Sunday, September 19, 2010

Peeking into my life at 16 weeks


This poor baby is probably getting tired of hearing the same conversation day in and day out. If I am tired of it, I am sure the little life inside of me is rolling his/her eyes-- a trait from me, unfortunately. I work at a very busy salon, with 31 other stylists. Throughout the day they call me over to show their clients my growing stomach. Sometimes I throw in a little laugh, I usually say thank you, and I always turn beet red from the attention. Here is what I hear on a daily basis...

Here are the nice things that I like to hear:

"Oh wow, I didn't realize you were pregnant until you turned."

"Look at that growing belly, you make such a cute pregnant lady."

"You make me want to be pregnant again."

"You and Sean are going to have cute little kids."

And here are the things that I hear too too often. These are the things that turn my face bright red, cause my blood pressure to soar, make my knees weak, and sometimes cause me to practice self-control and not self-defense. I occasionally want to send a punch to the mouths that let some of these comments escape from their minds out their mouths.

Said from my client, a nurse, who is 50 and a mother of three:

Nurse: "Congratulations! How many kids do you have?"
Me: "This is our first"
Nurse: "Really? How far along are you?"
Me: "Just hit 16 weeks yesterday."
Nurse: "You're kidding me! You look like you are at least 5 1/2 months along!"
Me (turning red): "Thank you"
Nurse: "You are pretty big, have you had a sonogram? Have they checked for multiples? Are there multiples in your family?
Me: "Nope, yep, yep"
Nurse: "Well if you don't have multiples, I would look into gestational diabetes, (and some other pregnancy-related complications, but I shut her out at this point). The symptoms are blah blah blah blah blah (more shutting her out)
Me: "How was your daughter's wedding?"

The man that sat in my chair five minutes after the previous conversation:

Man: "I couldn't help but notice that you are expecting- Congratulations"
Me: "Thank you"
Man: "You must be like 5-6 months along, huh?"
Me: "Actually, I just hit 16 weeks."
Man: "You're only 3 1/2 months along????!!!!"
Me (please tell me this day will end soon): "Yep. Looking pretty ripe, huh?"
Man: "Well, I am no expert in the area of pregnant women, but my wife is expecting our first, and she still has a flat stomach."
Man: "I am a physician, however, and I have seen many pregnant women. If I were you, I would have them thoroughly scan to make sure there aren't two or three in there."
Me (trying to catch my breath at the thought of him suggesting that I am large enough for three): "Thank you for your advice, we'll check into it."
Man: "You might want to read about gestational diabetes and excessive amniotic fluid."
Me: "Thank you, that'll give me something to do tonight."
Me: "Any fun plans for the weekend?"

To sum up the last shocking conversation that I had this week. I went to the mall to try to find some new work pants. I had an armful when I went into the dressing room. The dressing room attendant noticed my stomach and asked the usual questions. When she found out how far along I was, and that it was my first, her jaw dropped-- seriously. Secretly my eyes rolled-- when she wasn't looking. She lifted up her shirt and told me that she was 5 months along with her third. Her stomach was where mine was at about 11 weeks. We went through the whole routine about multiples and pregnancy complications. Yada yada yada.

I am learning that people are just trying to be helpful. I am also learning that I need to just let it roll off of my back, even when you hear these things every day ALL day. I asked for a little humility this week in my prayers, and I think that I have been humbled through the conversations that I have with people day in and day out. I am lucky to have a loving, supportive, trustworthy, hard-working, spiritual husband to help me raise our kids with. I am lucky to have wonderful, supportive, loving, hard-working, trustworthy, and spiritual parents (on both our sides), that have taught us to be parents by their examples.

As the weeks move along, I am realizing more of the changes that will take place. I am nervous to become a parent, and only hope to be as patient as Sean and both of our parents are and were. Maybe that's why I get to wade through all these conversations-- I think (despite my eye rolling) I will find ways to patiently wait for the subject to change in my next uncomfortable conversation.

23 comments:

Sarah said...

I think you look adorable!

James and Megan said...

I'm glad you are posting these...it makes me feel like I get to see you more than I do:) Christmas is coming soon...

AND you are rockin' that belly

tiffany and darren said...

It is legal to hit people in the face for their annoying comments. I wish I could say it gets better, but the comments just get crazier. I stopped going into public all together when I could because it took me twice as long to do anything being stopped about my giant belly all the time. You should also start thinking of really good come backs for the people you won't ever see again.
Example:
stranger: "you should look into gestational diabetes"
you: "you should two, I would guess you were ____ months along"
you can say that to a man or woman, it will take either by surprise.
good luck! I feel your pain.

tiffany and darren said...

i spelled too wrong, i meant too not two. see what pregnancy does to you?

Helena said...

Are you sure you don't have 5 or 6 in there?

Helena said...

Kidding! Hahahahaha. Sorry. You can punch me when you see me.

Mari said...

I so know how you feel. I decided that people always want something to say to a pregnant woman so you either hear, you're so big or you're so small, followed by personal experiences and medical advice.
I always wished someone would tell me how small I was vs. the big conversation but oh well.
I think you're darling.

Bryan and Jamie said...

People really have no tact. Its like there are no more rules when they are talking to a pregnant person. I don't understand. If it makes you feel any better, That was exactly how I was too. Do you recall my giant torpedo of a belly??? Huge. Thats what i am when I am pregnant. (I wore maternatiy pants at like 11 weeks with peter!) I still dont like to hear it though! ha ha. I think you look super cute.

Bryan and Jamie said...

P.S. I really miss you. Call me when you get a break! :) My phone broke and I don't have any numbers in my new one.

Gretchen said...

You should tell people that you're actually having quadruplets and that you're going to have a show on TLC. :) Or tell people you're not pregnant at all and make them feel stupid for calling you fat. I had someone tell me to quit eating watermelon seeds. We also had some old man say to Dane "You've been gettin' busy". I wanted to say 'Yep, at least twice.' Some people just don't understand how stupid they really sound.

Sheena said...

People should stop comparing you to other people. I probably would have punched them in the face by now. :-) You look amazing, and that's all that matters....no matter how far along you are!

Stephanie said...

You look awesome Rachel, people just think they know everything sometimes! I don't get it?

Mindy said...

Rachel, love, don't worry about the silly things they say - every pregnancy is different. Your doctor is on top of things and knows what to check for. You will be fine.

As for reacting to not-so-wonderful-to-hear comments, here's a story for you: Six months after I got off my mission, I went to the doctor for a thyroid visit. While there, I asked him if the little red lines on my chubby belly were stretch marks. Well, indeed they were, and the doctor asked me 10 different ways if I was sure I had never been pregnant.

I found a different doctor.

Since you're the one providing the services in your situation, I have the perfect solution for you - remember in Runaway Bride when Richard Gere sits down in the chair to hear all about Julia Roberts? And what did Julia and Joan do to Mr. Gere?

Think of all the fun tools you have access to while they are in your chair ;D

Love ya, girl. Hope everything's going well. You're AMAZING, and you are more BEAUTIFUL now than you have ever been!!!

Mindy said...

OH!!!

I forgot to mention that I have NEVER been pregnant, for those of you wondering what my point was there. That's why I was so upset by the doctor. :)

Potter Family said...

Rachel..you are gorgeous. Beautiful. enjoy pregnancy. i'm so with you about tuning people out. Obviously people in PA need to see more pregnant people! You are awesome! Love the belly pictures!

Will said...

Don't know if anyone suggested this, you could just tell people you're farther along than you really are. You could be creative and make up delivery dates and names and just answer the "typical" pregnancy questions.

Kaylene said...

I saw you at stake conference the other night and you look perfect. I know it's hard not to be self-conscience but trust me, you have nothing to worry about.

And if it makes you feel any better...I had gestational diabetes with my first and not my second. And I was a WHALE both times. Not just my belly, my whole body decided to look pregnant. I'll send you pictures if you want proof. :) So try not to fret and enjoy your little growing family.

Richins Family said...

i think you look soo cute :) can't wait to see you in real life :)

The Way I See It said...

Wouldn't it stop "them" in their tracks if you responded with "that was rude!" I mean come on; ALL women should know what comments are appropriate and which ones aren't, in the case of any pregnant woman. Forget the men. They know nothing!!! I think you look absolutely DARLING!

Ashley C. said...

Well, you do look super cute! People sure do love to give their two cents, there is something about seeing someone pregnant that brings that out in people. I remember being 6 months along and having people say things like "you look like you're about to pop any day now." Good luck with enduring all the fun advice!

Desiree P said...

You are an adorable pregnant lady! I wish I looked half that good. I had a doctor's appointment yesterday and found out that even though the baby is a 14 week size (where it should be) my uterus is a 20 week size. So I already look 6 weeks further along than I should. You are not alone!
Find some comfy pants and snappy comebacks.

Liz Morrill said...

I don't get it.. you look the perfect size in the picture!
maybe if you could take a few pictures NEXT to all those people who are so tiny.. I might see the difference! (kidding)
just wait until you have two or three or four or five boys in a row and EVERYONE that sees you with them (right in front of them) asks "so are you going to try for a girl?"
aaarrrggg!!
love ya girl... keep posting, miss you so much!
Liz

Di said...

Ummm wow I guess those east coasters don't have much tact!