Cragmama "Not all who wander are lost…" JRR Tolkien

1st Trimester Update – The Secret Weeks

I suppose in some ways, even “planned” babies are still a surprise…We’d been in the “not TRYING but not NOT trying” stage since the spring, so seeing two lines on a pregnancy test shouldn’t have been such a shock.  But I probably stared at those test results in utter disbelief before walking out of the bathroom and putting my harness  on (because of course I’d stopped to pick up a test on my way to the climbing gym…and then of course I couldn’t wait til I got home to take it…)  I won’t lie, my initial reaction involved a lot of fear –  How could I possibly love another human being as much as I love C?  Can we really handle two?  Will we ever  climb again?  What have we done?!?!?!?!?  But by the time I had shared the news with my “Baby-Daddy” and gotten a good night’s sleep, I woke the next day with that giddy peaceful feeling that comes from knowing you’re in the right place.  Though at 12 weeks I still have a few more days left before I’m officially in my 2nd trimester, most of the 1st trimester ickies have faded substantially, so to celebrate I thought I’d catch you guys up on all that’s been going on (and why there hasn’t been anything worth “‘trip-reporting.”)

Hard to believe something so little can affect so much!

Hard to believe something so little can affect so much!

Weeks 4-6:  So, so tired.  Like, soul-stomping, bone-crushing tired.  One night I slept a solid 12 hours and STILL managed to be late for a 9:00 appointment!   I feel bloated, crampy, and just generally “off.”  Being in the heat completely ZAPS every ounce of energy I have.  In fact, a hot July run that left me feeling dizzy was one of my first clues that there was a bun in the oven…

Weeks 6:  Hello nausea!  Though I never really had any with C, I’m now finding that  I spend the majority of the day trying to figure out whether I need to eat, go to the bathroom, or throw up.  Thankfully, the latter has yet to happen.  I randomly discovered that watermelon and pineapples (good for me!) and soda (not so good!) help to ease the off and on nausea.  At 6.5 weeks we went to the New River Gorge.  There was no trip report because I sent nothing besides the warm-ups.  Ironically I felt fairly strong – I got several moves higher on Lost Souls (5.12a) without falling than I ever had before, and each individual move felt a lot easier than I’d remembered! (It had probably been a year since I’d been on it.)  But my endurance is shot, so there’s no way I could think about linking the whole thing together right now.  I’m still lead climbing – at this point the baby is no bigger than a pea, and very well-protected deep inside my uterus.  That being said, however, I’m sticking with closely bolted routes and clean fall zones.  

Trying out the new Tenaya Oasi on Lost Souls (5.12a)

Trying out the new Tenaya Oasi on Lost Souls (5.12a)…with my phone in my pocket (oops)

Week 7: Our first doctor’s appointment, and we were thrilled to see a tiny, flickering heartbeat on the ultrasound screen!  Nausea is getting worse – and intermixed with periods of ravenous hunger.  I continue to wilt and wither in the heat more than usual (I end up drinking so much water that it feels like an ocean in my stomach).  Since I hate running on a treadmill, I’ve replaced my afternoon runs with the elliptical for now.  Hopefully once cooler temps move in in a few weeks I’ll feel better about running again.

Week 8: The song remains the same – my tummy feels like crap most of the time, although I’ve gotten used to it and am managing it a little better.  We haven’t climbed outside due to rainy weather, but I’ve been feeling really strong in the gym, and am enjoying the last few weeks of lead climbing before restricting myself to toproping only for the remainder of my pregnancy.  (For a good sum-up of climbing precautions during pregnancy, check out this article).  

Week 9:  Spent a week at Sunset Beach with my husband’s family.  It was nice to get away for a week and be able to talk freely about my “secret.”  It was also great to hang out on the beach with the new-found pudge around my belly button (insert sarcastic smile here).  There’s not really a bump yet, but people weren’t kidding when they said things happen faster the second time around!  My belly is “tracking” about 3 or 4 weeks ahead of where it was with C…We had some cloudy afternoons that were relatively cool so I ran 3 times while I was there.  While my pace had slowed, I was pleased that I was able to keep my distance the same.

Giving Stonewear rep Dana the local plastic tour!

Giving Stonewear rep Dana the local plastic tour!

Week 10: After a few days of horrible nausea at the start of the week, my hormones must be starting to level out a bit, because each day has gotten progressively better .  Still too hot to run, but I’ve been biking or ellipticizing (sp?) on non-climbing days.  I was really jonesin’ for a day on real rock, so after our planned weekend at the New River Gorge fell through due to rain, we took our chances with a sketchy forecast and BLAZING hot sun at our local crag, Crowders Mountain.  Good times were had by all, but I made a mental note to never climb at Crowders in August ever again…pregnant or not (it was masochistically hot).

Week 11:  Exciting times – after hearing a pounding 175 bpm on the Doppler at my appointment, we shared our big secret with the world!  I also got my fall allotment from Stonewear Designs, one of my sponsors.  Picking out what styles and sizes I wanted presented a unique challenge due to my ever-expanding belly.  Thankfully everything from Stonewear is super stretchy and comfy (read: forgiving), which makes them the perfect option for my not-quite-ready-for-maternity-clothes-yet body.  (Stay tuned for a review on my fall favorites coming soon!)  I also tried on my Mountain Mama maternity tops…still nowhere close to filling them out.  We’ve also had unseasonably cool weather this week, and I was delighted to get in 4.25 miles at a solid pace – it reminded me how much more fun it is to exercise outside than in.

Today marks the start of week 12, as well as the start of a very busy next few weeks – two climbing trips and an out of town wedding, followed by a weekend off and then more climbing trips on the radar.  Let’s hear it for fall!

This guy is gonna be a big brother!  (He's bloodied from biting his lip, but all smiles just the same!)

This guy is gonna be a big brother! (Bloody mouth and all…he bit it jumping down from a boulder problem but he’s all smiles still the same!)





9 Responses to “1st Trimester Update – The Secret Weeks”

  1. SO fun! And the feeling sick all the time is what killed me! I so get it! In fact one pregnancy I was so sick feeling all the time, that that was my limiting factor in staying active. Oddly though, working out also made me feel better…who knows? 🙂


  2. ManuelaE

    Exciting times! I can’t wait to see what a great big brother C is going to be:) Glad to hear things are going a bit better as the weeks pass!


  3. Liz

    I can relate to everything you said, cragmama! I really loved being pregnant with #2 despite the initial fatigue and nausea. Trimesters 2 and 3 rocked, I was able to keep running through the 7th month, and labor was waaaay shorter and easier compared to #1. Raising two kids has been wonderful. I don’t feel that it’s that much more work than one…I may have blanked out the details of the more intense early years though. 🙂
    You and cragdad have parenting down so well, and I’m sure C will be a fabulous big brother. Such an exciting time – I wish you much enjoyment!
    Also – I’m interested in your trip reports even if they don’t involve sending or leading, so please keep them coming. I like to read the details of the crag, the climbs, the process, overcoming problems, etc. The actual success or failure of the climb is of secondary interest to me. Thanks Erica!


  4. Erica

    Alyssa – I hear you on the working out. I’ve found that if I can rally myself to get moving, I end up feeling better, longer. (unless it’s blazing hot, then i feel worse lol).

    Manuela – You and me both 🙂

    Liz – Thanks for the encouragement. And, as far as trip reports, i’ll definitely keep them coming. After our last trip to the NRG, I sat down to write and I found that I couldn’t really explain anything WITHOUT talking about the pregnancy (which was still a secret!), so it seemed best to skip that one. 😉 But now that the news is out I’ll be sure to share 🙂


  5. My wife is at week #34 right now – It’s our second child. #1 was a breeze, she loved being pregnant. Not this time though. Nausea, heartburn, backpain, fatigue … you name it. Maybe a lot of that has to do with chasing a 2 year old while being pregnant? All I know is she says she’s done after this one haha.

    Best of luck to you as you progress into the second trimester!


  6. Angela

    Congrats to your family! And don’t you worry. C’s at a great age of gaining independence and enjoying being a helper that a second one won’t slow you down. And it’s nice to already know what to do the second time around.


  7. Congrats on baby number 2. Kristy and I are currently in the “not trying, but not trying” stage right now too. Hoping you get to feeling better as the pregnancy progresses.


  8. Liz

    Love keeping up with you! With our son (who just turned 2 years old), your blog was a saving grace in those first months where I felt like my life, let alone my climbing, would never be the same. Reading about your experiences energized me and made me feel like we could do this. And we have! I am climbing stronger than ever! Now hoping for baby #2 I am just as excited to follow your journey and be inspired by your determination and amazing mama-hood. Thanks for continuing to post what you do. It sincerely encourages women like me and we are grateful for it!


    • Erica

      Liz – Thank you SO MUCH for your heartfelt words. You really did make my day! It’s always fun knowing people are out there reading, but it’s so encouraging to know that writing about my experiences has been helpful to others. Best of luck to both of us with #2’s 🙂

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“Not all who wander are lost.” —JRR TOLKIEN