Ironically, pregnancy can feel lonely sometimes. Even though I am literally with another human at all times, I have experienced some really trying moments of feeling alone. I don’t think this is a bad thing, but something some of us simply deal with depending on how our pregnancies are going. For me, I have had a very easy pregnancy. I would still consider it easy, but the third trimester comes with unavoidable bodily complications that have started to drive me nuts! When I look around and realize I am the only one experiencing these symptoms, it sometimes makes me sad/overwhelmed I can’t talk to someone who can relate (or wants to listen to me cry.) Sometimes it just feels like it’s me and the bump. That’s it.
The other night I was hitting a brick wall. I could feel it coming and was bracing myself for what was about to happen. A few weeks prior I thought I was dealing with allergies for the first time (because apparently you are susceptible to everything while pregnant). I ignored these symptoms and a recommendation for a Z-Pak, and it quickly developed into bronchitis. The inflammation caused my ribcage to be extra-inflamed and made all sleeping positions pretty much unbearable. This started a long pattern of sleepless nights, even less than expected for the third trimester.
As Matt and I settled into our nightly routine, I started getting anxious to go to sleep. I knew there would be no relaxation or sleep, and I obviously had nothing positive left in my thought process. When the inflammation is bad, I usually have to stand up to experience relief. Sitting is the same as any sleeping position—it just doesn’t work. With a heavy heart and a sour perspective, I slow-walked over to our bed and just stood there. About 30 seconds later, Matt looks up at me confused and says, “Are you OK?” Naturally, this was the only question needed to start a flood of tears waiting to flow from my very exhausted eyes.
“I’m not trying to complain, but honestly I am just MISERABLE! I know that’s awful to say, but I am so, so miserable. I haven’t slept in I don’t know how long, and I am in so much pain. I know you can’t know how this feels—and you never will be able to—but I just feel lonely. I feel lonely experiencing something I truly cannot convey to you. I’m used to you being able to relate, and you just can’t! I know I am not going to be able to relax or sleep, and I am anxious to deal with it again!” (Me hitting said brick wall.)
After some more “Wahhh!” and “Poor me!” I came back down to earth and gained some perspective. Pregnancy prepares you for the unfathomable act of becoming someone’s parent. What I thought my limits were are no more. I will be stretched significantly farther than my thoughts can currently go, so this misery is making me stronger.
Motherhood makes you one bada$$, tougher-than-nails, top-human. It doesn’t leave room for weakness. Birth must be the most amazing thing we can do because the process of creating another person is so profound, yet trying. Thinking of everything that goes into growing this baby and the rollercoaster the mother experiences during pregnancy, gives evidence to motherhood basically equaling elite, VIP status. It’s honestly astonishing we can do this! With every sleepless night of discomfort and angst, I am pruning the branches of my identity that needed to be transformed for her. I believe my body is weeding out the parts of myself that are too needy. This is what I am telling myself to get through the last eight weeks.
Maybe parts of pregnancy are meant to be lonely because I am the only person who will be her mom. I can’t share that role with another person, and this experience has helped me realize the gift of being her one and only. Above all else, she is so worth it. That can go without saying, but I feel I really let it all out this week. Thank you for listening to my whine. I am human—but I am becoming a tougher one!