Answering the Most Common Pregnancy Question...
Let’s just all do every pregnant woman alive a favor and NEVER ask, “How much longer?!”
Because as if I don’t already count down the minutes until my due date and the soonest possible moment this baby can come out healthy and thriving, I’m also SUPER EXCITED to talk to you, dear strange man, in the freezer aisle in Trader Joe’s while my toddler pushes the cart into the kind woman reaching for the chilled chardonnay I can’t have.
Ten-ish weeks, sweet stranger. Ten-ish weeks until I can walk down the same aisle and be asked how many weeks old my baby is, and whether it is a boy or a girl, and silently pray that you don’t try and touch HER.
Yes, I get snarky in my third trimester. This is a trait I carry anyway, and I feel as if the last ten weeks of pregnancy give me the space to be as snarky as I please with little repercussion.
Now that’s out of the way, let’s talk about the second most common phrase spoken to me right now:
“Wow, pregnant in the heat! Oh boy…”
Let’s get one thing straight right now. If you’re saying this to me, you must not know that I already have a baby that was born in July, on a day that was 106 degrees. We also put solar on our home that year, because my sweet husband knew that our electricity bill for the AC would be through the roof (get it… I am being snarky again). Not everyone understands or has the experience of being 8 or 9 or more months pregnant in the summer time in Northern California, where 110 degree days are not uncommon and the air is dry and it feels as if you actually might bake to a crisp if you walk outside.
But, yes. I will be super pregnant in the heat of summer. I will also have a newborn in the heat of summer. It comes with the territory of wanting to have a baby between Christmas’s. It’s just kind of how it goes. Lucky for us, we were able to kind of strategically plan it this time, and it worked. We were not that lucky with Joey, and what we got is what we prayed for – a baby. So we’ll take whatever time of year we could get.
Ok, back to the point.
Summer and pregnancy is no joke. I feel blessed to have done this once before, and to have done it pretty well, aside from the occasional… uhum… frequent… complaint about how hot I was. But actually, being pregnant in the summer is super fun. Yep, super fun. And I’ll tell you why, and how to make it even better, no matter how pregnant (or postpartum!) you are.
Some pain points for me and the summer of pregnancy are these: beer, bathing suits, and body.
Listen, I like beer. I like wine. I like to enjoy them while sitting in my husband’s boat, sun bathing in cutoff shorts and a bikini top or in our backyard while the array of kids run through the sprinklers. And not having a bottle or wine glass in my hand is a major buzz kill for me. Call it what you want, but not being able to enjoy socially drinking my favorite beverages makes me sad. I miss it.
While pregnant with Joey, I kind of avoided situations in which I wanted these things. Social outings, days on the boat, etc. But I have to admit, I filled that void with other things, most commonly ice cream. This time around, I feel much more aware of how I’m feeling and what my body is craving. And ice cream and/or bubble water is not doing the trick.
Enter, non-alcoholic beer.
Don’t bother with the wine. It’s gross, and you’ll feel like you’re drinking over expired grape juice out of can. Seriously, don’t waste your time.
But beer. Beer I can do. And you know what? Non-alcoholic beer actually tastes good. And it comes in a bottle and I can open it with a bottle opener and put a lime in it and my husband and add my six pack to his six pack in our Yeti cooler and take it to the party. It’s basically a dream come true and I am so thankful to the beer gods.
Final thought on beer – you have to be ok with 1: drinking a beer that tastes like a Corona Light or a Coors Light with some umph. It’s not grand, but it does the trick. And 2: knowing you are serving yourself something that has less alcohol than kombucha or the Tylenol you give your toddler. In fact, the new Heinekein non-alcoholic is 0.0%. That’s no alcohol at all. So drink up, babe.
Bathing suits. Actually, let’s skip to body.
Girl, you got no control over what that body is doing. Feed it. Hydrate it. Move it. And for heaven’s sake, let her soak up some vitamin D. But most importantly, embrace her. This was so hard for me during my first pregnancy. I was terrified of what my body was doing, to be honest. How was I ever going to go back to “normal?” What was my new normal? Why aren’t my boobs growing like everyone said they would? What is this pain I’m having in my groin? How do I find help shaving my bikini line and why is my armpit hair growing so fast?
My questions about my body are different this time around, mostly because I have changed. Not because the concerns aren’t there, or I’ve done this once before so I feel secure doing it again. No, it’s because I am looking at my body, and what it’s doing, in a much different way. My questions are things like… what makes me feel comfortable, and how can I do more of that? How can I nourish my body instead of feeding it? What the heck is she doing in there, and why isn’t it sleeping? This pregnancy is so different yet so the same as my first, and though I don’t particularly love being pregnant, I do love the idea of watching my body do something miraculous, and being the provider of not only my own, but my baby’s well-being right now.
I’m tired. So beyond tired. I’m craving wine and raw fish and soft cheese (probably because I know I shouldn’t have any, but sneaking some now and then has certainly not evaded me). I feel strong and capable, while at the same time feeling like getting off the couch is near impossible. I can’t bend over to pick up toys or put my shoes on, and I can’t see my “area” which is giving me anxiety. But it’s temporary, and part of being, and making, human.
So with that, let’s talk bathing suits.
Don’t even try to fit into something you fit into before. And on top of that, don’t you dare try and buy a set of top and bottom of the same size. Girl, you got goods that need to be catered to. There is no one size fits all in pregnancy, and assuming that the Large sized two piece set at Target is going to go the distance is certainly not your one size fits all. Buy the large bottoms and extra large top. Or if you’re me, and didn’t get blessed with the bigger boobs during pregnancy, the large bottoms and small top because… genetics. Sorry baby girl.
Buy two. Two bathing suits, and if you can at all convince yourself, give yourself the freedom of a two piece. It will feel so awkward the first time you let that belly hang loose over bikini bottoms you can’t see when you look down, but give it 15 minutes and some sunshine and you’ll be convinced. That sunlight on that belly is like heaven is shining its golden rays down on your baby saying “welcome to the world.” I’m almost 30 weeks today, and as I swam with Joey in the pool today, I remembered that babies that old inside can differentiate between light and dark. Though it stays dark in there, she has the ability to see light. This is my way of giving her some.
The invigorating feeling of loving your body and understanding that no one is looking at the uncomfortable things but you is unlike anything you’ll experience while pregnant.
I never wore a two piece out of the house while pregnant with Joey. And this time, I am not making that mistake again. So I bought myself two bathing suits I love and would never buy while not pregnant, and I’ve been unashamed to put them on and walk outside. This will end soon, and I will want to be covering up my postpartum body with high waisted leggings and flowy tanks, so let’s let the good times roll while I still have said rolls.
In a nutshell, that’s how I plan to get through this summer at super pregnant and 110 degrees. Non-alcoholic beer, loving my body and rocking a bathing suit.
Also watermelon. And sleep. And air conditioning. And prayer. And lots of packing JoJos with the fan on in my sweltering garage.
See, I’m fine. Totally fine. It’s fine. It’s 106 degrees tomorrow and I’m totally fine.
Xo, and don’t forget the sunscreen.