Pregnancy Isn’t Always Pretty

You know those moms who love every minute of being pregnant? The ones who glow from day one, claim pregnancy gives them extra energy, and at 40 weeks their profile resembles a stick figure with a basketball stuck under their shirt?

I hate those moms.

Obviously, I don’t hate them OPENLY because that would make me look petty and small. Instead, I smile and nod as they go on about how they’ve never felt better. Then at night, before I fall asleep, I hope that one of their feet will grow two sizes while the other stays the same size.

That can actually happen. I saw it on Ellen.

You may be saying to yourself, “I thought Jennifer was so nice. Why would she wish ill on these mothers-to-be?” I don’t really. It’s just my way of coping with the reality that I DON’T DO PREGNANCY WELL. There is no part between getting pregnant and leaving the hospital that I enjoy.

With my first pregnancy, I had “morning sickness” (which is really all-day sickness) until week 16 at which point I was exhausted and uncomfortable until it was over. My hair and skin were greasier than they ever were during my teens. I was constantly cranky and bloated and in the final few weeks I began retaining water at a rate even my doctor couldn’t fathom.

This is a woman who has seen literally thousands of pregnant woman in her lifetime and everytime I would get on the scale she was like, “I don’t understand how that’s possible!”

And those are just the symptoms I’m willing to share. Trust me, you don’t want to hear the rest.

Lest you doubt my sincerity in this matter, here is some photographic evidence.

We Had No Idea

Here is a photo of me at four weeks pregnant. My husband and I are enjoying the last vacation we would ever have with just the two of us and blissfully unaware of the fact that I was about to blow up like a beached whale. Notice how “put together” I look here, ON VACATION. I’ve fixed my hair despite the fact it is 110 degrees outside. Ahhh. Those were the days.

Now here is what I looked like 36 weeks later. Like I said, pregnancy was not kind to me.

There are relatives I haven't shared this picture with.

Let’s do a side-by-side comparison.

It isn't pretty.

Before you begin writing a comment about how I am lucky to have the ability to get pregnant, and there of plenty of women who would kill to go through 40 weeks of pure torture if they could have a baby, I know. I was one of those women. It took us three years of trying to conceive my daughter. We chose not to use fertility treatments, but we had already submitted adoption paperwork and attended all the classes before I discovered I was pregnant.

So I get it. Pregnancy and childbirth are miraculous miracles and I’m lucky to experience it. Of course, I LOVE my daughter and I love this little nugget I’m carrying now. They are both TOTALLY worth it. But that doesn’t mean that I can’t acknowledge that for me, pregnancy is hard and uncomfortable and I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one that feels that way.

It isn’t all rosy glows and exciting butterfly kicks and that’s okay. Because the end product is sooo worth it. You really do forget it all as soon as that tiny bundle is in your arms. If that wasn’t true, we’d have a lot more only children. :)