Thursday, April 27

Pregnancy Weeks 3-8: Crazy Legs

The first sign of my pregnancy started a few days before I took my pregnancy test. My legs started acting funny. I would lie in bed, ready to sleep, but sleep eluded me because my legs insisted that it was not time to sleep; it was time to move. I would lie there for a couple of hours with my legs involuntarily flailing away until I finally gave up and went into the living room where I watched PBS until the sun rose. By the time I found out I was pregnant, I had gotten about 8 hours sleep total over 4 days. Everybody kept asking about how excited I must be about finally being pregnant, but I was so zombified by sleep deprivation that I couldn't muster up any excitement. My typical response to people's inqiries was "I'm just SO tired."

This went on for five hellacious weeks. Let me tell you, nothing can kill the joy over a much longed for pregnancy like the torture of sleep deprivation. And, of course, since I was pregnant, I couldn't take sleeping pills. This is how I found that evil marketing geniuses air a majority of their sleeping pill ads late at night while half insane pregnant women are watching loads of crappy TV. I would be up--the top half of me comatose while the bottom half of me ran a marathon--and literally drool whenever I saw a sleeping pill ad. That stupid Lunesta butterfly started to epitomize for me all things good and holy in this world. It got so bad that Ian forbad me to drive because my depth perception was so skewed and my reflexes set to slow motion. I tried not napping in the day, I tried napping all day, I tried sleepy time teas and aroma therapy and warm milk and every frikkin' thing I could think of and still my legs continued their ceaseless fidgeting. (A word of gratitude must be included here for my husband, who spent these five weeks sleeping on the couch so that I could have the entire bed to myself to thrash about in.)

During this time we met Twitch. I had grown so accustomed to ultrasounds during my ferility treatment that my 8 week ultrasound seemed old hat. As the nurse focused in on my uterus, I instinctively began looking to see how thick my uterine lining was and whether or not an egg was growing on my ovary. I was quite taken aback when instead I saw what looked to be a tumor in my recently cleaned-out uterus. "There's your baby!" the nurse beamed. (Fertility nurses become very smug at this point.) Well, that was new! The thing about ultraound photos is that they are never as cool printed out as they are on screen. I always imagined that embryos kind of just floated around in some sort of baby stasis, but there was our little spawn, twitching away like it was dancing to its own little drummer. (And thus, its in utero name was immediately adopted.) We also found out that Twitch was due to be born on September 19...Ian's birthday!

This photographic experience went a long way to helping me cope with my crazy legs. However, my functionality as a human being was reaching dangerous lows, and I seriously began to consider the fact that if this was going to go on for 9 months, I would have to be committed by my second trimester. I went to my regular Dr to see what she could do (she diagnosed my PCOS...this shouldn't be a problem!), and she said it sounded like I had Restless Leg Syndrome. She had never heard of it occuring as a pregnancy symptom, but she did some research and called me later in the day to tell me that it does sometimes happen to pregnant women and for me to take extra iron. A week after I started my iron boost, my legs finally stopped, just like that, as though they had finally gotten to where they were going. For the first time in weeks I felt human again, and for the first time I was truly able to appreciate my pregnancy (now that I knew it wasn't going to land me in the nuthouse!)

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