Pregnancy

What Not To Expect When You’re Expecting

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Ladies, we all know What to Expect When You’re Expecting: disease, disfigurement, dismemberment, oh my! Wait, this isn’t that book. This is not about what you should expect as a preggo, but rather, what you shouldn’t expect. Hitch up your belly and gather ‘round, because s**t’s about to get real.

1. Personal space. 

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Repeat after me: “No, you can’t touch my stomach. Or belly. Or bump.” For some reason, the moment you see that second pink line on the pee stick, your body becomes public property. As time goes on it gets worse, with strangers approaching you palm-first and even friends and relatives losing all sense of decorum.

How to handle this: Work on your bitchy resting face. It’s the only weapon you have.

2. Dignity.

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Somehow, portrayals of our pregnant sisthren in the media are elegant and graceful, glowing and serene. This…does not represent my reality. You know how it feels when you have a huge backpack on and you forget that it’s there, and then you’re knocking shit over and smacking people with your backpack? It’s like that, but with a part of your body, which is both awkward and mortifying. You don’t fit where you think you should, and all those years of trying to “grow into your height” are for naught.

How to handle this: You can’t.  Or, at least, I can’t.  Your best hope is to keep breakable heirlooms away from the edges of tables.  Bonus: this is good practice for when your Tiny Godzilla starts destroying everything you ever loved.

3. A good night’s sleep.

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When my sister was nearing the end of her first pregnancy, she complained about not being able to sleep. The doctor kindly patted her on the knee and said, “It’s easier to take care of them on the inside than on the outside.” If I could, I would travel back in time and pop that doctor right in the nose. He (Of course it was somebody who had never been pregnant. Of course it was.) may have been right – taking care of a newborn sucks balls. But at least then you might be able to enlist the help of whoever got you pregnant in the first place. Or take advantage of our country’s incredibly generous* maternity leave policies and catch up on sleep at odd hours. Or pass baby off on a hapless neighbor for fifteen minutes while you catnap. There is a special kind of crappiness in pre-birth non-sleep, filled with thousands of trips to the toilet and – if you’re lucky! – “practice” contractions that exist solely to make you miserable. Oh, and don’t forget you can’t lay on your back. Or stomach. Or right side, if you believe the hype. Or left side, because you are sure you’re getting bedsores from laying in one position for so many months.

How to handle this: Bed pillows? Sleep on a cloud? Your guess is as good as mine.  Pregnancy sucks.

 *Did I say generous? I mean draconian.

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