I’m at my 18th week of pregnancy, and I JUST started looking pregnant. [This is where, if I hadn’t lost my digital camera, I’d put up pics of my baby belly. But, alas, dear readers, you’ll have to wait another day or two until I can recover said camera from the craziness that is Rob’s mom’s attic.] If I did have a camera readily available and was able to put up the pics, you’d see that actually, I’m pretty short. I’m 5’5″, and the fact that I’ve only now started to look pregnant is kinda strange.
At least, me and everyone else besides my health team – ob-gyn, nutritionist, midwife – thinks it’s strange. Don’t get me wrong – I’ve been packing on the pounds all right. But where it goes, no one seems to know.
Rob has a theory. He says that the fact that I had a DD bust before pregnancy (which is creeping up to DDD and scaring the bejesus out of me), is what keeps me looking more svelte. Clothes usually hang on my curves, and even when I’m bloated, I’m saved by the illusion that I’m all boob and no belly. I guess the parameters of “bloated” extends to “pregnant”, too. In this context, at least, it does.
My parents, scared as they are that I’m somehow starving my unborn baby, have been foisting food on me, and I’ve had to decline politely, explaining what my health team has clearly stated to me: There’s NO WAY of starving my kid, even if I tried. The human body is good that way. The baby’s only the size of a melon, so I’m not exactly “eating for two.” Besides, according to my doc, my midwife, and my nutritionist (the last of which always clucks her tongue disapprovingly when telling me the following), I’ve gained too much weight.
My appetite has picked up in the past couple of weeks, and with the help of my health team, helping me figure out what to expect and what’s ok to indulge in, I’m having a grand ole time fueling 24 freakin’ hours a day.
What a glorious thing it is to be able to wake up Rob at 1:30 in the morning, look at him with big, puppy eyes, and say, “Baby, I’m hungry. Can we get crepes?” – all without guilt!
Before opening his eyes, he groans and says, “Again?!” and I know exactly what he means. Baby, can we get crepes? is roughly translated into Will you please brave the crazy and/or drunk drivers of NYC at this ungodly hour with your pregnant girlfriend in the car? Please? Said girlfriend will probably talk non-stop about which delectable crepe she’ll have up until you finally reach the creperie, and she won’t allow you to squeeze in a word about anything but crepes. But she loves you and she’s hungry. So, please?
Then, every time, he puts on his clothes and we drive out to the creperie, and I indulge in carby goodness. I’ll get a s’mores crepe, or a crepe with sirloin steak, mushrooms and cheese, or a crepe with goat cheese and sundried tomatoes… The choices seem endless. They’re all amazingly yummy and satisfying. And, somehow, everything just tastes better on a crepe.
One of the great things about living in NYC while you’re pregnant is that there’s a whole bunch of 24-hour food options. I can get my favorite roast duck and wonton noodle soup delivered 18 hours a day, and when that’s not available, there’s fresh pizza, and always a selection of bodegas and corner stores to choose from. Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods have become shopping staples, and I’m always gorging on fresh produce and freshly-baked breads from the city’s farmer’s markets.
There was a time, not too long ago, when I would never submit my readers to entries about my eating habits. Who cares about what I eat, or how I eat it? How could my diet be perceived as relevant, entertaining or edgy? All of these ideas would swirl around in my brain, and very often, they still do.
I tell myself that writing this blog isn’t about being relevant, or entertaining, or edgy. I’m pleased that people seem to apply these terms to my blog, but that’s not what it’s about. It’s about me and my evolution. It’s about touching minds with some amazing people, and learning about lives that aren’t my own, and celebrating world views and cultural perspectives and political ideals. It’s about actualizing in another forum, in a cyber form of myself.
Socialization is a constant reminder of who you are and how you fit into the world, and it’s easy to get caught up in the reassignment of labels and attitudes. But I refuse to restrict myself merely to a bunch of labels, even though I fully participate in the act of labelling. I realize that it’s easy to categorize and compartmentalize when you have a system of understood labels, and I realize that by blogging mostly about perceived negatives, I’ve become aligned with those things. People have asked why I blog about the extremes – sex, sex work, (mostly) problems with my boyfriend, family woes, financial troubles, etc. I’m obviously so much more than the negative, so why do I talk about taboos? Why do I allow myself to be wear a label like “poor” or “WIC recipient” or “struggling young mother” or “former sex worker” or “feminist” or “woman who enjoys sex” or “bisexual”? Why do I wear these badges so proudly, when so many people will proclaim their disgust or hatred at one or more of these terms?
I do it because I refuse to be oppressed by shame. I do it because I am human, and I experience a plethora of seemingly contradictory and equally amazing emotions and actions. I do it because I am proud of my human-ness. I am proud of my facets, of my mistakes, of my detours, and of my decisions. I do it because I celebrate people, and I’m not afraid of celebrating my self.
And it’s with all that in mind that I blog about sex just as often as I’ll probably blog about parenting; I’ll blog about money problems just as much as I’ll blog about my educational and career-oriented successes; I’ll blog about the past just as much as I’ll blog about the future. Because that’s what I’m about, and there is nothing short of beautiful or amazing about any of it.