Women are just bloody amazing.
The positives of pregnancy can be listed very quickly: No periods. Feeling like you have a superpower – supersonic smell. And seats on trams (though this will likely not kick in until your stomach is protruding so far that commuters can no longer ignore the possibility you’ve just had one too many Nutella donuts).
The reality is something like this…
Thanks to Hollywood, I expected morning sickness to be one quick spew (so the audience knew you were pregnant, of course), followed by glowing skin and partners running to Coles at all hours to buy craving-compliant food items.
But, having just emerged from the horror that is the first trimester, I was completely knocked for six by the severity and relentlessness that is morning sickness.
I was even more surprised by the realisation that women willingly experience this again after knowing what they’re in for. I was completely amazed by how many women are suffering through it in silence (not wanting to spill the beans before the end of the first tentative 12 weeks), just going about their lives – working, looking after kids, giving presentations, sitting through long meetings, presenting live TV – while dealing with the brutal symptoms of being pregnant.
When we broke the happy news to family, they eagerly asked, “Are you excited?” All I could muster was: “I just want to feel better.” For something allegedly ‘the most natural thing in the world’, why does it feel like something the size of a blueberry has hijacked my body and is slowly poisoning me?
And, unlike a regular illness, where you can openly talk about it and seek some compassion, during the first trimester – when symptoms of morning sickness are at an all-time high – convention is to keep the news to yourself due to the high risk of something going wrong.