, I repeat DO NOT let any of your nannies cook for you, especially the crazy one who stuck meat into doggie poop bags and put them into the freezer.
Please don't stress over the nanny situation. Let go of your desire for a bilingual baby whether it's Russian, Spanish, or sign language (because you will take care of that yourself). Hire a professional with experience. That would have saved you a huge headache! NEVER doubt your mother's intuition no matter how crazy you may sound, it's for your baby's safety. Don't drown yourself in guilt when you learn that one of them was drugging your two month old. Oh and that Los Angeles agency that was recommended to you was a total scam. Don't let it drive you crazy. Good thinking when you locked yourself, your infant, and dog in your room for 24 hours (thank God had a connected bathroom) because that newly hired nanny really did want to KIDNAP your son. Where was hubby? Husband was on a as 24 hour shift as an EMT far far away. You will survive it and then after that decide to take a lighter load in school so you can take care of your son yourself. SO WORTH IT! Don't regret finishing a couple months after your starting class. You get to walk with them for graduation.
You will rush home every time you get a break between classes to feed your child. Know that was all worth it too. Let go of the anger and resentment that rushed through your whole body when you walked in on your caregiver feeding your two week old after you specifically told them "be home in three minutes to feed." Ignore those crazy Russian nannies that told you your milk didn't have enough "fat" in them, they are all just NUTS! Move on and be thankful nothing serious happened after the first hired nanny throws hot water on your three weeks old face because she thinks your visiting friend "burned him with the evil eye" (which she said right in front of her). Next time during the interview ask if they have any superstitions and tell them they aren't allowed in your house. How could I have forgotten to ask that question?
You will sit and pump in a dark room while hearing male voices and smelling microwaved food. Pumping and missing your little one. Watching him through cameras wishing you could hold him at least for a second! You will rush back to class only with the Radiology Resident complaining about how you were gone for fifteen minutes and now she's marking you absent for the whole day, not caring that you just finished breastfeeding. She doesn't have children so forgive her. Don't worry about your current situation and know that all the battles you have fought will be won, but only after you have graduated. The school will finally abide by the law and make a nice, separate breastfeeding room and put a sign on it! WIN!
It will be a constant struggle, a constant battle whether its breastfeeding, an employer, a professor, or a nanny. We all, women and mothers, will pierce through the challenges thrown at us. There will be challenges, but it is all about how you learn to handle them. It will be about how you are able to deal with these stressors.
Take time for yourself, lessen your load, slow down, learn to just breathe. Do what's best for you and your family. Choose your battles and FIGHT FOR YOUR RIGHTS. Know most of the time you aren't being irrational and no it's not your pregnancy hormones.
Know that your future self is so proud of you and your accomplishments! Whatever happened in the past shaped the future and for that I would never change anything!