Apparently announcing my pregnancy has opened the flood gates to unsolicited comments about my body. First off, I’ll say that announcing the pregnancy was fun and the messages of congratulations and well wishes were touching. Here’s how I announced on Facebook:
The journey was longer than anticipated, but we are thrilled to announce that I’m knocked up, expecting, in a family way, baking a bun in my oven, in a delicate condition, eating for two, with child . . . Baby W is due November 3!
And here’s what J posted (facetiously):
It’s true. I am going to be a father unless Maury Povich tells me otherwise.
I told some coworkers first thing on Wednesday morning. The were very excited as they knew about the struggles we were having. I had to see a client right after, so I didn’t get to talk to anyone else. Once I was done with my client, I was told that some other employees in different departments wanted to see me, to ask me questions. The way it was said, it was pretty obvious that they were catching on. I figured they were catching on to the buzz around the office, but apparently it was due to how I look. One person said she wondered weeks ago because there was a “pregnant look” to my face (I assume she means a glow and not a rounder face and acne). Another coworker, the school librarian, had self-elected to ask me if I was pregnant since a group of them were whispering and wondering. She didn’t get the chance because I heard and approached her. When I confirmed the pregnancy and told her I was (at the time) 11.5 weeks, she was floored. She asked if I took fertility drugs (she saw me taking my herbs before and I told her why). I said no. Anticipating her response, I also threw in that I was only having one baby. She replied, “Are you sure?!” Now this woman is great! She is hilarious and straightforward. I could (mostly) laugh off their comments, but I felt a bit self-conscious that my bump is probably larger than most at this point (I think I’m extra bloated in the above picture). Another woman, who I also really like, told me I am huge today. I playfully gave her a hard time. I also relayed the story below (sorry for the lack of chronological accuracy). Another pregnant coworker told me to prepare for lots of rude comments and that at 6 months, she has been asked when she’s due since it “must be any day now.”
On the weekend, J and I went to Jasper, AB (in the Rocky Mountains . . . . soooo beautiful!) for his work event. J proudly introduced me and announced that I am carrying his first child. When people asked how far along I am, I felt a little embarrassed that I couldn’t say I was further along. I felt like my stomach and my week count were incongruous. I am not ashamed of my bump. I love it actually, but comments from others have made me feel self-conscious and worried that I’m growing too much too fast. This all came to a head at a company dinner. It was an upscale, 4-course meal. The dress I wore is fitted and my bump was visible. At the end of the day, following a big meal, I was likely extra bloated. I got up to use the restroom. When I returned to my seat, a VP with my husband’s company came over to say that our baby will be huge since I’m only 3 months and already so big. He kept going and going. Others around us could hear him and they could see my face. I could feel myself blush. I have never felt so humiliated. Once he finally left us alone, J turned to me and said, “That was more insulting than anything wasn’t it?” I was fighting back tears and his comment was enough to set me off. I tried to hide it and I hope I was successful as I would hate for J’s coworkers to see me in tears. We left and walked back to our room. When we got inside, I went to the bathroom and began sobbing. J must have heard me because he knocked on the door, looked at me with concern, held out his arms and said, “I don’t agree with him.” It took me awhile to let go of the humiliated feeling. I was still concerned about it when I put my dress on for the gala the next night. I was worried that I would look huge again! Maybe all of that sounds horribly vain. At the end of the day, I will blow up as much as needed to ensure a healthy, living baby. But all of this drove home the idea that if you wouldn’t say it to a non-pregnant woman, don’t say it to a pregnant woman. We care about body image too and it can be hard to come to terms with all the changes that are going on, even when they are miraculous.