The 4th of July is right around the corner, and that means barbecues, booze, and, of course, fireworks. Those things aren't particularly exciting when you're pregnant, though. Sure, some moms-to-be are the glowing kind and happen to enjoy normal amounts of energy and minimal side effects. But most of us deal with things like nausea, back pain, exhaustion, gas, and other ailments that make pregnancy less-than-enjoyable. So, yes, there are things that suck about being pregnant on the 4th of July, and they're worth mentioning so pregnant women across the country can at least know they're not alone. I mean, misery loves company, right?
A few years ago I planned out an early anniversary trip with my husband to San Francisco and Big Sur for 4th of July weekend. We had just moved into a new apartment, both had new jobs, and everything seemed like it was falling into place. Then I found out I was pregnant just a few weeks before the trip. I worried like hell about flying, because I was a high-risk pregnancy, and had a difficult time figuring out how I was going to fly (or even enjoy myself during the trip) when I was as sick and tired as I was. Thankfully, and overall, it wasn't too terrible. I was definitely feeling queasy, though, and it was nothing short of a miracle that I made it out to see the fireworks at the Golden Gate Bridge (I went straight to the apartment afterward to sleep, though!).
This year I’m excited to share the holiday with my husband and son, and definitely without the added “excitement” of a pregnancy. If you happen to be expecting at the moment, though, you have my sympathy.
You're Too Tired Or Too Pregnant To Go Somewhere Cool For Fireworks
If you’re the sort who loves an amazing fireworks display, you might be disappointed this Independence Day. Most places that provide grand displays attract hundreds of people, and do you really want to be in the middle of a crowd when you have to pee every three seconds? Or worse, do you want to have to pee in a port-a-potty multiple times throughout the night? Nope.
You Fall Asleep Before Any Neighborhood Fireworks Start
Because the sun goes down pretty late in the summer, most fireworks displays don’t start till 9:00 p.m., if not later. I don't know about you, dear reader, but during my first and third trimesters all I wanted to do is pass out by at least 7:00 p.m. and not a minute later. Unless you’re doing your own display, or have a cool park nearby, you’ll probably just miss out.
You Have To Stay Further Away From The BBQ Pit...
There’s a few reasons why, as a pregnant person, you'll want to stay far away from the grill during your 4th of July festivities. For one, and according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), carbon monoxide in large doses can be harmful for a developing fetus. For another, it gets pretty damn hot around the BBQ pit, which won’t exactly make any pregnant woman feel comfortable.
...And You Might Not Be Able To Enjoy BBQ Foods
Nausea is not your friend when it comes to attending a friend or relative’s 4th of July barbecue, especially if you happen to suffer from hyperemesis gravidarum. Plus, you have to be 100 percent certain all the foods are cooked thoroughly so you don't become the victim of food poisoning, which isn't good for you or your growing baby.
You Definitely Have To Stay Away From Bonfires
Did I mention that you don’t want to be inhaling lots of carbon monoxide when you're pregnant (or, you know, ever)? Yeah, OK, so that definitely means staying far away from any big bonfires, fun as they may be. Besides, wouldn’t you rather spend your time cooling off in a pool or something?
You Might Not Feel Comfortable Baring All In Front Of Others
Being pregnant doesn’t always mean having the confidence of a runway model. While we should all totally be loving the changes happening to our bodies, we live in this lousy patriarchal society that makes us women doubt how gorgeous we are unless we fit some conventional, usually unhealthy and unattainable beauty standard. I advise y’all to shrug off your internal hater and rock your best beach bod, but if you’re just not feeling it I understand. Yes, that makes 4th of July pool parties a bit of a drag.
No Alcohol Allowed
For ladies who enjoy a refreshing boozy cocktail, 4th of July is totally the worst. You want to be responsible to your growing bundle of joy, so you’ll have to 86 any drinks that might come your way. You still have to be around a bunch of intoxicated people, though, and as the only sober one at the party that can be a bit of a drag.
It’s Too Damn Hot...
Chances are, regardless of where you live it's going to be freaking hot on the 4th of July. If you're late into your pregnancy, well, that’s bad news bears. You’ll have to remember to stay hydrated and out of the sun, and it’s just, well, annoying.
...And Potentially Too Damn Humid
I spent most of my life growing up in Miami, Florida, also known as the most ridiculously humid place in America (or at least one of the most). You couldn’t walk outside without instantly sweating and having your hair frizz up. Forget about ever looking cute, let alone feeling comfortable — especially if you’re pregnant.