When I got married I knew how to part-write pretty well; I could analyze preludes and fugues; I could sightread about any piece of music that you could put in front of me. I could wash and wax a car until it gleamed; and that’s about all. (Notice I didn’t say anything about cooking, preparing food, knowing what a well-balanced meal was, etc.)
When I found out I was pregnant, I knew I would need some help. So I drove my husband’s little white truck to our little local library. There I checked out as many books as I could regarding pregnancy, went home, read them, and became extremely grossed out at the pictures.
At our first doctor’s appointment, the nurse went through a very specific list of foods and drugs that I could not eat and also a few items that I could take, just in moderation, or after so many weeks, and whatever.
Everyone I knew expressed their deep happiness over our coming baby. I got oohs and ahs and hugs and pats and well-wishes ’til I could not contain anymore.
But in all of this, I missed out on something very important. Either I failed to read it in the library books, or didn’t hear it in the doctor’s appointment. I definitely did not receive any advice from friends or family regarding it; perhaps they just didn’t understand how ignorant I was about it all.
But I learned. Oh, did I learn.
When you are pregnant, you have to eat.
There’s another little person in there, and they’re hungry, too. Even if you’re as sick as a dying goldfish, you have to eat.
Because if you don’t, your body will take whatever sustenance it has stored and give it to that new, sweet, deserving little person.
And that will leave you with nothing. And when your body has to run on nothing, it isn’t pretty.
Case and point:
With my first pregnancy, I was sick at night. About seven o’clock I would begin to feel just awful. The thought of eating would make me groan. Even lying down felt awful, and it would be late before I could get to sleep.
For this reason, it was very hard to wake up in the morning. I would stay in bed ’til the last possible minute and then rush to get ready to go teach piano lessons. Most mornings, I went without eating. (Remember the whole not knowing anything about food part? Well, I didn’t know at all how to stock a pantry, or even buy groceries; so most of the time there wasn’t even anything to eat in the house.) If I grabbed a granola bar or an apple, I thought I was doing good.
But then it came. The morning of the day that I would be humiliated…