Never Lose Sight

The past three months have been an absolute blur to me. All I wanted to do was sleep 24/7 and to make matters worse, I found anything food-related absolutely disgusting. Everything I used to do without thinking twice was turned upside down. Something as simple as grocery shopping made my stomach turn; the spark that I used to feel before I hit the gym was gone; a walk down the street with my dog seemed the equivalent of a marathon; cooking dinner was a non-negotiable.

Photos courtesy of BabyCenter.CA

But I didn’t come down with an illness. What I actually came down with was quite the opposite: a blessing called "baby in my tummy". So, yes my description earlier might seem a bit dramatic, and to be quite honest, more often than not, I’ve had to remind myself that I’m not the first woman in the world to be with child. But given the reality of morning sickness, the past three months were by far the hardest thing I have ever gone through in my life....drama queen tendencies aside. I’m sure that the mommies out there who have endured it will agree that whoever came up with the term "morning sickness" has obviously never been pregnant. Swap morning sickness for “all day hell” and you've got a more accurate description.

In the first three months, I inevitably lost sight of a lot of things. Being the type of person who can't sit still for more than five minutes, I found it very difficult mentally to put everything on pause in the name of sleep-time (which by the way, started every night at around 5:30 p.m.) Not being able to do the things I used to started to take its toll on me and I began to (irrationally) wonder if it was how I would feel for the rest of my life. Even when other moms reassured me that it would not become my fate and that I would start to feel better after 13-15 weeks, I still wondered whether I had simply lost the drive to be an active person and my overall zest for life.

Photo courtesy of BabyCenter.CA

The months have passed and I am now feeling a lot better. Yesterday was the first day in a very long time that I was able to work out at the gym while actually feeling good about it and it’s also when I hit my breaking point.

I went to the gym with my confidence at an all-time low. In the changing room I looked at myself in the mirror and thought “wow, you’re gonna have a lot of work to get these past 3 months back.” After I finished my 30-minute cardio session followed by some light weights, I stood in front of the mirror while lifting the weights and the thoughts running through my mind had completely transformed themselves: “ah, I still have some nice muscle tone in my arms….this shouldn’t take too long to get back…look how cute my belly looks when I face to the side!” And that’s when it hit me: I came to the gym feeling down and once I’d put a little bit of ‘oomph’ in my stride, my confidence and self-perception had completely changed in a matter of 45 minutes. At that very moment I switched my gaze to a nearby wall where numerous success stories of people who had overcome personal battles had been posted. One poster said, “I will not let Lupus take over my life” while another said, “I had a pacemaker put in at the age of 40; at 43, I climbed Mount Kilimanjaro.” How inspiring.

Photo courtesy of BabyCenter.CA

I’m not trying to compare my experience to someone who has overcome disease. My point is that whatever personal situation you are facing in your life, whether you’ve hit a rough patch, whether you’re just not feeling right or you’ve been down for whatever reason, that it is not who you have to become. For me, time was what I needed to start feeling better and for other people it may be something else. Either way, it’s important to never lose sight of the way you deserve to feel.

My realization at the gym was also my turning point as far as the foods that I’d been consuming. Being sick all the time had gotten me into the pattern of eating whatever I was able to keep in my stomach. In my pre-pregnancy days, I’d always daydream of eating only those foods that would be most beneficial to my baby and when I realized that I was unable to eat those foods, it made me pretty miserable. Once I started to feel better, I was able to regain sight of how I deserved to feel, and that’s when I said, “enough!”

No matter how you’re feeling, never lose sight of the way you deserve to feel. And for all the fit moms out there who think that they will never get their spark back- take it from me…you will!