Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Oddities of Pregnancy

Let me preface this by saying that, thus far, I really have enjoyed being pregnant. I will welcome a second pregnancy some day. Yet, I know the most challenging days are likely ahead. I have a VERY positive outlook on pregnancy etc, yet that doesn't mean I haven't noticed the weird universe of pregnancy that apparently does not follow socially appropriate rules.

First, I have accepted the fact that I DO look pregnant now. For me it is such a gradual change from day to day that I think I am tricked into believing that I don't really look THAT pregnant. Then, completely random people constantly shake my confidence in this belief by asking me when I am due...and then I am left wondering...do they think I am further along...and I search their faces for answers. Usually these people are very sweet BUT this line of questioning without fail leads to the first of the several oddities of pregnancy. These complete strangers, usually women but by no means exclusively women (which is even weirder), reach out and touch me before I even have the chance to stop them (what I want to do is slap them!). With their hands STILL still on MY belly they continue by telling me their "story." Do these strangers really think a first time mom wants to hear about their 23 hours of labor, 12 lb baby or layers of stitches? NO, PLEASE STOP...I want to scream as my eyes bulge, I being to sweat and my heart rate speeds. Do they not see the deer in headlights look on my face? Unless you have had a miracle like birth experience please don't share and STOP touching me! Just tell me it was all worth it and leave out the gory details! Remember when you were in my shoes, would you have wanted to know YOUR story, I doubt it. Let me go back a minute to strangers touching my belly...why is personal space valued in real life but not in the pregnancy world? TODAY alone I experienced the above scenarios at least a half a dozen times...I know I have been known to exaggerate but I kid you not, this is the straight up honest truth.

All this "story" telling led me to do something I promised myself I would NEVER EVER do, watch a video of a live birth. BIG MISTAKE LADIES! If you are pregnant, want to get pregnant, know someone who is or wants to be pregnant at some point in the future I urge you to also not make this same mistake. Why on earth these baby websites find it necessary to post videos like this for a soon to be mom's viewing pleasure is beyond me. Sure, the miracle of life is a beautiful thing...WHEN IT IS OVER, not during (at least in my opinion) and the video I watched scared the you know what out of me. I have been trying, unsuccessfully, to erase the memory of this video. I keep telling myself whether I like it or not this baby has to come out one way or the other so I can't stress about it, but then the vision of that video pops in my head...and WHOA.

Lastly, while I am ranting-who makes maternity clothes? Likely no one who has EVER been pregnant. If you had you would know that I do NOT want denim shorts (why oh why when no "normal" clothing stores sell these would I want them now, especially Daisy Dukes at 6 months preggo). Also, why would you make spandex skin tight maternity jeans...I can think of maybe two people in the world that would look good in these...and they aren't even pregnant. Also, why must EVERYTHING be Jersey Knit? Have I not earned the right to wear some decent fabrics? Why design "poofy" looking clothes...these clothes only enhance the size of the bump which leads to more "when are you due" questions (see above) and the eye brow raises when the person asking realizes that in fact you are not "about to pop." Lastly, these maternity stores that boast affordable prices-either your clothes are DISGUSTING (see above) OR the clothes are not affordable AT ALL. Who wants to pay designer prices for something they will wear just a few short months? Sure, there are cute clothes out there but I for one I am not shelling out 300 bucks for a designer maternity sweater that is poofy and makes me look larger than I already do.

This is only the beginning of this list, but I will stop for now! I am sure some of you out there understand. Wonder how many strangers will touch my bump between now and the next post...any guesses?


  1. Sarah, you are so right! People are clueless, aren't they? And fyi, if I can do labor and delivery, so can you. It was easy shmeasy! (Especially compared to my pregnancy!) Don't watch any more frickin videos...when it's time, you'll just do it. You don't need to think about it! Call me if you want to feel better...I can actually help in that department.

  2. Sar-You have your mama laughing till the tears are running with your observations ESPECIALLY the clohtes part!!! Little hormonal surges here?! That being said, you are SO very right on in all that you shared and BTW, you look gorgeous and just right for being 6 months pregnant! Remember when you were worried that you weren't large enough and if he was healthy? AND having some foreknowledge of things to come is always a good thing even when it looks scary on the video. Remember, every pregnancy and delivery is different for each individual. You are a strong and invincible woman!!! You will be awesome as you alreadyb are!!

  3. Amen sister! Holy cow...I totally concur...maternity clothes are hideous and people are NUTS! I got asked so many questions while I was working about personal pregnancy issues...I was astounded by people and their weirdness! And let me tell you...as you get bigger, the weird touching gets WORSE!

  4. Sar-I have been pondering your post all afternoon. As I think about it several things come to mind about people's reactions. For women who have already had their children seeing you brings back the longing to have a little one to love and cuddle again even though they have no intent to act upon that impulse--they prefer to live vicariously through you. And so, they want to reach out and touch that new life growing in you forgetting that they are in your space not their own. As for the sharing of labor stories, it is the common thread of birth mothers and perhaps they share their story as a way of bonding with a new mom to be to let her know that it will all be alright! It's their way of welcoming you into a new sisterhood. As soon as that little guy takes his first breath and is in your arms, everything else will fade into the background--even the super ugly clothes!!

  5. Sarah,
    Great post. I always thought it was weird that people considered itokay to touch someones pregnant belly. Though, I have to admit, I have the urge to touch it all the same. I always refrain but am continually suprised by the urge to do so. I think it has to do with humans innate need to continue the species and wonder at the miracle of a new human growing inside of you. We (humans) just want to connect with that really cool process going on inside of you. That said, I can totally understand your wish that they would just STOP!