The First Trimester: Month by Month

July

This was the month that we got the exciting news. Naturally, July is already an exciting month since it is my birthday month. The trip to Florida was a nice break before the craziness of the school year starting. In this early phase of the pregnancy, Doug and I were so excited about all of the events to come. I was especially interested to see how I would feel as LBD grew. By the end of the month, I was beginning to get the tell-tale morning sickness. Unfortunately, it was not limited to the morning. I also began to get extremely tired. All. The. Time. I became a whiny lump on the couch each day after work. Thankfully, Doug was always such a good sport!

Fourth of July at the Whitewater center.
Fourth of July at the Whitewater center.
Shanoya came with us!
Shanoya came with us!

We visited the Learneds in Winston-Salem and I was faced with my first of many fibs to cover my pregnancy. I knew that it would seem weird to not drink in social settings. So when Andrew, a dear family friend, offered me a beer upon arrival, I politely declined and said that I was fighting a bit of a stomach bug.

August

This month was when we got to meet LBD via the ultra-sound. And we finally shared the big news with our families. I had told the Motleys while I was home in Florida. Ashley had become my pregnancy buddy, since she was a trimester ahead of me. She is also an avid reader and researcher of all things and we often compared notes about the wonders and woes of pregnancy and childbirth. She was also pretty up-to-date with what items were the best rated and were must haves for the baby registry.

The night that we shared the news!
The night that we shared the news!

We told our parents and families via Skype. We held up the ultra-sound picture and the rest was history. I think my mom’s reaction was the best. She just gasped and then screamed. There were certainly some happy tears too. And luckily my whole family was together when we shared the news. I could finally tell them that I had kept the biggest secret the whole time I was with them. Leah and Rachel both admitted that they were suspicious of my non-drinking.  Kathy was visiting Kristin and Adam in Alaska and they were equally surprised by our big news!

I felt sick for the majority of this month. I quickly learned that cooking would result in a loss of appetite and I could never cook anything quick enough for my growling stomach. Cooking meat especially made me gag. So I became a reluctant vegetarian, at least when it came to eating at home. Doug started doing more of the cooking, just so that I wouldn’t eat frozen burritos (thank you Meg Shamburger Pevarski) and Eggo waffles every night.

Stella's 2nd birthday--August 8, 2013
Stella’s 2nd birthday–August 8, 2013

My energy continued to dip and at the worst possible time. Everyone in Higher Education knows that August is full of late nights and working weekends. This is especially true for those working in Housing. As we entered our Student Staff Training, I tried my hardest to keep a smile on my face and a spring in my step, even when I was dying to wear sweatpants and lay on my couch. Some how I made it through all of the madness. I kept hoping that this wonderful second trimester, that everyone spoke of, would just hurry up. I was ready to feel better!  At this point, I wasn’t showing, but when you know that you are pregnant and the news isn’t public, you are constantly worried that someone will figure out your secret.

First bump picture: August 18th- week 10
First bump picture: August 18th- week 10
August 25-Week 11 Not feeling too hot..
August 25-Week 11
Not feeling too hot..

September

We traveled a bit this month. We took a weekend trip to Callaway Gardens to visit the Conbergs. Of course we shared the big news and it was wonderful talking with Lindsay, who is a mother of two. She had great tips and information to share. And I got lots of details about what labor was really like and what I could do to survive it!

Lindsay and I with Katie and Michael watching the hot air balloons.
Lindsay and I with Katie and Michael watching the hot air balloons.

That weekend was also the hot air balloon festival. It was beautiful seeing the majestic balloons take flight. Obviously, being pregnant has its limitations. I soon learned that those limitations included hot air balloon rides and high-ropes courses. Apparently those activities are not recommended for women who are pregnant. It was ok, I managed to handle the disappointment.

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Doug on the high-ropes course.
Doug on the high-ropes course.
Me and Doug :)
Me and Doug 🙂
Over a lake…glad I missed this!
Over a lake…glad I missed this!
Yup…he's all mine!
Yup…he’s all mine!

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While on this visit, we received the sad news that my Grandfather, whose health had been declining, had passed away. Sadly, we cut our trip short and headed back to North Carolina so we could catch a flight to Chicago. It was a bittersweet visit as funerals often are. Seeing family come together to celebrate the life of a loved one is such an honor and a joy. But with the sadness of a loss, it isn’t always easy to have a positive perspective. I had grown closer to my Grandfather after my Grandmother passed away in 2011. He wasn’t much for technology but we emailed frequently. It was always so cathartic to write those long email updates. And in response I would receive only a few lines and usually a joke about not needing white-out like he would have used on a type-writer. Below are a few pictures that were posted at the ceremony.

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Cubs fan for life.

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On the trip we were able to share the exciting news with my Dad’s family in person. It was so wonderful to see their excitement. I love staying with my Aunt Joni and Uncle John. Their home is like my home away from home. My Aunt Joni is the queen hostess and she invited Doug’s family to come visit one afternoon, in the midst of all of the funeral arrangements, visitors, and all. It was nice to share our excitement with them in person and to have both of our families together for the first time since our wedding. We skyped with my Grandma and my Godparents. I think my Uncle Nick’s reaction was the best. He was in complete and utter shock…I love doing that to him!

The whole family..not sure everyone was ready for the picture.
The whole family..not sure everyone was ready for the picture.
LBD!
LBD!

This trip was the first time that I shopped for baby clothes. We were on the hunt for gender neutral baby shoes for our pregnancy announcement photo. This seemly simple task was actually much harder than we anticipated. Luckily my Aunt Joni is also a master shopper and we finally found a pair and a few other cute onesies, too!

Clay Matthews!!
Clay Matthews!!

It was special to share so much time with my sisters and parents so soon after our announcement. Rachel was in a class about pregnancy and motherhood and she knew more about what to expect than I did! It was fun sharing all of the strange new feelings and talking about all of the exciting events to come.

This month we got to hear the heartbeat. This was another moment of sheer wonder and awe. It is just so hard to believe that your child is growing inside of you. It all just added to the anticipation.

I was still able to wear my regular clothes this month, but things were beginning to get a bit tight. I continued to be paranoid about people knowing that I was pregnant. I finally told all of my colleagues in RLO and they were all so excited. When you see the same people every day, it is such a relief when you don’t have to hide anything any more. Plus, many of them were also parents and grandparents so they offered support and insight that was incredibly helpful.

Our announcement!
Our announcement!

At the end of the month we had a great visit with Meg and Brendan. I soon realized how hard it would be to not drink for the rest of the pregnancy. Now that I was finally feeling better and beer sounded appealing, it was only fitting that all of the wonderful fall pumpkin beers were just on tap, just taunting me. It was ok in the end. I found San Pelligrino and Izzy sodas to fill the void while socializing.

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We also took a road trip to Seaside, Florida for Matt and Sarah’s wedding. It was a longer drive that we expected, and we picked up Rachel on our way. We stayed with Ashley and Jamie and enjoyed the cute little beach town. The wedding was beautiful and the reception was a blast. We danced the night away. On the trip back, we blew out a tire. We were so lucky because we literally rolled in to a Walmart with an auto-shop about 15 minutes before they were about to close. It was Sunday evening in the middle of Georgia…we would have been stranded!


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I finally gave into the tricky task of finding maternity clothes. I had bought some while we were in Chicago, but I hit gold when I discovered Old Navy’s selection. Being the wonderful on-line shopper that I am, I created a wardrobe that would get me through the pregnancy. Poor Doug! As if I needed a reason to shop!

September 1st- week 12
September 1st- week 12
September 8th-week 13
September 8th-week 13
September 13th- week 14 Wearing my last pair of jeans that still fit. Thank you low rise!
September 13th- week 14
Wearing my last pair of jeans that still fit. Thank you low rise!
September 20th- week 15
September 20th- week 15
September 30th- week 16
September 30th- week 16

With Love,

From Me to You

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