Pregnancy: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (From Someone Who's Carrying Twins)
Style MBA is a lifestyle blog on the business of fashion, beauty, décor, and travel, created by Sara Azani. An MBA graduate with a background in marketing and business, Sara couples her business acumen with a love for fashion and design. Her mission is to share rare finds with her readers to make fashion both aspirational and attainable. She resides in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., but travels the globe (and often to NYC) to help curate looks from mainstream fashion brands to the small upstart boutique. Sara recently married in Napa, and her husband, a CEO of an agency that represents Grammy Award–winning recording artists, shares her love for travel and food. You can read more about Sara’s journey to blogging full-time on Style MBA.
It’s hard to believe today marks thirty-five weeks into my pregnancy. I’m so thankful to have made it this far, especially since there’s always the risk of pre-term labor with twins, along with other complications that come with a higher-risk pregnancy. I’ve tried to share my pregnancy journey (last post here) with you and thought it would be fun to share some of the good, the bad, and the ugly, as I’m only a few short weeks away from finally meeting these cuties.
So let’s first start with the good. When you’re ready, there’s no greater happiness than finding out you’re pregnant (well, maybe finding a great Chanel sample sale). It marks a major milestone in your life and sets you on a new course into parenthood. Once you’re able to announce it publicly, you witness the immeasurable joy that it brings to your family. For me, it was an even greater surprise to find out that we were having two (perhaps more for my husband who almost fainted in the doctor’s office upon hearing the news).
Once settling into the news about your pregnancy, it’s time to begin preparations, which include things like getting the right nutrition, vitamins, and preparing your “nest.” Nutrition plays a critical part of your life, as you’re eating for two (in my case, three!). While you hear stories that pregnant women can indulge in any possible food, your doctor will monitor your weight and also encourage you to stick to foods that are nutritious. Remember, anything you eat, you baby consumes as well. But you can still indulge, and anybody who knows me, knows that I love to eat. I’ve always been a healthy eater, and the first few months of my pregnancy I craved fruit. After my first trimester, cravings for fruit were replaced by fries and chicken nuggets (I’m craving them right now). And blow pops. I bought bags of blow pops. In short, you want to be able to enjoy your pregnancy and eat the foods you (and your little one) crave, but also try to ensure that you’re getting the right nutrition and vitamins by eating foods that are fiber-rich, high in protein, and good fats.
Many people talk about that pregnancy “glow,” and it’s a real thing. My skin was blotchy in the first few weeks, and that’s normal because your hormones are a bit all over the place. But once your body settles into your pregnancy, you will start seeing your skin radiate and indeed glow. I was able to go makeup-free and enjoy that natural summer glow.
Good Hair Don’t Care:
It’s all about the hair. I had to go on a break from my stylist and colorist because I was told I couldn’t highlight or color my hair (I miss you, Cherin!). But don’t be too worried because thanks to prenatal vitamins and folic acid, your hair takes on a new hue and grows fast and comes out full and luscious. If I could only bottle pregnancy hair.
Nest is Best:
You hear about nesting before your baby arrives, and it’s a thing. Our plans to nest took a detour when our place was flooded and almost everything we owned suffered irreparable damage. We had bought a house a month prior and were readying for a move, so there was upside as we now didn’t have anything to move. We were also in the middle of a major home renovation. So to recap—flood, damage, home renovation, big move, no place to stay, pregnant with twins. It was a challenging time, to say the least, but things looked up when our representative from Allstate Insurance called to tell me that they were sending me a check to purchase all new furniture, electronic equipment, and material for my home. Hello, Restoration Hardware (more on that in an upcoming post). Flooding does have an upside.
The Bad and The Ugly
Yes, Us Weekly may create the impression that all pregnant women are fashionable, impervious to the challenges around pregnancy, and spend their days shuttling to coffee shops in a great pair of sunglasses. One could only wish. There are a lot of challenges, especially for moms of multiples.
First, your skin can change a lot. In the beginning, I would get random blemishes or blotchy skin. That, coupled with strange things happening to your body doesn’t make you feel particularly confident or even sexy. And so I changed up my skin regimen to only include eco-friendly beauty products, and that helped tremendously (Jessica Alba, you’re on to something with Honest Beauty). Along with skin issues, I became veiny. I noticed more prominent veins in my neck and décolletage.
Morning and Night Sickness:
In the first trimester, I also had severe nausea. I’m not sure why they call it morning sickness, as I was afflicted at night. Along with that, I definitely started feeling lower energy. My twins were sucking up all my energy, and some days, my body felt as if I had just run a marathon. I needed sleep, and I wasn’t able to do things I enjoyed like cooking dinner or seeing friends. Though I rebounded in my second trimester, the other thing I didn’t anticipate is the sleep deprivation. As my belly grew larger, it became more and more difficult to get a good night’s sleep. I guess perhaps this is Mother’s Nature way to prepare me for the forthcoming sleepless night’s when the twins arrive. I’m still grappling with this because I love sleeping, and I’ve always encouraged good sleep as part of living a healthy lifestyle.
I Gotta Go:
As you grow larger, so does your baby (or babies), and it (they) begins to push into your bladder. I should start a Yelp list for bathrooms. I’ve had to endure constant trips to the bathroom, and it won’t stop until the babies arrive. You can expect double-digit trips to the bathroom on an average day, so plan accordingly. Fortunately, most people in the queue will let you go ahead of them, so pregnancy does have some bathroom benefits. Along with that, I’ve also developed numbness in my hands. The last few weeks have been particularly rough, as my fingers are completely numb. I’ve seen a doctor about it, but I was told that it’s normal at this stage in my pregnancy, and it won’t go away.
Breast Was Best:
And finally, the breasts. I don’t recognize my breasts anymore. In fact, my husband jokes that he loves my new National Geographic breasts. They have not only become substantially larger (they have to feed two babies), but the nipples also take on a much darker color and are unrecognizable. (Fun fact: The color changes because babies have trouble seeing when first born, so the dark color makes it easier for them find to the nipple to breast feed.) I know you may be saying this is TMI, but my goal here is to be real and not gloss over the joy and challenges of being pregnant.
And now I’ve only got a month to go. I’m blessed to be able to give life to two little ones, and I can’t wait to share this journey with you.
Now, who has some great baby names? Make a suggestion in the comments below.