Bootcamp & the First Trimester

I am 13 WEEKS TODAY!!!!
Hello, 2nd Trimester! You are a sight for sore eyes!

I actually started feeling immensely better earlier this past week... 
I didn't realize how much better until I stopped to look around my house. 
The signs of the 2nd Tri are everywhere I turn...
folded laundry...
kitchen immaculate in the morning... 
(in normal life, I gag at the idea of leaving dirty dishes overnight... 
this pregnancy, it happened at least once a week. Ugh.)
...and I even inexplicably cleaned out my car! 
(I think it may have been the residence of a homeless person for the past few months.)
I went shopping and actually felt cute in some stuff! 
I posted my first outfit in the 
maternityshmernity series
over at Life in Mod.

Before I fully move on from the past miserable few months, 
I would like to leave a little Thank You note to the First Trimester. 
[yeah, you read that right.]

*  *  *  *  *  *  *  *
Dear First Tri,
You knocked me off my feet.
It was painfully disorienting.

I had to give up all of my control over my life right from the middle of Week 5, 
when I woke up without warning one day
after a steady streak of happily working out, cleaning, 
and trying eagerly to just keep up with the shadow of my non-preggas self...
and I could barely move from the nausea, aches, and exhaustion.

You were neither kind or gentle. Nor were you merciful.

But... sigh... you were effective.

I hated the instant zap of energy.
I hated being glued to the couch.
I hated looking down at my plate and resigning myself to the 
empty white carbs that were simply all I could stomach.
I especially hated how the slightest noise in the middle of the night
would wake me up immediately, 
completely alert,
no matter how desperately I needed sleep.

One particular 3 am, 
moaning silently into my pillow after just such a rude awakening,
I realized reluctantly
 that this is all training.

The exhaustion? The weird bodily limitations?
The necessity of letting things go 
and relinquishing the control I have gripped with pride for the last (almost) 2 years?...
the forced humility when looking around at my house,
and the need to just be happy spending a day snuggling and reading to my little boy on the couch?...

these are all things I have to be able to jump into when my little one is born.

I feel no affection for you though, First Tri, despite my 
begrudging gratitude upon realizing the point of the pain you have put me through...
you are as brutal as a drill sergeant.
And as effective. 
And as unlovable.

My little brother visited me yesterday on his way home 
from a sailing trip in the Virgin Islands with my uncle...
my brother is leaving in 2 days for Marine Bootcamp.

He was asking me about my pregnancy... 
I told him I was 13 weeks and so, finally better, safely in the second tri.
He chuckled a little, and said, "Hey! That's how long my bootcamp will be!
I'll have a first trimester with the Marines!"

The symbolism of this coincidence hit me over the head.

This season has been so tough on me... 
Each day, I have felt much 
how I imagine my brother will feel very shortly,
when his sergeant is yelling in his face,
when he is puking from physical exhaustion,
when he is laying in bed at night wondering why the heck he signed up for this...
I haven't felt "good" about myself. 
I haven't felt like I have made any progress.

I haven't been sure what the point of this has been,
nor why I freely signed up for it.

But you did it, First Tri.
I feel no attachment to you, I'm not sorry to see you go.
But I am grateful for how you whipped me into shape
for this baby,
against all my notions of what I thought I needed.

I am ready for night feedings.
I am ready for feeling nauseous if I haven't eaten in 2 hours 
while breastfeeding.
My pain and discomfort tolerance level has been significantly stretched 
over the past 3 months. 

It wasn't pretty,
but it sure will be. 

Dear First Tri, you are nobody's favorite. 
But you brought me the happy tears in my husband's eyes
when I made him run into the bathroom late at night 
to check for a double line...
and you brought me the pattering sound of my tiny bebe's heartbeat.

 And most importantly,
you brought me this quiet confidence at the end of it all,
that no matter what comes
I can handle it.

I've done my bootcamp.

So thank you.
And goodbye for a long, long time.

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