This being pregnant thing is kind of crazy. Yes, for those of you who don’t know me in real life, I’ll be 16 weeks pregnant in a few days! That in itself is seriously crazy. Sometimes I can’t believe it, but then I vomit a bunch of stomach bile in the shower (i.e. this morning) and I am reminded that there’s a little baby in there who brought along with him or her lots of crazy hormones which are wreaking havoc on my body. I try to limit the complaining about morning sickness and all that to my wonderful husband, but I’m pretty sure even he’s getting tired of hearing about it, which I totally understand. I hate being an invalid. It’s strange though, I’ll feel relatively good for a few days and think I’m through the worst of it, especially now that I’m well into the second trimester. I was all over the place this weekend walking on rainbows and blowing kisses to bunnies, telling everyone how much more energy I have and how the nausea has almost completely disappeared. And then I started the week out yesterday by running from my office to the bathroom multiple times, slumping over in my chair most of the day, and sucking on Preggie Pops like they were going out of style. I totally jinxed myself didn’t I?
Anyway, in other news, my belly is starting to grow, and most of my pants are seriously uncomfortable. I’m in what I feel is a pretty ugly phase. I am “showing” based on what clothes I’m wearing and how much I’m sucking in, and random people I meet at Target, or coworkers who haven’t yet “heard” the news, would think I’ve just eaten too many cheeseburgers. I’ve avoided maternity shopping up until recently because I just don’t know what I’ll need, and how long certain things will fit. The whole thing rather stresses me out. However, one of the girls that I met through grad school just had her second (and last) baby in December, and she gave me all her maternity clothes when we met up for lunch a few weeks ago. I can sometimes be sort of bratty about “used” clothes, mostly because if I wasn’t a little bratty, my mother would make it her personal mission to fill my closet with her thrift store finds. But getting a huge box of ALL of someone’s maternity clothes, I have decided, is the best thing ever. I now have about 5 skirts, 4 dresses, 4 pairs of work pants, 2 pairs of jeans, 2 pairs of shorts, and loads of both casual and “office-appropriate” tops. I feel like I’m totally set, and as I go through my pregnancy will now be able to just supplement my new wardrobe as I change sizes or get totally sick of certain things. I went through everything this weekend, and organized by size, and now just feel as if this huge weight has been lifted from my shoulders.
Which brings me to women, and how awesome I think they are. While there are still lots of those out there who will only tell you their horror stories, or brag about how little weight they gained (Mom), for the most part I have found my relationships and conversations with other women who have gone through pregnancy and childbirth totally empowering. The girls from grad school, who I met up with for a quick lunch that turned into 3 hours, were so supportive, excited, and non-judgmental. One friend, Jessi, told me she will tell me anything and everything about pregnancy, childbirth, caring for newborns that I’d like to know, but that I just need to remember one thing. She said, “Whatever you’re feeling or going through is totally normal, and it’s ok to feel that way. You have to remember to tell yourself that constantly, now and after the baby is born.” I just love that, and I love her for saying it.
My friend Liz just had her adorable little boy in September, and sometimes I wish I had a tape recorder when I’m talking to her, she has so much helpful advice. Her honesty has been refreshing, she doesn’t leave out the scary stuff, and I think that honesty like that only helps women feel less alone during late night feedings and periods of intense “I don’t know if I can do this anymore” exhaustion. Those women that pretend to be “super mom” every time they talk to you just frustrate me to no end, I mean who or what does that kind of attitude serve?
Then there's Mandy, who I swear IS a super mom, but she certainly doesn't proclaim to be one. I see how much joy she gets from being a mother, and I remember why the morning sickness, bloating, and fat stages will be totally worth it when we have our child. Her relationship with her little boy is awe-inspiring, she just absolutely loves being with him, teaching him new things, providing him with new experiences. I swear she was put on this earth to be a mother. If I get half as much joy from being a mom as Mandy gets, I will be perfectly content.
Betsy and Kate are also both pregnant right now, which is seriously awesome. Betsy is due in July with her first baby girl, and Kate is expecting her second little bugger in August. How lucky am I to be pregnant at the same time as two of my best friends? Hypothetical high-five to God for that one. I love being able to bounce nursery ideas of the two of them, compare notes on weight gain, talk about weird pregnancy things like the constant burping & indigestion. (Seriously, what the heck is that about!?) And when I say “compare notes”, I don’t mean we’re competitive with each other and all Judgy McJudgerson about it. It’s just about receiving and providing extra support amongst friends that know exactly what each is going through.
Women are awesome. I guess that’s what I’m getting at with all my rambling. Being pregnant has only made that more clear.