I feel like I'm an hour into a long movie and I almost have the plot figured out. That's what the second trimester feels like—a lot of paying attention and trying to just relax and enjoy. My weight has risen over the last couple weeks along with my expanding belly, but now my insatiable hunger is subsiding, my nausea is a distant memory, and I'm feeling pretty normal—except for the six-inch kickboxer living in my lower body.
I've been having a pretty good time during my pregnancy—no major problems or concerns. By walking to work every day I'm getting a good amount of low-impact exercise. Also, I've been trying to include as many fresh fruits and vegetables as possible in my diet. I'm trying to do everything right—but of course I have my moments. There are times when a box of Nilla Wafers is the only thing that will satisfy!
So, there isn't much to report about my happy pregnant life at this moment, other than that I'm fully in the middle of my pregnancy and looking for things to do. What's not happening is any sort of social life. Now, I wasn't any sort of social butterfly before I got pregnant, but we did get together with friends every once in a while and have a good time. Considering my pregnancy bedtime is around 9 PM, I'm having hard time keeping my eyes open to even make it to any sort of gathering—even if it's at my house!
Parties When You're Pregnant
We were recently invited to a backyard dinner party. I was thrilled to have a chance to kick back and spend some quality time chatting. I planned on keeping myself up a couple hours past my 9 PM curfew. I also planned ahead to bring food and drinks that I knew I could enjoy—and that I could share with my friends. I really like plain mineral water mixed with juice or fresh fruit. Natural potato chips or veggies and spinach dip are good eats too, plus they seem to keep the kickboxer calm.
The first couple of hours of the evening went well, until I started noticing that things just weren't the same. It seemed like whenever I got involved in a conversation the topic shifted to what was going on with my pregnancy. I also noticed that I was sectioned off into a "smoke- and alcohol-free zone," which was somewhat sheltered from the others at the party. I've got no problem with others socializing in any way they feel comfortable and wasn't feeling I needed to be segregated, so how did it happened? There were a couple of families with young toddlers running about, but they were off on their own also. I just didn't seem to fit in—not with the nonpregnant crowd, not with the young parent group. What to do?
I began to wonder if I was acting differently too. I made my way to the food table (a great place to be while pregnant—no one looks at you twice for taking seconds) and introduced myself to those I didn't know. When I was tired of answering pregnancy questions, I asked questions about them: How was work? What did you do last weekend? See any good movies lately? The conversations started going better once I shifted things away from focusing solely on my big belly. Of course, just when that party was really getting going and I felt comfortable (and all the young toddlers had fallen asleep on the couch) I was ready to drop. I felt guilty about pulling my husband away and heading for home, but then I felt my little kickboxer going at it, and felt better about it all.
Now, just because I'm exhausted half the time and wanting to get into my comfortable bed as close to 9 PM as possible, doesn't mean I can't have a social life anymore—it just means I have to make some adjustments. I've learned what I can handle (anyplace that has good air circulation and food) and what's not comfortable (standing-room only and smoky air). But it's good to go out and see others and remind yourself how great your friends really are! Plus, you get to show off all your new pregnancy clothes!
Waist measurement: 37 inches
Weekly weigh-in: 161 pounds
Pregnancy symptoms: I've got a big belly. No missing it anymore. I'm in maternity clothes 24/7 now and find that I rub my belly a lot without even thinking about it.
My pregnancy advice for the week: You're eating for two now … guess what, I feel like I'm eating for a small army. I'm really trying to watch my portions and keep myself surrounded by fresh fruits and veggies.
Pregnancy "first" of the week: Nothing exciting—just making sure to get out and about while pregnant.
Doctor's visit: Not this week.
About the Photo: The above picture of the author was taken during her 18th week of pregnancy by Dean Lipoff.
Read the next installment: week 19