The week before I discovered I was pregnant, my husband and I took a much needed vacation while my mom watched our 3-year-old daughter. Freed from our parental roles, Dave and I had fabulous, unhurried, uninterrupted sex every day, during the actual daytime. I’m so grateful for that week, because ever since my pregnancy news, we have been totally celibate, and I am now well into my second trimester.
At first, we were just following protocol; with my history of early miscarriages, “no sex until a heartbeat” was doctor’s orders. Then, before we could do the deed, I had a bleeding scare and nookie was no bueno again. By the time I was out of the woods, I was vomiting on the regular and sex didn’t sound so appealing anymore. The only moaning you could hear from our bedroom was me with my head between my knees, trying to stop the madness.
I figured we’d find our way back to each other as soon as I started feeling better, but then a new wrinkle arose. Or really, an old wrinkle. With my first pregnancy, I’d been diagnosed with an incompetent cervix. Translation: The cork stopping up my uterus was faulty, and I was at high risk for preterm labor. I wound up confined to bed rest from weeks 22 to 36. Miraculously, I didn’t go into labor until four days before my due date.
We knew it was possible — even likely — that I’d experience this condition again with any subsequent pregnancies, so I’ve been carefully monitored with frequent ultrasounds. So far, so good, but that doesn’t mean much, since this early in the pregnancy, my turnip-sized fetus isn’t heavy enough to bother my cervix. Yet.
Incompetent cervixes are tricky business. When I asked my doctor if I could begin prenatal yoga, he said, “Exercise is great…for other people.” I have to admit, I wasn’t too crushed when I put my gym membership on hold. No exercise means way more time for napping. What’s unclear is whether sex falls into the exercise category. When we asked if it was safe to resume intercourse, my doctor paused before saying yes. That damn pause. My husband did not like the pause. The pause is totally cockblocking me right now.
Meanwhile, I’m highly hormonal and having those wild second trimester sex dreams every night. Sometimes they feature ex-boyfriends I haven’t thought about in 20 years. Once, I dreamt my husband’s penis was a hot dog — my raging hunger and horniness perfectly combined into one Freudian masterpiece.
We’re old enough so that sex deprivation is not the end of the world. But I will say, lack of intimacy can wear on our relationship in subtle ways. When we’re not having sex, we tend to have much stupider and more frequent fights about things neither of us really cares about, like who emptied the dishwasher last. When we are having sex, I can get away with murder, and I miss that!
So now I’m in the tricky position of trying to seduce my husband while not fitting into any of my lingerie and frequently burping. Good luck to me! But if this pitch doesn’t work, nothing will: “Honey, let’s do it before the baby comes. Because after that, I’m pretty sure I’m not going to want you to touch me for another nine months.”