I went through the whole range of emotions during both my pregnancies.
Forgetfulness? I could barely remember where I lived. Also commonly known as Goldfish Brain, as we often can’t retain information for more than 5 seconds.
It’s down to those fluctuating pregnancy levels causing havoc – ply, experts believe your brain-cell volume actually decreases during the final trimester of pregnancy (don’t worry; it returns to normal afterwards).
Listen, our bodies are busy growing eyelashes and arms and perfect little toes. All our energy has been diverted into creating The Wonder of Life. There’s none to spare for silly things like remembering where we left the car keys or why we put the iPad in the freezer. Really. Get over it.
Sorry, what was I saying?
Ah yes. Goldfish Brain often mutates into its big-sister condition “Mumnesia” after birth too, thanks to lack of sleep and adjusting to a new lifestyle. Don’t worry, it doesn’t last!
Click through the gallery for the most common pregnancy emotions…
2. Howling (with tears or laughter – or both)
When I am pregnant, I cry at soap operas. And real-life stories in magazines. And the news. And Countdown. Yes, really.
My pregnant sister cried when she saw a dog sitting outside a shop waiting for its owner. “It’s just… so… loyal!” she blubbed.
At the other end of the hysteria spectrum, a friend dared me to walk into a chemist and buy a pregnancy-testing kit for her, while I was 8 months’ pregnant. We laughed so hard, there may have been leakage…
The good news is, it’s all for a reason: heightened emotions are Nature making us use the right side of our brain more, getting us ready to bond with our baby.
I don’t know a pregnant woman who hasn’t felt anxiety at some point during the 9 months – from worrying about getting through the first 3 months safely, to thinking ahead to the birth.
For many, it’s just the fear of the unknown. We’re so used to being in control of our lives and bodies, it feels odd when we’re suddenly not in control.
But it’s important to chill out if you can. Complementary therapies can be very useful for keeping you grounded and relaxed.
4. Unexpected bravery
At the other end of the spectrum to anxiety are feelings of unexpected bravery or strength – and pregnancy being the emotional rollercoaster that it is, it’s quite normal to rock between both within the space of 10 minutes.
I went to a festival the day before my due date and danced manically in a field to a set by New Order, rather like a Michelin Man high on gas and air. Terrified passing revellers gave me a wide berth. I’d feel nervous about doing this now, but I was possessed with wild, Earth Mother-style gusto.
A friend of mine ran a marathon at 6 months. Frankly, I tip my hat at anyone who can jog down to the postbox, but keeping active throughout is so good for both you and your baby.
5. Irritability (AKA feeling murderous)
Sleeplessness during pregnancy is common, which can lead to irritability and, occasionally, murderous rages.
It’s because the production of melatonin, which gives us our skin colour, changes. The bad news is melatonin also helps regulate our sleep-wake cycle.
Of course, your raging pregnancy hormones don’t help matters.
Just keep away from sharp objects. Nuff said?
6. Obsessive cleaning & nesting
Even if the closest your pre-pregnant self ever got to Mr Muscle was a session down the gym, it’s perfectly normal to be scrubbing, sweeping and bleaching anything that moves during your final pregnancy trimester.
This newfound (often inconvenient) urge to move things around or redecorate the house has been bemusing husbands and partners everywhere since the dawn of houses.
It means you’re well and truly into the final stretch.
Being found up a ladder painting your kitchen ceiling bright turquoise, while 9 months’ pregnant, can happen to the best of us. Just pray your Goldfish Brain doesn’t make you forget where you put the paint pot…