This past memorial day weekend while my little family and I vacationed in Palm Springs with another couple, we were given the news that they are pregnant and expecting their first child! After congratulating them, the boys headed off to the bar for some drinks and our conversation quickly turned to millions of questions and sharing experiences of pregnancy. I could not help but notice that a portion of our conversation revolved around fear. Of course some fear is expected in this new, exciting and slightly odd time. However, as I reflected back on my pregnancy (which is almost an identical timeline as our friends) I couldn’t help but notice that one of her concerns was very similar to mine… How do we best handle our ever-changing body in the middle of summer?
Pregnant in a bikini… Not most girl’s ideal way to spend the summer. If you know me at all, then you know that the majority of my summer is usually spent boating on the river in a bikini. Last summer, approximately 3 weeks prior to taking our new boat out for our first holiday weekend, we were hit with the news of pregnancy. Not being a planned pregnancy, we quickly settled into the new realization that we indeed were going to be parents. After recovering from the initial shock, I was hit with another realization… I would be spending this summer pregnant in a bikini.
My Initial Thoughts
Stressed, self conscious, concerned, over whelmed… The list of emotions goes on. Lets just say, I was not loving my changing body. The lack of control over the situation completely terrified me. I have always been one to prefer to be in control. Initially, I felt like I had lost all control and my body was no longer “mine”.
As I flipped through my phone last weekend to try to find that first baby bump picture I took memorial day weekend 2016, I remembered how nervous I felt to tell all of our friends that we were pregnant. I remembered how as soon as the words came out of our mouth, people instantly looked down at my stomach. My thoughts instantly went to judgment’s. A million different questions quickly raced through my head regarding what others were thinking of our news and my appearance.
Once I found the picture I was shocked. I did not look pregnant at all. Comparing how I felt back then (huge is what I felt), to the reality of what I see in this picture now, I find it silly. I find it silly that we are so self-conscious. I find it silly that we
even care! Carrying a child is so much more thrilling than our appearance. I know it sounds cliché. However, it clearly has not been said enough because my fears were the same as my friends fears. Worrying ourselves and making sure people know we are pregnant to alleviate the fear that they might think we have not been as diligent at the gym is beyond ridiculous.
What I should have done differently (And I hope other girls decide to do…)
I should have taken MORE pictures
I hardly have any pictures of this past summer because I was afraid to see what I looked like. Do not let your self-conscious ways prevent you from having lots of pictures of you pregnant and rocking a bikini. Your little babe is going to love seeing those pictures some day. Do not let yourself get in your own way of remembering these moments.
I should have worn as many fun bikinis as possible.
All those pinterest pictures of pregnant girls in bikinis… that truly can be you and it should be!! When else will you ever have the chance to have a round baby bump and totally rock a bikini? Probably not as many summers as you think… So I say buy those bikinis and rock them.
I should have enjoyed the summer as a special summer
I did so many things out of the ordinary. I spent more time driving the boat, I was well hydrated and rested, I learned how to back up the boat trailer etc. I experienced summer in a new way. Enjoy the summer, do not let the summer rush by.
Most importantly, do NOT allow yourself to feel self-conscious.
You are at a place in your life that you have never been before (or maybe you have, but from what I hear every pregnancy is different). Do not let your concerns for other people take this summer away from you. Whether they think you should not wear that bikini or you should stay home. I say do what you want and wear what you want and be comfortable in it regardless. Do not feel like you have to explain your situation to anyone. If they judge you or discourage you brush it aside.
This is a summer for you and your growing baby. Enjoy it!
***Keep an eye out for part 2 to this post regarding exercise and pregnancy.