- The world loves a pregnant woman, and people will literally part the way and stop the traffic for you. This happened to me today, again. It's as if people are both cautious of you and protective over you, all at the same time, and it's surprisingly marvellous.
- Strangers want to talk to you (this also comes into the negs later). I am slightly introverted in the sense that I won't jump to make unnecessary conversation with people I don't know. It takes me a while to warm to people and it's something I've always struggled with. Everyone, from the cashiers at Woolworths, to the old man in the post office, to the little boy in the car park, will talk you. It's quite amazing. They want to know how far along you are, whether it is a boy or a girl, whether it's your first, or in the case of the little boy - if there's a 'baby in there'. They want to comment on how you look, how low/high/small/big you are carrying. And all of them do it with warmth. You'll know what I mean if you've experienced it. It's has taken me by surprise once or twice, like today when the Woolies' cashier started up a conversation about how much she wants a baby and her husband isn't ready. Without warning you are thrown into chats like this. It's been amazing for me, drawn me out of my shell a bit.
- People love buying baby clothes. And it's not about you, it's about them. There is some kind of projection that goes into baby buying, I've come to realise. People buy the things they would buy for their own babies, and each has a definite reason for why they bought you this SPECIFIC gift i.e. I've bought you this baby sleeping bag because I had one when I was little. I've had gifts from so many people, and I'm only 26 weeks. The generosity is overwhelming.
- You have an 'out' whenever you need one. Our social schedule is hectic most of the time, and most of the time I love it. But sometimes I just want to go home early, and that's when the preggie perks kick in. You can be the first to leave and everyone understands. I imagine kids 'needing to get to bed' is a good excuse too at a later stage.
- You'll detox like you've never detoxed before. No alcohol, no caffeine, no smoking (I'm not a smoker anyway). 9 months of eating well and taking more vitamins than you thought possible does wonders for you. It will be the healthiest time of your life, so avoid all these things for once. The time will come when you can indulge in all of them again, and will. Miss you caffe latte.
- Incremental "getting to grips with things". Before I fell pregnant, I imagined that movement might feel alien, that my stomach might look grotesque, that my ankles would swell up and become 'cankles' and more...the truth is, you have so much time to adjust, each month brings some small new adjustment. But nothing is sudden. Well not for me anyway. You are pregnant for 9 months so that you can sort your life out slowly and not have to race to the finish line. It really was 'planned well'.
- Belly touchers. They're everywhere. Like a "Where's Wally" sea of hands coming at you. Ready to touch, jiggle, tap and stroke your belly. This has been a BIG adjustment :)
- Maternity clothes. Or in this case, a SERIOUS lack thereof. Don't be fooled by the clothes in some of the major retailers, they were not designed for you, they were designed for aliens. There's a big gap in the market, please fill it someone! And yes, I know you can find nice stuff online, but I can't grasp spending that much when I'll be out of them in less than 3 months.
- Not feeling 'quite yourself'. This seems like an obvious one. From hair to skin, to clothes, to lack of energy, to baby talk, to feeling 'frumpy'.
- Drunks. I miss having drinks with friends and having a good time. Being the only sober one past 11pm does not have any perks, is not fun, and is not advisable (unless you're knocked up).
- You know you really should...SHUT UP! Mention the words 'pregnant' or 'babies' and the world is your expert. Everyone and their dog will give you advice. It's done out of love (must be said) but god knows it's the most annoying of the negs. I had a guy tell me the other day that 'the fitter you are, the easier your natural birth will be (because c-sections are a no-no), and you'll just pop the baby out in time for a mani and pedi'. Or something like that. Well buddy, last time I checked, overweight women the world over have given birth without even knowing they were pregnant. Pop. This story aside, people will bombard you with "use that nappy", "have a c-section definitely", "my cousin's mother's sister's gran's parrot said that breastfeeding makes your baby superhuman'. Or something like that.
This is a small peek into my life right now. I'd love to know any positives and negatives other moms/preggie ladies have/had. So please drop me a mail, or comment on this post.
In the end, we are all doing our best, and our best is best.