As soon as I saw the positive pregnancy test, I knew it was coming. I am the person who always finds a way to get sick, so there was no way I would make it through the first trimester unscathed by the nonstop nausea that plagues so many moms-to-be. But, as someone who is prone to carsickness and experiences nausea as a thrilling side effect of migraines, I wasn’t worried about it because I’ve dealt with my share of queasiness.
Morning sickness, however, is a different ball game. It’s an entirely different sport actually. I never realized how much of it would be mental. Yes, there are certain tastes and smells that activate my gag reflex in 0.2 seconds. But there are plenty of times that I can simply be thinking about our weekly meal plan or writing out the grocery list, and it will send my stomach churning. (I eventually relegated all food-related duties to my husband around week 7 because my brain and belly just couldn’t handle it.)
Every mama and every pregnancy is different, so you unfortunately have to figure out what alleviates—or aggravates—your morning sickness through good, old-fashioned trial and error. For example, I learned during an ill-fated spaghetti dinner that garlic is a very bad thing right now. And what’s worse, my list of offending/acceptable foods (the latter is far shorter) is constantly changing. What sounds good one day might be a no-go the next. It’s riveting wondering what your digestive system will be able to handle on any given day.
Now, I’ve heard/read from many sources that morning sickness should fade away at the start of the second trimester, but I’m a few weeks in with nothing to show for it. I keep hoping this will be the day! until I quickly discover, no, it won’t. So I’d love to know, when did your nausea finally take a hike? Please, oh please, tell me it was right around week 16. I miss enjoying my food and not just tolerating it.
In case it helps someone out there, here are a few coping tricks that have worked for me …
-Eating in bed. My sweet husband brings me a box of dry cereal every morning, so I can have something to munch on before I get up and get ready. It makes all the difference, trust me.
-Ice cold water. If it isn’t frigid, it isn’t helping.
-Deep breathing exercises. They help distract my brain when I am fighting the urge to empty my stomach.
-A veritable stash of bland snacks. I have to have something in my stomach at all times, so that usually means I’m nibbling on food every couple hours.
-Medicine. My doctor gave me a prescription for a tiny dissolving pill that I can pop in a nausea emergency. These have saved me from several close calls, but they aren’t always enough to avoid tossing my cookies.