A couple of months ago, I opened up a Wal-Mart brand pee test, put it in a cup of urine, and got a positive result. My period wasn’t even due yet. I tested because I was constipated. I am never constipated. It’s just not something that happens to me, ever. Some people think they might be pregnant because they feel little twinges, or get weird spotting, or feel pukey. Not me. I was constipated, for the first time in years. I had no idea that was just the opening salvo.
Apparently, pregnancy hormones make my entire digestive tract completely cease to function. For an entire month I was nauseous. And constipated. And the reflux– that’s extremely irritating. The nausea finally went away, but now… I can’t poop without help. I know you wanted to know that. Never before have I dedicated so much thought to my digestion. But after two straight days with no sign of a bowel movement (beyond the constant gas emission– also a new problem) things start getting really, really uncomfortable. That early pregnancy belly pooch? That’s not my baby. That’s everything I’ve eaten in the last three days. If you put your hand on my belly you might feel movement: it’s the gas.
Basically, though, if I left my guts to their own devices, I would gradually fill up with crap until I exploded. So every third evening, after hoping vainly for a bowel movement, I double up my dose of magnesium and spend the next morning in painful intestinal spasms. At least it works.
Meanwhile, I can’t eat within three hours of bedtime, or my esophagus rebels and I have to swallow that last bite of dinner ten or fifteen times.
I had seen mentions of “constipation” before on those cute lists of pregnancy symptoms. It never says “your digestive tract will become an inert bag with no lower outlet, and you’ll need your bowels mechanically cleaned out.” I feel this is withholding information dishonestly. People might reconsider the whole pregnancy thing if they knew the truth.
So… a travel blog wasn’t enough. There’s so much I want to say that doesn’t fit there, because nobody wants to read pregnancy gripes on a travel blog. Possibly nobody wants to read them here, either, but I think I will explode if I don’t gripe somewhere. Meanwhile, I’m three months pregnant and staying in a hostel. Home, insofar as home is a physical location, is on another continent, in another hemisphere, and it is summer there. I am starved for a little warmth and sunshine.
On the plus side, if we stay here long enough, nobody will throw me a baby shower. I hate baby showers. They bore me to tears, and there is so very little stuff one actually needs for a baby. Sure, there are things it’s nice to have. But… I recall the piles of useless crap everyone I know has accumulated at such events, that I would have to find a discreet way to get rid of… scented lotions and soaps and wipes that make me break out in rashes, bottles and pacifiers I don’t want to be tempted into using, diaper genies (good grief, could you possibly find a way to make more plastic trash, in a more mechanically awkward way?), Snuglis (yeah, I know, some people think they’re great, but I’m not a circus contortionist), bright plastic toys large and small to take up every square centimeter of space and pose a massive sanitary problem for years to come, tons of adorable clothes my kid won’t care about, but will probably fit into just long enough to urp/poop on (seriously, why get anything other than plain cotton jumpsuits?).
And that’s not even mentioning that all baby showers involve being surrounded by massive amounts of free sugar and pastry, neither of which I’m allowed to eat, but both of which I salivate and long for and try to sneak because even though I no longer eat them, it’s not like I don’t want them. Putting me in front of cookies and cupcakes is like giving a recovering crack addict a pipe and some rocks. Who would be so cruel? Right. Every nice church lady who’s ever thrown a baby shower, that’s who.
So as much as I miss home right now… maybe I can miss the shower as well?