So after spending approximately 20 agonising and frustrating minutes in the toilet earlier it is safe to presume that pregnancy #2 is COMPLETELY different than the first and not easier as some might have you believe…
What I have been discovering over the last 7 months has devastated me in ways I had never imagined was possible – I feel, to put it mildly, disgusting and in no way, shape OR form, lady like.
Stephanie has well and truly, left the building!
Without further a-do, allow me to fill you in on all the gory details (this is not for the faint-hearted):
- Farting – I was always very proud of my ability to keep this natural bodily function completely private for the sake of my own dignity… in fact, my body was so well trained that I was able to disperse myself from any given circumstance to allow ample time to find the nearest toilet or “safe zone”. It was a talent to be proud of, for sure! That, along with being able to hold in my wee (personal best record pre-pregnancy – a whooping 4 hours!). Now, I fart constantly and what’s worse – I farted while trying to get my boot on in front of my parents for the first time in my entire adult life. I was mortified.
- Peeing – I’ve actually experienced the aftermath symptoms of a loosened vagina. Unexpectedly, mid-laugh through an innocent conversation between friends, that horrendous pre-warning dribble breezed through the gaps and all I can remember thinking was, “I’m far too early for my waters to break”. Note: Buy and wear sanitary pads they may save you from the jeans-patch humiliation that I had to endure that day.
- Sweating – I just have to sit and speak to someone I don’t know particularly well and it attacks me like a plague and what’s more, I’ve never smelt B.O like it! And it’s leaking from everywhere – my bum cheeks, my inner thighs, my arm pits, even my upper lip for heaven’s sake! I am oozing in the stuff on a daily basis to the point I am getting sweat rashes that are now preventing me from shaving!
- Drooling – this is one of a singer’s WORST nightmare! Extra saliva in the mouth causing me to drool and blow bubbles when talking to anyone! This is particularly off-putting when I am trying to teach an ambitious student how to sing. On a regular basis throughout the day, I find myself peeling saliva skin off the face of my teeth – really, it is as revolting as it sounds!
- Constipation – I suppose this one isn’t as much of a shock. I had this the first time round and even before becoming a mum, I was always a nightmare with bowel movement HOWEVER, never this bad! I could cry. Take today for a prime example – 20 minutes of frantically trying everything to release the pressure – singing (to relax my muscles and take my mind of pushing), breathing techniques (the same used in labour), squeezing, manipulating my ass cheeks in hope to break it up slightly… (last time I had pushed too much and I was caught half way – the only thing I could do was scoop it out with a spoon and a knife – no word of a lie there!!). In a nutshell – I’ve already felt I’ve pushed out a baby a couple of times through the back door… so pushing one through the front, seems completely unfair!
- Stress – the stress this time round is almost unbearable. I was told the other day that I shouldn’t feel guilty for feeling so overwhelmed at times, with a 2 year old toddler running around, there’s no wonder why I’m constantly shattered! So, forget about “nesting” and making the most of your bump. There’s no special treatment during your second pregnancy – your husband knows you’ve done it before, so this time should be a doddle and besides, you are already a mum now with responsibilities that cannot wait 9 months until you pop the next one. What am I trying to tell you? Don’t expect to have it easy – your life is about to get doubly stressful but, you’re not alone!
- Cramp – I don’t know why I never got this the first time round, perhaps it was to do with having the time to rest throughout the day when needed? But, man am I suffering this time. I think they call it “restless leg syndrome” – whatever it is, cramp usually attacks my lower legs and feet at stupid o’clock in the morning when I’ve innocently went to stretch. It’s nasty!
- Back ache/Pelvis Pain – this has been my main problem throughout this pregnancy. Crippling pain that can be brought on with even the most subtle of movements… I seize up when sitting any length of time in one position, there are audible cracks as I walk or bend, the dull aching that shoots from my tail bone up to my lower back – it’s really uncomfortable. I see the chiropractor once a month and walk daily to try and keep myself as active as possible but I’ve had to say Goodbye to any form of intensive work-out. I’m trying pre-natal yoga tomorrow night, so we’ll see how that goes!
- Indigestion – I often feel like my baby is digging right into my gut, making me feel squeamish and bloated. I would say that from month 5, I’ve lacked an appetite – having mini-sicks’ for at least a couple of hours after each meal tends to do that to you!
- Fear – I had assumed that after going through labour the first time round and coming out of it alive and, for the most part, in one piece the concept of doing it all again wouldn’t be too frightening. I was wrong. Having foresight this time round has me worried. I mean, last time I had refused to push after the head was out thinking that, it was done (he was 5lbs!). Now I’m thinking, the chances of having another tiny baby is slim and therefore, I’m in trouble. I never forgot the pain of 12 hours in labour felt like, not to mention the epidural, the birth itself and the placenta to follow – it was horrendous and, this time could be a lot worse… and also, I don’t think my what’s-it down there can really cope with another baby attack – I’ve aged about 10 years already!