Ever have the feeling something is just… different?
They say every woman just knows the exact moment she’s pregnant. To this
statement I laugh. I laugh in jest and I laugh in incredulity. Mostly because every
woman is as unique as the child she bears and the life she leads. To say that all
women feel the same way at a given moment is lunacy, especially when it comes to
That being said, there are at least a few telltale pregnancy symptoms most women
will inevitably experience when that miraculous moment occurs. Having lived
through it myself along with a few other mothers who were pregnant with me on
almost the identical timeline; there were definitely similarities.
Pregnancy Symptom : Missed Period
Now, before you all roll your eyes and exclaim the obviousness of this one, keep in
mind that this might be the most significant pregnancy symptom for someone who
has a regular monthly period – like me.
I was as textbook as any would hope to be, even before I started birth control. My
periods were perfectly on time, lasted the same number of days every month, and
never gave me any trouble.
Then I got pregnant.
Suddenly, I was a week late. I thought maybe the fact that I’d only been a few
months off birth control that it was the hormones finally catching up. But something
in me made me want to go and buy that test.
For some, a missed period might be a natural and normal occurrence. In those cases,
it’s harder to pinpoint this as a major pregnancy symptom, and sadly might mean
many purchased pregnancy tests over the time it takes to get pregnant (note: Costco
sells pregnancy tests and is well worth the bulk investment in that case).
Taking that Pregnancy Test
So, you’ve determined your period is late – now what?
Peeing on that stick is a harrowing experience. And whether you do it alone or not,
it’s just as stressful. To think, a few lines on a plastic stick could completely alter
Most medical professionals will recommend waiting until at least a week after a
missed period or one to two weeks after having unprotected sex.
As a mother, here’s my advice: Take it when you think you need to. All the medical
advice in the world will never be as strong as our own instincts and us listening to
our own bodies.
Other Early Pregnancy Symptoms
A missed period isn’t the only early sign of pregnancy, however. In fact, the body has
a multitude of ways to tell you a new little life is about to take shape. Sadly, they
aren’t the most enjoyable, but they can’t be ignored.
The most common pregnancy symptom during the first trimester is a sense of
uneasiness in your stomach. Whether that leads you to praying to the porcelain gods
or simply has you feeling “off” an upset stomach coupled with a food aversion (or
obsession) is a good sign you might want to head to the pharmacy for a test.
Physiologically, our bodies might choose to tell us we’re pregnancy with overly sore
and swollen breasts and nipples, cramping, and (confusingly) slight spotting.
Positive Pregnancy Test
When I found out I was pregnant it was a shock. My now ex-husband and I wanted
to have a baby, but we were sure it would take longer (ha ha). That first month
stuck, but I didn’t think it ever would or could.
I paid attention to my body from my sensitive nipples and breasts to the discharge I
found when I went to the washroom. I knew I was pregnant well before I took the
And the night before I took that fateful test, I attended a friend’s birthday party. I
needed to be normal; I needed to not let anyone know what was potentially brewing
inside. And so I drank alcohol and partied and lived it up, all night. Yet, I look at
photos from that night now and see my face, and I look absolutely terrified.
Because I knew.
The next morning, just three days after a missed period that was always so regular, I
peed on that stick and the positive reading came up almost immediately.
Each Pregnancy is Unique
There is no hard and fast rule as to how you’ll know you’re pregnant (save for a pee
stick or a blood test). You really need to listen to your body, listen to that voice in
your head and to your gut (literally). Take the time to recognize slight changes in
your mood, your habits and even your skin and hair. Pregnancy is hormonal, and if
you pay attention you’ll spot the changes.