27 Weeks

At 27 weeks, my pointy belly and I went down to San Diego to see my parents. (Also, I dyed my hair, as you may have noticed by the faintly Elvira-ish shade it seems to have turned since the last weekly photo. Apparently, L'Oreal and I have very different definitions of "dark brown.")

At the airport—Hamish's 21st flight in utero! This kid is going to be born reciting the airline safety instructions—the TSA man to whom I'd handed my ID and boarding pass looked at me and said "Just the two of you?"

For a second, I thought he was making a fairly decent stab at humor, given that my burgeoning belly was pushing its way between us, and so I smiled and opened my mouth to say something equally witty and hilarious—you know, like "Ha! Yes!"—but then I realized he was looking over me at the guy behind me in line, and so a few seconds passed where I didn't quite know if this was a cheesy baby-on-board joke or if he was legitimately inquiring as to whether this dude and I were traveling together. That's the thing about being pregnant, I think; a lot of the time, it feels so utterly all-consuming that it eclipses absolutely everything else in your life. When I see people I haven't seen in a little while, for instance, and they say "Oh hi, how are you?" my first instinct is to say "Ah, well, I'm pregnant," as though it's suddenly the most defining thing about me. I mean, sure; that's probably the biggest change in my life since we saw each other last, but still, "doing well, thanks!" would likely serve just as nicely, at least for this level of the conversation. 

Anyway, since the last person you want to piss off unnecessarily by laughing at them is a man who is a) authorized to not let you get on your flight and b) carrying a gun, I decided to play it safe and assume he was actually asking if the guy behind me and I were traveling together and not trying to make a cutesy baby joke, and so I just said "Oh no, I'm by myself," which proved to be the right call, because he nodded stone-faced, stamped my boarding pass and let me through. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar, I guess. Sometimes the TSA agent isn't trying to engage you in hilarious baby-related banter. 

(Also, sometimes the Gap will send you an email with the word "train" in the subject line and it'll be about exercise clothes—you know, things you train in—rather than the adorable trainset-themed onesies you were expecting. Bit of a disappointment, that one, I have to say.) 

The funny thing is, when I'm not acutely aware of being pregnant, the rest of the time I pretty much just forget. It always takes me a few minutes in the morning to remember, and I'm terrified that I'm going to accidentally order a gin and tonic or buy a non-empire-waisted dress or go bungee jumping while eating unpasteurized cheese or something, and then only remember afterwards when I'm drunk/squeezed into something I can't zip up/lying in the hospital with a broken leg and listeria. Has that ever happened to anyone, do you think, just forgetting they're pregnant for long enough to do something forbidden? Has it happened to you?

Much like Kim Kardashian—hmm, not something I could ever imagine saying about myself before now—I think I've finally figured out how to dress my bump for maximum "yes-I'm-pregnant-not-just-frumpy"ness, and it involves, if you can believe it, a lot of maxidresses. Now, I had hitherto considered the maxidress flattering only on a very specific type of person—basically, the five-foot-eleven type paid to walk the runways of Paris and Milan—but I have to say that maxidresses are curiously flattering on the pregnant body, for some reason. I myself have this one and this one and rotate them more frequently than is possibly hygienic. I also adore this pair of pants, if we're recommending attractive maternity clothes, and only wish they came in more than one color because I would likely own them all.

Aside from these three staples, I am mostly wearing a motley mix of hand-me-down shirts from my kind friend A'Dell, who shipped me a bunch of stuff a few weeks ago, just when I was beginning to despair of ever looking cute again. Let me tell you, if you have a pile of leftover maternity clothes that you don't know what to do with and there is someone, however random, in your life who is pregnant, GIVE THESE CLOTHES TO THEM. (Uh, if you want to, I mean. I don't want to sound bossy about it.) I cannot tell you how much better it made me feel to suddenly have some choice in my wardrobe, and I fully plan to pass on my own hand-me-downs and make someone else's day when I'm finally done with them. 

27 weeks is, by most accounts, the very last week of the second trimester, and my body—as though wanting to remind me of how generally pleasant and painless this section has been so far—decided it would go out with a bang. I was getting ready for work last week—putting on my makeup in my bathrobe, half-checking email on my phone—when I opened my mouth to tell Sean about the (surely scintillating) dream I'd had that night and boom, instantly knew that I was about two-point-three seconds away from throwing up.

I made it to the bathroom just in time, where I hurled my guts out with the vehemence of the first trimester vomiter (band name!), while poor anxious Sean hesitated outside the hastily-closed door saying "Holly? Uh...are you okay?" and all the time I was thinking whoa, what is happening, I felt FINE just a second ago. Is that common, do you think, for the early days of queasiness to pay you one last visit later on just to remind you who's boss? It took me right back to that terrible period in December and January when I spent a large number of mornings (and evenings) kneeling at the porcelain throne. And because I am someone who lives for nostalgia, I didn't think, like a normal person, oh god, this is totally disgusting. Instead, I just thought awwwww, this! I remember this! Man, they grow up so fast.

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1
Kyran
May 06, 2013

You look so beautiful...like a poster girl for happy expectancy.

I think your hair looks lovely, but let me feel like the useful matronly auntie, and share a miracle DIY hair color rescue: get thee to Sally's Beauty Supply and pick up a tube of Clairol Pro Soy4Plex demi-perm CLEAR gloss. Ask the sales person to find the matching developer. It will lift the color by one shade, and make your hair shiny and soft. When you are ready to color again, look in the soy4plex demi line. I have played the brunette field and I keep going back. Also, learning your base level will help in future. I think of myself as very dark brunette, but I'm actually a level 5, a light brown. My fair skin makes it seem darker. My soy4plex shade is 5N.

2
Liz
May 06, 2013

I threw up a lot with my 3rd. Sitting there just fine and then running to the sink (always in the kitchen too since I'm usually feeding my always hungry littles) and making it just in time. Ugh. And they'd be saying, in their sweet little voices, "Mommy? Are you OKAY?"

It's worth it. :)

3
Marianne
May 06, 2013

Sadly I've thrown up more in my third trimester than I did in my first, which I find completely unfair.

4
Glenys
May 06, 2013

Hi i don't think dying of hair while pregnant is allowed... Isn't that unsafe for the baby?

5
Nothing But Bonfires
May 06, 2013

Glenys: Thanks for the concern, but I talked it through with my OB and she was fine with it after the first trimester. I researched dyes and specifically chose a "lower-dose" one, as well as one that only needed to be left on for 10 minutes. I also did it in a well-ventilated space. There's a ton of research out there if you want more info!

6
Practicalgirl
May 06, 2013

I was so forgetful during my pregnancy that I was also sure I would accidentally digest or do something "forbidden!" (Love me some unpasterurized cheeses!) But, thank goodness, something in my brain always clicked and that never happened. Going grocery shopping in my slippers, or wearing two different shoes to work...well, unfortunately that did. That incident (among many, many others) prompted my boyfriend to ask, hesitantly, "Um, you're not going to forget the baby somewhere, are you?" :-) Good times!

7
Shauna
May 06, 2013

Your belly is probably one of the cutest ones I've seen! Not that I'm surprised, but pregnancy suits you well!!

8
Shelley
May 06, 2013

Sometimes you just throw up! For no reason! I always told myself it just meant the baby is healthy. When he's born you can go back to your normal life of not throwing up!

Before I had children I liked to lie on my stomach under an umbrella and read in my yard. One day when I was five months pregnant with twins, I went outside to do just that ... when I realized there was no way I could lie on my stomach. What, did I forget I was pregnant?! It was funny. It still is. : )

21 flights? Amazing! I hope everyone you see is helping you with your luggage.

9
Laura B
May 06, 2013

I'm 32 weeks and had an awful first trimester (no one should vomit that much). In the las three weeks I've thrown up twice. It was very different than first semester vomiting. In the first trimester, I would feel awful all day and then finally at the end of the day, I would just be like screw it, I'm going to vomit. Third trimester vomiting for me is like you described. All the sudden its like, I'm going to vomit. Right. Now.

It still sucks, but not as much as first trimester. At least in my case.

PS: You look adorable!

10
michelle
May 07, 2013

I am so happy for you and i look forward every week to your update and post. You look so happy and adorable and i cant stand how stylish you still are, carrying the numbers that change every week.

Show us how you are decorating the bb's room!

11
Amy
May 07, 2013

Little fingers under the bathroom door - you can't hide, long nights in the rocking chair - their hair smells so sweet, kissing their boo-boo's, though nothing is really there, the fight to put a diaper on and then giving up on pants all together. Moments to look forward to, my son is almost two and I can't wait to see how this ride goes. Remember pregnancy is the path to the journey. =)

Sorry, getting nostalgic. Damn motherhood.

12
Michelle J
May 07, 2013

Despite all your recounts of vomiter, you make pregnancy look effortless and beautiful! However, I couldn't really stay connected past your first paragraph because I was all consumed with wondering how you hold your bladder while flying. I mean, speaking as a small bladder girl, the time between boarding and 10,000 feet is quite long. Is that a weird thing to wonder about a stranger? Probably.

13
AA
May 07, 2013

Yes, I did forget. I was about five months pregnant and not showing yet really (I'm 5'10" and thin, so I had a lot of available space) and I was riding my horse. He was a very well trained dependable horse. And i was just goingbto go at a nice walk. But I look back now and think I was kinda crazy. So, I'm just about to get off and call it a day when the ranch dog comes barreling around the corner chasing the ranch owners favorite rooster. I kicked my horse and took off after them yelling, got between the dog and the rooster and distracted the dog. All was well. Then I remembered I was pregnant and that could have gone a whole different way if the rooster had flown up into my horse's face or something. Falling off a horse pregnant is probably not a good thing. I remember thinking, " if you can't remember you are pregnant you better not ride." So I didn't. I sold the horse and my old pickup soon after. I've ridden maybe five times in the last fifteen years.

14
Lisa
May 08, 2013

I always seem to forget I am pregnant when I am trying to fit between narrow spaces! Going to the bathroom while half asleep I try to quietly slip through the half open door and whack my belly, I have almost tipped over a Starbucks umbrella by trying to squeeze past some cafe chairs and I accidentally scratch my belly a lot because I forget how much it pokes out now!! And although I am very careful when ordering food I find sometimes I will try a bit of someone else's meal without finding out what all the ingredients are first.

15
Angela
May 09, 2013

I forgot I was pregnant long enough to order a salad with deli meat on it, then get through half the salad before I remembered I couldn't have deli meat! I then freaked out for an hour or so while researching listeria symptoms, while my husband said, "You don't have listeria! Quit worrying about it, practically nobody ever gets it anyway!" Yes, he's helpful like that :-P That was about 6 weeks ago and I'm perfectly fine, but yeah, it happens!

16
Marcheline
May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day! 8-)

17
Freya
May 13, 2013

I started reading your blog a month or so ago and am really enjoying it! I'm 18 weeks pregnant so love following your progress several weeks ahead of mine. I did forget I was pregnant a few weeks ago and ordered a brie sandwich. Not until it was set in front of me did I think, "Oopsies...I'm pretty sure this is one of those forbidden cheeses" and then shrugged and ate it anyway. It was heavenly. Since then I've received a journal article from my midwife detailing research around how rare listeria is - that if you're concerned about cheese then you have to be concerned with spinach etc. etc. So I wouldn't worry about it. Also I think there's a real cultural bias here in North America (I'm in Canada): my friend asked her OB in Belgium about the soft cheese thing and got a quizzical look in response. Apparently pregnant Belgians go right on eating soft cheeses! Of course the risk is always there so if you are risk averse then it's worth it to avoid those things that might be contaminated.

18
Brooke Raymond
May 29, 2013

When I was pregnant I would constantly try to suck in to squeeze through/past things. Um, that doesn't really work.

19
Cathy
May 18, 2016

Now I feel studpi. That's cleared it up for me

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