A year and a half ago, I weighed 185 lbs and had not yet realized I struggled with insulin resistance or PCOS. After my nurse practitioner, Laurel Schaberg, gave me a dietary plan to follow and put me on Glumetza (a time-delay-release version of Metformin), I quickly dropped 20 lbs down to 165. By the books, a “normal” or “healthy” weight range for my age, height and frame is 135-155, and I was working on losing those last 10 lbs. When I found out I was pregnant in August 2010, I weighed about 160 lbs.
The First Trimester
The first trimester, I gained no weight. I had little appetite. When I was hungry, I ate mostly fresh fruits and other raw foods, and I was grateful for the ridiculously fresh produce we received weekly from our CSA farm share. I started reading Nina’s Plank’s book Real Food For Mother and Baby and took her advice to heart, adding whole-fat foods (especially dairy), continuing to drink raw milk and eat raw milk cheese, and adding as much fish to my diet as I could stand.
I had a lot of nausea, but quickly learned that it had NOTHING to do with my food intake. When I was nauseous, it was because my body was overwhelmed and needed to rest. I thought this signal was weird, but I got in the habit of napping in response to nausea, and it worked.
I did notice, however, that the only times I threw up were when I ate foods that were processed, less-natural or less-organic than others. This might not be the case for everyone, but I learned quickly to avoid the supermarket goods when at all possible and stick to raspberries and pastured eggs fresh from our local, organic farm.
The Second Trimester
The nausea passed and my belly started to pop out. What amazed me was I still wasn’t gaining weight! Not much, anyways. It wasn’t till December that my weight rose above 165 lbs.
I ate more but still stuck to raw, natural and organic foods when I could. Around week 28, I went through a phase where all I could eat was Greasy Cheeseburgers, shakes and fries from a local burger joint, Frisco Freeze. And pancakes…I could stomach pancakes. If I ate too much (or any) fruit, my acid reflux would be unbearable.
I cut out my multi-vitamin and just stuck to fish oil supplements and Glumetza. I even stopped taking the iron that my midwife recommended, as well as the calcium magnesium citrate supplement; they just aggravated my esophagus too much. I ate little food, because eating was painful. I stuck to tiny, frequent meals and focused on simple foods that would be easy for my stomach to break down: cheese, Ritz crackers, ice cream.
The Third Trimester
As I write this I am 37 weeks pregnant, and my current weight is about 187 lbs. And I am happy with the way I look. I’m a little nervous about baby’s weight (to be honest), because I know bigger babies can make for more difficult births; however, I’m not letting myself worry about it.
I hate it when people tell me I’m mega-huge or say things like, “You must have twins in there!” or “It has to be a boy, because boys are bigger.” Do you know what that honestly sounds like to me? One of the following:
- You’re calling me fat. And I know I’m not fat.
- You’re not only an idiot about what a pregnant lady should look like, but you have no clue how to be emotionally supportive about a potentially stressful situation.
- Who asked you? If I wanted to know how big I looked, I’d ask Mr. Wetzel. If you wouldn’t want non-pregnant me to ask you “Do I look fat in these jeans,” then don’t comment on the size of my baby belly. Unless it is to say I look amazing.
- Why should I listen to you? If I was concerned about how large I was getting, I’d ask my midwife for perspective. I pay her to be an expert.
I’m not really upset about what people say to me in particular; but it bothers me how tactless people can be with pregnant ladies. My family and friends are encouraging and I have a great support system, but many women don’t. I’m confident about my food choices and weight, but many women aren’t. Pregnant ladies don’t need criticism, they need loving support. (End ranting…for now).
I have been carrying baby Wetzel rather high, and I believe the extra pressure on my belly has made my acid reflux worse than what other mamas tend to experience. Because of this, I still don’t each much, but I try to snack often. I have no real food aversions or cravings. I’ve been eating a lot of tuna fish, grapes, cottage cheese, apples, cheddar, oranges, eggs and oatmeal, mostly because they are easy snacks and small meals.
We have 1-5 weeks left to go until the birth. I have little newborn diapers and onesies that we may or may not be able to use on our little squirt, depending on the baby’s timing and birth weight. Hopefully not long, now; and I’ll look forward to losing the pregnancy weight, especially with the help of breastfeeding!