One of my favorite bloggers is taking over my blog today and sharing what it's like to be pregnant while your husband is deployed. If you've never visited her blog before, please head on over once you've read the post!
Hi y'all! I'm Jessica from Jessica Lynn Writes. When PoeKitten asked me to write a post for her while she's off snuggling her new baby, I couldn't resist. I'll just jump right in with my post—it's about being pregnant during not one, but two deployments!
The first time I found out I was pregnant my husband deployed 10 days later for a seven-month tour. In retrospect, I'm lucky we found out before he left; I have several friends who discovered they were pregnant once their husband was already "in the sandbox." I'm also extremely fortunate that he came home before the baby was born.
So when we decided to have another baby, it seamed only natural that we repeat that whole scenario again for our second child! Only this time the deployment isn't as long and we found out two weeks before he left. Anyone else sensing a trend with the way my husband knocks me up and then takes off for several months at a time?
The first pregnancy was a blissful vacation compared to this one. When your pregnant and your husband is deployed, and you don't have any other humans in your life to care after, you can basically do whatever the heck you want. I was also fortunate to live in a country at the time (Italy), where I wasn't working, so I literally had nothing to do (but indulge in pizza and gelato cravings). There's an overwhelming exhaustion that passes over you during the first trimester, so I took the most enjoyable naps whenever the sleep-mode hit me. I would lounge on the couch during the day binge watching TV shows on Netflix with my hands on my belly and just enjoy feeling my baby kick, punch, roll, and move around. Blissful—my first pregnancy was blissful!
That's not to say that this pregnancy isn't a bouquet of roses, because it is...there are just a few thorns getting in the way. When my husband left for this deployment, I was right at the beginning of the first trimester—in other words, I felt absolutely horrible. On top of feeling the "all day sickness," my daughter decided that would be a grand time to transition from two naps to one nap, which is much, much more exhausting than it sounds. The first two months he was away were really, really hard. I grew a lot in those months, and learned that—and this may sound dramatic—in order to survive, I had to ask for help. I found a babysitter, talked to neighbors, talked to friends, and enrolled Julia in a mom's morning out program. I needed rest, I needed help, and I needed both, bad.
Luckily, we got into a routine pretty quickly after she settled into one nap, and once I hit the second "golden" trimester, things were smooth sailing. I've actually learned to really appreciate this time with my daughter. I know how fortunate our time is together since this will be the only time she and I will have together—just the two of us—before the baby arrives. Sure, we'll still be together during the day once my husband comes back, but then I have to share her with him. He'll hopefully take over the night-time duties with her, so I can rest and they can bond.
Yes, we get on each others' nerves, and some days are much, much harder than others, but most days we have a decent rhythm and routine to help guide us.
Instead of spending my days napping whenever the heck I feel like it, I dutifully close my eyes minutes after I put her down for her nap. I cherish that alone time. And instead of lounging around on the couch all day, poking and prodding my belly to initiate kicks, I feel this little one in me wiggle around late at night right before I fall asleep. It's like she's telling me, "Here I am Mama! You've been busy moving around all day, but now it's my turn to get your attention!"
I've learned, during this deployment that my life will now revolve around the word "balance." It's all about balance and how you handle things. Right now, my daughter is at a mom's morning out program, because as much as I love the heck out of her, I need some me time. My life can't revolve around her, especially during a deployment. Life is about figuring out what balance works for us during the season we're in, and I hope I can remember that once our family grows from three to four.
I could keep chatting about this for several more paragraphs, but I don't want to talk your ear off. Come by my blog, and let's be friends; I'd love to talk with you more!