Hey Nutrition Baby!

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One day, at the beginning of February, I was sitting in an armchair in my living room, with my eyes closed, thinking about how awful my apartment smelled. It was cold outside and all of our windows were closed, and I was finding the apartment smell stifling and overwhelmingly gross. From where I was sitting, I kept getting wafts of my husband’s beer, which smelled repulsive all the way from the other room.

Then, it suddenly dawned on me what the circumstances were the last time I found those particular smells to be so off-putting. My eyes flew open and I bolted out of the chair, told my husband I’d be right back, and ran down the street to pick up a pregnancy test. Half an hour and a quick wee later, there it was: that little blue line.

So we’ve got another baby on the way, and this one is scheduled to arrive in the middle of October!

In a crazy turn of events, my sister and sister-in-law are both also expecting, and are due the same week as I am. My mother is basically losing her mind, with three new grandchildren in three different countries scheduled to arrive at basically the same time. Summers at our family homestead are going to be a whole new kind of chaos!

In many ways I’ve been finding this pregnancy to be a lot tougher than the last. I’m a few years older, to start with, and am chasing after a highly active two-year-old who gives precisely zero f*cks that mom doesn’t feel well. I’m also self-employed now, and if I don’t work I don’t get paid. So while last time I basically slept through the first trimester, this time I had to tough it out.

I thought it was all going pretty well in the beginning, with mild nausea when I allowed myself to get too hungry and cravings for delightfully quirky foods like kimchi grilled cheese sandwiches. “Oh!” I thought to myself with tinkling laughter in my head, “I guess this will be the pregnancy where I feel great but eat lots of funny foods!”

Buuuut then I rounded the corner on the 7th week and the hormones kicked into high gear and woah, I had forgotten how much the first trimester sucks. Between being bone-crushingly tired and constantly hungry but far too nauseous to eat, it’s a time I’m glad to have behind me.

I don’t think the food aversions were as severe as last time, although I’m not sure I’ll ever recover my relationship with kimchi (I’ve tried, and sadly, no, not yet), rather this time was a general repulsion to basically everything. Which was grrrreat. I did fairly well with food I didn’t make myself, so I, lunch packing queen of the universe, ended up buying my lunch for weeks on end, because it was the only way I could get myself to eat.

Similarly, I could eat a pretty good dinner if Paul made it, but anything I made myself was fine on the first go around, and then beyond disgusting there ever after. Blah. Unless we are talking about bagels, which will always be my forever food.

New This Time

Although we covered pregnancy nutrition when I did my undergrad in nutrition, we didn’t touch it at all in my master’s degree, so it’s been quite some time since I’ve dug into the research. When I was pregnant with Niko, I was far too superstitious to do any reading, since that pregnancy was on the heels of a miscarriage. This time, however, I’m digging into the latest research and I’m excited to start sharing some of what I’m learning with you – particularly about how to optimize a vegetarian diet for pregnancy. You can expect those posts to start appearing in the coming weeks.

I also didn’t talk about my pregnancy a whole lot last time, nor did I ever write out my birth story – it somehow felt out of place here. Yet, I’m ravenous for pregnancy posts and birth stories in other places, so I’m wondering whether this time I should share more… how would you feel about that?

Lastly, there is the million dollar question, which is some version or other of, “do you know what kind of genitals your baby has?!” 

I have complicated feelings around having this information in the first place, but as it turned out it was kind of unavoidable. When I was pregnant with Niko they picked up a slight abnormality with his kidneys at the 20 week anatomy scan, which we now know is much more common in boys. At this scan, once again, the kidneys were noted as needing further monitoring, so that, along with the midwifery student saying, “Oh! I can see it!” when we got to *that* part of the scan is a pretty clear indication we’ve got another teeny peeny on our hands.

Knowing this makes me happy and sad at the same time. Thinking about two boys* running wild together makes me happy, yet simultaneously I’m mourning the loss of the girl I’ll never have. I had a girl’s name picked out, and really felt that my household could do with the balance, but alas, the universe has other plans. I truly do believe that my feminism is probably best served by raising good men, so this is ultimately a good thing. I just need a bit of time to say goodbye to my dreams of a girl; I’m just too damn old to do this again.

*Let’s note that not everyone who is born with a penis is a boy; I’m using binary terms for simplicity’s sake.

Mostly I’m just happy to welcome another sweet child into this chaotic, messy, frightening, wonderful world, and thankful for the privilege and opportunity to do so again. Not everyone is so lucky, and it’s not something I take for granted. I’ve had my own experience with pregnancy loss, and I know several people who yearn for a child or for a second child for whom it is simply not a possibility. I’m sending all the love and light to all of you.



 

Comments

  1. Yay!!!! Congratulations, Katie, Paul and Niko!!! Sending all the positive vibes (and energy) I can. I could only have one child, my precious Rachel. I had wanted about three, including a boy. But the fates decided otherwise. But we both know that whatever happens we just want health and happiness for our children, and all children. Lol the kimchi 😉😉 And your poor Mum. I am feeling for her dilemma. All best, Kellie

    • Thanks Kellie! I do know that your Rachel is something of a miracle, and of course, we’re always thankful for what we have. The universe does what it wants, and I have one beautiful boy already and I’m sure that two will be just wonderful!

  2. I can’t help but comment, because although I *never* comment on blogs (ok, maybe I have once before – I think it might have been yours that time too!), just yesterday I was searching for information about healthy pregnancy nutrition and came up, more-or-less, with a blank. So I am very grateful indeed to hear that you are planning to address this topic! And congratulations (and I totally identify with morning sickness kicking in at 7 weeks – after my last four pregnancies, where I felt nauseous just about from 5 weeks on the dot, I thought I might have got off lightly this time! ).

    • Hey Tamara, congrats on your pregnancy! I’ll definitely be doing some pregnancy nutrition posts in the coming weeks – hopefully you’ll find them helpful!

  3. I look forward to more posts about pregnancy nutrition and all that is involved! Our little one also had a rental anomaly identified at the detailed scan. It was quite stressful with so many unknowns… hopefully everything is well as Niko can show for that!

    Also, your mention of two boys made me thing of this blog post I read. https://cupofjo.com/2017/05/having-a-boy/

    Give yourself room to grieve not having a girl, but I think two boys will bring just as much joy to your family!

    • Hey Stella – yeah, the renal abnormalities are a bit stressful, and with Niko they had not resolved by birth so he was on antibiotics for a month and had a few follow-up scans as a newborn. But all was well by then, so it ended up not being a big deal, just a lot of appointments. Thanks for the Cup of Jo link – and you’re right about boys bringing joy. I’m looking forward to it!

  4. I’m so excited for you, I started following you after I read your previous pregnancy announcement and our micros are a few months apart so this is thrilling news!

  5. Looking forward to your veggie pregnancy posts…as I’m vegetarian and we’re thinking about trying for a little one. When you’re saying you’re too old “for this shit” I’m wondering about your age (since I’m 35😉).

    • I’m turning 40 in January… so squeezing this second one out juuuuuust before then. I had my first at 37 and this one will be a late 39. 35 is no big deal!

  6. Congratulations! As the mum of two teenage boys, I can live vicariously through your adventures with wee ones. I’m sure three new grandbabies in three different countries will be a challenge for your parents but how great it will be to have cousins the same age.

    I remembering the slight mourning of the girl I never had but soon forgot it when I met number 2 boy.

    I hope the rest of your pregnancy goes well and look forward to hearing about it.

    Cheers from Vancouver.

  7. Congratulations, Katie!! I loved reading your story and would love to hear more about your experiences. Even though I don’t always comment (I’d spend my entire day behind the computer if I commented on all of my favorite blogger’s posts-ha) I do follow along. Best wishes to you and your family!

  8. Congratulations, that is such exciting news! I always enjoy your blog, and am currently pregnant with twins (my first) so I look forward to any maternal nutrition/recipes that make their way to your blog. I’ve just been diagnosed with gestational diabetes too- which is requiring a lot of adjustments- so if it works to post suggestions for adjusting recipes, that would be super helpful for me, and hopefully for others too.

    • Hey Katie, congrats on your pregnancy! Twins – what a journey! I recommend you check out the book “Real Food for Gestational Diabetes” by Lily Nichols. She’s a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator who specialises in gestational diabetes, and her work is really great. She’s got recipes and meal plans and tips for adjusting your diet in there, you may find it really helpful.

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