Woah, cue the crankypants

Fair warning: random trains of thought crossings ahead. 

You guys. I’m starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. The last 36 hours have not been super awful. As of the time I’m writing this, I’ve left the house on four separate occasions today, and it’s only noon. Big fucking news.

fit pregnancy first trimester
Playing at the dog park. This counts as exercise, right?

I’m still nauseous, still taking naps.

pregnancy napping naps
This guy is always willing to take a nap with me.

But yesterday I introduced a new food (and a new color!) into my repertoire:

pregnancy first trimester diet
I couldn’t wait – had to take a bite before taking the picture. #ImmediateGratification

Avocado. One of my favorite foods pre-pregnancy; haven’t eaten it in two months. Until yesterday, when avocado toast with loads of salt was bomb.com.

I’m also starting to show. Not enough that the average stranger would notice, but I notice. It’s what a good friend of mine calls the awkward beer belly phase. I’m just thicker through the middle, with a little protuberance at the bottom.

I just entered my second trimester, according to some accounts. I just hit the 12 week mark. But pregnancy is 40 weeks, so I’m counting up until 13 as first trimester. Math, people. Just do it. That also gives me a few more days to really start feeling better so I can swing into *real* second trimester with tons of energy and joy.

Speaking of joy, that’s been the hardest part of the last couple days. I am so inexplicably and irredeemably cranky. My poor husband has been a champ putting up with it. I can barely stand to be around myself.

Also, we found out the sex this week. It makes all this business about growing a little person so much more real. No, I’m not telling yet. Soon.

Now to muster the energy to restock my avocado supply…

Benefits of not exercising

manduka yoga

It’s been 6 weeks since I did any kind of exercise, unless you count my one pathetic squat jump at Fitbloggin’ last weekend. Even though walking from my bedroom to my kitchen feels kind of like exercise, given all the huffing and catching my breath it inspires, it’s been pretty rough not feeling well enough to move around and sweat. I’ve always depended on exercise as a reliable way to brighten my mood, relieve stress, work through problems, and give me more energy. Not having access to the magical cure-all of a good sweat has been really hard, especially lately.

 

I watched Tangled with my godchildren last weekend, and I had a flash of solidarity with Rapunzel: I’m living in a high rise for the first time in my life, and I can’t help but feel I’m in my own little lonely tower. I’ve been feeling kind of isolated, disconnected from my community, my new city, and my favorite activities. I thought I had turned a corner last weekend, and was really hoping it would stick and that I’d start getting my life back, but I had a major relapse coming back home. So tired. So nauseous. And getting pretty down about this slide back into symptoms.

I’m doing my best to change my outlook, and muscle through this last week (hopefully?) of first-tri symptoms, focusing ever so hard on the light at the end of the tunnel. So I created a list of all the benefits of not exercising—AKA why it’s a GREAT thing to be a couch potato for two months:

  • Your pedicure lasts forever. Mine is a month old and, as long as you don’t look too close, it’s still completely passable.
  • You don’t have to wash your hair as often! I always try to stretch hair as long as possible between washings. Not sweating doubles the length of time I can go between. Here’s to half as much blowdrying!*
  • Way less laundry. No daily pile of sweaty workout clothes to deal with.
  • Way more time to get stuff done. I gained a ton of time moving here because I was no longer commuting 2+ hours / day. Now, I’ve recovered another 90 minutes to 2 hours (or more, when you count the blowdrying!) thanks to my not-leaving-the-house-ever situation.
  • All pajamas, all the time. My normal M.O. is to put on sweats immediately when I get home from work / wherever. I would always prefer to be in sweats than real clothes. Now I basically live in lounge clothes. Kind of embarrassing when I open the door for Instacart or package deliveries, but whatever, I’m pregnant.

 

* That’s a lie. I also have not blow dried my hair in about a month. Why bother, when it’s just me and Tigger, napping and lounging? 

First trimester vacations: keep your expectations low

I just got back from a glorious trip to Hawaii to visit my husband’s family. My sister in law moved to Maui a few years ago, and ever since the whole family has gone to visit every year. I know, I know, my life is rough.

alyse tree pose hawaii

I look forward to this trip every year. I’d never been to Hawaii before she moved there (thank you, S, a million times thank you!), and though I’d heard plenty about it, I had no idea just how magical a place it is. It’s home to one of my favorite beaches of all time, where the water is warm and crystal clear, the sand soft, and pretty little fishes frolic around. Swimming at that beach is about as close to heaven as I can imagine. And the place where the whole family gathers has a pool so deep I can revisit my childhood fantasies of being a mermaid, and spend plenty of time playing with my nieces and nephews.

prana digging

This year was a, ahem, different trip. Swimming is possibly one of my favorite activities, but this year in paradise, I spent more time watching Game of Thrones than I did in the ocean and pool combined. Out of the ten days I was there, I made it into the ocean exactly once, and it was pretty anticlimactic.

Here’s how it went down:

We got up nice and early (thanks, time zones!) and I actually felt almost normal. Minimal nausea, pretty good energy, so I knew I needed to take advantage. My husband drove me to my favorite beach, about 30 minutes from where we stay. Kind of a hike, but so, so worth it. We swam for about 20 minutes before I felt the familiar fatigue creeping in, and I had to go lay down on my towel. A few minutes, and most of a can of Pringles later (breakfast of champions!), I was so. hot, in a panicky, get me out of the sun kind of way. Normal Alyse is pretty sun-sensitive, but pregnant Alyse is downright pathetic.

pringles on the beach cropped

We got back in the car as I wrapped up that can of Pringles. Before we made it out of the parking lot, I was nodding off. You know that kind of falling asleep when you’re riding a train or a plane and you jerk yourself awake, over and over again, but you just can’t keep your eyes open? That happened the whole way back.

It was almost beyond me to rinse off the sand and the ocean before collapsing back into bed.

It was 8:30am.

And that was my best day. Most other days I spent doing my best to lie in the shade by the pool, then shuffling back to bed. There was at least one nap every day. Instead of fresh fish and juicy tropical fruits, I ate a lot of bread, crackers, string cheese, and chicken broth.

lap swimming hawaii

This is me pretending to swim laps, so I’d have something to post on Instagram during my trip. It’s one of two total times I actually got in the pool.

In a lot of ways, it didn’t feel like a vacation, and I told my husband I needed a tropical redo once I was back in action. But I will say, being there with family—who were so, so supportive and kind and understanding—was way better than being at home, where no one yet knew why I was so wiped out. My sister in law is a midwife, too, so I had the chance to ask all sorts of questions, and she brought me some supplements that are supposed to help with nausea. More on those in an upcoming post!

Like with everything else this trimester, vacation was all about adjusting my expectations. It’s really hard to admit that when 1pm rolls around I just need to nap, and it’s even harder to confess how I basically spent my tropical vacation, indoors, in bed, when I’d much rather be coming home a pruny, sunburned mess from too much time spent in the water.