Next week I hit the halfway point of pregnancy #2.
My doctor confirmed on Monday that all is going well and everything is right on point. I like to hear that. Have I mentioned that I have an awesome OB/GYN? (I'm happy to refer you to him)
Recently I have found myself contemplating the differences between pregnancy #1, with Ben, and now pregnancy #2, with my little "plum".
Really, when it comes to basic physical pregnancy stuff, much is the same. Each time I have had zero morning sickness (please don't hate me). I just get a little tired by the afternoon. My only real food aversion is eggs, especially with runny yolks...ughh. A little heartburn after fried foods, so I just avoid them Mine and baby's heart rates have been similar each time. I have had some really whacked out dreams each time. I mean freaky. And its the kind that you remember. We are again choosing to wait till the birth to find out baby's gender and are waiting to share the names as well(much to everyone's chagrin). Of course all of the similarities lead me to believe that I am having another boy. Which is fine by me, because I adore my little munchkin. But then again, last time I was dead certain it was a girl! WRONG!!!
But the real differences between the two for me, are truly mental and emotional.
If you were around me with pregnancy #1, I was so awkward about the whole thing. I mean, I was so excited to be pregnant, but I kept it quite internal. We had been trying for a long time. The attention that it brought made me so uncomfortable. Even saying the word "pregnant" felt weird.
I didn't take any of those baby bump pictures every 2 weeks like everyone shows off on Facebook. I didn't have any trouble waiting to tell most people (except my sisters). I didn't really want to talk about it with anyone. When I was showing, it was like torture when strangers would ask questions or, God forbid, touch my belly. I refused to buy maternity clothing. I did buy those things that extend your pants out at the button/zipper. And some of my style was maternity friendly already. I put off registering for baby stuff and setting up a nursery till the last possible moment. (no seriously. I didn't even have a crib and room for him until after he was born) I was like, the opposite of every first time mom ever.
In retrospect, I understand myself from then enough to know why. I was terrified. Of so many things.
1. you know I'm superstitious. I didn't want to jinx anything. This thing that I had wanted for years. Like if I acknowledged what was happening, the other shoe would drop. Or something would go wrong. And that would have been devastating.
2. I was so not comfortable in my own physical skin to begin with. Now that skin was going to change. And stretch. And be changed forever. Were those changes going to make me unlovable? Would it change my relationship or how my spouse looked at me?
3. I was going to be a parent. The sole mother of this tiny delicate important human. It was overwhelming, the responsibility. I did not take this lightly. At all. Was I strong enough? I do come from a long line of leavers.
And there is so much deeper we could dive into the psyche of it. but I've already bored you with enough details of my own personal crazy.
I am happy to say that in the 2 years since I gave birth to my beautiful boy, I have changed and grown tremendously.
The things that seemed important once, are no longer so dire. The fears are still present. But so is the present moment. And the realization that those fears are really crap.
I mean stretch marks don't make me unlovable. They make me powerful.
I've lost some personal freedom only to gain purpose, focus and value of time.
Its in the ordinary every day monotonous tasks, that glory shines.
Only jerks give a crap if my house is perfectly in order.
And perfection means nothing. Presence means everything.
And in being less afraid of everything. I am enjoying my pregnancy this time.
Yes, I am taking those corny baby bump pictures every 2 weeks. (i'm just not posting them on Facebook). They are for my enjoyment only. And I do still kind of think they are corny, oh well.
I am embracing the changes in my body, and how they are happening earlier, and making the necessary accommodations. I am staying very active, but also taking regular naps (which I have never done in my life mind you). Yes, I have bought maternity clothing already. Thanks to the local Children's resale store and Kohl's clearance rack. What the hell, I might as well be comfortable.
I couldn't wait to tell people this time around. I mean, I still waited past the first trimester to tell most people, but I wanted to scream it from the rafters immediately. That might also be due to the fact that it was during the abominably cold winter months that I found out, and was bored as a gourd.
And much of this is likely due to what Ben has taught me. And motherhood in general. I know that I only have one baby (on the outside!) and , yes motherhood is hard. But it is also awesome. He doesn't care what I look like (unless I pull my hair into a ponytail. which he hates. whats up with that?). But he cares what I do. How I look at him. That I am THERE! And how am to him and with him. And I want to be my best self for him. I am amazed that I have been able to get into the best shape of my life since having him, because I want to keep up with him. And set a good example. I've followed my professional goals to work for myself and provide a schedule of my own choosing, so that I can choose to be with my son most days of the week. I work only 2 days a week. Doing what I enjoy. I'm not sure I would have been brave enough to pursue such things before baby #1. So disabled by fear.
There have been so many changes in 2 and a half years. Growth. Stretching. Improving. Its painful and uncomfortable at times. So uncomfortable. But what is change without that.
I wish you could see the stretch marks on my mind, my heart and soul. They are glorious.