Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Post 95...Weighing is the hardest part

There was a time when I promised myself that I would not let weight gain in pregnancy bother me. I knew that it was just a part of being pregnant and that, it is healthy to gain weight and size. But I suppose that my growing confidence in the pregnancy going full term has made way for a growing dislike for my overall growing in general. I already started off the pregnancy as a plus size woman. I wasn't obese by any means but certainly overweight by medical standards. Over the years I got used to giving it cute nicknames such as: fluffy, pudgy, curvy, or festively plump. All of which were my nice way of saying I was "fat." But the bottom line is; I have struggled with my weight my entire life, always being the heavy girl in class, which has made weight gain a hard pill to swallow when it comes to pregnancy.

Originally I had hoped to only gain 25-30lbs total in pregnancy. But seeing as how I am only 24 weeks along and already 20lbs heavier than my beginning weight...well, I guess my goal is no longer a realistic one. (Sometimes I hate that word...realistic! It leaves a bitter taste in my mouth.) I've tried to give myself some grace, realizing that, for the most part, I have had to be more immobile than most pregnant women because of my condition. Considering that I haven't really been able to exercise or go on long walks until just a few weeks ago can certainly explain my added "fluff" in the past few months. Not to mention, I do enjoy the occasional splurge of a sugar sweet, but I typically keep it to just one small splurge a day (meaning a few thin mint cookies or a couple little chocolates). But recently, with all the family birthday parties, cake and ice cream have found their way into my diet a little more than I would care to admit to.

The truth is, I love seeing my baby bump when I look in the mirror. But for some reason, I still find it hard to feel as excited about my bump when people keep telling me how big I look. Although what they're saying is I look pregnant; when I hear "Look how big you've gotten," I suddenly I find myself standing in a middle school classroom, my thin hair laying limp around my chubby freckled cheeks, as I try to hold my books in front of my stomach, fighting back tears as the nearby kids chant out "blimpy girl!" Every book tells me I should just be excited that my growing stomach means a growing baby. But simply telling me to be okay with it, doesn't make it any easier. Not to mention, by all other charts, books, and medical standards, I've already gained too much. What part of being labeled "too big" by all pregnancy books is supposed to make it easy to love and accept my growing body?...

I tried to seek out refuge online by reading this blog I found about plus size women learning to love their pregnant bodies. It seemed promising at first. Women who where more "curvaceous" posted pictures of their growing tummies to help other plus-size pregos, giving them a better reference to their own changing bodies. And although I started to feel a little bit better about my own body, realizing that it will bounce back in time, there was something quite unnerving about this particular blog. Although the woman had great confidence in her plus-size body, I couldn't help but feel a little concerned about her disregard for her mid-wife's warnings. It's true that genetics can play a part in how big a baby will be, but this particular lady seemed to use that as her main excuse. In the end, she gave birth to a 12 lb baby with, luckily, no major complication. But 12 lbs??? That's a bit much! And when she posted pictures of her baby, I have to admit, I was a little shaken. This was no small kid! I hate to say it but, he looked like a mix between a sumo wrestler and the Michelin Man! I was shaken up. It's one thing to be a plus size momma, but it's a whole different story when it comes to the actual health and condition of my baby! This baby was clearly not just genetically big in length or bone structure. This baby was...well...overweight. Not only does a bigger baby mean a more difficult delivery, putting the baby at risk for injury, but it can put the child's health at risk in the long run.

Just peachy! My attempts to find solace in other plus-sized pregnancies only scared me all the more! I know that I can't keep letting my own childhood scars scare me into depression about my weight gain in pregnancy. It's not fat that I'm gaining so much as it is a baby that I'm gaining...and a placenta, and amniotic fluid, and blood volume.... But I will do my best to make sure that I don't gain so much that my baby comes out unhealthy. So if I have to pass up on the birthday cake for now, I will gladly do so if it means my son will be healthier for it.

Balance is something to be achieved. If only it could be achieved easily...

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