My Pregnancy at 35 Weeks

My Pregnancy at 35 Weeks

At 35 weeks, I’m officially 88% complete with my pregnancy. I thought it might be fun to give a quick update on how the baby and I are doing, as well as what I still need to do before he arrives. I’ve also included links to a few items that have been super helpful for me for staying comfortable with a full-size watermelon inside of me. Enjoy!

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Baby K

This kid is a maniac. At 35 weeks, he’s moving around like crazy, and keeping me and hubby entertained with how much my belly moves when he’s dancing. He’s about the size of a butternut squash (around 5 or so pounds and at least 18 inches long). He’s most active at night when I’m laying down, but every once in awhile he starts stretching and spinning when I’m driving or riding in the car. He also likes to kick me in the ribs, which is really, really great.

pregnancy-35-weeks-mama-brilliance

Graphic made with BabyStory App

Hubby finished up the assembly for the nursery items, and we’re almost ready to unveil the final product to the world. Our baby shower was a couple of weeks ago, and let me tell you, people must love us or something because we received some AMAZING gifts. It was so wonderful to reconnect with so many friends and family members at the shower, and we are so thankful for all of the support we have received so far during the pregnancy and in preparation for Baby K’s arrival.

I’ll be writing more about what we registered for and our favorite products in a week or two, and I’ll be doing a recap of what works best for our little guy once he arrives and has had a chance to try everything out.

How I’m Doing

To be honest, the pregnancy hasn’t been too terrible up until now. I’ve had sciatica throughout the pregnancy, but it’s really starting to pick up now that Baby K is getting closer to full term size, and pressing on nerves. My doctor also diagnosed me with symphysis pubis dysfunction (SPD), which is basically code for “your pubic bone is separating.” It gets worse with bending or lifting, as well as if I’m walking around too much; which is a doubled edged sword because I’m trying to stay as active as possible to build up my strength before delivery, but if I move around too much, the SPD flares up and I can’t walk. #pregnant

To combat the sciatica, I bought a pelvic belt similar to this one. The belt helps tremendously when I’m standing or walking around, but it’s not great while sitting. It also doesn’t do much for the SPD, but hey if I can get some relief from the sciatica, I consider that a win.

If you have a job that requires a lot of standing or walking or you’re a busy mom that needs a little extra support while being upright, I highly recommend getting yourself a maternity support belt of some sort. Also make sure to talk to your doctor to discuss the options of chiropractic, acupuncture/acupressure, or even physical therapy.

I’m also just starting to experience less sleep at night. Part of that is because of the sciatica and the SPD, but it’s also just really difficult to roll over when you’re holding a basketball in  your stomach. I had originally purchased the hiccapop Pillow Wedge as my main pregnancy pillow, but much like The Little Mermaid, I want morrreee.

Hubby picked up a Snoogle for me, which is a more traditional pregnancy pillow that’s about 6 feet long, and kind of wraps around you to provide support for your neck, back, hips, and knees. I’m loving it so far, and I use it in combination with my hiccapop Wedge for extra support underneath my belly. I would say if you’re going to get the Snoogle, make sure to buy an extra cover for it. The one that it comes with is fine, but it’s a bear to get on and off after washing, and trying to finagle a 6-ft body pillow cover onto your pillow while your baby kicks you in the ribs is not my idea of a good time.  

I’m also feeling pretty puffy. Normal pregnancy weight gain for individuals at a healthy BMI before pregnancy is between 25-35lbs, and at week 35, I’ve officially gained 32lbs. Some of that is the baby, and some of it is increased blood volume and water retention from growing a human. But let’s be real, I’ve also gained a full cup size (at least) in my bra, and my thighs are definitely juicier than they used to be. The only real issue I have with the weight gain is that it’s officially much worse trying to find a bra that fits correctly and that doesn’t constrict my ribs.

It’s also starting to really set in that we are going to have a baby in 5 weeks. Like, holy crap, is this pregnancy really truly coming to it’s final weeks? I feel like I’ve been pregnant for years, and now I’m finally going to have something to show for it? YES. That’s a pretty good feeling.

Plans Before Delivery

After my preterm labor (PTL) experience, Hubby and I buckled down and got a lot of our Baby To-Do’s wrapped up, just in case our little guy decided to pull another PTL stunt (you can read about that here). We still have a few things to finalize, but we are pretty much ready for Baby K to arrive whenever he is ready (hopefully not for a few more weeks!).

The last few things we need to do include:

  • Pick our pediatrician.
  • Finish our birth class.
  • Pack our hospital bags.
  • Make some freezer meals (I’m lookin’ at you, Pinterest).
  • Hire a pet-sitter.

And that’s about it! I still can’t believe we’re only a few weeks away from meeting our little guy. It kind of blows my mind, and I’m not entirely sure how to handle it. One day at a time, I suppose!

 

How did you prepare for your little one’s arrival in the last few weeks?

As the founder of Mama Brilliance, Megan is an avid writer, reader, and self-professed coffee snob. You can find her in northern Minnesota with her family, exploring the great outdoors and dreaming of breakfast food.

How to Win the Battle Against Postpartum Depression

How to Win the Battle Against Postpartum Depression

After 40 long weeks, you finally get to meet your newborn baby. You’ve been waiting for this moment for months, and you expect nothing but pure joy during those first few weeks. After all, you made this tiny, perfect, little human. How could life be anything but perfect after this?
 
For many women, postpartum depression becomes the norm after delivery. It’s estimated that approximately 20% of women experience some form of postpartum depression (PPD). That means out of 5 of your friends or relatives who are mothers, at least 1 of them has experienced PPD. The reality is that this estimate could be low; meaning the rate of PPD is most likely somewhat higher than 20%.
 
So what’s the solution? There isn’t a one-size-fits-all remedy for PPD, education is a big first step in understanding mental health issue.
 
As a woman who is 31 weeks pregnant, and who has struggled with depression for over 15 years, postpartum depression is definitely on my mind. My strategy at this point is to educate myself about as many aspects of PPD as possible. I feel that if I go into the postpartum period equipped with knowledge and strategies, I will be better prepared to handle the possibility of postpartum depression.
 
Enter Lauren Cecora, postpartum depression survivor and author of Past Partum: From Shattered to Sane. Lauren was gracious enough to let me review her brand new book about her experience with PPD. I’m beyond excited to share this review with you, so let’s dig in!
Win The Battle Against PPD

Past Partum: From Shattered to Sane Description

Lauren is a military wife and mom-boss. During her husband’s most recent deployment, she gave birth to their daughter and developed Postpartum Depression & Anxiety. Her life in a sense, shattered before her as she was drowning in maintaining her joy and happiness. Through her struggles she developed a series of actions that helped regain her sanity as a mother. Lauren shares with you five of her “Sanity Saving Tips” that will help any mama with balancing life, home, mommy-hood, a career and marriage.
 
So grab a glass of whatever you’re drinking, put the ear muffs on the kiddos, and get ready to get personal. Lauren holds nothing back as she reveals her heart in this personal story of her Postpartum Depression and how she overcame it.
Past Partum Book Cover

Book Review

In reading Past Partum, I felt I was hearing the experience of a friend; someone who knew that her experiences were dark, yet relatable to so many women. How could she keep quiet when she knew that her survival could mean saving another mother?

As a fellow military spouse, I empathized with Lauren’s situation. Her husband was deployed during a part of her pregnancy, birth, and first few months of her daughter’s life. I appreciated her sharing this detail, because I will experience a similar situation with my husband’s schedule. The tips she shared for managing her mental health are invaluable to me, because I know that there will be months where I am parenting on my own.
 
Lauren holds nothing back as she describes her experience with postpartum depression. Reading her darkest thoughts during the first months of her daughter’s life, I am filled with gratitude. I know this sounds strange, but it’s true. I am grateful that Lauren demonstrated such honesty as she penned her memoir.
 
We need more women to come forward and say, “I thought the same thing.” Sharing their experiences with this common enemy will move mountains towards creating postpartum resources that are available for the women who need it.
 
Postpartum depression is an ominous and unforgiving opponent. It makes you think, say, and do things that cause you to lose track of who you are. Lauren makes an important point in Past Partum: postpartum depression is different for every woman. Postpartum isn’t a failure to bond with your baby after delivery (although this may be a symptom). It may manifest for some as anxiety, or obsessive compulsive disorder. You may feel angry or resentful, or even despondent.
 
The important thing is to recognize what you are feeling is an imbalance of your emotional spectrum. And I say “spectrum” of emotions because we all live within an emotional spectrum (happy to sad to happy to angry to content to blissful to indifferent, etc.). The spectrum is normal. It’s when there is an imbalance that the spectrum requires further examination.
 
I also loved that Past Partum wasn’t solely focused on the darkest parts of PPD. Lauren provides what she calls Sanity Savers, or simple solutions to staying sane in the postpartum period. These Sanity Savers are simple, and can be easily implemented in any household. The best part about these Sanity Savers is that they are flexible, meaning you can adapt them to fit your unique needs and schedule.
 
I plan to adapt a few of Lauren’s Sanity Savers to get into an established routine before our little guy arrives. This will help with little things like keeping the house clean after he is born. And with big things like maintaining my mental health and my building up my relationship with my husband.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, Past Partum: From Shattered to Sane is a must-read for any new or expecting parents. In all honesty, Past Partum should be recommended reading for the following:
  • New or expecting moms
  • Moms who have experienced or are currently experiencing postpartum depression
  • New or expectant grandparents (to recognize the signs and provide help as soon as possible)
  • Spouses or partners of new or expecting moms
  • Close friends and family members that will be providing support during the postpartum period
It cannot be emphasized enough: understanding postpartum depression and recognizing potential symptoms can go a long way in providing support and encouragement for new mothers and their families. Past Partum is one resource in this emerging mental health issue. Educate yourself. Provide kind and compassionate support for yourself during the postpartum period.
 
And remember: you are loved. You are beautiful. You are strength itself. Reach out for help when you need it AND when you want it.
 
You. Will. Thrive.

A Special Offer

As a special thank you to Mama Brilliance readers, Lauren is offering 10% off of Past Partum: From Shattered to Sane from July 10-12, 2017. All you need to do is click this link to get the discount during that period.
Past Partum Affiliate Link
Lauren also has an AMAZING Sanity Saver available for new subscribers. I recommend it regardless of if you are a parent or not. Lauren developed several Sanity Savers to help women focus on what they desire most out of life. Should you choose to work with her, you’ll talk about how you want to feel in the day to day. Together you and Lauren will find a balance that works for YOU and your family.
 
These Sanity Savers aren’t “one size fits all.” They’re meant for you to break down to the bigger picture so you can identify where to focus your time and energy.
 
You can also connect with Lauren on her Facebook page here. And in her free Facebook Group Sanity Savers Support Network. The network is a private support group for mamas who might be struggling with motherhood. Lauren shares a TON of sanity saving tips in this group.
 
Thanks so much to Lauren for sharing her story, and her generous discount for Mama Brilliance readers!

As the founder of Mama Brilliance, Megan is an avid writer, reader, and self-professed coffee snob. You can find her in northern Minnesota with her family, exploring the great outdoors and dreaming of breakfast food.

My Preterm Labor Event and What I Learned

My Preterm Labor Event and What I Learned

Preterm labor isn’t something I was expecting. All signs pointed to a pregnancy of 40 weeks or more. For 27 weeks and 6 days I was in a low-risk pregnancy. Then 28 weeks hit, and something changed. I started experiencing bleeding and contractions. I called my doctor, and he told me to come in so they could assess the situation. Sure enough, my body was experiencing preterm labor symptoms, and we needed to slow it down. I was ambulanced to one of the best maternal fetal medicine units in the state, and measures were taken to minimize the contractions, and to get baby ready for birth (just in case he decided to come early).

After 24 hours in the hospital, contractions had stopped thanks to a magnesium sulfate drip and rest. Baby boy did great the entire time, kicking and dancing up a storm all weekend, with zero evidence of fetal stress. The care team was even impressed at how active he was, and how fully developed he was for 28 weeks. At about 40 hours in the hospital, the doctors decided to discharge me, since the baby and I were doing great. Thankfully, I was able to stay pregnant, and baby boy is still a movin’ and a shakin’.

Preterm labor is never something you plan for, but incidentally it happens in about 12% of all pregnancies. Even though I was seemingly low-risk, with virtually no medical or lifestyle risks for premature labor, I experienced an event. What does this tell me? Well… not much actually. Even the doctors weren’t entirely sure why the contractions and the bleeding started. But I learned a lot from this experience, and my hope is that by sharing what I have learned that another mama-to-be will feel more confident and secure in her pregnancy.

My Preterm Labor Event

Amenities Are Secondary to Care

This sounds rather obvious, but there is an important point to make here. When I first found out I was pregnant, I knew that we would be moving at the start of my third trimester. I began to look around at the various hospitals of the locations we could be moving to, and I fell in love with St. Luke’s in Duluth, MN. The hospital recently renovated their maternity floor, and it looks amazing.

It has tubs for birthing in just about every room, and they focus on baby-centered care, meaning that after your baby is born (as long as everything is okay with mom and baby), baby gets to stay in the room with mom and dad. Plus, it actually had decent seating and sleeping areas in each suite for your partner or your family members who would visit or stay with you.

When I saw that setting, I knew that’s where I wanted to deliver. I mean, what more could you want from a delivery experience than to relax like a queen after you’ve given birth?

I’m more clear minded about the whole situation. Yes, amenities are great, especially when you are in recovery. The real work happens during labor and delivery, and a pull out sofa with extra support isn’t going to help keep you calm while you’re pushing.

What you need is an experienced care team who will go the extra mile to make sure you and baby are safe, calm, and healthy. When I was admitted to Yale New Haven’s Maternal Fetal Medicine Unit, I immediately recognized the level of professionalism and concern for my welfare. This team truly wanted to make me as comfortable as possible, and ensured that every single one of my needs were cared for. They explained every procedure to me; what it was, why they do it, and what side effects to watch for.

The care team at Yale New Haven was beyond anything that I could have hoped for in the event of a threatened preterm labor. I didn’t care that I didn’t have a birthing tub or that my birth plan wasn’t finished. I knew I was in good hands, and that this team was going to keep me and my baby safe.

Simplify Everything

The last thing you want when you go into labor is a complicated checklist of all of the things you need to have with you, or items you need to tell the doctors. The more stuff you bring with you (mentally and physically), the more complicated your delivery is going to be.

Listen, I am all for having an empowered birth experience. You should absolutely be able to get what you want when it comes to giving birth to the human you have been carrying. I want that for you. And I want that for me. Simplifying my expectations and minimizing my “requirements” are going to dramatically increase the level of calm I experience when labor actually happens.

Why? Because I won’t have to grapple with the mental load of potentially struggling with my care team to get what I want out of delivery. This is not about what I want. This is about keeping my baby healthy; allowing both of us to recover in the most optimal way possible.

With that being said, I know that there are tons of birth plans and birth strategies out there to choose from. My recommendation is that if you feel that a birth plan is in your best interest, use one. Keep it simple. The last thing you need is to create this highly detailed birth plan that can’t be followed because of an emergency situation that is out of your hands.

Try to keep your birth plan to less than 2 pages. This will not only simplify the process for you, but for your care team as well. It will be easier to keep everyone on the same page when there aren’t a handful of pages to keep track of.

Preparedness Goes a Long Way

An emergency is after all, not something you plan for, but it doesn’t hurt to take extra steps to make sure you’re ready. I had a pretty good idea of what to bring in a hospital bag for labor. Since I was only 28 weeks, I didn’t have one packed. Thankfully, I was able to stay calm and grounded as I evaluated what I really needed in case I did need to stay overnight. Which thankfully, wasn’t a lot. Again, simplification helped a ton here.

I knew that if I was going to be staying overnight, the hospital would have pretty much everything I needed in the realm of clothing, but I also wanted to make sure I had a couple things in case I needed them, i.e. a zip up sweatshirt, deodorant, a brush, contact solution/glasses, and chapstick. Honestly, that was all I needed. I packed a couple pairs of underwear just in case, but the hospital has disposable ones so I just used those for my stay.

What I’m getting at here is that being prepared can help quite a bit when it comes to minimizing the stress of an emergency situation. Not only does physical preparedness help (packing a go-bag), but mental preparedness as well. Researching procedures and terms ahead of time makes a huge difference when it comes to understanding what your care team is talking about.

This is not to say that you should research every single obstetric procedure known to man and know the exact risk factors and all other scary stuff that goes with it. That is is not the point. The point is to educate yourself so that you are equipped with the knowledge to make the best decisions for you and your baby when the time comes.

Read as many pregnancy and labor/delivery books as you can throughout your pregnancy to help prepare you for the changes your body goes through, your baby’s development, and possible procedures you may need in order to keep both you and baby safe and healthy.

Mindfulness & Affirmations Really Work

Throughout the preterm labor event, I was scared. I didn’t know what was going to happen, but I knew that if I stressed myself out unnecessarily, that the stress would only affect my baby to his detriment. My solution was to pray, to be mindful of my mind and my body, and to affirm to myself that whatever happens will happen, and that my baby and I will be safe. These are some of the affirmations I said to myself while I was in the thick of uncertainty.

  • My body knows what to do to keep my baby safe.
  • This event is temporary. This stress will pass.
  • I am confident in myself and the health of my baby.
  • I will keep my baby safe and calm by breathing deeply, and embracing feelings of love and security.

In addition to prayer and strategic breathing exercises, these affirmations helped me to keep my breathing steady, and my mind clear. Yes, I was nervous, and yes, I had fears. But I knew that by repeatedly praying and saying these affirmations that I would ultimately keep myself calm and collected, and be able to make better decisions when necessary.

What I’m Doing Differently

The preterm labor scare taught me a lot of things about myself and what is truly important to me. Because of what I have learned, I’m doing a few things differently than I had planned.

  1. Prepare an emergency bag for my car. Something simple with a change of clothes, a few toiletries, and a couple of snack bars and bottles of water. This bag will be helpful in any emergency, regardless of whether or not I’m pregnant.
  2. Keep a copy of my medical records with me if possible. I want to keep a small record of recent events on my Emergency ID on my phone. That way, if something happens while I’m out and about or alone, whichever hospital I am sent to will have my information and will be able to make more informed decisions about my care. This information will include medications, current medical status (i.e. pregnant), allergies, medical directives for care, etc.
  3. Get a better support system in place. With my husband in the military, there is no telling whether I will be on my own or not. Thankfully, with us moving closer to family, I will have more support options, but this event made me realize that I’m really terrible at making in-person support networks. Online? I’m a freaking pro. But in the real world I’m pretty limited. I’m so thankful for the people who helped us out during the worst of it, seriously you guys are amazing. But I know that having a few more people in the pipeline that can offer assistance is going to ease quite a bit of strain off of my mind.

 

Thank you for reading my experience with threatened preterm labor. I truly hope that this finds someone where they need it most, and can help them to manage the emotions that go along with this event.

As the founder of Mama Brilliance, Megan is an avid writer, reader, and self-professed coffee snob. You can find her in northern Minnesota with her family, exploring the great outdoors and dreaming of breakfast food.

Pregnancy Safe Yoga Workouts You and Baby Will Love

Pregnancy Safe Yoga Workouts You and Baby Will Love

Exercising while you are pregnant is important for your physical and mental health. Yoga during pregnancy is a favorite among many mamas-to-be for a few reasons; primarily because you can do it just about anywhere, and you don’t need any special equipment to do yoga.

Yoga has a ton of benefits, regardless of if you are pregnant. During my pregnancy, I found yoga to be the most beneficial exercise routines because of the focus on breathing and flow, as well as strengthening through body weight. Yoga can be pretty intense, but pregnancy safe yoga is intended for pregnant moms looking to stay active without over-doing it.

You can find a prenatal yoga class just about anywhere these days, but I wanted something I could do in my home on days when I didn’t feel like seeing other people. Introvert problems. Here are a few online pregnancy-focused yoga workouts that you will love.

Pregnancy Safe Yoga Workouts

Sarah Beth Yoga

Fun fact, my dad was the one who shared this resource with me. Sarah Beth Yoga is on Vimeo and Youtube, and she has my favorite prenatal yoga series. There are 3 free videos on Youtube, and a paid program that you can purchase on Vimeo, and let me tell you, the paid program is AMAZING.

Let’s go over the free videos first. There is a morning warm up, a 20 minute prenatal workout, and a night-time wind down routine. These are my go-to workouts because they are quick, comprehensive, and I feel amazing after I do these routines.

The paid program is amazing too. For $75, you get four 45-minute workouts that are safe for all three trimesters. And you get a PDF guide that can help you to vary your workouts to help prevent you from getting bored or feeling like your workouts are stagnant. The PDFs also teach you how to modify your poses for greater comfort and safety as your belly grows.

Yoga With Adriene

I’ve been watching Yoga With Adriene videos for a couple of years now, and I love how she is focused on the concept of finding what feels good. Adriene’s videos are primarily on Youtube, but you can subscribe to her paid channel here.

Adriene has a prenatal series that highlights a yoga workout for each trimester, plus some lady talk with Adriene and one of her close friends who is in her 3rd trimester. It was kind of fun to hear another woman’s thoughts on her pregnancy, and the workouts were great too.

There is also a PDF guide for safe yoga practice during pregnancy if you subscribe to the paid Find What Feels Good by Yoga With Adriene.

Prenatal Yoga Center

The Prenatal Yoga Center is exactly what it sounds like: an online yoga resource for pregnant ladies! The Prenatal Yoga Center has a ton of free videos that are focused on specific trouble areas that many women struggle with during pregnancy, i.e. sciatica, hip-openers, carpal tunnel, etc.

For me, sciatica has been a capital B during my pregnancy. The hip opener video was a huge help, as was the Alleviating Back Pain video. The other great thing about the Prenatal Yoga Center is that they have in-person classes in the New York City area. So for NYC mamas, definitely check out what they have to offer!

Gaia Prenatal Yoga

Gaia is one of the most well known international yoga organizations. I hesitate to call it “corporate” because yoga is so far from corporate it’s ridiculous, but you can typically find Gaia products in stores like Target or Walmart. Gaia also has online yoga videos, including this Prenatal Yoga series with Shiva Rea.

These workouts are also pretty short, less than 20 minutes each, but they are comprehensive and help you to focus on breathing first before posing. Which is SUPER helpful for breathing through labor and delivery pains.

 

What workouts are you loving while pregnant?

As the founder of Mama Brilliance, Megan is an avid writer, reader, and self-professed coffee snob. You can find her in northern Minnesota with her family, exploring the great outdoors and dreaming of breakfast food.

4 Pregnancy Symptoms Worth a Belly Laugh

4 Pregnancy Symptoms Worth a Belly Laugh

I’m sure you’ve heard that pregnancy symptoms can be pretty crazy. Mood swings, morning sickness, exhaustion, just to name a few. But pregnant women and women who are trying to conceive should know about more symptoms than what is most commonly discussed. I want to talk about the stuff that requires you to be able to laugh at yourself. Like a lot.

This blog is not for the feint of heart. We’re gonna talk about vagina stuff, poop, and even unsightly body hair. My hope is that you will read this and it will 1) prepare you for what is to come during your pregnancy, and 2) give you a laugh and let you know that you’re not alone in your crazy pregnancy symptom experiences.

Enjoy ladies!

Pregnancy Symptoms Worth a Laugh

Underpants

Congratulations! Your underwear is now brought to you by Elmer’s School Glue! But seriously… The discharge is real ladies. Your body chemistry changes so much when you’re pregnant, and because of those changes your underwear will suffer. It will suffer greatly.

The reason why vaginal discharge increases during pregnancy is because your vagina is working on protecting you and baby against infection and irritation. For many women, discharge will increase gradually throughout the pregnancy, peaking in the 3rd trimester. This means multiple panty changes per day, or you could just invest in Kotex and help keep the stock market prices up on panty liners; ‘cause you’re gonna need a lot of em.

Just remember, discharge is normal, but be on the lookout for funky stuff. Anything that seems out of the ordinary for color or smell might be something to talk to your doctor about. Yeast infections can happen during pregnancy, so be sure to chat with your doctor if you think something is off.  

Tummy Troubles

Okay internet. Here’s the real deal. Digestive problems during pregnancy are no joke. In fact, I would argue that digestive issues are probably among the most reported pregnancy symptoms and side effects. We all hear about morning sickness, but it is so, so much more than that. I’m talking bloating, gas, heartburn, nausea, vomiting, and poop. Your digestive system goes cuckoo for cocoa puffs during those 40 weeks. Hormone changes are a huge part of the symptoms, but as baby grows, your uterus pushes your organs into weird places. When those organs are displaced, it puts pressure on them. Thus, the crazy symptoms.

For me, this has resulted in some moderately embarrassing bodily functions, and one massively humiliating trip home from a burrito place. That’s right friends. You inferred correctly: I pooped myself. Thank God it happened while I was pregnant, because it gave me a good excuse to throw a pity party for myself (a.k.a. eat even more food thus increasing the potential for more poop). And I don’t think my husband would have felt as bad for me if I wasn’t pregnant; so he took pity on me and threw away my pants of shame so I didn’t have to walk out to our garbage can butt naked. Such a good man.

But the best part of this whole pooping-my-pants thing was finding out that I was not alone. When I told my best friend Raewyn about it, her reaction was not, “You’re a disgusting animal, you belong in a barn because you’re basically just a cow.” It was instead, “I need to read you this blog post,” and she proceeded to read The Day I Pooped My Closet from Five Kids is A Lot of Kids. This is why I love Rae. She read this blog with conviction, and hit all of the important aspects of the blog with hilarious accuracy, which told me that this was not the first time she had shared this content with a pregnant friend.

So basically, if you pooped yourself while pregnant, it’s okay and you’re not alone. Maybe just invest in some brown pants?      

Hair

No, I’m not talking about the full, flowing locks that so pregnancy books claim that women receive during pregnancy. I’m talking about body hair, people. On your face, on your legs, on your arms, on your lady parts. Erry’where.

For example: sideburns. I love me a thick, luscious pair of sideburns. Someone who can rock sideburns? David Tennant. George Harrison. Elvis. Men in general.

Someone who does NOT want to rock sideburns? Me. Me, I don’t want them, please get them away from my face.

The worst part is that I’ve always had a little bit of peach fuzz on my face. No big deal. I’m a human, and peach fuzz is normal. But pregnancy has graced me with a lovely set of sideburns that not only go down the side of my face, but seem to connect to my hairline behind my ear, creating this lovely ring around my ear. So that’s nice. Honestly, nobody notices this ring around the ear but me, but it’s still a crazy pregnancy symptom that makes me laugh.

So what to do if you have excess hair that you’re not that fond of? Get yourself an appointment with an esthetician who is comfortable waxing pregnant ladies. Especially in the late 2nd and into the 3rd trimester. Because having to take breathing breaks while you’re shaving your legs is a little bit ridiculous.

Smells

Heightened sense of smell is a pretty common pregnancy symptom. But did you know that the way your body smells is also a side effect? Yup. Remember those body chemistry changes we talked about that cause increased discharge? Well they can also make your body smell a bit differently.

Case in point: I was relaxing on the couch with the dogs, and all of a sudden I got a whiff of something that smelled a bit like a mild cheese. And I was like, where is that coming from?!? At first I thought it was the dogs. I gave them each a hearty smell-down, much to their delight because they assumed I was playing “dog” with them, so they were ALL over that little scenario. But it wasn’t the dogs.

Maybe something spilled on the couch? Nope… nothing. What the heck… Omg… what if it’s me? It can’t be me. I shower or take a bath every day, there is no way I smell like dairy…

Ohhhhh wait a minute. Dairy. Breastmilk. Maybe my milk is coming in?

Yep. Not even a week later, I had leaky boobs. Which is another lovely side effect of pregnancy. But we’ll get into that in another post.

Changing body smells can be attributed to changing hormones, but it can also result from the food you are eating. What you put into your body can definitely change your body chemistry, especially if it is highly acidic or highly basic. And because you have a heightened sense of smell, you will be more sensitive to what your body smells like.

 

These are just a few symptoms that many women experience during pregnancy that require a decent sense of humor. I would love to know, what were your weirdest pregnancy symptoms that made you laugh?

 

As the founder of Mama Brilliance, Megan is an avid writer, reader, and self-professed coffee snob. You can find her in northern Minnesota with her family, exploring the great outdoors and dreaming of breakfast food.