POSTS WITH TAG: emotions

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    My sister, who happens to be my best friend, was the first person to find out I was pregnant -- after my husband, of course! She is an interior designer so we immediately started talking about what was most important -- the baby’s nursery. At the time, my husband and I were renting a one-bedroom apartment, but I was sure that in the course of nine months, we’d be living in the lap of luxury, and my baby would have her own room, if not her own wing in our new house.

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    Now that I am an experienced and somewhat jaded mother of three, I look back longingly to my very first pregnancy.

    Everything was so brand-new and exciting. My husband came with me to every single doctor’s appointment. He rubbed my belly. He rubbed my feet. We went eagerly and early to our childbirth classes. We both read books. Lots of books. I subscribed to parenting magazines, spent incredible amounts of time on the Internet, and welcomed advice from any woman who had ever had, wished to have, or would eventually have a baby. I shared sonograms, bare belly photos, and had three different baby showers thrown in my honor. I kept a journal of my deepest thoughts and feelings all the way through my pregnancy and beyond.

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    One of the funny side effects of pregnancy are strange dreams -- as in, bizarro "I've gotta call my husband/girlfriend/therapist and tell her this one pronto" dreams. Experts chalk this up to hormones, as well as your self-conscious mind acclimating to impending motherhood. Whatever you call them, they're bound to leave you scratching your head and wondering what they're about.

    All will be illuminated in the slideshow below on moms' common pregnancy dreams with explanations of what they mean from Lauri Loewenberg, Dr. Oz's resident dream expert and author of Dream On It, Unlock Your Dreams Change Your Life.

    More from The Stir: 5 of My Most Embarrassing Pregnancy Sex Dreams

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    When I was pregnant with my first baby, I went through a period where I felt lonely and slightly depressed. My husband, who is usually wonderful and beyond supportive, became so obsessed with providing for us financially that he slacked for a while in the emotions department. I was frightened to death about becoming a mom and beyond terrified that something bad was going to happen to my baby -- that she wouldn't be healthy. Many of my friends still hadn't become moms yet, so my emotions were lost on them. 

    But one person totally "got me." He was always there for me and would listen to every one of my mom concerns AND have an answer -- an actual answer that wasn't "stop worrying." Yep, I kind of, sort of developed a crush on my gynecologist.

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    The exact day I celebrated my third trimester, I also welcomed one of the more annoying pregnancy symptoms: insomnia. It's been one week and, without fail, each morning I spring up at almost exactly 4:30 a.m. from out of what feels like a deep and relaxing sleep. I listen to my husband breathe loudly for a few minutes. I switch positions a hundred times and tell myself it's all in my head and I can easily get back to sleep if I would just let myself calm down.

    Then I finally admit defeat, tiptoe out to the living room, and try to come up with something to do to fill up the next three hours. Instead of viewing insomnia as a curse, I've decided to see it with new eyes this time around and consider it a blessing

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    Dear formerly pregnant friends,

    I know this is way, way overdue on my part -- but I really owe you an apology for how I reacted when you excitedly told me you were going to be a mom. The minute "I'm pregnant!" came out of your mouth, I saw the look of pure joy and elation on your face. But what did I do instead of sharing in that happiness with you? I immediately started ranting and raving about how much your life was going to change -- and not necessarily for the better.

    And I wasn't trying to rain on your parade ... I swear. I simply thought giving you the brutally honest version of what to expect with a baby's arrival would spare you hours and hours of sitting on the couch crying and wondering why you weren't adjusting naturally to motherhood ... because that's what happened to me after I had my kid.

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    There's something about being pregnant on New Year's Eve and day that makes you feel more reflective. Blame it on sobriety, but it's actually really nice to spend the holiday with a clear mind that gives you the power to actually make resolutions you'll want to keep. I've never been one for promising myself I'll spend more time at the gym or eat less meat after January 1 -- but I'm all for resolutions that can slowly be achieved over the course of the year.

    And so I've vowed to make 2014 the year I focus solely on goals that will make me a better mom. Talk about pressure!

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    What is it about a woman's pregnant body that makes some people want to run for the hills when you're around and others spew every nonsensical thing they can possibly utter about bumps and bellies while in your presence?

    Actress Olivia Wilde said it best on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno this week. She joked that some people go as far as asking her if she wants to ride on a roller coaster or drink whiskey when the fact that she is pregnant is plain as day. I consider these folks the best of the bunch. They've chosen to lie remain silent about her expanding body rather than draw attention to it and risk humiliating themselves and hurting her feelings if, let's say, she's just bloated at the moment and not really pregnant. 

    But far too many people still consider it their duty to comment on your tummy when you're expecting. And there's just no need.

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    A 37-year-old woman from Brazil made headlines this week when doctors performed an emergency C-section on her only to realize she was not pregnant. The woman believed she was 41 weeks pregnant and was admitted to a hospital after complaining about abdominal pain. Not sure if her doctors gave her a sonogram or why they wouldn't after failing to detect a heartbeat, but they reportedly decided to perform a Cesarean because she looked pregnant and was experiencing some pregnancy symptoms, like nausea.

    This story sounds fishy, but the woman's actual condition isn't as odd as you may think. Docs say she had a "phantom" pregnancy, which is when women are so thoroughly convinced they are pregnant that they actually experience bodily changes that resemble those felt during pregnancy. 

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    There is rarely a day that goes by when we aren't bombarded with images of celebrities, models, or even fitness bloggers who gave birth three seconds ago and have already dropped all the weight and wiped out all evidence of stretch marks. Look, some women have secret tummy tucks and others are purely and truly genetically predispositioned to lose the weight quickly -- I don't feel there's anything wrong with their enviable selfies.

    But lest we forget that a great many women -- most, I'm going to say -- aren't going to have washboard abs one month postpartum, this amazing and brave blogger and mom of three is here to remind us that we shouldn't be ashamed of our real postpartum bodies. And she's willing to prove it by sharing photos of her own body 11 months after giving birth to twins. 

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