Pregnancy 3.0- An Apprehensive User’s Guide

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This guide is designed for anxious moms-to-be who may have had difficulty completing previous versions of Pregnancy. Don’t worry; you don’t have to “pass” previous levels to complete Pregnancy 3.0. In fact, lucky users will get a free version of the program just for trying. This may lead to some obvious anxiety about completing Pregnancy 3.0, however this guide will assist you with overcoming the challenges facing you in this version.

Level 1: Peeing on a Stick (aka Pregnancy Tests)

Pregnancy tests shall always be referred to in the plural form since they never exist as a solo unit. Tests should be completed in duplicate, or ideally quadruplicate for absolute confirmation. Your initial reaction to a positive test will likely be disbelief, elation, followed by a constant and lingering feeling of anxiety. Don’t worry! This is completely normal part of the Pregnancy 3.0 programming.

Level 2: The Early Ultrasound

Upon having achieved Step 1: The Positive Pregnancy Tests, you may now proceed to anxiously awaiting Step 2: The Early Ultrasound. You are convinced that once you see the bean bouncing around with a healthy heartbeat you will be able to relax and enjoy Pregnancy 3.0. Seeing a healthy baby is a short-term diversion only. The effects will likely last an average of 16 minutes, after which you will resume feeling distressed until your next appointment in 4 weeks.

Level 3: First Trimester Limbo

During the next phase, you will enter what shall be referred to as “First Trimester Limbo”. You are pregnant. You saw the little bean on the ultrasound. Still, you are only partially convinced that you are even participating in Pregnancy 3.0 (maybe it’s like the Matrix, and nothing that appears to be happening is really happening). However, the evidence is mounting. Your pants don’t fit. Your boobs hurt. You are hungry/sick/exhausted/have to pee 90% of the time. The remaining 10% of the time you just want to punch someone or cry. But no one must know this! You have to keep the pickle jar carefully hidden in your filing cabinet and the afternoon nap hammock slung discreetly under your desk. You must simply wait, act “normal” and cross days off the calendar until you have reached P3.2 (the second trimester). At some points, you may irresistibly drawn to online discussion boards, pregnancy help pages, and scouring Dr. Google for the meaning of every ache, cramp, twinge, or burp. This is a trap! It will only increase the paranoia level during P3.1. Although alluring, avoid these sites at all cost.

Level 4: Doubting Thomas

Somewhere near the end of P3.1, you will  undergo another doctor’s appointment. Fixating on this date, when you will likely hear the little bean’s heartbeat again, will carry you through the Limbo/Matrix phase. As you wait in the office, your own heartbeat is thumping in your ears, your pulse is racing, and your palms are sweaty. This is it…the moment of truth. The nurse has to take your blood pressure twice since it is off the charts. You joke, “Haha, that’s what you get for taking the stairs”, she nods as if agreeing, but you can tell she thinks you’re crazy. Deep yoga breathing, in and out, in and out. It’s going to be ok.

When the doctor places the doppler on your belly, you hear the thump thump thump thump, and relax. What a beautiful sound. “That’s not my heartbeat, is it?” you ask. “Not unless your heart rate is 130 bpm” he laughs (can robots laugh?). “Right, of course”, you agree. My heart rate couldn’t be going that fast, I’m just lying here. You leave the office and get into the car. Just to be sure, you take your pulse (your heart is still pounding in your ears from the whole experience). 125 bpm. You count again. 130 bpm. Bloody hell. It wasn’t the baby’s heartbeat, it was mine! It must have been! You bang your head on the steering wheel and cry in exasperation.  It’s not fair. Why do you have to keep going through this? When will it end???

Don’t worry. This is the most critical test phase of P3.1. You will ignore your doctor’s 30 + years of experience listening to baby heartbeats and let your own irrational thoughts take over. This is normal for P3.0. To compensate, you are permitted to participate in the “Frivolous Shopping Bonus Round” where to distract yourself you may purchase something that you a) want b) do not need and c) cannot really afford. Unfortunately, once you have completed this critical test phase and bonus round, you must re-enter the Limbo/Matrix phase until you have passed the next test.

 Level 5:Inflection point

The location of the inflection point in the time-space continuum of Pregnancy 3.0 is not documented anywhere. You must find it on your own. It is not really a place, but a new mental plane that will be reached when you are ready. Like the Force, it can only be harnessed with awareness, power and training. First, you must become aware of your unhealthy anxiety, use your power of positive thinking to overcome it, and retrain your thoughts to focus on successfully completing Pregnancy 3.0.

Here are some ideas to steer you “towards” the turning point-a) attend a prenatal yoga class with a really cool hippy earth mamma instructor who asks you to visualize your healthy baby and talk to it, b) consider upgrading to Doctor v2.0 (NEW! Now includes obstetrician with both surgical expertise and actual human qualities!), c) hear the baby’s heartbeat AGAIN and finally believe that it’s real, d) buy your son a big brother T-shirt and smile when he won’t wear anything else, e) finally let yourself be excited about being selected to participate in Pregnancy 3.0.

Although this guide has only led you through Pregnancy 3.1-The First Trimester, for those who may have had difficulty completing other versions of Pregnancy, this guide will suffice. Once through P3.1, you will have already gained the necessary skills and strength required for the rest of the journey. The perseverance you have learned will assist you with completing “Birth 2.0-Newly Revised and Extended Version” and “Parenting 2.0-Now with Bonus Add-on Child Pack!”.

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