“I CAN’T, you say?”


I’m not used to being told “you can’t”. It’s not normally in my vocabulary. When someone says to me, “You can’t do XYZ”, my response is usually, “Watch me.” I take it as a challenge to excel and I usually meet those challenges. I’ve always been rather independent and willing to work towards whatever goal I or others set for me. In fact, I often welcome the challenges and joy in rising to meet them.

However, pregnancy presents a brand-new set of challenges. Now I am being told more and more “don’t do that” or “you can’t do that”. I actually growled a little when my mother told me I couldn’t lift my in-laws’ retirement cake the other day as we were going through the check-out line. I’m used to working hard, to lifting, carrying, doing for myself and others a great deal. So, to be told that I can’t do the things that I am rather used to doing is, admittedly, a bit tough to swallow. It’s like telling me I can’t walk and have to be carried everywhere. And, yet, it makes me wonder if I will be able to do what I need to as the months progress. I am a middle-school teacher and there is a LOT that goes into that, as you are aware, I’m sure. Long days, and sometimes even longer nights, are involved, naturally. However, I’m used to managing it all, doing it all, and so being told or finding out that I can’t do things right now is rather jarring. I’m not used to being treated like I am made of glass, even as I am doing my best to be careful, for myself and for the baby.

I’m four and a half months along and already feel huge, so I have no idea how I will be coping in the months ahead, with the further changes in my body and the weariness and discomfort that will surely come with it all. But I know it’s all worth it.

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One thought on ““I CAN’T, you say?”

  1. I didn’t respond well to that, either. My OB told me that I was totally fine to lift up to 40 lbs for the majority of my pregnancy. It’s a lot more than people think. A first grader, a 5 gallon bucket of water, and a big bag of kitty litter all weigh about 40 lbs.

    Honestly, I’d probably tell you (especially as you go forward from here) to watch your energy levels more than what you’re lifting. I found that I was okay until all of a sudden I wasn’t; I didn’t have a lot of warning signs that I was about to be crazy fatigued, but you might. Having snacks helped, and being able to sit down frequently did, too.

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