I am currently sat at our bedroom window watching our local 10k race speed past, and feeling increasingly agitated at the general perkiness of the general, non pregnant population. Look at them, all smug, bouncing along the road in their teeny tiny shorts in the rain. I am no longer a #runningwanker. And that makes me sad.
When people warned me I’d get tired during the early stages of pregnancy, I was pretty dismissive. Tiredness is for other people. As long as I’m in bed at a decent time at night, I’m always good to go by 6am. If I’m not travelling a ridiculous distance for work that day, I might even squeeze in a casual run or gym visit before my first client visit of the day. But my god, has that changed.
I’m no longer a morning person or afternoon person, and I’m definitely not an evening person. Last night I was asleep halfway through an episode of Sherlock before 8pm. This morning, the only thing that got me out of bed was my rumbling tummy. I have no get up and go. It’s enough just to get up at all.
All this tiredness is making me a bit unstable too. At work, I tend to get on with things without complaint, and take each day in my stride. But this week, someone really hit a nerve. A senior manager came down to one of my client meetings after said client became upset at the speed at which the company is dealing with some financial matters, one of the few things I’m unable to manage end to end without the involvement of Head Office. At the meeting, the client mentioned another concern, which his accountant had broached over the weekend, and which was news to me, as it was to him. We put a plan in place to help him through it, and once the client left, the senior manager, who I’ve always felt particularly dislikes me, turned to me and told me that the business plan I’d had in place with the client until now was obviously inadequate, since I hadn’t addressed this new issue, because I’m clearly a bloody mind reader. Maybe it was because she’s never made me feel welcome, or competent, or wanted, or maybe it’s because my hormones are all over the place and my sleep pattern is completely screwed, but I snapped at her. Not in a shouty, aggressive way, but in a ‘I’m sorry, I don’t agree with you’ way, which apparently she found less than acceptable. Logically, I knew I was in the right, but it is not the done thing to question authority. I had a rather chastising phone call from my boss that evening, which culminated in me crying at him, thus cementing my status as a unhinged, preggo loon. And despite feeling in my heart of hearts that I’d done nothing wrong, I still found myself texting to apologise for being tired and hormonal the next day.
The upshot of my little meltdown is that it actually gave me the confidence to tell my boss, in a throughly non-negotiable way, that I will be taking weekly admin days for the foreseeable future. This is something I should have had for myself years ago, because half the reason I’ve been struggling with the tiredness situation is that I normally end up working until late each night just to keep up to speed with the basic requirements of my job. Now I’m pregnant and falling asleep so early, the admin is slipping day by day.
But why should the pregnancy thing be the catalyst for this? Surely I shouldn’t have been expected to work until stupid-o-clock every night just because physically, I could just about manage? Simply put, until I started growing a tiny human in my tummy, I hadn’t even noticed the impact it was having on me, despite knowing deep down that something wasn’t right. Now, I have other things to think about. My health, and the health of the baby-to-be, is far more important than syncing a daily report before going to bed every night.
So I might be tired, cranky, and, now, also quite fat. But thank god for the instinct of self-preservation, which has kicked in when I need it most. I like these new priorities. They might not pay me at the end of each month, but I have a feeling I’ll be far more grateful for the rewards than I ever am for a pat on the back at work.