“The pregnancy app says now’s a good time to take up swimming,” said Manfriend.
I looked up from the gallon Ziploc bag full of leftover croissants I’d been working my way through and wondered how someone so focused on a new life could be so cavalier with his own.
“Now’s a good time for the pregnancy app to stop bossing me around,” I replied, retucking the couch blanket and wondering what fresh hell pregnancy had in store that day. I knew to expect nausea, exhaustion, mood swings and pornstar boobs, but I didn’t anticipate dandruff, hives, explosive sweating and feet that looked like loaves of bread with toes at the end. I’ve literally gone from a size 8.5 to a 10.
For many folks, pregnancy is a magical experience. Turns out I’m not that flavor of folk, and that’s fine. I just gotta dig down deep and wade my way through it.
It’s a weird thing, being knocked up. That rule about keeping it quiet for the first trimester makes things tough, too — really lonely and weird, right when the hormones might be making you the most tired, the most barfy, the most irrational you’ve ever been in your life. I distinctly remember thinking, “I have lost my mind. What is running through my head is definitely not accurate, and my response to it is incongruent, and the only thing I can think of to do here is distract the inside of my head like you would a toddler in the midst of a temper tantrum.” There’ve been out-of-body experiences during which I wonder why the lady in the mirror is crying so hard about her pants not fitting when there’s a perfectly good explanation for it, and it’s not her fault. Well, it is actually, but not in that way. Oh shit, she’s crying even harder now.
I think maybe it would have been easier to just tell people the truth instead of hiding in private misery, and I think I might’ve just decided I will never again follow that three-month rule.
I get that if things go sideways, having to report bad news to everyone would blow. But I’d just tell two people and ask them to spread the word that shit happened and I don’t wanna talk about it.
The women I’ve known who have miscarried have suffered greatly. To go through that alone sounds awful. I’m not seeing how pretending miscarriages don’t happen is doing any good. So if I get knocked up again, I’ll say so right away, first to the old doggie that sleeps in the bathtub like last time, and then to the Manfriend, and then to whoever will listen, because I will need my people to help me wade through it. And if this pregnancy doesn’t stick, then I’ll share that, too, because I will need my people to help me to move forward.
I feel like so far, that might be the best lesson I’ve learned from this experience — one I imagine will be full of lessons. Well, that and the fact that wearing a swimsuit while 30 pounds heavier than ever, the day after Thanksgiving, in public, will not actually kill you.
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