Joys and Jolts of a 2bMom
One of the many benefits of pregnancy is that you end up becoming an early riser. Whether you intend to or not, you will simply not sleep beyond 6:30am. The logical reason for that is that you will be hungry after 8–10 hours of fasting and your growling stomach in the first trimester, and your baby’s solid kicks in the second trimester will not let you just lay in bed for a little while longer. You will have to get up to get a bite or sip some milk. And for me there is no going back to sleep once I am up and have made a few rounds of the house.
The habit to get up early offers a plethora of benefits and you don’t need to read this post to be convinced. But for me the best part of waking up early is ‘my’ time. ‘My’ time which will soon become non existent and/or super-precious. And hence I spend my morning hours doing either of these three things — reading, writing or talking to people. All of these three are very passive acts. And give me a certain sense of calm before I start the day.
Not so very long ago I used to use my morning hours to do a weekly finance check, plan travel or plan weekly menus and other social engagements. Life changes! I no longer look forward to any active mind engaging work in the morning. Mornings are to soothe the brain that will soon start running at 30miles an hour and leave me exhausted.
One of the other changes I have noticed in the last few months is how less I care about things that are really not under my control. So if you are a worrier like me — get pregnant ☺ It is a one stop spa shop for cleansing your mind of all the things that should not be any of your business. And this cleanse applies to both professional and personal contexts. Double bonus. I still have bouts of anxiety at times, but it is much much less than what I was used to.
Of course when all these changes happen, you automatically become a better spouse. And even though your life partner is doing a lot of over time in terms of the home chores, he does not complain as much, and in my case does not complain at all. I wonder if I was always capable of this or if this lil munchkin inside of me is helping me be a better partner. The dishes in the sink don’t annoy me any more and neither does unfolded laundry. I get to cleaning up the mess when I feel like. And in some cases he gets to it even before I do.
You make checklists if you are prone to making them. But you outsource as many items as you can on that list. Of course I can clean the garage, but having the cleaners do it won’t make it less clean. So these days I basically conserve my energy for a limited few tasks — my work (well it offers a pay check), cooking a healthy meal, our daily walks and planning or rather orchestrating the events that need to get done before she arrives. Rest everything else comes second.
The pro list can run quite long. There are some rather unsettling things you also have to deal with when you are pregnant.
First and foremost — dealing with the changes in your attitude at work and that of the people around you. You might have been the tiger that just gets things done, but no one looks to you as that person anymore. They are all just trying to be courteous. And this can make you feel a little challenged. You think you can still do all that you were able to do four months back, but the reality is that you cannot. And people around you realize that even before you do. For me that is very unsettling. Of course their behavior should be appreciated and is something to be thankful for. But I have a hard time digesting that I am no longer the go-to person for getting things done. Especially things that require a massive force or relentless efforts.
I still try to take on a few of such tasks and drive them on my own and no one objects. But it is this shift of expectations that you need to deal with. More with yourself than with others.
Secondly, you tend to have a little less patience, thanks to the little less energy. People were the same around you, it is you who have changed. You are undergoing some chemical imbalances. If that makes the people around you a little less perfect in your view, then you need to adjust your view. As much as I understand that in concept, it is really difficult to put it into practice. At times you hear your thoughts and laugh — a common dialogue is — “If I can do this, why can’t they? They are not even pregnant.” Now you can say that is plainly mean and immature. And may be that’s what it is. But your lack of patience for inaction and incompetence sometimes makes you question your surroundings. And that can be unsettling.
And lastly, you have a nagging feeling about all the things that were left undone. The feeling fades over time and I have experienced it first hand and can attest that this is the easiest of the cons to handle. The good news is that the nagging feeling is replaced with that of anticipation of all things yet to be discovered.
Amongst the top things I felt that were left undone was a personal health goal I had created. Also some pending travel that I had planned that needs to now move out by years not months. And of course the biggest one was to get at least a few solid chapters of a book I have been intending to write ever since I figured that I like to write. All is not lost. Most of these tasks can be picked up at a later point, but I will be a different person then. And I won’t be able to avoid the influence my age and experiences will lend to my writing.
But like I said, there is just so much to learn. About child development, how they learn, how they grow, what can we do as parents, what to feed, what to say, what not to say, what to do in situations and above all how to make it all work without trying to be a super woman! These bright horizons subdue the streaks of lost hope that make their appearance from time to time.
This is the sum total of my learnings from the last few months. I have heard there are tougher times ahead.