I had a bit of a meltdown two nights ago.
I wasn’t sure if it was hormones (because they’re raging), emotions (because they’re utterly imbalanced right now), or circumstances (because they’re a bit out of whack this week as well). But I freaked out to a degree worthy of kindergarten.
So what did I do? I called in the troops. I sent an email to all “My Baby Mama’s”…those friends of mine who have carried babies in their uterus’s (uteri?) and have dealt with the fears and concerns that plague us all.
Yes, every woman wonders where her waist went, and if she’ll ever see it again.
Every pregnant mom fears her peers are eyeing her suspiciously, wondering if she is, in fact, pregnant, or just letting herself go.
Every one of us has done battle with the crippling fear that we were as fit as we will ever be, and we won’t ever be that again. We’ll gain 50 lbs. while pregnant, and won’t lose it. Ever. We will join the ranks of the tattered mother who simply doesn’t have time, energy, or – let’s be honest – any motivation whatsoever to be or feel like a sexy, beautiful woman again.
I didn’t know these things plagued us all until these dear ones emailed back such words of encouragement.
Every single one of those friends eased my mind with the comforting truth that it won’t stay this way forever, that I will get my body back, to some degree, and that my beloved husband – that guy who loved me enough to insperminate me with our precious little baby – will love me, always, no matter what. One friend’s husband even asked her to tell me that, from his perspective (and that of most husbands/fathers-to-be), his wife was beautiful when they met, she became more beautiful as she grew into her pregnancy, and her beauty found its pinnacle in motherhood.
But thing is, with every one of those friends, that wasn’t the focus. Sure, I’ll get my body back. BUT.
And the BUT! was simple: Don’t let these fears steal the wonder of what’s happening inside me right now.
I got to thinking about that today.
When I was in college, some friends and I would often complain about how women got the short end of every stick. I mean, it all starts when we hit puberty and start bleeding copious amounts of blood every month (which in any other situation would be an indicator of imminent death). And with that comes the cramping…a debilitating, curled-up-on-the-floor-tear-my-insides-out pain that comes every month, on schedule. Then, when we’re older and wiser and hopefully married, we get to have sex! Which hurts the first (few) time(s), and takes months, even years, to find pleasure in. Guys? They endure the occasional unwanted boner in junior and senior high. Fits of mental lust I don’t envy, but are controllable nonetheless. And with sex? Yeah, for them it takes a few seconds, and it rarely hurts. Then, we girls get knocked up and have to endure getting fat, having raging hormones, carrying “a parasite” for nine months, and then somehow, by the horrifying and unjust laws of nature, push football sized people out of our hoo-ha’s. Then, IF our mates still find us attractive AND we haven’t driven them away with our hormonal insanity, we have to start the whole process over again. Ahhhh! Injustice!
Of course, none of us had experienced pregnancy yet.
It’s unbelievable to me how incredibly blessed I am these days to be a woman. To have this secret. Everybody knows I’m pregnant. But they don’t get to experience the little wonders like I do.
For these nine months, it’s just me and Baby. I’m not just sharing my food…my exercise…my conversations…my stress and comforts. I’m sharing my body. Literally. We are co-habitating in the most intimate way for nine months.
Of course, I want to share this amazing adventure with Paul…but I can’t yet. Right now, Baby is too small for even me to feel. But I know s/he can feel the vibrations when I speak or sing or breathe. I know Baby is growing because I’m eating and drinking what I should (and avoiding what I shouldn’t), and I’m still hungry. I am, even in these early days, already able to rock Baby to sleep while I run. It is, at almost any given time, just us.
So yeah. People might think I’m growing fat instead of growing a baby. And that’s OK with me. Because I have a secret. A little companion who is all mine right now, who I get to know and love and give myself up for before anyone else in the world gets the chance (except God).
And I’ll take Baby – with the cramps, the pain, the bloating, the hormones, the weight-gain, and all those other injustices of womanhood – any day of the week.
Because it’s part of the gift only I get.
And what an amazing, unmatched gift it is.