Boobs, Belly, and Baby

Last we met, I was regaling you with the joys of finally realizing the dream of becoming pregnant a second time. As time has passed, the enormity and sheer bliss of it all is still not lost upon me. Not a day goes by that I don’t look down and smile.

And cringe.

These boobs. This belly.

Let’s start north and work our way southward, shall we?

Boobs can be funny thing. They serve a dual role in our society. Ask any man and he’ll tell you what he feels is their primary role. Ask a new breastfeeding mom, and she’ll give you a whole new perspective on mammaries. Women identify with their breasts as a uniquely feminine quality. We have ’em, and whether you flaunt ’em, hide ’em, boost ’em, or ignore ’em, your breasts will never cease to amaze you.

Especially when you get pregnant.

Oh my.

Shortly after peeing on that pregnancy test stick, I noticed the not-so-subtle changes that occur during this time. They not only grew beyond their current ‘restraint system’, but they were so tender and sore, I found myself contemplating wearing bras to bed in an attempt to avoid the gravity-inducing pain when removing them. This pain goes beyond the usual pain that we women associate with, “Oh, shit, my period is coming”. It’s akin to throbbing the likes of which you’ve never quite experienced. I vaguely recall this sensation the first time around.

FIFTEEN YEARS AGO.

There’s something to be said for spacing pregnancies this far apart. Time heals all wounds, right, both physical and emotional? I dimly remember this boobie transformation, but this time it seemed to be happening with a greater sense of urgency, as if my boobs were saying, “Shit! We didn’t think this was going to happen again! Let’s get this show on the road. GROW! GROW! FASTER! FASTER!”

This past week when I could finally ignore my burgeoning bust no longer, I went to my local Nordstrom where I had great luck in the past with bra fitting and selection. I made a point to wear one of these particular bras when I went in to the store. I calmly walked in, went up to the first salesgirl, and said,

“I need to be fitted for a strapless bra for my wedding dress.”

(Oh, yes. There’s a wedding for us next month, but I’ll save that story for a future post).

My query was met with an enthusiastic response from someone I’m quite certain was young enough to be MY daughter. I sighed. These mammaries were going to scar this poor thing for life. Perhaps it would be my own public service announcement for her to remember to take that little pill daily so as to avoid this massive rack that stood before her. I shook my head in disbelief. She seemed positive she could help me. She herded me to the nearest fitting room with her tape measure in hand. I watched her tiny frame with her perky boobs as she directed me to remove my shirt in preparation to measure these cans.

I think I heard her gasp.

I tried to explain I was pregnant. These boobs are not for the faint of heart. They will require some serious fitting and handling. I felt bad for her. When she approached me on the sales floor, she had no idea what she was in for. I can only imagine what was racing through her mind as I stood before her, spilling out beyond the confines of my current boulder holder. Awe? Revulsion? Shock? Contemplation of transferring to a different department within Nordstrom? I could only guess.

She smiled, measured me, and so astutely proclaimed, “Well, YES! You have definitely outgrown your current bra!”

No. Really? What part of outgrown didn’t she really think I understood: The fact that my boobs were spilling out like dough in a pan that’s too small or the clasp in the back that was straining with the pressure of keeping these puppies in some semblance of socially acceptable location? In any event, I smiled, agreed, and off she went to either cry, scream, or do her best to find me a size big enough to accomodate these milk jugs.

She returned with four bras. I could tell by looking at them, they were much too small. She vowed to return to check on me. I contorted myself and hoisted these newfound friends into the bras. It was so comical I actually laughed out loud. I giggled. I even took a picture, because it was just too damn funny. It was a dichotomy between a girl who has chosen to bind herself and Dolly Parton. It was a bra epsiode of What Not To Wear.

When she returned and inquired as to how those worked out for me, I chuckled and told her I was going to need something bigger.

Yes. Bigger. Much bigger.

She looked worried at this point. I translated this look to mean one thing: they don’t have a bra big enough in the entire store.

My worry was for naught, as the only bra she brought me fit perfectly. Now, granted, one cup on this bra is big enough for my entire head, but I didn’t care. It held up these girls, and was snug enough for what I needed. Success!

The salesgirl seemed pleased. And probably relieved. And hopes I never return.

My belly has grown exponentially as well. When I finally hit the 9-week mark, I was unable to wear my regular clothes. Scrubs weren’t even an option. This belly would not be ignored. I made my way to a maternity store and invested in some basic maternity pieces. Ahhhh…….comfort!

What I’ve noticed the most thus far is how much EARLIER I’m showing than I did with my son. I’m pretty certain I didn’t start wearing maternity clothes until I was around 16 weeks or so.

Not this time. 9 weeks was the tipping point.

I find my belly growing with each passing day. James is in excited awe with this life growing inside me, as the baby becomes somehow more visible to him as my waistline expands. It never gets old to see his face every time he touches my belly, cozies up, and murmurs to his son or daughter in utero. Priceless. This man will finally know the joy of a life created partially in his own image.

photo (14)

 

It just doesn’t get any better than this…..

And then there’s baby…..

We have chosen to be surprised by the gender of this little peach, and while the temptation is at times overwhelming, my feeling is this: there are so few pure and wonderful surprises in this life, that this one seems to be the best one of all. The goal was healthy, and after a stressful week of waiting to hear results of a fetal DNA blood test, we were relieved and thrilled to know that all is well with baby. A vagina or penis just seems so secondary at this point.

I have been wavering back and forth. I started out thinking this peanut was a girl (twin girls, actually), then definitely a BOY, now I’m leaning back to Team Pink for some unknown reason. It’s fun not knowing. It’s also fun when people ask, “Ooo! What are you having?” and replying with, “A BABY!”

At 13 weeks and some change as I sit here at type, I am feeling those familiar flutters in my belly. I smile. There’s our baby. The movement coupled with the sound of our baby just makes it all the more sweeter. The best $30 I ever spent was on this home doppler. Listening to the quick gallop of his/her heartbeat just never gets old.

So, onward we go. Growing, growing, and growing. I bid a fond farewell to the first trimester and all its woes. The nausea has subsided for the most part, and for that I’m grateful. The insomnia has worsened, but I’m sure that’s just my body’s way of preparing for many sleepless nights to come. My boobs are still sore, but I’ve grown accustomed to that. I just hope I don’t need to go bra shopping for a while.

I bet that salesgirl hopes I don’t need to, either.

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