Today I was playing in the pool with my babes and a woman came over to me (she was with a few other women) and said, “we’ve been watching you all day and I just have to know… you’re having twins, right?”
I was gracious and said, “no, just one baby, and I only have a few days left!” to which she looked genuinely shocked and said, “wow! You look just like a friend of mine who had triplets a few years ago! But don’t worry, she is tiny now!”
I could have said a lot of things in that moment. Honestly, I could have bit her head off or I could have busted out crying. Neither of those things would have been a big surprise at this point.
But now that I’ve had a chance to process this whole scenario, I have a few things I’d like to say (a little louder for the people in the back) 😅
First of all…. What is it about a pregnant lady that makes people forget their boundaries and think it’s okay to make comments about size and reach out and touch and pretend they know all the things? (Now, I’m not talking about friends or family… if you know me, you know I’m happy to grab your hand and say OH MY GOSH FEEL THIS when this sweet baby has the hiccups…. I’m talking about strangers.) If you saw someone who was obese, would you go up to them (when they’re in a swimsuit playing with their kids, nonetheless) and say, “hey I have a cousin who was huge just like you but don’t worry, they had gastric bypass and they’re tiny now.” Carrying a child doesn’t give you a free pass to make remarks on any woman’s size.
Second of all, I was pregnant 3 times in a year. I have carried 2 precious babies, lost 2 precious babies, and this miracle baby we will get to meet next week is worth every pound, every stretch mark, and every size up. I don’t want (or expect) to “get my body back” after this baby. “Don’t worry, she is tiny now” doesn’t spark hope in my heart that I can “bounce back.” It just makes me feel sad that there’s so much pressure on women to look like they’ve never carried a baby or been changed forever in ways so many friends I know struggling with infertility would be honored to know.
Lastly, I could be one of those moms sitting on the side of the pool too worried about my hair or makeup or just feeling too insecure to squeeze myself into a swim suit. But I’m not. At 38 weeks pregnant, I’m splashing around in the pool with the two greatest loves of my life because they’ll remember. They love me because I’m present, not because I’m perfect. I overcame that because there’s no freedom in that. I overcame that because slowly but surely, I’ve learned to give my body grace.
Not sure how to end this except to say that like only a few other things in life, carrying a child is sanctifying, holy work. There’s so much to learn through all of it. So many ways to grow. So much change. And my heart feels like clay in the Potter’s hand these days 😭❤️🙌🏻