32 Weeks + A Nine Month Myth

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It’s interesting that the magical number decided for pregnancy was nine months. The way it’s spread out does help you acclimate to each stage and your changing shape in a slow, but steady, manner. What they don’t explain thoroughly enough, is that it’s actually ten months. Yep, ten. At least I wasn't aware that you are pregnant through the ninth month.... making it practically a full ten months. Make sense? Yea, I’m still trying to count on my fingers. But, what I do know is there should be a PSA distributed about the expectant length of being pregnant for women like me who slept through that whole ‘you-know-what' education class in middle school. I kept wondering why the numbers didn’t quite add up.

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:: Confessions on Pregnancy ::

- We’re at the stage where the baby does these ‘grazing’ movements from the inside of my stomach. Nothing too extreme, but it’s like a slow elbow brushing from right to left. In those moments, I’ve come to start referring to it as Nessie, The Loch Ness Monster. Seems appropriate. Sometimes when it stops being so lazy and actually pushes or kicks up against my stomach, I’ll push and poke back. In my head, it’s like we’re high fiving each other. ‘Hooray, you haven’t pushed mommy’s belly button out yet!’......‘Thanks mom for letting me take all your energy to grow my kidney’s today!’

- At some point, this whole process becomes ‘real’, right? Like, it sinks in? Everyone says it usually happens after your first baby shower and you start accumulating those quintessential things. Oh, does it? I recently came home, checked the mail and while walking to the stairs glanced over to see a box with a picture of a crib on it that had been delivered. I thought, ‘Huh, looks like someone got a crib. That’s nice.’ And proceeded to walk straight up to our apartment as if nothing else should’ve occurred to me.

- My new business idea is this, someone should start an Army basic training style boot camp for woman about to enter motherhood for the first time who are utterly and completely clueless on all fronts.... like myself. What better way to learn new skills than at a high stress situation. If the Duggar mom had more bite, I'd envision her with a whistle in hand, but I think it's best to assume Tracy Anderson would hold court. Activities would involve some, if not all, of the following:

 1. Ninja Reflexes - How to dodge rapid firing pee or spit up.

 2. Origami - The art of assembling a diaper with one hand in under sixty seconds.

 3. Driver’s Ed - The basics on steering a stroller through Soho on a Saturday afternoon so you can  run errands.

 4. Mind Over Matter - How to assemble a pump and/or bottle.

 5. Obstacle Course - How to take a full shower in under five minutes.

 6. Survival Of The Fittest - How to function as a human and communicate with your spouse after forced  extreme sleep deprivation.

26 Weeks + Stage Five Panic

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I’m not sure if there’s a term for what is currently happening in our apartment right now. It’s not technically ‘nesting’, as one would think, as much as ‘pure and total destruction’. I’ve discarded half my closet, but only managed to get the ‘giveaway’ box as close to the Salvation Army bin as my bedroom door. So that’s fun to trip over every day. Our front couch is in the back, we’re using E’s v-flats (definition: photo gear technical term for super tall foam boards) as fake walls to envision how the baby room would be built and every piece of furniture has been moved in order for me to get a feel for what it would look like elsewhere. And then, of course, only partially moved back. I basically can’t make a decision right now to save my life. So we’ve learned my feelings come out in the form of furniture rearrangement. Chalk it up to my stage five panic that set in after I went to my latest doctor appointment only to have her inform me that I’m on my final trimester. Huh, what? Yea, I said the same thing to her. Or at least my facial reaction did (disclaimer: I am 28 weeks in real time. I'm just lagging in keeping up the photos to correlate!) Thankfully, she’s my kind of lady. Took me a few visits to realize why I had a distinct feeling we understood each other. She’s slightly sassy, nonchalant and honest in a way some could find jarring, but I find refreshing. E was the one who acknowledged that she always complimented me on my fur, anything leather in my outfit or bold nail color. So pretty much the top three components to winning over my affection. Which makes her basically my OB soul mate and, therefore, the most qualified person to deliver this child.

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:: Confessions on Pregnancy ::

- You don’t know what an OB is either? I just learned this week when making a follow up appointment with the zesty new front desk receptionist! Let me enlighten you too. “Are you making an OB or GYN appointment, dear?”. Blank stare from me. “I don’t know what that means? Are those like those texting codes teenagers talk in these days?”. Blank stare back from receptionist. “Are you pregnant or not pregnant?”. “Oh” I stare down at my obvious belly near her eye level and then glance back at the receptionist. “By golly, I think I’m pregnant.” There was obvious judgement all over her face....it wouldn’t be far off to assume she burned my records.

- Perk of pregnancy; random strangers feel completely comfortable talking to you and sharing their wisdom on a whim. Take the dweller outside the corner bodega on Washington last week. After noticing I was pregnant and fighting a slight cough, he informs me to be sure to really take care of my health. I smiled and said I appreciated his concern. He continues to inform me that his lady was sitting on the park bench down the street one summer day and had a sneezing fit so bad it made her water break. Now they call their child ‘Sneezy’. The end. 

- What is a pregnant woman’s natural musk, you ask? Well, I’d have to say cocoa butter with a dash of Bio Oil. That’s right. I could spray perfume on myself with the intensity of an Abercrombie store, and it still wouldn’t hide the always present cocoa butter aroma that seeps out of every part of my skin. The best offense is a good defense, my friends. My fear of stretch marks is a close second to my fear of an outie belly button.

What I Wore :: 24 Weeks

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Shirt: H&M // Pants: F21 // Shoes: Louboutin // Jacket: Target (similar) // Clutch: c/o JustFab // Belt: Urban Outfitters (similar)

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It happened.

I knew the day was inevitable. It was bound to happen. But something in my mind kept convincing myself otherwise; that I was going to be prepared, composed and equipped for when the hurricane hit. Was I actually? Of course not. Have we met?

After months of waiting for my bump to officially arrive in hopes of showing it off and parading around in all the cute maternity outfits I had imagined and laid out in the endless closet of my mind, that day had finally arrived. From the moment I found out I was pregnant, one of the first things occupying my mind was how my body was going to change. It was in all the ways any gal thinks.... ranging from ‘I’ve dreamt since I was a little girl shoving basketballs up my shirt about what being pregnant will look like’ to ‘Holy crap, I don’t want to look like Jessica Simpson’. Both are completely normal reactions... in my book.

The honest truth is, your body is going to change. I repeat..... your body is going to change. And it won’t look like Giselle. Or maybe it will. In which case, we won’t be friends. Either way, I woke up one morning and realized I was living out an episode of Body Snatchers. I stood there in an outfit I had worn over a dozen times and couldn’t comprehend why it looked different. Things weren’t falling how they used too. My once chic oversized tee was now mere inches away from being a crop top. Then I did the worst thing you could do in that moment.... I turned to get a side view of my outfit. Annnnnd...... cue meltdown. Within the next ten minutes I had completely devoured my closet, trying on every combination of shirt/pant/dress/skirt/top I could get my hands on. Then immediately took them each off and over dramatically threw them on our front sofa. Everything felt weird. It was as if I was getting dressed out of a strangers closet. Where did these clothes come from? This was, of course, at 8:00am on the morning I had an 8:30am meeting. (Take note: perfect time to ‘blame the baby’.)

Thankfully, E overheard the commotion and slowly talked me off the ledge.... and out of a crop top. But the moral of the story is not about the dangers of crop tops, it is about the inevitable closet related temper tantrum no woman is immune to. Take it from me, it takes a couple of weeks with your new accessory to really get a handle on how things will look and how you will feel in them. I’ve never been one to wear body hugging anything, and now, I’ll rock a bodycon dress..... without the need for Spanx (read: rebel). Cause really, when else in life can you do that? It’s quite liberating.

After that fateful morning, I vowed to never let my closet explode again. Mainly, because I didn’t want to have to take an entire Sunday afternoon putting everything back on hangers, but also, because I wanted to love every minute I have with this bump-a-roo. You only have it for five of the nine months. And you only get to experience being pregnant for the first time.... once. I didn’t want to waste time being in a fight with my bump. My advice? Take a day and go through your entire closet of what you already own. Try things on and take pictures. Trust me, those photos will come in handy when you need to talk yourself off the ledge again one morning..... ‘Oh right, I don’t look like a blimp in this shirt if I just add a blazer over it’. I went through my closet and noted pieces I could still fit and how to style them with the bump. There were also pieces I had to admit just weren’t going to fly, no matter how I pinned, tucked or tied them. Just remember... they aren’t gone forever, merely on a relaxing vacation until next season. I used this as an opportunity to note the few ‘maternity’ specific staple pieces I was going to actually purchase. But that’s a whole post of its own!