It’s July, summer weather has finally arrived, I am sequestering myself in the air conditioning and sitting on my bouncy ball as I type this long overdue life update!
Click here to read my first trimester recap. I never shared an official second tri blog post but all you need to know is that I felt great, it was amazing, etc etc :)
“How are you feeling?” is the question everyone asks me, so in case you’re wondering…
I’ll be 35 weeks pregnant tomorrow, and physically I’m feeling way better than I expected at this point which has been a huge relief! I’ve been trying to get out for a walk almost every day but I can’t make it more than 1-2 miles without needing to pee, and I can’t workout AND go for a 2+ mile walk in one day or I will be too exhausted to function, but I’ve had several months to adjust to my new default state of SLOW so my lack of energy hasn’t really been bothering me.
My favorite part of pregnancy is feeling the baby move inside, allthetime. It started with tiny popcorn pops that felt like a muscle twitch in week 16/17, then stronger and stronger kicks and flutters, and now I can watch my entire belly distend as a little butt and legs shift from side to side. It’s so crazy and surreal!
So far I’ve escaped a lot of the typical pregnancy side effects like swelling and heart burn, but I’ve been dealing with low back pain since first trimester. You know the pinched nerve feeling when you just need to crack your spine? Except I can’t crack my spine and it never goes away. I’m sure this is due to my pelvis and joints relaxing, but I’ve been seeing a chiropractor since week 23ish which has helped a lot. It comes and goes, this week actually has been pretty good. I have to make sure to stay off my feet as much as possible. I’ve gained almost 25 pounds, most of which is concentrated in my belly, so that doesn’t help either.
It’s crazy how much your belly squishes your internal organs. I’m feeling it the most in my bladder, stomach, and lungs. I can’t eat a full meal or I will feel sick for hours, and I can’t take a full breath. I’ve read everywhere about feeling short of breath during pregnancy, but this is different than the winded feeling of the first trimester, when hormones and increased blood volume made me feel like walking up the stairs was a sprint. I’m used to feeling winded and out of breath. This feels like there’s someone constantly putting pressure on my chest so my lungs physically can’t expand. It’s the same feeling I used to get when I had an anxiety attack, which triggers my nervous system to respond by jacking up my heart rate and anxiety levels. Not helpful!
Speaking of anxiety, the anxiety is real.
I want to be honest about the mental and emotional challenges of pregnancy because no one really prepped me for this, and it’s easy to start to feel very isolated like something is wrong or you should just “get it together” and be grateful and happy to be pregnant.
I’ve been crying almost every day over the last couple weeks.
Sometimes I cry even though nothing in particular is wrong. It’s definitely hormone driven because it feels exactly like I used to feel when I had a PMDD episode back in college.
On top of the hormones, I’m extra sensitive and emotional in that all my emotions are amplified.
It’s like subconsciously my intuition can sense there’s a massive life change and transition happening, and even though I know I am supported, safe, and as prepared as possible for this change, it’s still completely overwhelming.
Overwhelmed is the best word I can use to describe it.
Overwhelmed by love, joy, gratitude, but also by fear of the unknown, stress about money and business, just all the feels.
It doesn’t help that I’m an Enneagram 4, which is the personality type notorious for being overly attached to my emotions and feelings. I FEEL IT ALL! The only way to process is to cry it out and let it pass.
It literally feels like a storm moving through me and I am always calm afterwards, I just have to surrender and not fight it or judge myself.
I’m learning how to fully embrace my emotional side and feel the feels without rationalizing them (and letting go of my fear that everyone I love will leave me if I exhibit weakness/sadness/neediness). Actually, the best thing we can do is fully embrace the feels and let the overwhelm overwhelm us. Emotions always pass, and I always feel calmer and more resilient afterwards.
Life is hard. Change is hard. It’s ok to take space to process it all.
Food and cravings
Still leaning towards sweet foods and dealing with a veggie aversion. Have been eating lots of ice cream and my go-to meal to make for myself for lunch if I feel blah is french toast.
A couple weeks ago we celebrated a baby shower with our Chicago friends, which was really fun to bring all our friend groups together and we were overwhelmed with love and generosity.
Since we don’t have immediate family nearby except Ben’s sister and brother in law (soooo grateful for that!), I’ve been more appreciative than ever of our friends and community we’ve built here in Chicago over the last 7 years.
Up until we started trying to get pregnant I was desperate to leave the city and move somewhere more outdoorsy with a slower pace of life, but I can’t see us uprooting anytime soon now that we are growing our family, and I’m actually getting really excited to raise a kid in Chicago. It’s going to be so different from my own childhood in the valleys and cornfields of central IL! Crazy how life evolves, sometimes you just have to go with it and bloom where you’re planted.
Business and work
The hardest part of pregnancy so far has been trying to figure out how to navigate my business and work to honor my limited capacity, allow me to focus on the pregnancy, but also pay the bills. As a solopreneur, I’m incredibly grateful I have the flexibility to make my own hours and take off as much time as I want to be home with our baby, but on the flip side it’s created a lot of stress around financial stability.
I’ve always worried about money -- it’s how deeper fears manifest for me. Kind of like how some women fixate on the number on the scale or numb out with emotional eating when their weight isn’t the real problem but rather the deeper feeling of being out of control or feeling shame and worthlessness.
I don’t know what life with a baby will look like but I know I’m going to be exhausted and preoccupied especially for the first few months so I’m trying to work ahead as much as I can.
I’ve wrapped up my 1:1 client work, and have created a couple new digital products to offer including my mindset trainings Fear & Flow and Let It Happen, and my signature digital program Wild Synchronicity. I’m extremely proud of myself for creating these, even if launching has been a little slow and discouraging so far.
My plan for this month is to batch create content and blog posts, and schedule a series of automated emails and newsletters so I can still add value and nurture my list, and hopefully make the transition back to work a little smoother once I’m ready to take on 1:1 life coaching clients again this fall. If you aren’t already subscribed to my email list, click here to sign up — I have lots of really great content on mindset, overcoming fears, self care, feminine energy, and navigating life and business as a spiritual entrepreneur lined up!
If you’re interested in working together, you can click here to join my waitlist if you’d like to know when I have client openings for life coaching again. I’m planning to raise my rates this winter, so if you want to lock in my current rates, the waitlist is the best place to be.
Gratefully, I’ve been able to build up a dependable residual income with my Beachbody business, so I know I’ll be able to at least contribute to bills and expenses without being “on” or actively working, but I haven’t been able to save up as much as I wanted and have a bit of standing credit card debt that’s annoying the heck out of me as my life coaching income disappears for now.
The most frustrating part is seeing and feeling my potential for earning, but not having the mental and emotional bandwidth to WORK! Which is triggering feelings of scarcity (I am not doing enough/earning enough/being enough//need to work harder/do more).
Slowing down physically is one thing, but slowing down mentally and energetically is tough.
The way hormones are affecting my brain chemistry, it feels like I’m constantly distracted by something else as if I’m multi-tasking (which makes sense because I am and it’s called 3D PRINTING A HUMAN), so it takes an enormous amount of energy to focus on one thing. Like writing this blog post… I’m letting the words flow stream of conscious style and am not even going to worry about editing it.
Well, Ben is home and it’s time to kick off the holiday weekend! I’m going to make these cupcakes tonight for our 4th of July cookout tomorrow. That’s another great thing about pregnancy — I’ve given myself full permission to enjoy all the not so healthy treats that I want, and have never felt this free in my body and around food!
Have an amazing weekend, and happy summer!