Thursday, June 21, 2012

A Hot Mess!

Well it was the first official day of Summer and it was HOT. Record-breaking hot. 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit). Over 45 with the humidex. Normally I don't mind the heat. Last Summer I would have been in a bikini, heading to the beach. This year, I'm 8 1/2 months pregnant. The idea of wearing a bikini isn't too appealing. And long road trips aren't as fun now that I'm not driving my convertible (which incidentally I still have to sell! Please let me know if you're in the market for a nearly new Mazda MX5!) and my feet and legs are blown up like balloons making driving uncomfortable at all.

It's tough to stay cool. I don't have air-conditioning. Luckily I have a big tower oscillating fan. It is a life-saver. Last night I tried to sleep in the basement but I just lay there for hours so I finally went up to my bedroom, with my big fan next to me and the window open. Thankfully the air had cooled down somewhat and I got a little sleep.

It's not easy. I've heard the second trimester of pregnancy referred to as the honeymoon phase and it was pretty good overall. Well the honeymoon is over! I'm at 35 weeks and I'm a hot mess! The heat certainly isn't helping but it's not all I have to deal with these days. I've been overly emotional, weepy, irritable. I hung up on my mother a couple of times (she's a worrier and can be very negative. I just can't deal with it when I'm already stressed and going through enough.) I still have to sell my car which is a big stress. Finances are a stress. Impending labour is a stress. The biggest change in my life, the unknown is a stress. Not to mention what I'm going through physically.

Whether it's the pregnancy hormones, the stress or the heat or a combination of all three, my skin has been erupting in bumps like never before. I have a whole whack of new skin tags. I've read they are common in pregnancy and are harmless, they're just a nuisance. They have an over the counter solution you can use to remove them but I wouldn't be able to use it during pregnancy. So I'm stuck with them for now. On top of that I'm getting other sore bumps here and there. Pimples and blisters and boils, oh my! It's no wonder my skin gets irritated given that I'm overflowing with hormones, carrying so much extra weight, have developed new folds here and there, am sweating profusely. I have a painful bump on my inner thigh which gets rubbed every time I walk because my legs touch now. I tried to put cream and a bandage on it but it doesn't stay because of the rubbing and the sweat. The only way I can keep my legs from touching is to try to walk bowl-legged which of course looks ridiculous. There are fewer and fewer clothes that fit me now and some of the things I was anxious to wear I am now apparently allergic to. My skin is so itchy (particularly my chest) that I can't stand anything against it that isn't soft cotton. I'm wondering now if a lot of the tops have nylon in them and I'm allergic to nylon. Not all of them have labels to tell you what the fabric is. They never bothered me before but my skin is different now. It seems my skin, and me, are much more sensitive these days.

Sometimes it's just overwhelming. Yesterday I just went down to the basement, curled into a ball and cried. My cat, Ali came to comfort me. She was so sweet. She even let out the cutest little cry. It's a sound I've never heard her make before. It's like she understands. She purred and snuggled up next to me until I felt better. Sometimes a good cry is all you need. Just a release. And I know a lot of it is hormones. I did some reading online and everything I was going through (the stress and the tears and the bumps) was all normal. That helps somewhat.

I met a friend for brunch today which was nice and then did a bit of shopping. When I waddled into one store from outside the clerk shook her head and smiled at me "You poor thing. You must REALLY be feeling this heat." "Oh yeah. And I don't have A/C at home."

In another store the cashier said "Pregnant in the Summer? You didn't plan that very well!"
"Honey I didn't plan it at all! Biggest surprise of my life!"

I was walking back to my car and was worried I would spontaneously combust so I ducked into a furnishings store just to get a breath of refreshing conditioned air. I guess my breathing had them a little worried and they asked me to sit down. It was a relief to sink into a soft chair in the cool store. "Ahhhh." The problem was it was hard to get up afterward!

Carrying this belly around is the biggest challenge. I have a hard time getting up. It's almost impossible to bend over. I have trouble breathing. Climbing the stairs is rough. I swear there are more stairs now somehow. Baby Michelle is moving much more aggressively. It's kind of fun to watch but sometimes I worry she's going to put a fist through my belly or just walk out of me when she's kicks really low.

I've reached a number on the scale that I never thought I would see in my lifetime. I know it's only temporary but it is still rather surreal. I try to keep my sense of humour about it. I'm thinking of learning to speak whale. (If you don't know Dory from "Finding Nemo" this won't really make much sense to you!)

Speaking of whales, I love this little Whale nightlight I got from the people at work! I had been wanting to find a sea theme nightlight for the nursery and didn't have much luck. This one is just perfect!

I also love this pink stuffed whale they gave me. She even plays music. I can't resist when I see any cute fish themed items to add to the nursery. I'm glad that people were paying attention and found some more ocean treasures for me.

I'm happy with the nursery. I can't wait to have the furniture (when my brother in law brings the crib, rocker and change table in his truck) and see it finished.

Of course I was obsessed with the ocean long before I started decorating the nursery. My Mom asked if my dreams of living on a tropical island were gone after suffering through this heat. I said no of course not. I won't always be pregnant (actually I would venture to say that I will likely NEVER be pregnant again! This miracle baby is my first, last and only. Unless I meet the most incredible man on Earth and love him so much that I'm willing and/or insane enough to attempt it again if he had his heart set on a child. Did I really just say that?! OK. It is HIGHLY UNLIKELY. But if there's one thing I've learned about life it's that it surprises you. My experiences in the past nine months have all been highly unlikely and against the odds, but here I sit. You just never know!) Anyway, no Mom I am not giving up on the whole island thing. I would still love it. Besides if I lived right near the ocean, the heat wouldn't be such a problem. I'd jump in right now! I suppose I could still drive to the beach here though there isn't one all that close. I should hit the beach at least once while pregnant. Just for kicks. I have a tankini that accommodates the belly... 

I used the heat as an excuse to go for an Oreo McFlurry. I just couldn't resist. My Mom suggested I have popsicles on hand to cool me down. I found these ones that are supposed to have real fruit juice in them, so presumably a little healthier. They're pretty good. Very refreshing. I'm not a big fan of plain water but I have been drinking more ice water. I have to stay hydrated when I'm sweating so much. I like water with a little lemon. Lemonade is delicious but loaded with sugar of course. I do love my sugar but I try to get my fix through fruit. I ate a bunch of grapes, an apple and some cold, sweet local strawberries to die for. 

I had almost forgotten I had these gel slippers hiding in the back of the fridge. The cool only lasts a couple of minutes but it's a nice treat for my hot, bloated feet for those minutes let me tell you! With the weight of my belly on top of the heat, my feet are blown up more than ever. So puffy they look like they're going to explode. I almost laugh when I see them. They don't even look like my feet. They look like the feet of a 400 lb man! Even elevating them doesn't seem to help. (Not that I put my feet up too often. I should be taking it easy but I usually don't. I always think of something else I should do.)
Another trick to stay cool is keeping my pjs in the freezer. Like the gel slippers, the cold only lasts a minute but it's soooooo refreshing for those brief moments it's worth it.

I'm starting to get a little tired so I think I'll grab my jammies from the icebox and hit the hay! At least the air outside is a bit cooler so I should be all right with the window open and my biggest fan next to me (one of my exes referred to himself as my biggest fan. He was pretty cool. He oscillated too. But it was never easy to sleep next to him...) 

They're calling for a thunderstorm tomorrow. I sure hope we get it. The lawn and garden need a drink. It would be a relief for me too. I think I'd almost be tempted to dance in the rain at this point. Then it's supposed to cool down on the weekend and next week it's going to go down to 20 degrees Celsius (68 Fahrenheit) which will be a nice break.

Despite some of the physical (mental and emotional) discomforts, I know that I'm very lucky to have had a healthy pregnancy and that everything has been pretty normal throughout. Being pregnant is a unique adventure. It is a gift. After all, I'm carrying a baby in this big ole belly! How amazing is that? It's all going to be more than worth it once I hold my baby in my arms. I know that I can look forward to future Summers at the beach, my little girl and me. And I may even look back a little wistfully at the Summer when I was pregnant. Especially since it will (probably) never happen again.


  1. Oh those Del Monte pops take me back! I was addicted to them while pregnant!! Tho I was lucky enough to deliver in March so didn't have to bear the heat like you are. At least it's supposed to get cooler Friday!

  2. Yes I hope so! It was supposed to rain today but it's another scorcher, bright and sunny...Looking forward to it cooling down this weekend.