When I first found out I was pregnant in February, I had no idea that three weeks later, I would be getting ready for a stay-at-home order, stocking up on food and supplies, and being completely overwhelmed by the coronavirus news. It is mid-July now and my husband and I are still under a “voluntary stay-at-home order” for ourselves. This is definitely not how we (or anyone) envisioned this pregnancy happening. I thought it would be fun to do a first trimester Q & A to document this experience.
If this turns out well, I will do a second and third trimester update as well. I didn’t do any kind of poll to get these questions but I have been reading other blogs and it’s been fun to read about others’ experiences. I like the Q & A format, so here we go!
How did you tell your husband and parents?
I actually told Travis that I thought I was pregnant before taking a pregnancy test. My periods are very regular so when it didn’t come on the day it was supposed to, I suspected that this may be it. When it was the next day and still nothing, I told Travis that I think I may be pregnant, but I didn’t want to take a test until 5 days later when the test says it’s the most accurate. I had taken pregnancy tests early before because they say “up to 5 days before missed period!” but they were negative. I didn’t want to see a negative again, so I wanted to wait until it would for sure be positive.
Travis could not wait that long though. He went out and bought me a box of tests so I wouldn’t feel like I was wasting another test. I took it right then and it was positive! I went downstairs and showed him the test and we were both very excited!
It was pretty much the same with our parents. My mom happened to call me the day when my period was due and I told her it is late. She didn’t push me to take the test until I wanted to. I told my mother-in-law a couple of days later and she, like Travis, was going to go get me a box of tests because she couldn’t wait! Travis beat her to it though so we were able to share the happy news that same day with a photo of the pregnancy test.
Do you know the gender?
Yes! Travis could not wait until 20 weeks to find out the gender, so he wanted me to do the blood test to find out. We did that at about 9 weeks and got the results a week later. The test results were then confirmed at my 20-week ultrasound.
Travis was convinced that it was going to be a boy. He kept saying that all my symptoms were pointing towards a boy. We were even coming up with boy names and had settled on two to pick from.
Finally, when the doctor called with the results, I had the phone on speaker so Travis could hear, too. She said “Congratulations, you’re having a baby girl!” I started crying and Travis started freaking out. It was happy tears for me, though I did not care if it was going to be a boy or girl. Travis didn’t know what to do with the news though. It took a couple of weeks for it to settle in before he could really get excited about having a baby girl. But we’re all good now!
How did you tell the rest of your family and friends?
At twelve weeks, we did a Zoom call with our closest family members to share the happy news. Since we knew the gender already, we did a surprise gender reveal on the same call. We got a balloon, filled it up with pink confetti, and popped it on video. It felt nice to do something celebratory, even if it wasn’t in person.
For everyone else, we told over the phone, text, and then eventually social media.
How have you felt? Any first trimester symptoms?
I felt GREAT the first two weeks after finding out. No tiredness or nausea. Then came week 6 of pregnancy (when finding out I was pregnant, that was already at week 4 because of how pregnancy is tracked). I started not feeling good for short periods of time in the morning. Coffee started tasting bad, so even though I had switched to decaf, it tasted horrible and I had to stop drinking any coffee completely.
Then full-on nausea set in, but it was in the evenings instead of the mornings. I soon realized that if I ate dinner after a certain time, I would throw it up before bed and sometimes again in the morning. I had to eat by 5:30 or 6 pm, no later. After dinner, I was super exhausted. I wanted to go to bed by 7 but it was usually closer to 9.
The night nausea was the worst if I just sat around – at the computer or trying to read a book. So needless to say, I did not get much reading done during the first trimester. I had to keep myself busy and moving to not think about how awful I felt.
As for food aversions or cravings – I didn’t really crave anything other than watermelon, but I did have some aversions. Like I said before, I could not drink coffee. I also didn’t want anything sweet (which is very unusual for me) – no chocolate or ice cream, which I used to eat almost daily. I also could almost not keep down chicken or vegetables. Beef and carbs were the only things that tasted good.
How has the coronavirus affected your pregnancy?
Where do I even start…
First thing was that I started to work from home before any statewide stay-at-home orders were put in place. I am definitely grateful for a job that allows me to do this.
Travis’ job didn’t have any systems in place for working from home. They don’t even use laptops – they all have desktops (except for a few people). When the stay-at-home orders were going into place, it was a stressful time at his job. They ended up just sending everyone home with their desktop setups and shutting down the office. They had to pull together packets of information for how to log into their system from home – it was pretty confusing. I’m glad they were able to figure it out and Travis has been working from home ever since.
The doctor appointments are a big one – Travis has not been to any ultrasound appointments with me. The first ultrasound I had was at 9 weeks and Travis was very upset that he couldn’t come. I was disappointed that he was going to miss the first ultrasound of his first child. It was pretty amazing to see the baby so early and I wish he could’ve been there. The ultrasound photos are not the same experience as the live ultrasound.
Speaking of doctor appointments, the regular doctor office I usually go to was closed due to the virus to keep a minimal amount of locations open. I have had to go to the actual hospital for all my appointments so far, which made me nervous at first (but I realized it’s fine because the women’s center is separate from everything else). I also have had to wear a mask at every appointment, which I don’t mind, but definitely not what I would have expected to be doing a month earlier!
Family & Friends
We weren’t able to see any family for several months. The first trimester was kind of tough mentally, to be honest. I didn’t feel good physically, I could never leave the house, the news was only getting worse for the world, grocery stores were out of stock of so many things, and being isolated didn’t help.
Another thing that made it worse was not being able to tell anyone how crappy I felt because I couldn’t yet share that I was pregnant, so I kept to myself. I could only talk to Travis and our parents.
This got harder once the state started opening up and Travis and I stayed at home. We are happy with our decision to continue to stay home but it is hard for me, mentally speaking. Even though people think I’m quiet and an introvert, I’m actually more of an extrovert than you think. I need human interaction to re-charge and feel happy. Then I like alone time to relax.
By the time tax season ends in April every year, I’m VERY ready for warm weather and getting back to spending time with family and friends regularly. But that couldn’t happen this year. No family dinners, no baby item shopping, no in-person book club meetings, no friend gatherings, can’t even go out and enjoy the weather safely. Basically, I can’t celebrate and enjoy this pregnancy like I really want to.
I do have to say that I am grateful for our parents being so close to us and dropping off food, supplies, and baby items at our door. They have been very supportive and understanding of everything. They even brought me watermelons when I was craving them 🙂