Thursday, March 15, 2012

Weight gain.

It’s humbling when you become a version of a person you used to hate.

Obviously while I was doing treatments, a lot of women around me got pregnant. Inevitably, they’d start complaining about how fat they felt.

This used to annoy the shit out of me. You are not FAT. You are growing a BABY. Your body is changing because it’s doing something miraculous (insert stabby eyes and frustrated sighs).

And yet, here I am.

It started early on, because that first trimester bloat before you get a bump can be very demoralizing. That’s probably the case for any pregnant woman, but when you add the tail end of an IVF cycle and ongoing progesterone supplements, things can only be worse.

Before I started IVF, I was in great shape. I had been working out hardcore and eating a decent diet. I was a muscular 151 pounds, size 8 in pants. I felt great. Not thin, but healthy.

I wasn’t all that concerned about weight gain when I got pregnant. In fact, I wanted to gain weight because I so desperately wanted that belly!

The pregnancy books all say you can expect to gain 25-35 pounds throughout your pregnancy. Here’s a breakdown of my weight gain:

Sept 12 (retrieval week): 151
Nov 23 (12 weeks): 157
Dec 22 (16 weeks): 159
Jan 24 (21 weeks): 166
Feb 6 (23 weeks): 168
Feb 29 (26 weeks): 176 (!)
Mar 13 (28 weeks): 181

I am clearly on track to outpace the 35 pound “maximum”.

And as much as I don’t want to be that person, I hit the roof when I broke 180.

This has been a major wake up call for me about the ways we are conditioned as women. Even though I knew I would gain weight, expected to gain weight, and had prepared myself – even though I had been frustrated with others in the past who were panicked about their weight gain – despite all these things, I still hate seeing the numbers climb on the scale. I’m still deeply conditioned to want them to go the opposite way.

I finally have a beautiful pregnant belly that everyone looks at and thinks “baby” (as opposed to “six pack” or “gummy bears” or “pasta”). But I also have a lot of new weight around my hips and thighs, and I can’t even guess how much each breast weighs.

This, combined with my constipation troubles, makes me feel heavy and weighed down. I walk pretty slowly these days (my husband is usually waiting for me to catch up). I get out of breath easily. I am not my young, in shape, self. What did I expect, right?

But there is still a sense of mourning. My pre-pregnancy body, which I constantly berated, never lived up to my expectations. Now, I miss it with a deep, heartfelt yearning. My C cup breasts! My (not so flat but relatively flat) stomach! My non-swollen face!

I’ll never get it back all the way, that body that I was never happy to have in the first place.


Alex said...

I was the opposite. I hated my pre-pregnancy body (too fat!) and then loved it when I got pregnant enough to look really pregnant. I loved how round my belly was, and how womanly I felt with my big beautiful belly. Try to enjoy the belly. I know it's hard - I hate how conditioned we all are to want to be skinny. But you will get back to your previous body! In the meantime, embrace some fabulous maternity clothes that show off your belly in all its gorgeousness!!!

Jem said...

I'm on the exact same weight trajectory as you, my dear.

It's hard to just accept where we are and what's happening with our bodies. Right now my fingers are so swollen I can barely make a fist. They hurt.

I think our post-baby bodies will be different. Still beautiful, but different.

Stacy said...

Ahhh, don't be too hard on yourself! I stopped gaining weight towards the end of my pregnancy. Also, I was the thinnest I have been since high school about 6 months after I had my son due to nursing. Yep, that's my diet secret! Nurse about every 2-3 hrs... that's all I got!

MaryMargaret said...

I could have written this post, and I am glad that you did it for me. Daily, I must remind myself that I am gorwing babies and if being "fat" is what it takes, so be it. But I hate that I have become one of those women that made me so, so angry when I wanted desperately just to be pregnant!

Dollface said...

I love your blog and I have been following. I have gained about 25 pounds and I am 27 Weeks. I am also severly constipated which I swear is about 10 lbs of it!! Is Colace the only remedy?