Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Does This Come in Size Hugely Pregnant?

Over the last eight months I have gained 40 pounds.  Not four, not fourteen, but 40.  Obviously, this is to be expected, as I am currently gestating a human being.  However, trying on clothing when one is eight months pregnant and 40 pounds heavier than normal is a truly humbling experience.  I’m one of those annoying women who have always been super skinny.  I’ve never had to starve myself in order to achieve Hollywood’s famine survivor look; I’ve pretty much always appeared as though the only thing I’ve eaten in the past two days was a leaf of lettuce.  In fact, for most of my life I’ve wanted, and tried, to put on weight.  So when I got pregnant and began to shovel anything that even remotely resembled food into my gaping maw, I was excited to finally, finally, have the chance for life as a normal-sized woman.  What I somehow failed to realize is that I wouldn’t be getting hot, sexy Marilyn Monroe-esque curves.  I would be getting a giant round belly, ridiculously over-sized boobs and the attendant back pain and flatulence that accompanies both of these things.
Last week I dragged my pregnant self all the way to Beverly Hills to purchase a dress for my baby shower.  I hate to shop under the best of circumstances, so imagine, if you will, just how fun shopping seemed when eight months pregnant, gasping for breath, and having to pee every seven minutes or so.  Up until last week I’d avoided the supreme torture of bad lighting and dressing room mirrors by shopping for all my maternity clothes either online or in my no-longer-pregnant friends’ closets.  But I couldn’t very well show up to a party thrown in my honor looking, as I do most days, like a homeless, drug addicted Mother-to-be.  So I set aside my usual hatred of clothes shopping and I gave it the old college try.  Thankfully, the store had a nice selection of cute, hip clothing designed to flatter my pumpkin sized belly and camouflage my three rows of love handles.  I flipped through rack after rack after rack, avoiding anything with horizontal stripes (really?  Horizontal stripes on maternity clothes?  I certainly don’t need any help looking wider through the ass and the middle than I already am, thank you) or patterns that reminded me of the housedresses my Jewish Grandmother used to wear.  After picking out a large stack of dresses, I somehow managed to wedge the clothes, my giant purse, and myself into a dressing room that seemed more suitable for a child than a large and clumsy pregnant woman.
After at least an hour of trying, and rejecting, everything I’d selected, I was in danger of having yet another pregnancy melt down on the level of the epic Buy Buy Baby event.  Dresses that were designed to be loose and flowing made me look like a drawing of a pregnant stick figure; skinny arms and legs with a big bump covered in a triangle of printed material.  Items that were supposed to be sexy and form fitting showed more than I really wanted to share about how wide and lumpy my hips have gotten.  Over the course of eight months I’d turned into the skinny fat woman, and it was ugly.  Finally, just as I was on the verge of attempting to slit my wrists with a garment hanger, I found the perfect dress.  It was the maternity version of the Little Black Dress: simple, chic, flattering and, most importantly, comfortable.  Suicide averted, I threw that dress at the saleswoman, handed her my credit card, and screamed, “I’ll take it!”  As I left the store, I glowed with happiness.  Not only had I survived shopping and found something I actually liked, but I’d survived shopping while eight months pregnant.  After that experience, giving birth should be a cakewalk!
Honestly, I never expected that pregnancy would give me a new appreciation for my pre-baby figure.  In fact, I’m really looking forward to getting some semblance of it back after the baby makes his appearance, and I’ve made a pact with myself that I will no longer complain about my body.   Although it would be nice if I could keep the porno-size boobs indefinitely.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Baby (Stuff) on Board

I just registered for a breast pump.  Let me say that again in case you missed it the first time, I just registered for a breast pump.  Prior to becoming pregnant, the last things I added to my Amazon wish list were 50 Shades of Grey and How to Mix the Perfect Cocktail.  Dear God, what has become of me?  I have spent much of the past several days registering for strange gadgets on Amazon.com that are  “must haves” when one has a baby.  Apparently, you actually do need more than a few diapers, a couple of onesies and your boobs once baby arrives.
I am not one of these women whose bedside table is piled with pregnancy and motherhood books.  In fact, had it not been for my Mother sending me Amazon boxes full of parenting books, I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have read anything pertaining to baby care at all.  What can I say, I find House Beautiful just a tiny bit more fascinating than reading about diapering and sore nipple care.  So imagine my distress when a friend asked me where I was registered.  I was tempted to tell her just to get me a case of Belvedere at BevMo (to enjoy after the birth), but then I thought better of it.  Which is how I found myself at Buy Buy Baby surrounded by stuff I’ve never heard of, accompanied by my Mother.  Buy Buy Baby is the Bed Bath and Beyond of baby crap.  Imagine a store, several football fields in size, stocked floor to ceiling with stuff I supposedly need for my soon-to-arrive offspring.  Now couple this super-sized baby supply hell with an emotionally unstable pregnant woman prone to anxiety and her Mother who hasn’t bought baby supplies since Staying Alive was number one on the pop charts and the Harvey Wallbanger was the cocktail of choice.
As my Mother cruised around the store commenting on how many wonderful things have been invented since I was born in the Mesozoic age, I followed behind, attempting to use my self-hypnosis techniques to avoid having a panic attack and/or causing gross bodily harm to my Mother or myself with a bottle cleaning brush.  Eventually one of the salespeople noticed the homicidal maniac look on my face and took us under his wing.  After explaining that he himself has five kids (I was tempted to give him the condoms I still carry in my wallet, but I figured it was too late at this point), he walked us through the store and pointed out all the things that I really did need to purchase if I didn’t want to have my child taken away by the Department of Children and Family Services.  I test drove strollers, I learned how to fasten a kid in a car seat, and I even got to try on a Boppy and a My Breast Friend pillow!  Several hours later we left the store with a list of all the necessary stuff, and a bag full of cute baby clothes that my Mother couldn’t resist purchasing.
As I sat at my computer this afternoon registering for all the baby gear we’d picked out, I couldn’t help but be grateful to that salesman at Buy Buy Baby.  I’m pretty sure if he hadn’t shown up not only would I have dissolved into tears in the rocking chair section, but I probably would be planning to let my kid sleep in a dresser drawer instead of the nifty bassinet I picked out.  Which makes me feel really guilty for registering at Amazon.  But, hey, their prices are better and they have free shipping.

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