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Invasion of the Body Snatcher


Sometimes being pregnant feels like an alien abduction. Credit: Agent Smith

At some point during pregnancy, you realize you have no control. Sure, you can control how much you exercise. And how much you eat. And how much you try to rest. But there are many, many, many things that happen to your mind and body that you just can’t control. Like the resting thing? You can’t control that the baking bun in the oven decides that 11 p.m. is the ideal time for rising to the occasion and bouncing around in the uterus (Rising! Baking humor!). Or that no matter when you stop drinking fluids at night, you’ll still have to haul your belly out of bed for several bathroom stops.

Even though my body doesn’t belong to me any more, I do love being pregnant. It’s definitely an experience like no other, even if I sometimes feel like an adorable little alien has taken over my body. An adorable little alien who can control everything from my fashion choices to my trips to the store for the basics. A few of those surprising experiences? Let me share!

Fluffy Feet
My feet have really been hurting lately. And today especially. And when I looked down, I discovered I no longer had foot bones. While I haven’t graduated to cankles yet, my flip-flops are so tight they’re leaving imprints on my feet. So I’ll be doing some of the swell-reducing techniques my childbirth class teacher recommended: Epsom salt soaks, propping my feet up, and if all else fails and things get worse? Prenatal massage. (One mom-to-be in my class lost six pounds of water weight after a massage!) And because not all of the foot pain is swelling related, I’ve had to retire my flip-flops more often and wear tennis shoes for support. With shorts—the total dorky-mom look.

And On That Note…
Swelling hands. My wedding ring has been banished to the jewelry box. As the water weight increases, so did the size of my ring finger. In the mornings, my hands would be fine. But by the end of the day, I almost always had that tell-tale ring around my finger, portending my finger’s demise. I finally had to remove it altogether before it had to be removed for me. The hubby figures my belly is enough to state “I’m taken,” but I bought a cheap silver band so my hand doesn’t feel naked.

Out of Breath
When I turn to my husband and talk to him all breathily, it’s not because I feel frisky. It’s because I’m out of breath! Early on, I got out of breath when working out. Now, I get out of breath walking across a room or really, for no reason whatsoever. Apparently as every internal organ is being pushed upward and into my lungs, it’s becoming harder to breathe. Who would have guessed?

Pop Goes the…Belly Button
My belly button hasn’t officially become an outie yet, but it’s barely hanging on for dear life.

Second that Emotion
I’ve never been afraid of expressing my emotions. I cry in movies. And I cried every time I watched this Dan Jansen commercial during the Olympics. Every. Single. Time. But pregnancy is like cranking up the emotional dial several notches. I practically sob each time I watch A Baby Story. A harmless comment can cause an hour of emotional turmoil. And I could not get a grip on myself after watching Toy Story 3, a movie known to make grown men cry (I know, my husband was one of them).

And About Those Bathroom Breaks…
Those frequent bathroom breaks add up. I started noticing that no matter what jumbo pack of toilet paper I bought, we were always at the store getting more. I finally realized that those middle of the night bathroom stops don’t come cheap. I should have bought stock in Charmin.

What crazy side effects have you noticed during your pregnancy—fitness, food and otherwise? —Erin

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  1. Zarah says:

    I had to go to the bathroom ALL THE TIME when I was pregnant! I actually thought my ability to practically sleepwalk through my potty breaks might come in handy for late night feedings once the baby was born… unfortunately it didn’t quite work out that way. =)

  2. T'knesha says:

    You are absolutely right! I have all of these symptoms, except the swelling, with new ones being added to the list regularly. I do have back pain and trouble sleeping because of it. No one tells you these things BEFORE you get pregnant!

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