An unfiltered fire hose of flaming condemnation

Three months

I recently went through my archives to gauge just how bad my morning sickness was during my pregnancy with Leta, and after the fourth or fifth entry dedicated to puke I wanted to tell myself DUDE. I THINK WE GET IT. And so instead of going on for pages this time around I’m going to get it all out in a couple of paragraphs, and I’m not even going to include details on what cornbread stuffing tastes like laced with stomach acid (hint: really awful). Here goes:

Devout Mormons routinely fast for two to three meals on the first Sunday of every month, and this ritual is supposed to bring them closer to the Spirit and strengthen their testimony of the gospel. When I was in college my roommates and I used to go to a local restaurant called The Brick Oven on the Saturday night before fast Sunday and binge on the all-you-can-eat pasta buffet. I’m talking plate after plate of spaghetti, rigatoni, and fettucini, to the point that we wanted to throw up afterward. And the strategy worked, we wouldn’t be hungry for another 24 hours, but I think that kind of defeated the purpose. Fasting is supposed to be challenging, and here we were taking the easy way out. Oh my God, if that wasn’t a sign of things to come. Hey you, parent of a student at BYU… is your child stuffing themselves with carbs to make fasting easier? Yeah, four years from now they’re going to be really good at giving hand jobs. OUT OF WEDLOCK.

That horrible feeling I had after the fifth serving of pasta, the one where the noodles feel like they’re sitting at the top of my throat, where my pants are so tight that I can’t maneuver into a comfortable position, where I feel like I might hurl if I move my head too quickly, that is what I feel like ALL THE TIME. It never goes away, even if I haven’t had anything to eat in several hours. And my brain and gut are telling me that I’ll feel better if I just eat something, which is a lie. It’s after I eat that I feel the worst. Food tastes phenomenal, yes, but during the two hours after a meal I have to assume the fetal position and remain perfectly still. This is not convenient when life has to be lived, when dogs need to be fed and walked or certain daughters need baths and bedtime stories. Leta has grown used to the grimace on my face during her bedtime routine and more than once has voiced her opinion that “that baby isn’t being very nice.” Really? In that case your feelings won’t be hurt when I tell you that this is nothing! When you were in my womb I used to daydream about how much less painful it would be to shove a fishing hook through my upper lip.

All of this is to say that no, I do not like being pregnant. I am thankful that I am pregnant, so grateful and hopeful about the baby, thrilled about what it means for our family, but I do not enjoy what this does to my body. I cannot relate to women who say that they love this, that they wish they could be pregnant for years, that they have never felt more like a woman. I don’t know exactly why, but there are things about this that make me feel totally disenfranchised. I have no control over my body or appetite, and I cannot do anything to improve the way I feel. The nausea is constant, the weight gain already intimidating, and my face is a plate of what I like to call Pregnant Pizza: acne, fever blisters, discolorations, and unruly hair. Yes, hair where hair should not be growing. Read that again, teens: HAIR WHERE HAIR SHOULD NOT BE GROWING. Put on a damn condom already. Or better yet? HAND JOB.

Also, I did not start showing with Leta until I was almost six months along. And guess what? Yep. Not even kidding. I’m totally showing. In fact, I’ve already had to buy a ton of maternity pants. I’m actually really happy, ecstatic even about this because I feel like I can see the progress, whereas last time I had serious doubts I was growing a baby and not some deadly strain of the flu. Although lets hope that small bump I’m sporting right now is the baby and not all those salt and vinegar chips my brain told me was crucial to my survival. No really, it woke me up one night and said that if I didn’t eat that whole bag of chips both me and the baby would die. And I was all, brain, THAT IS AWESOME LOGIC.

  • Anonymous

    Ginger pops !!

  • sara-jayne

    I am one of the weird one that love being pregnant!!! Heck I have even been a surrogate mother 3 times!!! You would think that after pushing 5 babies out of my vahjayjay it would be enought for me….but it.make me sad to think that I will probably never be pregnant again.

  • EOMama

    You just described EXACTLY how I feel about being pregnant! That’s why I only did it once. Hope it gets better soon!

  • Sara Joy

    Ummmmm, happy for you, sad being pregnant makes you miserable.
    2 things to consider:
    a) after first baby all women show much sooner
    b) you lost 15lb first trimester w/ Leta – not healthy and a reason why you did not show….also not healthy.
    Showing is good.
    Commence to hating me: I am due 10 days before you and feel great. I am hungry, love food, have no further nausea, never threw up, and really love being pregnant. I just thought I would give you a reason for my lack of sympathy, I have no clue whatsoever what you are going through.
    But I heart your blog so I feel bad that you feel bad, does that help?

  • ShannonO

    I’m just starting my third trimester, and I’m thrilled/ecstatic about my little girl on the way – – – buuuuut, I’m with you completely. I DO NOT enjoy being pregnant. I don’t get the people who love it either. I’m really tired of the feeling that this is not my body anymore. I don’t think any woman should feel bad about admitting these very real feelings. It’s a weird paradigm to be so happy to have this child and so over being pregnant all at the same time.

  • Jeff

    I remember when I started reading your blog while you were pregnant with Leta. It reminded me of my mom’s stories of her pregnancies (I’m the oldest of 8) but your were much cooler. I hope things get better as you enter your second trimester.

  • One of my best friends feels the same way about being pregnant. She told me the exact same thing you said – she feels like she has lost control of her body. She absolutely loves being a mom. But has silently suffered through all of her pregnancies. She has had four children and is an amazing mother.

    And yes, GINGER. It may be hard to get a sliver of fresh ginger down, but oh. my. goodness. it works on the nausea. If you buy ginger snaps and ginger ale, make sure they actually have ginger in them. Maybe have Jon look at health food stores for the real stuff.

    No advice on the acne. Sorry.

    I keep you in my thoughts for continued healthy pregnancy and for a big, strong, healthy baby.

  • Definitely!! I feel your pain. I am 17 weeks and just now starting to feel “good,” meaning I have a bad day here and there, but not every day. I hope you feel better soon.

  • pat (long time reader)

    I cant wait till you start sharing pregnancy pics…..



  • I loved being pregnant.

    I lived off ZOFRAN this last pregnancy. It saved my life! It is the best script you can get for nausea and safe for the baby.

    I am trying to talk my husband into baby #5. Yes, you may smack some sense into me.


  • do you know what the sex of the baby is? chances are it’s a boy. for some reason everyone i know that’s had both a boy and a girl always show early with the boys and barely at all with the girls. so odd.

  • Ann

    For some reason I have not been able to comment lately.
    But congrats on the pregnancy! I am so happy for you and your family.
    I am sorry to hear how crappy you feel.
    I am not planning on having children–so I have no idea how crappy you feel. 🙁
    One of my friends described it as feeling hungover all the time. Uh, yea, no thanks.
    But regardless of the yuck part–yea for you and the family on the newest addition. I know this is something you guys have wanted for a long time. So right on!

  • Thanks for so perfectly writing about my thoughts on pregnancy… excited about a baby but hating losing control of my body.

  • AW

    Oh. My. God.

    Totally feel your pain and sympathize here. I am 29 weeks along with my first (yep, not even reading your pukey entries 4 years or so ago scared me off the baby thing) and I wholly believe any pregnant woman who loooooves being pregnant should be smacked. Hard. Now I understand why it costs so much to adopt- I’d pay that price to not have to go through this again for the next one. Except the kicks. I really do love being kicked. But yeah, everything else? Sucks.

  • I hate being pregnant too. I am 28 weeks pregnant with my third. I never ever want to be pregnant again. Three kids is way too many anyway.

    I was hospitalized at 16 weeks when I hadn’t kept anything down for 24 hours. I still feel nauseous sometimes.

    My acne is awful too.

    I have friends who can’t get pregnant so I feel like I shouldn’t complain but this pregnancy crap sucks.

    Congrats! Heh.

  • i am in the middle of my third month now and because i’m not as eloquent with my words as you are, i’ve just been bursting into tears whenever my husband asks why i’m curled in bed/barfing/laying on the floor of my bathroom.

    thank you for writing exactly how i feel! i’m fwding this post to him right now.

    all i’m saying is, my baby better be fucking awesome.

  • This post is sad but wonderful at the same time. It is all part of the cycle. I can see you rolling your eyes!

    Good luck for the rest of the term.

  • I want to preface my comment by saying that this is in no way judgmental and solely based on my own curiosity. I repeat: not judging anyone’s choices. But I’d be curious to hear your thoughts on adoption. I ask because you mention that you don’t like being pregnant and what it does to your body, which I’m sure is the same for many women, and you’ve been frank about your meds & postpartum depression. Personally, I have zero desire to ever endure pregnancy and childbirth, yet I am open to one day adopting a child. And I have friends who have had this debate with their partners – bio kid vs. adopted kid. I know it’s deeply personal, but I wonder if this is something you & Jon discussed.

  • MamaLana

    Try canned cling peaches in heavy syrup. They taste the same coming up. Good luck, Sweetie. We’re all pulling for you!

  • Noelle

    My due date is the same as yours. I was having a hard time explaining to my husband how I could be starving one minute and deathly ill the next. I am going to make him read your post because you explained it perfectly. I too am also a pizza face. This bothers me to no end, because no matter how much Proactive I slather on my face I wake up with a new zit. I keep telling myself that I wanted this baby, wanted it very badly, but your idea of hand jobs makes perfect sense to me now.

  • Anonymous

    Ohhhh, so painful! You poor thing; I so feel your anguish. I read this and it made me flash back to my pregnancies (4- yes, I’m insane) and the funky penny-like taste in my mouth that made me salivate so much I had to spit in a cup 18 hours a day.

    Thank Christ for vasectomies.

  • Girl, I totally hear you. Did NOT enjoy being pregnant either, and this last one, which resulted in a beautiful baby girl, was worse than the first. Pregnancy: such a beautiful thing, a beautiful IDEA, but gosh it’s hard on some of us. Can’t wait to see your photos!

  • Well Hell. Why is it that we are trying to get pregnant? No wine, getting fat, and also – no wine. Fuck this – I’m going celibate. Wait – I’m going HAND JOB.

  • Brutal. I know my sister started showing earlier for her second one too. I was all hopeful for you that this would be going well since your last post was so good!

    Now you have to teach Leta how to feed the dogs and be your own personal secretary – i.e. respond to emails, answer phone calls etc!

  • I hope you start feeling better as soon as possible. Good luck with the remaining months!

  • Sandra

    Disenfranchised. Thats a great way to describe pregnancy.
    If it makes you feel any better, I don’t get women who lovvvvvvve being pregnant either, but I get YOU. Especially at 12 weeks. Ugh.

  • geminijen_2000

    I doubt you remember, but I wrote you an email once, and while commenting on your beautiful letters to Leta, I admitted that I totally did not want kids. Well, that must have been before I started reading Sweet Juniper and Laid off Dad along with your blog. One simply can’t read all this awesome parenting bloggage without falling victim to it.

    So, yeah, I’m pregnant. 5 months pregnant. And I am soooo with you about the 1st trimester! It BLOWS! The 2nd is much better, but I still wouldn’t want to be pregnant for years.

    I hope you feel better in the weeks to come!

  • Two years later…I’m still wearing maternity sweats…not because I need to….but because they are so DAMN COMFY.

  • I agree. I cannot relate to any woman who says being pregnant feels so great and wonderful. I, too, am grateful to be having a healthy pregnancy so far, but being pregnant bites.

  • ZhaoShu

    dude. my MidWife gave me these really nifty bracelets “SeaBands” I wasnt even about to expect them to work… THEY DID! go to the drug store and get some “SeaBands”!!!!!!! I was sick for six months with my first pregnancy it was terrible… with the second pregnancy… I got the SEABANDS! and NO BARFING!!!!!
    thank me later 😉 teehee!

  • Deanna

    Thank GOD for all those puking posts from 2004!!! Because that’s what I would read on the weekends from July-October of this year, curled up on the bathroom floor crying because I wanted a baby but I didn’t know how I could get through another day of puking. It was the 24-hour seasick-with-a-champagne-hangover curse. I couldn’t even nibble Cheerios, I couldn’t leave the house without plastic bags in the car and extra shirts, I just sucked on ice cubes and wished I was dead.

    The worst was when I called my sister, who has a ten month old, to yell at her. “You never told me it was going to be like this!” Her reply? “Honey…how did you think I lost those ten pounds my first trimester? I DID tell you, you just didn’t understand.”

  • Jeri

    Heather, I’m just about 10 weeks, and I’m just hoping Jon didn’t say to you what my husband did about my morning sickness: “It’s all in your head”. The evil eye, along with the threat of no sex ever again and punching him in the stomach daily (so he knows what it’s like) pretty much stopped that from coming out of his mouth again.

    My body played a nasty trick on me. I woke up one morning about two weeks ago with absolutely no nausea or dizziness and thought maybe it was going to start tapering off. The next day I threw up. And the day after. And the day after that. And so on.

    I’m so glad I’m not alone.

  • From Week 1 to Week 40 with both girls, I begged my husband to kill me. I don’t know how I survived the flu for 80 weeks. What gene did those women get who “LOVE” being pregnant? Why didn’t I get it? What is retribution for pre-marital hand jobs? Labor is a joke. 24 hours of hell as compared to 40 weeks of unrelenting nausea. I can do anything for a day.

    Best of luck. Benadryl, Vitamin B6, refried beans on chips at 1 pm (the best advice I received from an OB…saved my life),

    Mother of 2, and DONE with pregnancy

  • UniquelyJessa

    oh mama, do i EVER feel your pain about the constant nausea! get your OB to write you a prescription for Zofran (i took 4mg every 6 hours) and you’ll be thanking me and wanting to buy stock in their company with all of your savings 🙂 the med is expensive (even with most insurances – I could only get 12 tablets at a time) but, again, well worth your sanity! best of luck!

  • Starting to feel like the odd duck here but I did love being pregnant. Could be because my hormones are already F’d up in the first place so pregnancy was when I felt my best. I admit that I did not have hardly any morning sickness and feel so bad for those that do. Don’t hate me – I developed pre-eclampsia and my son had 4 heart surgeries after he was born. I’d rather have barfed for 9 months than have a son with lifelong heart problems.

    I think you start showing sooner as your abdominal muscles have already been stretched once. It doesn’t mean you will get bigger.

    I hope in a few weeks your stomach will give you a well-deserved break and that you start feeling those little butterflies of baby movement that can help you relax and enjoy this pregnancy. I envy you, your sickness and all.

  • Natasha

    THANK YOU DOOCE!!!!! I am 12 weeks with my first child, and I am one of those women no one thought would ever have a family, I am not that maternal. Now to add more fuel to fire I HATE being pregnant. I have been feeling so shitty as a woman for hating being pregnant. All I hear about are women who LOVE being pregnant, like it is some out of body experience that makes us as women closer to a higher power. I call BULL SHIT!

    Give me a great bottle of red wine, a romantic dinner and the naughty, naughty activities that got me in this position anytime!

    I have always appreciated your honesty in your posts, but this is so close to home for me right now. When I found out I was pregnant, I actually started searching out your posts on being pregnant with Leta hoping for something to make me feel better. Thank you for sharing something that I have found so very difficult to voice to anyone but my partner and my closest girlfriend.

    How can you love being pregnant when you have to go to the hospital every 2 days for IV fluids because your allergic to your baby and have THE WORLDS WORST mornin sickness? All my guilt over this just made me feel worse. So while I am still laying in the fetal position hoping to God my most recent mandrin orange actually stays down, know that you actually MADE ME FEEL BETTER!

    Thank you!

  • Nikki

    You’re not alone. I’m currently about four months pregnant, the 2nd time around, and although I’m past the worst of the nausea and exhaustion I still don’t particularly enjoy being pregnant. It makes me feel like I’m missing out on some mother-earth thing. And like you, I’m showing so much earlier than I did before. At least this time I can look at my daughter and know that it’s all worth it.

  • Welcome to being pregnant with #2! I looked like I had a basketball with the 2nd one . . . I won’t venture to tell you how much he weighed, I don’t want to scare you!

    ps – you’ll be fine.

  • Marika

    I suffer from chronic nausea (not because I’m pregnant; it’s just a diabetic thing) and my doctor prescribed Zofran for me. It is a medication that is used on patients going through chemo. Also, it is safe for pregnant women because a friend of mine who is in her third trimester just started taking it and finally feels relief from all the nausea.
    Another trick I’ve tried is using massagers to distract me from the nausea. That sometimes seems to help too.
    Hope you feel better soon and congratulations!

  • Nice joke for you:
    When is the best time to get an epidural?
    Right after you find out your pregnant.

  • allison

    I’m sitting here 13 weeks pregnant, bawling at a St. Jude’s commercial and sipping a room-temp sprite (the only thing I can regularly keep down). I can’t wait until I really can eat anything I want. I have felt hungover to some degree or another since late September. Hopefully it doesn’t continue until June. Congrats to you and I can’t wait to go through the next few months reading your posts and sharing the experience. Except instead of a 4 year-old girl I have a crazy 18-month old to wrangle.

  • Kim

    Yep, I hear ya about the whole pregnancy thing. My body HATED being pregnant, especially my digestive tract. Good thing I only had two bambinos and they were eight years apart. It was torturous!!!!

  • The niffer

    Oh honey, I feel your pain. That was me for the first few months. Things were much better after I went on Diclectin – it’s a fun combo drug we have in Canada that’s a mix of vitamin B and some sleeping med used in the U.S.

    It made me functional enough to be vertical but the trade off is sleepiness.

  • Maggie

    Have you heard of/ tried these? They’re lollipops for pregnant women to help tame the nausea, and I think they also have lollipops for plain old nausea too. They were on unwrapped on the food network once, and if they work they sound amazing!

  • Pat

    Erm..I remember waking up out of a deep, sound sleep so sick I thought I would die…no food or drink, just sleeping! How can sleeping make you sick? But, Dude, it can. I so remember, like it was yesterday. but actually? 40 years ago! Some things you just never forget…babies are the bomb, pregnancy is for the birds!

  • I love your humor and your blog! And how inappropriate many would think this blog is!

  • Minda

    I am so happy for you!!! I’m looking forward to following this pregnancy as closely as I did the last one. Hubby gets to hear me read all of your blog posts aloud. We smile about them together. I hope the morning sickness passes soon!

  • I went through that too. Thrice. TORTURE. But just remember, in only 147 million years it will all be over! (Glad I’m not within pinching/kicking/projectile puking distance)

  • Jen

    Well, I’m glad to know at least that I am not the only person who turns into a Sasquatch when gestating. When I was pregnant with Babe I “accidentally” punched a seven-year-old in the face when he pointed out that I had shag carpeting where my belly should have been.

    It’s okay, though, because that kid was my brother. He disowned me for a little while but I bought back his affection with a set of fancy playing cards. Something tells me that strategy wouldn’t work so well with Leta, though.

  • I know what you are going through, and I felt the same way about pregnancy. Can we just get to the end already?!?! Sadly, I have had to relive this all through chemo over the past 6 months. It’s not fair – at least with pregnancy, there’s a prize at the end! 🙂

Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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