• Whitney

Uncharted Waters

On April 1st, yes, April Fool's Day, my husband and I decided to take a pregnancy test. I had been feeling extremely emotional, crampy, fatigued...Pretty much all normal PMS symptoms, but I had been feeling that way for over two weeks. As soon as the test was even started, there was a plus sign in the window. Still, I waited 3 minutes and checked again. Still positive. I read that morning tests are the most accurate and decided to test again the following day... Still pregnant.

As I started to think about when we could have conceived, I began thinking that maybe I've had symptoms for a while that I wasn't paying attention to. When we left Vietnam, I couldn't smell a noodle without gagging. Isn't that weird? I love noodles, but now they make me want to vom. And since we returned from China, I have barely been able to leave bed. I thought it was jet-lag, but I've never really had that before. Also, my weight has increased, I cry randomly, and I haven't had a full night of sleep in weeks.

Now that I'm paying attention, I have noticed a few changes that I don't recognize in myself. I went to get a pedicure and my toes were ticklish. I've never had ticklish feet. I've been craving fat. I want avocados, vegan mayonnaise, olive oil, & vegan butter. Fat everything! I'm also experiencing really intense emotions... Mostly crying, but I also had a massive stress moment at the restaurant yesterday and I felt my abdomen tighten, which makes me think that working in this industry may not be a good idea for the pregnancy. And for the first time in my life, I have little bumps on my forehead. Not exactly zits, but they're noticeable to me. I have never had blemishes on my forehead.

My husband, Ian and I are both in our 30s and I've been on birth control for most of my adult life. We have extremely stressful lives and figured that going off of birth control was a good idea if we ever wanted to have a baby, because we knew it wouldn't happen instantly. We made this decision in December of 2018. Oddly, just a couple days before we took the pregnancy test, Ian said to me, "Are you concerned that we aren't pregnant yet? Do you think I should get tested?" and I assured him that I did not want him to get tested because stress only makes it more difficult to get pregnant and we weren't in any hurry! Of course, in hindsight, we were already pregnant when he asked!

I definitely have some concerns because we haven't been living like we're trying to have a baby. I've been drinking coffee and alcohol, not taking pre-natal vitamins or folic acid... Hindsight is always 20/20. I spoke with a nurse who reassured me because the baby is evidently in a "yolk" before the placenta is completed and that would protect it from any of my wrongdoings. Still, every day I think I'm going to just start my period and life will go back to normal. It just doesn't feel real yet.

We are planning on having a completely vegan pregnancy and baby. I haven't experienced any morning sickness yet and I read that some of this could be attributed to my vegan lifestyle, but that could totally be vegan propaganda too. I do realize that by me even having a baby, many vegans will consider me "not vegan." You can't win them all! I will say that, looking over the foods you can't eat while pregnant has only made me feel more confident in being vegan because everything I eat is fine! Other than too much coffee and booze...

I plan to be as transparent as possible here. I have never been pregnant before and this is definitely a huge learning experience for me. If you have any questions, comments, helpful advice, please share them!

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