Today I am 25 weeks pregnant.
Earlier this week I was on the "how big is baby?" page, and I noticed that I am kind of dangerously close to the bottom of it. I still have a few months to go, but I kind of never thought I would get here - to the eggplant stage.
Yep, Charlie weighs over a pound now and is also over a foot long. He'll stay in the eggplant stage for awhile until he becomes a nice big squash.
Here I am this week:
I've decided that red is not my best pregnant color. I normally look awesome in red, but it makes me look like a big ol' blimp these days.
Here's a naked belly shot:
(The mirror was smudged. No stretch marks yet, just veins.)
My belly has started getting in my way. I can no longer do certain things normally; it takes more effort, and I find myself grunting. (Side note: I used to call myself a "grunting cavewoman with acne" back when I was in the first trimester, and it appears I'll be revisiting that very pleasant side of pregnancy once again - sans acne, hopefully.) This is probably the beginning of the uncomfortable stage.
And that makes sense considering that HOLY CRAP, I AM ALMOST IN THE THIRD TRIMESTER.
The third trimester scares me. Being huge and uncomfortable just doesn't appeal to me. I don't want to waddle. I don't want to swell. I don't want to deal with insomnia any more than I have this entire pregnancy. But it looks like that's what these last few months hold for me.
And then there's the giving birth part. I've actually never really been scared to give birth. I know women have done it since the dawn of the human race, and so I can do it, too. I'm not scared of the pain (yet), but give me some time - I might get there.
What am I scared of? Oh, how about parenting? I am scared to death of it. I'm scared of breastfeeding. I'm scared of changing diapers. I'm scared of baby vomit. I'm scared of having to make decisions about things like circumcision, vaccinations, childcare, etc. It all just freaks me out, man.
But you know what I feel the most?
Love. I already love him so much. Feeling his kicks, hearing his heartbeat, watching him make my tummy move - he is so undeniably a part of me, and since his very beginning back in September, he's been preparing to make his entrance into the world. This means that right when I give birth to him, I'll be letting go of him - not a lot, just a tiny bit.
Pregnancy has been one huge lesson in letting go. I've had to let go of my pre-pregnancy body (and I wish I would have been better about embracing its imperfections). I've had to let go of the notion that I can do everything and be the same person I was before I got pregnant - physically, mentally, and emotionally, it just isn't possible. And I've had to let go of the nagging "what if" voice that lives in the back of my mind - What if he's not healthy? What if I miscarry? What if I have post-partum depression? What if this? What if that? (The "what if" voice can never be completely silenced. I still deal with it every day. But I have learned not to let it control me.)
I guess it's only appropriate that I learn how to let go now, because as soon as he is born, the time will start flying, and next thing I'll know, he'll be laughing, crawling, eating solids, walking, going to kindergarden, graduating from high school, getting married... And I won't be able to keep him safe. It's not like I can even really keep him safe now. I mean, I do what I need to do to take care of him, but there are so many things that are out of my control. I think that's the really scary part, knowing that no matter what you do right, it's not always a guarantee that things will turn out right.
It sounds a bit silly and premature to be talking about such things when I haven't even given birth to Charlie yet, but with great love comes great risk. I don't need to give birth to him to know that I love him. I don't need to give birth to him to know that I'm his mother and he's my son. I just did, and he just was, right from the beginning. And right from the first positive pregnancy test, there was that potential for great happiness as well as the possibility of overwhelming devastation. The closer I get to meeting him for the first time, the higher the stakes become. It's really fucking scary sometimes.
But pregnancy is also the best thing I've ever done, and it has been worth every one of the 25,000 emo tears I have shed in the last six months. I truly can't wait for the challenge of parenthood.
Today I am 25 weeks pregnant, and I love my son Charlie.