A Baby Belly

All of a sudden, it seems like my third pregnancy is coming to a too-fast end.  The July morning we found out about Bundle #3 feels like a long 7 months ago, but now that I’m in the home stretch I’m starting to panic a little bit.  So much to do! So much will change! How will I ever prepare for it all in just a few weeks?!

Lately, I’ve been getting lots of comments about the size of my belly.  As with my first two pregnancies, I didn’t really start to show until 6 or 7 months, so now that I’m at 8 months I finally have a little tummy I can be proud of.  But, everyone from the dry cleaner to my grandmother has a comment about how “small” I am. Someone had the nerve to ask me if I’ve had a doctor check on me!  And, another person suggested that perhaps there is something wrong with the perfectly healthy baby inside me.

Here’s the thing: just as all women are different, all pregnant women are different.  Some pop in the first trimester, some never show until their due date.  Some bellies look like basketballs, while others resemble the oblong shape of a football.  There is nothing I can do to beef up my belly – my long torso means that my uterus will keep going up until it has to go out!

While some cute banter about my belly is just fine, unsolicited comments that suggest I am neglecting my health or the health of my baby get on my nerves.  A pregnant tummy is not necessarily an open invitation to criticize a woman’s body.  When negative comments about my size came my way during my first pregnancy, I became very nervous and anxious worrying that something was wrong. I’ve since learned not to take these remarks personally. Some people just don’t know better, and other people are truly concerned and trying to be helpful.  There’s no sense in getting worked up about it!

And, while I’m on a bit of a rant, here’s a P.S.: Unless you are a female blood relative of mine, do not reach out and touch my stomach. I like my personal space, thank you very much.

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6 Comments for this entry

  1. Courtney says:

    Not cool. But I know if I were to say something like that, it would be out of envy (along the lines of “you look like a toothpick!” to a non-pregnant woman.) When I was pregnant, I got lots of comments of concern because of how big I looked. I agree–it’s never appropriate to comment on a woman’s body, unless you’re her doctor (or, I suppose, toddler).

  2. Donna R says:

    Such great memories…when I was pregnant, I worked at several schools with about 120 staff members total. I made it a game as I walked along the hallways at 8 months pregnant…about half the staff said I was getting big, half said I was too small. They all just wanted to share something with me. Well, he was very small until age 7, and now he is a huge man of 16 as big as his dad…

  3. Courtney says:

    One other thought (sorry!) When I was pregnant with Charlie, I was case manager for people with developmental disabilities. I remember that several of my clients (men and women) couldn’t keep their hands off my tummy. While I’m usually a person who doesn’t enjoy being touched (and especially at work), the excitement and love that a simple, wordless touch from someone who doesn’t have words communicates…well, it perfectly expressed their hope and tenderness toward my soon-to-be-baby, it made me feel like I was part of something bigger. But I still don’t suggest anyone touch a pregnant belly!

  4. chris says:

    I love my wife’s beautiful baby bump 🙂

  5. Myah says:

    I got comments like that all the time – yes, pretty annoying – but take it as a compliment!! 🙂 You know what you are doing. You look awesome – and I’m pretty certain you’re taking care of that baby 110%!!! 🙂 love that baby bump!

  6. A. Duffy says:

    You said it sister. When I was prego with my son, everyone and anyone felt the need to tell me what they thought about my belly or the birth plan that we had chosen. It got a bit out of hand at times. It’s good that you set boundaries for yourself. After all it is your belly!!!!!! Hope all the best for you and your soon new little one!

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