At 26 I feel like I’ve spent most of my 20’s being pregnant. Currently, I’m nearing the 29th week of our third pregnancy. At this point I have to ask myself why? I’m not a glutton for punishment; I’m actually kind of a wimp, so why do I keep doing this to myself? The answer is simple; because the only thing I love more than babies is being pregnant.
I’m not good at being pregnant. I complain about all of my ailments probably more than anyone. But there is some magical spark hidden beneath all of that heartburn and weight gain that keeps me coming back for more, and these are ten of my favorites…
1. The kicks. They’re amazing. All day long I have these limbs skimming across my bulbous belly and it’s so amazing I want to pull strangers out of their cars at stoplights and demand of them “are you seeing this?!?” The movements are small, jabbing, reminders that for nine months I am never alone, and forever after being pregnant parts of my heart will never be alone because I will always be loving a child.
2. Being waited on. I’m not too proud to say it, either. I don’t open my own doors or carry anything heavier than a glass of water without someone scrambling to help. Strangers hold doors and share smiles. It’s like I’m in a special club where I’m not completely incapable, I’m just incredibly entitled to being helped in the most gracious way.
3. Deedles. I’m not sure where we came up with the term but I get deedles every night. As soon as the boys have had their last round of giggles in their room and nighttime has finally set in I weepily say to my husband “deedle me,” and he takes his thick, rough fingers and gently tickles my back until I fall asleep. I could pay for a professional pre-natal message but it would never be as amazing as deedles.
4. I’m an artist. I live to create. To take something that wasn’t and produce something that is. Is pregnancy really anything other than that?
5. Food. I love eating. I love food. I love how I can eat the same amazing food craving five days in a row and it absolutely fills every fissure of my soul with pure, pure, pure satisfaction.
6. A free pass to complain. Honestly, I try not to use it often. This is my third go-around, I don’t want to push my luck. But after a long day of being exhausted and achy and emotional if I need a good racked-with-emotion cry over my buffalo chicken sandwich at Dairy Queen, I’m going to do it, no shame.
7. Feeling pretty. I’m not talking about how I look. Trust me, I know how I look. But it’s how I feel. I don’t feel attractive, or hot, or glamorous, but a huge chunk of life sticking out from my abdomen really does make me feel pretty. A huge chunk of life will do that I guess.
8. The anticipation. I also hate the anticipation. But I love it because it is a challenge. I love forcing myself to slow down and savor each moment. I love being in the moment, and reminding myself just how quick and important this moment is. I will never get these moments back, and as frustrating as some of them are, they are amazing.
9. The extra dose of moxie. Normally I can be reserved, maybe a little unsure, but when I’m pregnant? Bring it. Bring. It. For these nine months I can conquer the freaking world, if I feel like it, or just take a nap. But either way I will feel moxie-licious doing it. So bring it.
10. Watching your kids become siblings. My two boys are churning up this beautiful relationship between them and slowly opening themselves up to one more brother. It’s beautiful. I love my oldest begging questions like “When will the baby come out?” or “Will the baby’s first words be that he loves me?” And I die when my youngest lifts up my shirt to feed baby brother milk from his sippy through my belly button. I am watching love happen, watching it grow and flow and expand through every bit of us as a family. It’s pure delight, pure beauty.
Being pregnant is profoundly challenging, it’s demanding on so many exhausting levels. But when I think of these ten things, there isn’t anything I would possibly rather be right now than pregnant.