The back pain. The morning sickness. The "whose body even is this and why do none of my clothes fit me right now?" The hormone-induced rages and sporadic, irrational crying (that your partner doesn’t dare refer to as “mood swings,” lest you hurl the ice-cream scoop at their head again.) Ahh, the ~joys~ of pregnancy. Throw in the constant cramping, weird shooting pains, insomnia, and frequent urination, and you’ll realize what every pregnant woman already does: Results vary for each woman, but in general, pregnancy is practically synonymous with discomfort, at least for parts of it.
Whether it's your first go around, or your uterus is basically a revolving door of gestational badassery, each pregnancy will have an enormous impact on you, both physically and mentally. So why on earth do we bother? Who in their right mind would willingly sign up to host what is essentially a tiny parasite for 9 months (but actually 10 months; who decided to call it "9 months" in the first place)?!
The reality is, when they place that adorable, squishy bundle into your arms after giving birth, everything you endured the previous 37-42 weeks will fade away into a blurry haze. You will have vague recollections of discomfort, but that new baby smell will be so wildly intoxicating that you’d probably sign up for round two right then and there if you could (hormones are a hell of a drug). Fortunately, for those of us gluttons for punishment, pregnancy actually has a few perks that you can’t help but miss after giving birth.
There is nothing quite like the anticipation of pregnancy. For ten-ish long months, every waking hour is devoted to thinking about, dreaming about, and imagining your growing babe. Will she have the same bouncing curls as big sister? Suffer from Dad’s giant dumbo ears? Or rock Mom’s award-winning sense of humor? There is plenty to be excited about after baby makes her debut, but the initial anticipation that parents feel during pregnancy, is in a league of its own.
Always Having A Buddy With You
Being pregnant means always having a captive audience! With at least one or perhaps even more babies baking in there, you’re never lonely. They won’t make fun of you for singing off key, they’re excellent listeners, and certainly the best belly-dance party buddies. And, in the wee hours of the morning, when your mind is racing but the rest of the house is sleeping, there's something immensely comforting about the sweet, soft nudges of a babe in your belly.
The Attention (Eh, Some Of The Attention)
Sure, unwanted questions, stares, and — cringe — touches from people are not anyone's favorite part of pregnancy, but some of the attention you get isn't the worst. The world will never again treat you as well as it will when you’re sporting a growing bump. Strangers will smile sweetly and lunge to open doors for you. Your partner will bend over backwards to keep you and baby comfortable and well-nourished. People will rub your feet, bring you food, and convince you to lay down while they do all of your household chores. If only these courtesies extended over to toddler moms! I could sure use a nap about now.
Having A Totally Justifiable Reason To See A Doctor All The Time
Perhaps it's my inner hypochondriac speaking, but there is something so nice about all the mandated doctor visits during pregnancy. On a monthly, or even weekly basis, your OB or midwife is there to field any questions or concerns you might have. Everything from “why are my nipples turning this color?” to “what’s up with my bellybutton?” — it's all taken in stride. Possibly for once in your life, you aren't thought of as a mild freak for being so obsessive about your health (or potential lack thereof). After the baby is born, and you are forced to resort back to consulting WebMd about everything, you’ll totally understand where I’m coming from here.
Eating For Two (Or More!)
The FOOD! Oh, how I miss all the food. Inarguably, I took the “eating for two” thing very seriously, gaining a whopping 65(!) lbs during each pregnancy. YO. LO. My doctor assured me I was healthy (so the delivery guy can really stop judging my journey with his eyes). Being pregnant is basically the only time in your entire life that people will watch you scarf down an entire pecan pie, smile, and ask if you’re still hungry. It’s pretty much the greatest thing ever. Almost makes up for having to give up booze (almost).
While most of them are not even remotely stylish, maternity clothes are so incredibly comfortable that you will want to remain pregnant forever. Seriously. God bless the inventor of the stretchy waistband, without which, eating that entire pecan pie at one sitting would never have been possible. My youngest “baby” recently turned 20 months old, and I will still occasionally wear my favorite pair or maternity shorts, just for comfort's sake.
The Peace, The Quiet, The Netflix
As much as you can’t wait to see your little doodle's face when it finally bursts onto the scene, you will most definitely miss the quiet, insightful moments that pregnancy affords. The peaceful silence. The ample time to quietly reflect and gather your thoughts. The uninterrupted binge-watching windows. The good life, is what I'm saying.
Because all of that will end soon. A “hangry” newborn waits for no man. Loud, piercing wails will become commonplace after baby is born and your thoughts will become so scrambled that you won’t even remember why you just entered a room. If you already have children, the noise level will simply multiply exponentially. From "mere zoo" to "actual frat house" levels overnight. So take time during your pregnancy to soak up the quiet, and ponder deep things—they might be the last well-formed thoughts you have for awhile.
Images: Lionsgate; Giphy(7)