Being pregnant can present a number of challenges, not the least of which is the monumental task of getting dressed in the morning. You genuinely don’t know from one morning to the next what will fit. I have finally started to show and am in what I affectionately call the “fat chick at the bar” stage. My apologies to any portly bar flies who might be reading this. What I mean is that I am not obviously pregnant to folks that don’t know me and because I have a paralyzing aversion to the sailor collar, bell shirt, and general “Look at me, I am with child and virginal looking at the same time” style of maternity clothing, I end up wearing larger sizes of normal clothing or simply let clothing get a little snug.

I am proud of my bump. Proud to be pregnant. Proud to be proud of it all.

I am very aware, after having been pregnant over a summer, that there are people that would prefer us pregnant folk stay in a private tent or do everything possible to conceal the fact that we are pregnant. A person we know here in town who is from the city was talking with us one day when we were pregnant with Briar and he said that pregnancy makes people in these parts nervous because it means you’ve had sex. We laughed, but I do think that there is a bit of truth to that statement. I often say that I don’t mean to be new-agey (because I “often say” it should I be worried that I am a little new agey?) Anyway, not to be new agey, but, I think pregnancy is amazing.

It’s the miracle of life people.

So, while I crack wise about my growing size, I love nothing more than to relax at home at night just holding my belly, rubbing the skin and imagining the little person inside of me. I love when Sean comes over and says in a goofy voice with his lips pressed against my belly, “Hello baby. Hello.” I delight in Briar lifting my shirt, pointing and touching my belly button and giggling. I love the sensation of being in bed reading and turning to one side and realizing that I need to adjust for the life inside of me. I like the responsibility, love the magic.

I don’t really love the in between part when, quite honestly, you just feel like nothing fits right and that you don’t belong in the maternity shops nor do you belong in the regular department stores. But I don’t want to throw in the towel. Just wearing a man’s shirt is not the answer, that’s like wearing fat clothes with a nice shiny pin. C’mon, you can’t give up on your body until it suits you. We have to live for every minute. Don’t procrastinate.

I have started working out with a co-worker at the Civic Center next door to my work. Another co-worker is going to start in January. She says she needs to get through the holidays. Bet you there’ll be another something to make it past in January before she starts.

This is your life. Today, right now. You have to go for it, whether that means leaving your job or tucking in your shirt, don’t waste a single precious moment.

Wow, I am getting dizzy up here on this soap box.

But seriously, I don’t want to waste time. Just like with Briar. We have made a concerted effort to not say,

“I can’t wait until she – insert accomplishment, age, whatever-

We are relishing each step, each day, each part of the journey. This first year has taught us that it does really go by too fast.

The point…ah, yes, the point.

I put on a skirt today. A real live skirt with nylons. And just to show you how out of the norm this is…God this killed me, Briar is just so cute and so direct.

I put on the skirt and my shirt and then went downstairs with Briar to get breakfast set and to retrieve my nylons. She was standing in front of me as I pulled the nylons up over my legs and arranged the waist band on my belly so that it wouldn’t bother me.

Briar was watching my hands and looking at my legs. She came over and ran one hand along my leg. Big eyes, sweet smile. Then both hands were rubbing the shiny, nylon smooth surfaced of my legs. This was a total revelation to her. Such a smooth feeling. She looked up at me with utter delight. I have never felt so beautiful in my life. That little move on Briar’s part made me remember how it felt growing up to see my mom put blush on, or apply eye liner. The way she would leave a delicate trail of “dressed up” smell. The magical sound she made when walking in heels. The same way that all the books say that working helps balance moms, so too does dressing up. This isn’t about “saving your marriage” or “playing the part” this is about being well-rounded, about continuing to be all the different parts that make up who you are.

I need to remember, we need to remember, that in the same way that we make sure to enjoy each day of Briar’s life, we need to enjoy each day of ours. As we can we need to continue to do things that may seem out of reach. We went for a snowy walk on Thanksgiving morning. It was not a total success, but we tried, ya know. I think all things considered we are doing a pretty good job of balancing things. So, I am going to continue my day, in my skirt, with my silky legs.