Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Why Some C-Sections Involve a Tummy Tuck.

A dear friend who is also with child bemoaned to me yesterday that she felt "puffy". I knew exactly what she meant: Pregnancy Puffness. Your face, your arms, your ankles ... you just get kind of puffy, in odd places. I remember the day after Cub was born, I walked by a mirror and stopped and stared at my reflection. I couldn't believe it: I still had a JAWBONE. OH MY GOSH. It hadn't disappeared into the abyss of my triple chins. 

Then the whole puffy thing got me thinking about pregnancy and trying to look cute in pregnancy and actually feeling cute for a little while during our pregnancy ... when at the end, we just feel gross and fat. Really. I have yet to meet a woman who has experienced pregnancy and has not, at some point, felt fat, sore, awkward, or, well, puffy. 

Then I began to wonder: Are we supposed to be cute while we're pregnant? Since when?

I mean, don't get me wrong: I'm all about cute clothes and cute looks and trying our best to look cute at all times, even during pregnancy. But, I think that at some point, the focus of pregnancy became, well, pregnancy itself, rather than the baby that pops out at the end of it all. Maternity clothes are suddenly cute, celebs are suddenly traipsing around looking tiny thin with only a little pooch (and a hardcore physical trainer trailing closely behind), and now we're using terms like "baby bump!" and "preggo!". It's almost as if pregnancy has become a trend.

Okay, I know. It might sound crazy. But, think about it--this is very telling of our society anyway, right? The way people pour so much into weddings, for example, without giving a thought to the marriage. It's all about the short-term. Not the realistic long term. 

And, really, if we were supposed to be cute while we were pregnant, wouldn't our stomachs get smaller rather than bigger? Wouldn't our cheekbones become more defined rather than sink into our poochy cheeks? I mean, come on! We are just, you know, GROWING A HUMAN BEING.

That is bound to have some sort of outward physical effect, yes?

Not every woman grows to the size of a couch, like I did. And I understand that. But this ideal that we are supposed to be svelte and tiny and not look sleepy and not feel fat while we are pregnant falls right in line with the current idea of beauty, anyway. It's all about how you look--and, most importantly, what other people think of you. If you can convince them that you've got it all together, you've won. When really, pregnancy is the most beautiful thing, regardless of the dark circles and the swollen feet. And the puking. Ohhhhh, the puking. 

I'm only eight weeks along and I've got a pooch. This bothered me for about a day until I just tossed my hands in the air and decided to let it go. My body is going to do what it needs to do, regardless of how far along I am, regardless of how much I throw up, regardless of whatever. If that means getting a pooch, then bring on the pooch. 

I am, after all, pregnant. 



  1. I think ALL pregnant women look cute because they are pregnant. Simple as that. Even if they may feel not-so-great, they still have a glow about them that makes them gorgeous. It's truly a miracle and I think it projects on their faces.

  2. You have some good points there. I think we put the added pressure on ourselves to look cute all the time, even during pregnancy. I do have to say that there are times when putting on that cute outfit does lift my spirits or put an extra spring in my step. However, when women feel PRESSURE to look that way ALL the time, that's when things are out of whack. No need to bring back the tent dresses of the 80's for which I tease my mom endlessly, but I do think giving ourselves a break now and then when sweats and hoodies are calling our names is just fine. ;) Also, as I mentioned before, Target is not helping with this be-cute-always-during-pregnancy trend seeing as they have stopped offering BASIC maternity wear and, instead, have opted for such important items as the maternity leather jacket. Wow. ;)

  3. Isn't the celebrity pregnancy obsession scary? I guess it is easy to love the hoopla of pregnancy when you're just going to hand the kid over to a nanny afterwards anyway. :) And I'm with Erin...Target is letting me down in the maternity wear department!