We have now survived the second trimester and are headed straight into this Missouri summer for the third.  Just as everyone told me, the second trimester was a breeze.  Most days, I even forgot I was pregnant.  No nausea, no headaches, no aches or pains, no aversions to food, and for me, not even any crazy cravings.  However, there were still a few things I didn't fully expect.

Shopping is no longer fun.
I love shopping, so this whole needing a completely new wardrobe thing should have been fun, but has turned out to be a real downer.  First of all, there are so few places to even shop for maternity clothes.  And then, after you find those places, they have one rack (or less) in their maternity "department".  Sure, there's Motherhood Maternity, but I have found it to be overpriced for the quality, and somewhat out of style.  Also, why would you cram as much as possible into an extremely small space with teeny tiny aisles for a bunch of women with protruding bellies, when most of them are pushing a stroller?  And, if you are going to cram your little space with clothes, then carry all the sizes.  Every time I finally find something I like, they don't have it in my size...and they don't plan on getting it in stock, either.  So, I've resorted to doing a lot of online shopping...and returning.  Why make a dress for anyone, much less a pregnant woman, that you can completely see through?  And who knew pregnant women weren't allowed to wear white capri pants?  I started looking for that summer staple back in February.  No luck at all.  Motherhood Maternity finally got a pair in a few weeks ago, and they are exactly what I was looking for, but unless I want to go commando underneath, they're not going to work.  And what about skirts above the ankle?  We're hot!  Make some shorter skirts!  And while you're at it, make some in white!  And last but not least, as if trying on everything before you were six months pregnant wasn't exhausting enough...

You will pee when you sneeze.
I swore this was not going to happen to me, until it did.  I remember standing in front of the oven, working on dinner, when I sneezed and simultaneously peed.  It happened very early on in the second trimester, actually, so I thought I had a long road ahead of changing my underwear several times a day.  But, I started a prenatal fitness class which incorporates a lot of Kegels and pelvic floor exercises, and I swear it has worked.  I've sneezed, coughed, and laughed a lot since, and haven't peed again...yet.

Prenatal classes can help you meet other pregnant women.
But they won't if you're the only person in the class.  I signed up for a prenatal fitness class thinking it would be a fun way to stay fit during the last two trimesters and meet other pregnant women.  But, apparently no one else out here in the country wants to stay fit while they're pregnant.  It's great for me though, because now I basically just have a personal trainer every week.

You won't be able to breathe when you bend over.
I thought it would be the eighth or ninth month before this happened, but no.  I already dread tying my shoes or rolling up my jeans.  Haven't yet figured out how I'm going to put my new Jamberry nails on my toes tomorrow for my cousin's wedding.  I feel bad taking them into the nail salon and asking them to do it.

Everyone has an opinion.
And no one's opinion is the same.  One person says you've gotten "really chunky."  Another says you haven't gained any weight.  (I've gained thirteen pounds so far.)  One person thinks you should name your baby after a family member.  Another thinks you should name him after royalty.  One person says you MUST have the wipe warmer.  Another says it was a total waste.  But no matter what, women will share, which leads me to...

Pregnancy is the way women connect.
I can't believe that all of my adult life I have been an outcast.  I didn't realize until I was showing, that pregnancy will make you tons of friends.  Women that never would have talked to me before will approach me at the gas station and have my ear for ten minutes.  They have questions, they have answers, and of course, they have opinions.  Cliff's theory is that before you have kids, women think you will steal their men.  I just think it's a way for women to connect over something that only we can experience and something that consumes our lives completely.

You will have more energy.
But no matter how much energy you have, you won't get everything done.  We had planned to get the nursery completed while in the second trimester, but we didn't even get started on it until I was already in the third.  I already regret it...see the paragraph on not being able to breathe when you bend over.

Pregnancy brain is real.
I am so tired of being dumb.  I don't mean the time I was looking for my keys and they were in my hand.  I did that before I was pregnant.  I mean the time I paid for everything at the store, then walked off without it.  Or, the time I went to the wrong school for my brother-in-law's graduation.  Or the time I parked in Kansas City and then couldn't remember where I had left the car until we had walked around for 40 minutes.

Husbands and partners may put up with more than we do during pregnancy.
This whole experience may be even tougher for our support systems.  They put up with so much (see the paragraph on pregnancy brain).  Cliff is smart enough to say that he hasn't even noticed I'm cranky, that I haven't gained any weight, and that I don't keep him awake while I toss and turn at night.  He also jumps through hoops to try to accommodate me before I even have to request it.  He eats what I want to eat, he agrees to do anything and everything pregnancy and baby related, and pulls more than his weight in helping around the house.  I can't imagine what it would be like to put up with a real life Russian nesting doll for nine months, but he does it, and he does it with a smile on his face.

So, on to the third trimester, where I'm already freezing Cliff out of the house keeping the A/C at 64 degrees, getting new aches and pains daily, and struggling to sleep comfortably.  But, on the bright side, still no migraines, constipation, or heartburn!  Two months and counting...

By now, you probably know that I'm pregnant.  Said pregnancy explains my absence for the past three months.  I wish I could say I was gone because we were wintering in Spain or something, but no such luck.  Instead, I was hibernating, but not the good hibernating where you get to sleep a lot.  I mean hibernating where you are completely withdrawn from the rest of the world, barely able to move, and completely miserable.  Which now brings me to share with you all the things I learned about pregnancy in the first trimester.  Things that I'd heard about, but no one told me the nitty gritty details about.  Because if mothers around the world really shared this stuff, there would be no future generations; no sweet grandchildren for our parents to spoil.  Because even though we planned this baby, and are extremely excited about it, being in the throes of the first trimester made me wonder why anyone would ever choose to go through it again.  That, or just wish we were having twins and get it all over with at once.

You will vomit.  A lot.  All day long.
Sure, we all hear about morning sickness.  (And although it's the most common pregnancy symptom, for some reason I never believed I would suffer from it.)  But what I had heard was that you might be a little nauseous, but a few crackers would help.  Not even close.  I was sick all day long, every day.  For weeks on end.  And not just nauseated, but so nauseated that I was vomiting.  Like, please-let-me-have-the-flu-so-this-will-at-least-end-soon vomiting.  Crackers didn't help, ginger didn't help, eating before I got out of bed didn't help, exercise didn't help, motion sickness bands didn't help, eating small meals didn't help.  Nothing helped.  Except moving into the second trimester.  (And now a shout-out to Cliff who endlessly researched and came home with remedies for me to try.)

You won't want to do anything.
Of course I'd heard about how tired I would be.  But no one told me that I would be so exhausted (from doing absolutely nothing except lying around and vomiting) that I wouldn't want to get dressed.  Or shower.  Or leave the house.  Or eat.  Or even move.  And I especially didn't want to work.  (And now another shout-out to Cliff who worked, and worked, and worked--covering everything with the law firm while feeding himself, taking care of me, and keeping up the house.)

You'll un-crave things.
Obviously I'd heard about all of the insane cravings pregnant women have, but I didn't really know about the aversions to food.  I didn't want anything.  Nothing sounded appetizing.  (Except for two days when all I wanted was Chipotle Burrito Bowls and my sweet husband was buying them in bulk to keep on hand at the house.)  I could barely enter the kitchen without gagging.  I would think I wanted fruit, so we would run to the store and buy two of every fruit they had for sale, only to get home and I couldn't stand the thought of biting into it.  Then I'd think I wanted Jell-O, so Cliff would bring home an assortment of fourteen flavors of Jell-O only to find me unable to even look at the boxes.  I wanted salad, so we bought warehouse sizes at Sam's of all the fixings, just to let it rot in the fridge.  And onions, don't even get me started on onions.  Just the thought of them sent me straight to the bathroom for another bought of upchucking.  (And now yet another shout-out to Cliff for all the emergency runs to the grocery store.)

Your sense of smell will increase.
I think I'd heard something somewhere about this one.  But no one told me that it would be so strong that you could practically smell your neighbor cutting an onion.  And there I went, back to the bathroom.  (Yes, another shout-out to Cliff for ridding our house of every onion-containing product we'd ever purchased.)

You'll be bloated.
I was expecting to eventually grow out of my regular clothes, but not before we had even told anyone we were pregnant.  I was bloated so badly in the first trimester that I think I was bigger then than I am now.  (That's right, shout-out to Cliff for surprising me with a couple of sweet pairs of maternity pants early on, just so I could be comfortable.)

Your boobs will hurt.
Those bad boys won't just hurt, they'll practically render you unable to move.  Ouch.

It will get better.
It will and it has.  (Although I understand that some women are actually diagnosed with Hyperemesis Gravidarum and it doesn't get better--and my heart goes way, way out to them.)  Now that we've made it to the second trimester, I am practically symptom-less.  Some days I even forget that I'm pregnant.  
Except for all of that extra peeing.  And it's not just a regular urge to urinate.  I don't even know I have to go until I. Have. To. Go.  And by then, it's almost too late.
Except for having "pregnancy brain".  Which as it turns out is a real thing and not just something we get to use as an excuse.
Except for people now telling you how fat you are.  How you "look bigger."  Or "are getting chunky."  Which is extremely annoying when I haven't even gained a single pound yet.  Thankyouverymuch!  (And now a shout-out to the guy that installed our new furnace and A/C units this week and looked at my abdomen with bugged out eyes and exclaimed, "In there?  You have a baby in there?")
Except that we're learning that a lot of our doctor's appointments seem to be a waste.  We drive an hour each way for a ten minute check-in.  Boo.

But on the very bright side, I haven't been having migraines, I haven't had heartburn, and I haven't been constipated.  Plus, we got to have fun buying a crib and planning a gender reveal party for next week.  And so, I'm sure by the time this is all over, I will be easily persuaded to do it all over again.  Cliff's already working on talking me into the next one...