Pregnant: Large and Lovely

pregnant tree in Oregon

So I am (almost) 27 weeks pregnant.  Just a bit beyond that and I’ll be firmly in the third trimester. 

Here is my secret: I hate gaining weight and having to really watch what I eat.  I do not see pregnancy as a free for all in the food area, liberating me to eat whatever I feel like.  In fact, I have had absolutely no cravings, and after the general nausea of the first trimester, no food aversions, either.  Guess I’m a pretty boring pregnant lady.  😉  Because I figure that every pound I gain is a pound I have to lose.  Granted, I’ll lose between 10 and 12 of those pounds in one fell swoop the day that Squirt arrives.  But still.

I had an eating disorder from the time I was 19 to the time I was 22.  It was a form of anorexia sometimes known as runner’s anorexia, which means that I severly restricted what I ate while exercising my butt off, literally.  I never was a competitive athlete, but senior year of college I would routinely spend 90 minutes a day doing pure cardio work, 6 days a week.  Not counting walking at least 3 miles a day all over campus and 2 – 4 hours of yoga per week.  Kind of crazy.

I won’t go into all the harrowing details (at least in this post, lol) but with the help of my husband and counseling, I have been ED-free for about 18 months now. 

That doesn’t mean that it is easy to donate my body and ditch my preferred exercise routine and diet for someone else, though, no matter how much I already love that particular little someone. 

Squirt at almost 11 weeeks

 When I got pregnant, I weighed 134.5 pounds (I think; hadn’t weighed myself since Christmas).  I am 5’7″ tall.  I have gained about 18 pounds at this point, and expect my total weight gain to be between 30 and 35 pounds–a perfectly reasonable and healthy amount.  I admit being to terrified that I would blow up like a balloon and gain like 70 pounds, but thankfully, that hasn’t happened!

And while I do have some days when I really don’t like how I look, I have been able to mostly “get over” myself and my compulsive need to control how I look and what I weigh.  As I thought it would, it helps that I now have a definite “baby bump.”  Because when I think of all the amazing things that my body is doing, to build and prepare for Squirt, it is pretty intense.  I mean, how wild is it that all I am doing, really, is eating and basically existing as normal, and my body is just doing the thing it was intended to do: create and grow another human being? 

you can find this on cafe press; I thought it was funny

When I found this poem on mothering.com, it really struck a chord with me.  It helps to remind me that although I am not running or cycling like I used to, perhaps this is the most amazing thing that my body has ever done. 

Large and Lovely

by Peggy O’Mara

Now I know my body

Is really a vessel,

Able to transform itself

At the service of life,

Able to stretch big

With life,

To swell small breasts

Large with milk,

To grow narrow pelvis

Open for birth,

To reach open arms

Out for comfort.

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One Response to Pregnant: Large and Lovely

  1. Emily says:

    Oh, girl, I am so with you here. I’ve never had an ED, but I’ve struggled a lot with body image- dabbling in diet pills, extreme diet/exercise, and some other unhealthy habits that I won’t mention here.
    It’s such a vicious cycle- so excited to be pregnant, but not happy about what it does to your body. Then feeling selfish for caring about your body. Then feeling as though you’re not doing enough to take care of your baby. Then looking at yourself in the mirror and feeling huge, and not being able to do the things you’d like to and feeling huge some more. Then feeling the baby kick and being excited about being pregnant again….
    All I can say is that having been through this before (just last year, in fact!) I can tell you that people like us who love to be active and are dedicated to working out will drop the weight rather quickly. You’ll be so busy taking care of your little one that you’ll have little time to think about exercise, and then once you’re feeling up to it again (and I definitely recommend taking several weeks off- breastfeeding takes so much out of you and it takes a while to find a balance in terms of caloric intake, rest, exercise), working out is a great way to have some “me time.”
    I have found that even though my life has changed so much as a mom, and that it can be difficult to not feel as though you’re losing your identity as the individual you were before baby, working out afterwards will help you feel like “yourself” again.

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