A Denver Home Companion | pregnancy brain

pregnancy brain is a real thing. and it has set in hard for me this past week. well, i think it set in earlier but it’s just now i’m realizing what is happening to me. i’m both glad to know there’s a reason for this madness and anxious to see how the next eight weeks pans out with a brain for mush.

what is pregnancy brain?

one pregnant friend of mine due this week, described it best: “i feel like somebody pooped in my head.”

amen, sister. amen.

it’s a mixture of fuzziness and lethargy and discombobulation and unclear thinking. mine is accentuated by a complete lack of motivation (how long has it been since i wrote a blog post?!) and i have zero ability to concentrate. i’m not sure if it’s an inevitable part of pregnancy for every woman but it sure has been for both of mine. call me crazy, but i’m super looking forward to a newborn who doesn’t let me sleep through the night more than this soupy brain bc i can operate a lot better on little sleep than i can with fuzzy head.

it can be desperately lonely at times, this pregnancy-brain malady. it’s my hormones and my changing body growing a human, surely, but messing with my head?! just leave me be. being present with ramona in the last weeks we have together, just the two of us, is becoming increasingly hard, and my patience is tried bc my mind isn’t thinking straight. and i don’t quite have the enthusiasm about getting out of the house but then, of course, i feel so cooped up and that brings me down as well. i’ve already had to stop doing yoga and i have intense ligament pain that prevents me from walking long distances. i feel like a beached whale and already weigh more at 32 weeks than i did at 40 with ramona. woe is me.

the upside to all of this is that i am understanding it is my body’s way of telling me to sloooowwwww down. take it easy. rest up. there is a baby about to be birthed and a complete change in schedule and life and dynamic. and it’s best if my body is ready for this. so i’m nesting like a maniac. trying to keep the house clean and organized. cutting back on social commitments. emotionally and mentally preparing my self and my heart for this new bundle of craziness that’s about to be a part of our family.

admittedly, i don’t do pregnancy very well. certainly not this second time around. i was far better at embracing all of the changes my body and mind went through the first time as it was all so new and magical to me. i remember gushing and glowing to jp and my midwives about being pregnant with ramona and they would lovingly listen but gently remind me that it gets harder the further you get along and the more pregnancies you have. i scoffed at them. don’t rain on my parade! but, yes, my body is not handling this as well as the first time. i am not glowing and gushing. it is very very hard for me to embrace how this pregnancy is making me feel. it still is completely magical (growing a baby inside of my body, what?!) but i’m over it. i know what happens. now i just want to meet this little girl and have my body and my clarity back.

have you experienced pregnancy brain? how did your pregnancies compare between your first, second, or more? 

photo of me at 30 weeks by miss ramona bean.


15 Responses to PREGNANCY BRAIN

  1. meganstilley says:

    I find that once pregnancy brain sets it never goes back. Now with a newborn the fog is still there with lack of sleep and two beings to care for, but I guess that is what they call mommy brain.

    • emily says:

      right? i hear ya. but there seems something a little different about pregnancy brain and mommy brain. at least in my experience. i seemed to be able to get a better handle on the mommy brain — but pregnancy brain just invaded every. single. aspect. of my life! gah!

  2. Kelly says:

    oh yes, pregnancy brain is very real. makes me into a crazy person, seriously. I don’t do pregnancy well either. I actually hate it very much while feeling terrible for hating it because I should feel so blessed, right? (hugs) take care of yourself! whatever makes you feel good/better/happy.

  3. Lauren says:

    It’s good to read this, Emily! I don’t mean this in the sense that I’m glad you’re feeling this way, just that it’s refreshing to hear someone else who had trouble with subsequent pregnancies as I did. And for me, it’s good to remember the rough times so I don’t end up pregnant again, ha! You will make it through, and yes, a good reminder to slow down and try to relax. I’ve been missing your posts, but I’ll keep coming back no matter how long you take a break! Hugs from afar!

    • emily says:

      if this isn’t birth control i don’t know what is 😉

      thanks for the love. i haven’t looked at my feedly for weeks and am missing posts from mamas/friends like you!

  4. […] So why the delay? Well, Emily is also pregnant with her second baby, and she and I been commiserating over email about how much more challenging our pregnancies have been this time around–physically and mentally. (That’s one of the reasons I like Emily: She’s not afraid to be honest about real life struggles like pregnancy brain.) […]

  5. endelaney says:

    I really enjoyed reading this, relating and not feeling so alone. This pregnancy is nothing like my first and i am struggling to remain present and embrace it. Last month I lit a candle and stuck it in the fridge. This week while packing up boxes to move I simply wrote “boxes” on them, instead of clothes, books, etc. Ha! This is only the beginning of the madness. I am laughing and crying daily and excited to have this baby in my arms. I know it’s so worth it and yet it doesn’t help thinking that when you’re in the thick of it. Hang in there and thanks for sharing! xx

    • emily says:

      i laughed out loud at the candle incident. that’s hilarious. hang in there, lady! sending you love and vibes for clarity and presence. xoxo

  6. Amanda says:

    I can completely relate. It’s so frustrating to not feel like yourself, and pregnancy is the the the most prime example of not being able to be yourself. Unfortunately, pregnancy brain turns into a weird form of mom brain. I still never know where my keys are. When I find them, I swear they are not where I left them.

    In the end, you are an amazing mom. I am thankful to know you and I really can’t wait for this new little one. I can’t imagine what pregnancy brain is like with another little one. I feel for you. Just remember and constantly tell yourself that it’s worth it. All of it is. I know you already know this. Keep on keeping on.

  7. Lorissa says:

    You may recall my “leave a block of cheddar cheese and a pound of lunch meat on the counter with the dog in the house and take a long walk with the kids” incident?

    I remember when I was pregnant with Avi I felt like I had been banned to a little room with no windows. Just felt lonely and limiting. And it was difficult to be patient with myself and others. I was tired! Now I look at his face and I can’t imagine life without him.

    I think coming home from a lovely trip to a little needy one who (missed you) is enough to make anyone feel irritable and cranky!!

    Bottom line-I just can’t WAIT to meet that sweet baby you’ve got growing in there and I hope you know that you’re not alone. If you need anything I’m happy to help.

  8. Courtney says:

    Love this post, and the interview on PJ’s blog. I totally felt this way too. I’ve been feeling so out of the groove of writing and it’s lovely and inspiring to read what you have to say about your expectations for baby #2 – the good, bad, and ugly.

  9. Erica says:

    I’ve never enjoyed it, it’s brutal, lonely and exhausting. It’s almost unimaginable that someday you’ll have that body back and be looking at your two beautiful kids playing together. But, it’ll happen. And, in my opinion everything goes even faster the 2nd time around. Just hang in there! Love you!!

  10. Kezzie says:

    I refused to believe that pregnancy brain was anything more than being overly tired until the end of my pregnancy. I was constantly putting frozen foods in cabinets and random things in the freezer and fridge.

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