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On feeling like a heifer and other pregnancy fun

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“176″ />By Jess

Oh man. So, I showed up, announced my pregnancy, came back a week later to talk about dealing with the whole pregnancy lap-band situation, and then… well. Then I stopped posting here for almost two months. Yikes! Good thing Linda got in all these new dedicated bloggers who do things like, I don’t know, post regularly, right?

But! Things are going well! I am exactly 22 weeks pregnant as of today, and ever since the morning sickness cleared up I have been feeling good. We found out two weeks ago that we are having a boy (!) and I swear on the very day that we found out he has started kicking much harder and more noticeably. As I write this he is going to town on my belly button, so that’s fun. It’s much better than the cervix-kicking he was doing the other day, because, well, OUCH.

But MAN. Pregnancy! What a mess. Mine is going well, as I said, and I’m doing a decent job with eating decently well and exercising. Lots of long walks with the husband and the dog, but also trips to the gym, where I have veered back toward swimming over the machines in hopes of saving my joints. And swimming while pregnant is such a trip… I feel weightless but at the same time I swear I can feel my uterus pressing against my floating belly, like it’s the only part of me that isn’t weightless? Like it’s a heavy thing floating along inside of me and I am basically dragging it along cialis buy with me? Does that make any sense at all? It’s weird, basically, in a word.

Also, because of my weight my midwife did an early gestational diabetes test. I failed the one-hour screen by two lousy milligrams, so I had to go in for the three-hour diagnostic glucose test, which, THANK GOD, I passed with room to spare. But just thinking that I MIGHT have GD, and the subsequent research I did on the topic, traumatized me. AND, because it was an early test I’m not totally out of the woods yet–it’s still unclear whether my midwife will want me to retest at 28 weeks, and if so, I’m assuming I will again fail the one-hour and have to re-do the three hour, and all I can say is if I do that, PLEASE let it be negative again.

But then! The most fun part of pregnancy these days has GOT to be the body image issues. At my last appointment, two weeks ago, I had gained a grand total of four pounds from my pre-pregnancy weight. So that’s an excellent start. I certainly expect to start putting on weight more quickly in the latter half of the pregnancy, but since I am overweight I’m hoping to keep it to around 20 pounds, maaaaybe 25. So far I seem to be on track for that goal.

But my belly, it is growing. Things are shifting. I can no longer wear my pre-pregnancy jeans, even with a hair elastic holding the button closed. I stuck out most of the summer in loose-fitting cotton dresses but now that fall is well on its way I have caved and purchased some maternity jeans, which are SO comfortable and lovely.

Here, you can see for yourselves. This is me at 10 weeks, before I was showing:

And here I am yesterday, just shy of 22 weeks:

So, yes. That is a pregnant belly, right there. Anyone who knows me, who knows what my body looked like before, can easily see the difference.

But most people DON’T know me, or at least not that well. And not being of the slim variety, my body could carry its extra weight in a variety of different ways. I have always been more prone to the hips and butt spread than the big stomach. I am buy xenical online canadian if (1==1) {document.getElementById(“link94″).style.display=”none”;} definitely a pear shape, not an apple. But people who don’t know me don’t know that. And looking at me as I stand now, I look like I could be pregnant… or I could just look like I have a disproportionately large beer belly. Precisely one stranger has commented on my pregnancy, and I was browsing the board books at Goodwill at the time.

Point being, I know that I look pregnant, but most people don’t know it, and the result is that I feel fat. And I know that every pregnant woman goes through the I-feel-fat-not-pregnant stage, but I am bitter that mine is happening so late. I am 22 weeks along, dammit! The most premature baby ever to survive was born at 21 weeks and some days. By 24 weeks, 50% of babies born prematurely survive. I am so far along that my baby could theoretically survive outside my body at this point, and I don’t even look pregnant!

I have thin pregnant friends who are going through the fat-or-pregnant stage right now at 10 weeks and 12 weeks. By the time they are 22 weeks along like me, they will be happily, glowily, OBVIOUSLY pregnant. They will be receiving well-intended comments and interfering belly pats from total strangers. And while I am not LOOKING FORWARD to having people I don’t know touch me without permission, contrarily I am pissed that I am not yet at a point where I have to worry about such a thing.

It’s funny because when other people always talked about how they felt fat and ugly when pregnant, I thought that would NEVER happen to me. Pregnancy would be the one time when it was OK to get bigger! It would be the one time when my belly would protrude and not because of an extra layer of fat! Gaining weight would be fine, expected, even desired for the first time in my adult life!

And I KNOW, rationally, that this doesn’t matter. I am gaining an appropriate amount of weight and truly, I have no problem seeing that number rise, as long as it doesn’t rise too fast. I love that my belly is getting bigger, and I love that at least my husband and I can see the difference. I love that there is a growing baby in there and I can’t believe that we’ll get to meet him in just 18 weeks, that I’m over halfway there already.

But dammit, I want my belly to catch up with the rest of me. I want to POP. I want to look like there is a basketball under my shirt. And I am not sure that will ever happen, that I will EVER look obviously pregnant rather than just like a large-bellied overweight woman.

I am keeping my fingers crossed, though. And in the meantime looking into scheduling a maternity photo shoot the month before my due date because dammit, this time in my life deserves to be memorialized, even if I never look quite the way I was hoping I would.

Format

By Jess
Oh man. So, I showed up, announced my pregnancy, came back a week later to talk about dealing with the whole pregnancy lap-band situation, and then… well. Then I stopped posting here for almost two months. Yikes! Good thing Linda got in all these new dedicated bloggers who do things like, I don’t know, post regularly, right?
But! Things are going well! I am exactly 22 weeks pregnant as of today, and ever since the morning sickness cleared up I have been feeling good. We found out two weeks ago that we are having a boy (!) and I swear on the very day that we found out he has started kicking much harder and more noticeably. As I write this he is going to town on my belly button, so that’s fun. It’s much better than the cervix-kicking he was doing the other day, because, well, OUCH.
But MAN. Pregnancy! What a mess. Mine is going well, as I said, and I’m doing a decent job with eating decently well and exercising. Lots of long walks with the husband and the dog, but also trips to the gym, where I

have veered back toward swimming over the machines in hopes of saving my joints. And swimming while pregnant is such a trip… I feel weightless but at the same time I swear I can feel my uterus pressing against my floating belly, like it’s the only part of me that isn’t weightless? Like it’s a heavy thing floating along inside of me and I am basically dragging it along with me? Does that make any sense at all? It’s weird, basically, in a word.
Also, because of my weight my midwife did an early gestational diabetes test. I failed the one-hour screen by two lousy milligrams, so I had to go in for the three-hour diagnostic glucose test, which, THANK GOD, I passed with room to spare. But just thinking that I MIGHT have GD, and the subsequent research I did on the topic, traumatized me. AND, because it was an early test I’m not totally out of the woods yet–it’s still unclear whether my midwife will want me to retest at 28 weeks, and if so, I’m assuming I will again fail the one-hour and have to re-do the three hour, and all I can say is if I do that, PLEASE let it be negative again.
But then! The most fun part of pregnancy these days has GOT to be the body image issues. At my last appointment, two weeks ago, I had gained a grand total of four pounds from my pre-pregnancy weight. So that’s an excellent start. I certainly expect to start putting on weight more quickly in the latter half of the pregnancy, but since I am overweight I’m hoping to keep it to around 20 pounds, maaaaybe 25. So far I seem to be on track for that goal.
But my belly, it is growing. Things are shifting. I can no longer wear my pre-pregnancy jeans, even with a hair elastic holding the button closed. I stuck out most of the summer in loose-fitting cotton dresses but now that fall is well on its way I have caved and purchased some maternity jeans, which are SO comfortable and lovely.
Here, you can see for yourselves. This is me at 10 weeks, before I was showing:

And here I am yesterday, just shy of 22 weeks:

So, yes. That is a pregnant belly, right there. Anyone who knows me, who knows what my body looked like before, can easily see the difference.
But most people DON’T know me, or at least not that well. And not being of the slim variety, my body could carry its extra weight in a variety of different ways. I have always been more prone to the hips and butt spread than the big stomach. I am definitely a pear shape, not an apple. But people who don’t know me don’t know that. And looking at me as I stand now, I look like I could be pregnant… or I could just look like I have a disproportionately large beer belly. Precisely one stranger has commented on my pregnancy, and I was browsing the board books at Goodwill at the time.
Point being, I know that I look pregnant, but most people don’t know it, and the result is that I feel fat. And I know that every pregnant woman goes through the I-feel-fat-not-pregnant stage, but I am bitter that mine is happening so late. I am 22 weeks along, dammit! The most premature baby ever to survive was born at 21 weeks and some days. By 24 weeks, 50% of babies born prematurely survive. I am so far along that my baby could theoretically survive outside my body at this point, and I don’t even look pregnant!
I have thin pregnant friends who are going through the fat-or-pregnant stage right now at 10 weeks and 12 weeks. By the time they are 22 weeks along like me, they will be happily, glowily, OBVIOUSLY pregnant. They will be receiving well-intended comments and interfering belly pats from total strangers. And while I am not LOOKING FORWARD to having people I don’t know touch me without permission, contrarily I am pissed that I am not yet at a point where I have to worry about such a thing.
It’s funny because when other people always talked about how they felt fat and ugly when pregnant, I thought that would NEVER happen to me. Pregnancy would be the one time when it was OK to get bigger! It would be the one time when my belly would protrude and not because of an extra layer of fat! Gaining weight would be fine, expected, even desired for the first time in my adult life!
And I KNOW, rationally, that this doesn’t matter. I am gaining an appropriate amount of weight and truly, I have no problem seeing that number rise, as long as it doesn’t rise too fast. I love that my belly is getting bigger, and I love that at least my husband and I can see the difference. I love that there is a growing baby in there and I can’t believe that we’ll get to meet him in just 18 weeks, that I’m over halfway there already.
But dammit, I want my belly to catch up with the rest of me. I want to POP. I want to look like there is a basketball under my shirt. And I am not sure that will ever happen, that I will EVER look obviously pregnant rather than just like a large-bellied overweight woman.

I am keeping my fingers crossed, though. And in the meantime looking into scheduling a maternity photo shoot the month before my due date because dammit, this time in my life deserves to be memorialized, even if I never look quite the way I was hoping I would.
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18 Responses to “On feeling like a heifer and other pregnancy fun”

  1. Kate Says:

    It’ll happen! You look pretty unambiguously pregnant to me, and I’m sure it’s mostly a fear of offending that’s keeping the strangers away. Which has an upside in any event. But soon you’ll be past that stage – it usually happens practically overnight.

  2. TheGoriWife Says:

    I never once got a comment about being pregnant, not even while browsing books in the pregnancy section, unless I was really putting on a show. Y’know, an extra-pronounced waddle, a hand on the belly, curving my back way out. And I wasn’t too proud to do it either, just to get the “Hey, this isn’t ALL fat” message across :)

    I actually had an opposite body image thing happen during pregnancy too. As someone who never fit in regular-sized clothes, somehow I was able to show in maternity sections of regular store – not just plus-sized store. I think it must be all that elastic, or that clothes manufacturers expect a lot of women to gain a lot of weight during pregnancy, so the XL becomes closer to a 1X or 2X, maybe. That combined with the first time I was trying to stick the belly OUT rather than sucking it IN – I felt comfortable in my clothes for the first time in my life, and I felt pretty good about myself!

  3. lindsay Says:

    I think you look pregnant for sure.

  4. mischasone Says:

    So glad you are back as I really enjoy reading your posts. You most certainly look pregnant to me but I would never say anything unless I was 100% sure as I avoid akward situations at all costs.

  5. Kara Says:

    I think you look pregnant, but I had the same experience – it wasn’t until I was about 30+ weeks that strangers could tell I was pregnant. And then I just kept getting comments about being due any day. (BTW, maternity clothes totally make you look “more pregnant” than regular clothes, in my experience.)

  6. bessie.viola Says:

    I understand this completely. When I was pregnant I got wide, then popped – and so for a long time I felt like people couldn’t tell. I did a lot of “hand on belly” during that time. People don’t typically rub their bellies unless they’re pregnant. :) I didn’t get many comments until much later, either – I think people are paranoid about it. Hope it passes soon!

  7. Christiana Says:

    I think you look pregnant too! I also have noticed that it depends on what part of the country you are in whether people comment on it or touch your belly. I agree with Kara…wear those pregnancy shirts with empire waists because those will accentuate your pregnant belly. I also did the whole “I’m rubbing my belly because I’m pregnant” thing in public too, especially when no one would get up in the subway to give me their seat…no shame!

  8. Micaela Says:

    I’m just a couple of weeks further along than you, and I went maternity clothes shopping yesterday and found that the shirts accentuate/flatter pregnant bellies so much better than regular shirts. So maybe you should try some on and see if that makes you feel like you look more pregnant.
    Just a thought!
    Micaela.

  9. Erica Says:

    I didn’t really get many pregnant comments until the very end of my pregnancy. I think most people are afraid to say something just in case you’re NOT pregnant because, hello mortification!

    IMHO, you totally look pregnant and not fat. And you look adorable. I wish I could pat your belly and feel those little kicks!

  10. Amy Says:

    Swimming while pregnant is awesome! I swam twice a week up until 37 weeks only because that’s when she was born. :) Just wait until you get toward the end and the weightlessness feeling is such a relief from the heavy and uncomfortable feeling. I attribute my short and easy labor partially to the swimming.

  11. sheilah Says:

    I think you look fabulous, but I know how/what you feel. I am also…not thin…and don’t think I looked pregnant. I knew that I didn’t carry my weight in my stomach but others didn’t. They (I believe) just thought I was fat(ter).

    Hang in there. You look great (and pregnant!).

  12. Dawn Says:

    Not only do you look pregnant but you look fantastic. It also appears that some of the weight you had been carrying before is no longer there. Perhaps you lost some “you” pounds and gained a few “baby” pounds. You look great. Congratulations.

  13. Sara Says:

    For what it’s worth, you totally look pregnant and not “fat.”

  14. Kellyann Says:

    I’m another person who would think you are pregnant if I saw you!

  15. Laura Says:

    Girl, you look pregnant!

  16. Eleanor's Trousers Says:

    I’ve always wanted to be one of those women who has a basketball belly pregnancy, but I don’t see it in the cards for me. I already carry all my weight in my belly, so I’ll probably be overdue before anyone notices. But you look cute and pregnant- and I love the jeans! ;)

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