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When you find out you are pregnant, it's like being sentenced to nine months of majorly messed-up sleep. Because once baby arrives, it's not as if the likelihood you'll get any beauty rest improves. Here are the stages of pregnancy sleep every woman can count on experiencing, in order.
Early first trimester coma-like sleep. You may not even know you are pregnant, but you know you haven't made it past 8 p.m. in a week. Did someone drug you? For the seventh night in a row? Are you getting sick? Nope. You are pregnant. Get used to feeling like you've been hit by a truck before lunchtime for the next few months.
Late first trimester interrupted sleep. You are still bone-tired, and may fall asleep easily, but nausea, night sweats and weird-ass dreams will wake you every few hours. Keep Cheerios by the bed, and expect to strip naked by dawn. As for those dreams? Yeah, that was pretty deranged.
Early second trimester insomnia. You have to pee. So you get up to use the bathroom, then proceed to lie awake, staring at the ceiling for the next hour or longer. You toss, you turn, you take a Tums for heartburn. You Google, “what my baby looks like at 15 weeks.” You kick your husband who is snoring soundly beside you. You make a mental list of baby names your mother hasn’t said she hates. Eventually, you doze off. Repeat, repeat, repeat.
Late second trimester blackout sleep. Like first trimester coma-like sleep, toward the end of your second trimester, you once again start falling asleep within 10 seconds of your head hitting the pillow. Because, after you are done doing everything you couldn’t do during your first trimester, sheer exhaustion is inevitable. You may wake up once or twice in the night; you may even get up to pee. But once your body is vertically oriented, you fall blissfully back to sleep, instantaneously. Enjoy this stage of pregnancy sleep. Very bad things are next.
Third trimester no sleep. Sleep during your third trimester? Hahaha! As if your giant belly, constantly-kicking baby, perpetual heartburn, racing heart, aching feet, and restless mind would allow such a thing. At least sleepless nights are good training for the next stage of pregnancy sleep. Sorry.
Postpartum sleep deprivation. You've heard the rumors, and they are all true. Babies don't like when their parents sleep. They aren't being mean-spirited or anything, even though you may suspect them of having diabolical intentions at times. Babies just don't sleep for that long. The good news? Eventually, all babies sleep through the night. Even if it's not until they're in high school. Just kidding. Um, sort of. But you'll sleep more. Some day. Unless, just as your baby starts letting you sleep, you get pregnant again!
Opinions expressed by parent contributors are their own.