One of my best friends, Regan is also pregnant (with her second) and due just a couple weeks before me. She was one of the first people to know I was pregnant and has been impatiently waiting for the news that we were expecting! I never imagined we would be so fortunate to experience pregnancy together during a similar time frame. So of course one of the topics we frequently discuss is our pregnancy weight gain!
Weight is a dreaded concern for most pregnant women. I am especially sensitive to this topic as I am one of those always-had-to-watch-her- weight-women. I have never been skinny or too fat; rather I have carried a petite body with busty boobs that are never a short-girls friend. However, 3 ½ years ago, six months before my wedding date I threw all my energy into losing weight and finally feeling comfortable in my own skin. With motivation, Weight Watchers, workouts, running, and complete attention to my food intake, I lost 26.5 pounds. I shrunk about 8 dress sizes, my stress headaches disappeared, I rarely got sick, and most importantly, finally felt (almost) completely comfortable with my body. I diligently worked out and ate right over the next 3 years in order to keep the weight off, and although 10 pounds slowly crept back, the remaining weight stayed away leaving me okay with where I was. And then I got pregnant…
Although I’ve had a rather easy pregnancy, my most obvious symptom has been fatigue. My 6:30 pm workouts are a thing of the past. Dinner is followed by naps on the couch which is followed by a grumpy, mad-at-the-world walk up to bed. And food. Oh, how the first few weeks I loved food. All food. Good food, bad food, worse food. If I thought about it, I had to have it. Thankfully that crazed phase has passed!
And even though my weight gain hasn’t been excessive and is in keeping with the routine monthly increase, the thickness of my stomach and fullness of my already full breasts, are hard to come to terms with. I think the in-between stage of “Is she pregnant?” or “Did she get fat” make this almost mid-point in pregnancy a bit more troubling.
So this weekend when a lower baby bump emerged from my waist I went online to see how other women looked at the 17 week mark. Were their stomachs smaller or bigger than mine? I needed some sort of comparison tool to either make me feel better about myself or make me skip the ice cream and milk shakes at night! I confessed this to Regan and she made me laugh – she does the same exact thing! I was relieved to know that I wasn’t the only one!
So here are some other anonymous 17 – 20 week pregnant women. I will post my 18 week picture next Friday and then you can go ahead and judge me as I have judged these other women! Some make me feel better about my current size, others don’t. Either way it is nice to see that what is happening to my body is normal and also happening to others at the same time!
*Disclaimer: This is my first and last internet bikini picture ever that will ever be posted, that is unless breast feeding is successful and I somehow lose 35+ pounds!! The discoloration on my stomach is due to my wedding preparation tanning bed friend! Faces of pregnant women have been cropped to protect privacy!