I can’t get over the fascination people have with how pregnant women look. People will say things to a pregnant chick’s face that they would never dream of saying to any other woman. I am noticing this even more with my second pregnancy than with my first. With my first, everything about my body was novel and mysterious. When would I get the “bump?” How much bigger could my boobs actually get? Would I experience the cankle? So, I didn’t particularly notice other people’s comments on my appearance.
I gained a good 50 pounds with my first born and by the end, at least 30 of those pounds were in my face. But, I was content and healthy and successfully delivered a healthy baby girl, so there was no wrong in the world as I knew it, even when I didn’t really lose much of that baby weight after-the-fact.
This pregnancy I am tiny by comparison. I weigh less now at 8 months than I did before my pregnancy. My midwife keeps asking me questions to make sure I don’t have an eating disorder and/or I am not starving. But, I am eating at least 6 times a day, have totally upped my protein intake and still can’t seem to pack it on. With being put on disability early and dealing with “gestational diabetes” (it’s a real thing it’s just that since my “diagnosis” I haven’t had one damn abnormal blood sugar reading) this pregnancy has actually been fairly unhealthy comapred to the last one; and I am getting the most compliments on how I look. Apparently I don’t even look pregnant from behind, whatever the fuck that means.
I am not sure what to do with this. On the one hand, I am hoping I can maintain this magical metabolism post-pregnancy so I can get back to a healthier size, and it is nice being constantly told how lovely I look, even though I have absolutely nothing to do with this outcome. I also don’t mind that I can still wear some of my non-maternity shirts.
On the other hand, I figure, shouldn’t I look pregnant from behind? It seems a shame not to look pregnant when I am in fact so pregnant I have to roll my legs out of bed first so I can build the momentum to move my torso. I am also pretty sure that my husband will have to paint my toenails for me from now on.
The one time a person should look pregnant, from any direction, is when they are, in fact, pregnant. And, the last thing a pregnant woman should be made to feel insecure about is her appearance. Don’t worry–she has plenty of competing guilt about other topics like her diet, her birth plan, the choices around immunizations and circumcision. If you must, if you are absolutely compelled to comment, tell her she looks magnificent–if only for the reason that she is bringing new life and hope into our world.