September 1, 2022

All the First Trimester Symptoms

 I know and am glad that not every pregnant person experiences symptoms in the first trimester. I was not one of those people. In addition to the standard nausea and fatigue, I experienced almost all of the other symptoms I read about:

  • Night sweats: I’d wake up in the middle of the night drenched head to toe. It didn’t matter that we had two fans and multiple open windows. It was completely unrelated to heat, and had me waking up suddenly wondering if I had tuberculosis or menopause.

  • Metallic mouth taste: I had a persistent dry, chemical-like taste in my mouth. It lingered in the background at night, like I could sense it even when I was sleeping and dreaming.

  • Breast tenderness: Yes, this came along with the questionable benefit of enlarged breasts, but in no way did that compensate for the pain in the first few weeks. At times the ache woke me up and then I stayed up wondering what was the evolutionary benefit of all this pain.

  • Urinary frequency: One night, I counted that I peed nine times throughout the night. NINE. I have a small bladder so I’m used to getting up at night at least once or twice, but I didn’t anticipate such an increase in frequency so early on -- I learned again that hormones can cause these changes even before the physicality of pregnancy kicks in.

  • Constipation: I’ve always been grateful for my extremely regular digestive system, which quickly became erratic and seemingly sometimes non-existent during pregnancy. Luckily, I didn’t feel that uncomfortable from it; it was just inconvenient to not know when I would finally feel the urge.

  • Moodiness: As you can tell from all these posts.

  • Food aversion: People would ask me if I craved certain foods, and I wish that I did. But it was more like, what seems like it isn’t stomach-turning? Luckily I could eat most things once I started to eat, but I never wanted to eat anything. The most definitive example of this? I did not want to eat cheese. CHEESE. I once had a birthday party in which I asked each guest to bring a different type of cheese, and ate every single one of the thirty-odd cheeses that night, and finished all the leftovers within the week.

Were you pregnant and gloriously free from first trimester symptoms? I am very happy for you, and only ask that when someone tells you about theirs, you don’t say “Oh, I had none of that.” The other person might smile and tell you that’s great, but inside their hormones want to kill you.

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