I’ll have to admit, all of the comments and attention focused on the size of my bump started to get to me last week.
Today’s comment was: “I can tell you’re having a girl because the shape of your face has changed.” I can only assume that means it’s, err, filling out? Awesome.
Actually, the comments have bothered me from the beginning – one thing I have learned from pregnancy is that you can’t really help how you carry the baby. Some girls carry high, some carry low. Some carry only out in front, others wear their baby like an inner tube (hello, back fat – we are not friends). Some girls puff up all over, others look like they swallowed a tic tac until month 7. And you know what – none of them has any control over it. You just get what you get.
To every pregnant girl who has gone before me, whom I have secretly judged, I am SO SORRY.
So after a dozen too many “Oh my gosh, you’re HUGE!” comments, along with some unflattering photos (I’ve learned my lesson – no more pics taken from the front – you will get nothing but profile shots of me between now and when the baby is 7), those insecurities in my head got really loud. Couple that with the date on my calendar that started creeping closer – maternity pictures! Aaaack! What was I thinking? I panicked.
Since I’m good friends with our photographers, I emailed her and told her that if I didn’t love her and trust that she could work magic with ANYTHING, then I would have cancelled already. She responded with encouragement – told me to go buy some new clothes that I’d feel cute in, take some deep breaths, and loosen up. And that’s what I did.
Nobody needs to know about the hour I spent in the dressing room at Destination Maternity at our local mall, trying on item after item with disgust (maternity clothes are NOT cute). Nobody needs to know that the whole time sweet baby girl was dive-bombing my bladder to the point I wasn’t sure I’d make it back to my car. Nobody needs to know that when I went to try on sandals I realized I couldn’t reach the buckle and so I just gave up trying (I was wearing a knee-length skirt – I could have reached it, but it would NOT have been lady like).
Because two days later we went and took our pictures and had a blast. Those insecurities melted away as Mr. Right snuggled against me and told me how beautiful he thought I looked, and as my photographer friends showed me sneak peeks in their camera that proved that at the right angle, I’m rocking it.
(For my records – I was 30 weeks when these pics were taken. Photo courtesy of McGowan Images.)
I get to see the rest of the pics tomorrow. In the meantime, I’m continuing to battle and pray my way through those silly insecurities about my body, which to be honest I’ve had both pregnant and non-pregnant, because it’s one of those traits I don’t want to pass along to my little girl.
My sweet friends, what has helped you overcome those body insecurities? I’d love to hear from you in the comments.
In case you missed it, my guest post, Top 10 Crazy Things People Say to Pregnant Women, is available over on my work blog.
You look amazing!
I honestly think pregnant women are the most beautiful women EVER!! I felt amazing pregnant (I’m one of those weird girls that would be preggo 24/7), but when I looked back at those maternity pictures, I was waaaay bigger than I realized! And my cankles…um gross, and yes, people commented a lot on them and said their feet just hurt looking at mine. Ignorance is bliss, right?! I’m sure I have amnesia about how yucky I felt at times, but if you remembered all of that “stuff” then you wouldnt have more babies!! Just remember that God chose y’all to be the parents of this sweet girl and that children are a reward from God. Blame Eve for all of the uncomfortable times!!! That darn apple…
You look amazing, and just hold your head high and ROCK the rest of your third trimester…you’ll forget about it all when Wrenn is in your arms!! Wrapping you in prayers, Bethe!
Jenny, my favorite people are the men who say “I think a woman is never more beautiful than when they’re pregnant.” You know, in a non-creepy way. And you’re right – children are a total blessing – and this baby is the answer to a lot of prayers and longing – so I will continue to be thankful and count down the minutes until I get to hold her in my arms.
Girl, I saw you at church the other day and thought how great you looked! Hang in there people will always be inconsiderate!
You are absolutely beautiful, Bethe, inside and out! To God be the glory!
Thanks Kaye! And you’re right – may he be glorified.
pregnancy was my cure. not just because i suddenly had an excuse for having a belly, but because as i learned each week about the new things that were happening to my baby, i started to finally appreciate the body God gave me. He built me this way and my responsibility is to be the best version of what He gave me to work with. After giving birth that was a motivator that helped me lose the 40+ lbs i was carrying before i even got pregnant:) I started to force myself to think about things like, “I have two sound legs that function just the way they are supposed to, why am i obsessing over my chubby ankles?” it started to feel like i was telling God i didn’t think He did a good enough job when He made me…that realization was enough to straighten me out. i still have days when im bloated or a pair of jeans cuts me weird and gives me muffin top and i start to play those old tapes in my head. but now i know what to remind myself of to get me focused again…focused on the incredibly amazing body that God gave me…a body that was capable of and designed to bring forth another life! too cool! also, a woman’s body rarely improves aesthetically (by society’s standards) after having a baby. if i hadn’t gotten over a lot of my issues i would have been devastated by the keratosis pilaris and additional stretch marks that Solomon came with:)
You have a great outlook Charis. And you’re right – God created me to carry this baby, and I shouldn’t stress about what it looks like in the process, as long as I’m strong and healthy.
Oh Bethe-you are Beautiful! While I have not been pregnant (yet at least ;)) body insecurities are something I have been oh too familiar with and something The Lord is continually working with me on. Something that helps me is to remember the perfection of The Lord and how he created me just as I am, on purpose! The same is true of you and the perfect baby girl he is creating in you. And beyond that he created a perfect match for you. One to affirm you of the beauty God has created in you, yes you. Hold on to those sweet words and make them your truth.
P.S. For what it’s worth, I only hope to carry my child one day with grace and beauty you are carrying Baby Wrenn.
You speak truth Nicole! And such sweet words… thank you.
You are gorgeous. Pregnant, especially. Mack and I both talked about how much the look suits you! I can’t wait to hear what you think tomorrow. 🙂
Chelsea – your pics made me feel so beautiful. Thank you for that – I’m going to treasure these forever. Can’t wait for our next photoshoot that involves a cute baby girl!
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