(I’ve been working on this for a couple of weeks, and just now brought myself to click “publish”. Sorry if this post offends anyone out there!)
I realized pretty early on that I would need to bring my snarkiness into full force during this pregnancy. When I was around 9 weeks, someone I was arguing with actually questioned me (twice) about being pregnant, with something like, “well you’re doing this, so are you still pregnant?” And I didn’t know have a response other than, “did you really just say that?” And I walked away. (The guy never apologized, and I barely speak to him now when I see him every week. I do, however, make it a point to mention to someone around him that yep, I’m still pregnant.)
So rather than be speechless, I’ve been rather honest, blunt, sarcastic, or whatever you want to call it. Someone may call me rude. I just want people to realize that it isn’t okay to say some things. And now we can all re-live the painful moments of the past few months.
For instance, someone asked if this was planned or an accident. My response, “Really? I’m not 16. Would it matter either way if I said it was an accident?” (For the record, we were talking about planning, and it happened sooner than we anticipated.)
Another comment I’ve received (from a family member), “Is that baby weight or pre-baby weight?” Me: “A little of both. What’s your excuse?”
It’s a wonder people still talk to me.
Someone who knew I was pregnant told me, “Don’t be offended, but you’re starting to look pregnant.” Me, “well that’s a relief. I’d hate for anyone to think I was still carrying around Christmas weight.” If I wasn’t with child, I’d be offended. This person has also made this comment at least 3 times (once to a family member of mine – about me.)
When it comes to touching my belly, I’m not a fan. I’ll just put that right out there. I even have issues with my husband touching my stomach, and my first instinct is to slap his hand away. He told me to get used to it. Several people have told me this. But here’s the thing. It’s my body. It is not public property. And I don’t walk up to a random person to touch his/her stomach. It’s inappropriate. Now, if you want to ask me if you can touch my stomach, I might let you. But right now? There’s nothing to feel here, folks. (Side note: I’ve been more accepting of Kenny – I don’t have the reflex to slap his hand now – but he’s my husband. Anyone else? All bets are off. You have to ask first. Otherwise, when you least suspect it, I might walk up and grab your stomach just to see how you like it.)
A co-worker walked up to me last week kind of shaking his hand in a circle and looking at my stomach and said, “what’s going on here?” I replied, “lunch.” And then, “I’m having a baby, you fool.” I think there was a better way to approach that than “what’s going on here?” Another co-worker came up to me and said that he heard my good news and wanted to congratulate me. Totally appropriate. I had nothing snappy to say to him.
Earlier this week, we were at the aquarium when I mentioned the river otters looked like my cat. (It was true. She looks like a rodent.) This woman (from Asheville, unfortunately) turned to me and started rattling off “You know you can’t be around your cat….” and lots of stuff dealing with the litter box. My reaction (and my normal voice is rather loud and I speak fast sometimes), “You don’t know me. My cat has a very low risk of having toxoplasmosis since she’s indoors, and I have more of a chance of getting it from gardening than my cat who doesn’t hunt prey. Besides that, I don’t change the litter box, so please do your research.” She then said, “it’s called toxoplasmosis? I didn’t know that.” So maybe it was a learning opportunity for her. Either way, she didn’t know me. So don’t judge.
Finally, last night someone I hadn’t seen in a few weeks said “wow, you look really pregnant!” I quickly responded with, “That’s because I really am pregnant!” We laughed….because it was a funny moment.
The comments just keep pouring in. I experienced the strangers comments for the first time this week, while on vacation, and I was NOT prepared for that. I’m relatively healthy. I don’t smoke, I haven’t had alcohol in months (before we even found out that our family was expanding), I exercise and I eat fairly healthy. Yet people just assume that I don’t know what I’m doing. I’m here to tell them they’re wrong. 🙂