After trying to get pregnant for nearly 3 years, in January 2015, I both accepted the fact that it would most likely not happen and got that big fat positive all in the same week. My husband and I relished in the moment and thanked God for such a blessing. And then it happened…..and once I became aware of it, there was no pulling me out. I despised being pregnant, and it got worse with each week that passed.
I remember feeling such guilt about it, thinking what is wrong with me?? I prayed for this! For nearly 3 years this is all that I wanted. It preoccupied my every thought. I would see other pregnant women and be envious beyond belief. I wanted so badly to hold life inside of me. And there I was, finally able to do so, and I was hating every moment and just counting the days until it would be over.
Not long ago someone asked me if we would want to try for a third child, and I instantly felt sick to my stomach. Forget about the fact that I’m struggling enough with two at the moment, and the thought of keeping three tiny humans alive actually scares the crap out of me. That wasn’t it. I was nauseated at the thought because it took me back to those 9 months (8 in my case, because both my babies came out earlier than anticipated) where all I wanted was for it to be over. It also got me thinking, and made me realize that I brushed those feelings under the rug once my children were born and never really faced that demon. So why did I hate it so much? A few reasons surfaced.
I am an anxious person by nature, so imagine what happened when we threw a bunch of f*cked up hormones in the mix. I was constantly worrying about the baby. Every pain, every twinge, every kick I felt, or didn’t feel would throw me into a state of sheer panic. I would overthink and over analyze everything, to the point where I ended up in the hospital on several occasions. I suppose its always better to be safe than sorry, when it comes to growing a human being inside of you. But my paranoia was unhealthy, and it was sadly preventing me from enjoying this new experience.
The Weight Gain
Ohh the weight gain. I gained a ridiculous amount of weight while carrying my daughter. What’s funny is I can remember sitting in the waiting room for my first ultrasound at 12 weeks, and telling my husband I was worried. All these women around me looked so much more pregnant than I did. I should have embraced those first 12 weeks, because I was never prepared for what soon followed. I was huge, to say the least. I started off my pregnancy at 110lbs and delivered at nearly 180lbs. You would think I ate like a slob and stayed in bed all day, to have put on so much. NOPE! I truly did not over do it. In fact I was perpetually nauseous during my entire pregnancy and most things turned me off completely. I also worked up until the week before I delivered. I was active during the day – mostly on my feet. I couldn’t wrap my head around it, and it began to consume me. Every doctors appointment would send me into a downward spiral. I didn’t want to know how much weight I had gained that month, but it was inevitable. I longed for my body back (and still do) and felt like I was losing myself to this pregnancy. Around the 5 month mark people would comment “oh wow, any day now, right?”. Not once, or twice, but quite often. Strangers – even family members felt the need to remind me I was larger than life. It infuriated me. Would they have been comfortable commenting on my weight had I not been pregnant – probably not. So what gives a person the right to vocalize their thoughts and opinions on a womans body, just because she is pregnant? Nothing. Nothing gives anyone that right. It was disgusting.
I would be walking into work, or doing groceries, and random people would stop and touch my stomach. Random, f*cking people – women, more specifically. All sorts of women. I was horrified the first time it happened, but put it behind me and quickly moved on. Until it happened again, and again. It’s one thing that my mother or best friend would want to feel my belly, but these incidences with strangers had made me feel so disgusting that I could no longer even allow the ones closest to me to give a little belly rub every so often. Even now as I write this and reminisce, I want to jump out of my skin at the very thought of someone touching me during those 8 months.
The guilt that I feel is because as difficult as I found those 3 trimesters, I also remember what it felt like during those 3 long years of trying to conceive. So when someone would ask me how if I was enjoying those moments, I would lie most of the time, because who am I to complain about something so “beautiful” when some women never get to experience it.
With that being said, the fact of the matter is, you are allowed to hate being pregnant. You are allowed to tell someone not to touch you and you are allowed to feel like shit about your body. And the only way to empower each other as women is to speak up about the downside of pregnancy some experience. The realities we face as women during those 9 months are different for everyone, but at the end of the day, its ok to feel this way – and whats even more important is to know you are not alone in it. Some women glow and embrace every day and others just can’t wait for it to be over. Regardless of which category you fall into, lets support and have respect for one another, by understanding what may seem undoubtedly beautiful to most, is not always the case for some.