To be

You know what I have never understood? The phrase “mother-to-be”. As someone who is pregnant now and has had miscarriages in the past, I resent the idea that I’m not a mother until my baby is outside of me. From the moment I found out I was pregnant, I completely transformed. My body became home to a child and a myriad of uncomfortable symptoms accompanied him. My priorities changed, my house began to morph into one that’s making room for an expanding family, my sacrifices began. Throwing out enough to make room for a nursery, refraining from having an evening cocktail or painkiller even when I threw out my back while throwing up from morning sickness. My life is significantly different now than it was before I had a baby growing in me.

If motherhood is all about keeping your child healthy and safe, sacrificing for the little one, making room in your world for another little person so they can grow up, then I am a mother. Right now. My job right now is to keep my son safe from chemicals and stress and injury. To make room for him in my house, my heart, my life. To try my hardest to give him the opportunity to grow up strong. So I’m going to call myself a mother, and grow into that role. 



My son is kicking around in my womb right now, moving in this playful way as my husband’s hands follow him from one side of me to the other, whispering, “I found you!” to my belly. There are moments like these when my boys play, where it seems as if I’m almost not there, just resting a hand on my husband’s head as he chuckles quietly at the little movements beneath his hand.
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Honest goddess

There seem to be two groups of women when it comes to views on pregnancy. There’s the oh-God-get-this-baby-out-of-me-the-things-I-sacrifice-for-this-damn-fetus group that only seem to think about how fast they can get that epidural and get back to drinking wine. And there’s the earth-mother-I-am-a-goddess-I’ve-never-been-more-beautiful club which post beautiful maternity photos on Instagram with henna on their curves and circles of women gathering under moons as full as their bellies.
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First trimester

The things that I want to remember about this time, little one, are small. They are the nights when your father and I ate hash browns for dinner because that’s all I could stand to eat, the way your father places his hand on my belly every night to talk to you, the little presents your godmother is already bringing over for you. The general feeling of the first trimester is exhausted and nauseous and a little moody, but these little moments remind me of the greater good that is you. I can’t feel your movements yet, I haven’t seen you on an ultrasound, so much is uncertain. But when I hum to you in our kitchen, tell your grandmother that I’m craving the same foods she did when she was pregnant with me, absentmindedly have a hand on my belly while I watch tv, I know you are the best thing that’s ever been mine. I hope you know how loved you are.

It’s real now.

We went to our first prenatal appointment yesterday. Okay, that’s not quite accurate. Yes, we technically entered the doctor’s office. Yes, it was baby-related. But really, all I did was say hello to a nurse, pee in a cup, have them admit I’m pregnant even though I already knew, and have them tell me to come back in six weeks. Six. Weeks. The fetus will go from the size of a blueberry to the size of a clementine in that time. I was under the impression I’d get a lot more involvement in between that amount of growth. But, for now, we wait.

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dead dresses and new life

I’m wearing the dress of a dead woman. My mother’s cousin died last year in a car crash, her only child in the back seat, completely broken by the incident. She had her daughter when she was 42, the product of a lifelong dream. Motherhood was something she waited for, something she longed for. And when she died, she left a spoiled little girl with a broken father, both spiraling down into despair.

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