This Is Not A Pregnancy Blog

(WARNING: Hormonal Venting)

Dear Reader,

I solemnly promise that this blog will not turn into an extended discourse on all things ultrasound, weight gain, back pain, leaking boobs, and pelvic pressure. Mostly because the mention of at least two of those phrases will get me a creepy heaping of undesirable Google hits. (Can I tell you that at least once a week someone finds my blog by typing in the search term “wife underwear penguin shotgun”? It’s a scary world out there. Really. Lock up your kids.)

However, I will probably mention the fact of my gestating from time to time, and even occasionally devote an entire entry to my swollen feet. Please feel free to read along or to skip these entries. I’ll be none the wiser if you decide to instead spend the day at www.WivesinUnderwearShootingPenguins.com

That said….

10 Things To Never Say To A Pregnant Woman

(Or, more accurately, 10 things to never say to me when I’m pregnant. I'm sure most pregnant women have a better sense of humor than I do. Currently.)


Maybe this time you'll finally get a boy.


I have two daughters. I really like my two daughters. It wouldn’t be hyperbole to say that I am incredibly fond of my two daughters. If I had ten more like them, I’d need to buy Prozac - and tampons - in the handy-dandy economy barrel, but I’d be happy to have ten more daughters. Girls are fantastic. None of that annoying peeing on toilet seats or knocking-up teenage cheerleaders that so many moms of boys have to put up with. However, if I am blessed with a son, I will consider myself, well…blessed. I won’t be thinking, “Finally! Someone who won’t throw like a girl or take the last tampon!” I will think “Oh how blessed I am! A baby! Welcome to the world, little Jennifer!” Because my husband and I stink at coming up with boy names.


Are You Pregnant?!

I don’t know why, but even now that I am obviously with calf, this question just brings out the snark in me. And I never use the word “snark”. But to have a little fun, I always look aghast and first answer, “What do you mean, pregnant?!” I love to see the blood drain from a person’s face. Why should I be the only one feeling faint all the time?


Are You Going To Breastfeed?


This is even worse when someone well-meaningly (but I doubt it) phrases the question as a non-question: “I hope you’re going to breastfeed.”

Did you know that when I was pregnant with my first daughter, I was attending the wake of a dearly departed relative, and some Uncle Vinny from New Jersey (who I had never met before, by the way) cornered me near the mint tray and asked point blank what my milk production and delivery intentions were? “So, you gonna breastfeed this kid, or what? Cuz if you don’t breastfeed, he’ll resent ya ferevah.” There’s just no good answer to this question that doesn’t follow-up with an approving nod or a disapproving shoulder-tightening. And I’m not even talking about the lectures that follow if you say you aren‘t going to breastfeed. Oy. The lectures. From both sides. How to breastfeed, how not to breastfeed, how often to breastfeed, how long to breastfed. If you plan to breastfeed and the person asking is a mom who didn’t breastfeed, you possibly risk stirring-up the non-breastfeeding mom’s (erroneous, I say) feelings of feminine inadequacy, or her anger over her husband's not wanting her to breastfeed so that he could have his twin-fatty-deposit playground back sooner, or her frustration with the La Leche friend who gift-wrapped a stack of nursing pads with "Formula is for Losers" pamphlets, and then the poor woman feels the need to explain herself, and sister, I swear, however you feed your child, it’s all good to me. By a year old, they are all eating Pez and drinking Kool-aid, so what’s the difference. Go worry about, I don’t know…Bin Laden. Where is that guy, anyway?

Yeah, yeah, and I know the differences between breastfeeding and bottle feeding and formula feeding and putting rice cereal in the bottle, etc., etc., etc., ad infinitum. It’s just not worth screwing with someone’s head. That’s what pregnancy books are for.

So don’t ask me about breastfeeding. If my boobs and milk production were up for discussion, believe me, I’d rent a billboard over I-83 with a picture of me wearing nothing but my black-and-white spotted cowhide underwear. (That’s good for another 1,000 Google hits.)

By the way, I told Uncle Vinny that I was only going to breastfeed if it was a boy, because I was raisin’ me a tit man. He seemed satisfied with that.


No really, are you going to breastfeed?

Really. Shut up.


Wow! You’re really showing now!

Not technically a question, but okay…what is my response to that? And did you think about just how many times a day someone says this to a pregnant woman? It’s like at the bookstore when a book doesn’t scan on the register after the first, second, third swipe, and Mr. Don Rickles thinks it’s a real original gas to say, “Hey! I guess it’s free! Wink, wink, can I get a Ba-dum-bum, thank you, I’ll be here all week."

I’ve heard it. And all I can do is smile and nod and say, “Gee whiz. That’s a gas.” Because saying anything else will get me fired and/or stricken from my mother’s will. So yeah, I know, I’m really showing now. However, there’s more to me than my expanding uterus. Say? How about that Bin Laden guy?


Can I Touch Your Stomach?

Are you
a) my first or second daughter
b) my fetus
c) my midwife
d) my husband
e) George Clooney
f) none of the above

If you’ve answered f), then no, you probably can’t touch my stomach. I mean, you can, but you may not. But thanks for asking.

Truthfully, I will often let someone other than George Clooney touch my stomach if he or she promises not to ask every time they see me. Or if they promise to give me their plate of chocolate cheesecake.

But an absolute stranger or anyone who continually adjusts their crotch?

Uhhhhmmmmm…no.

But again, thanks for asking. I mean it.


Whoa! You look a lot bigger than just five months!

What exact data are you basing this upon? Are you basing it on the fact that pre-pregnancy I weighed about as much as a wet, anxiety-prone greyhound (and not the bus type) and so putting even an 8 ounce body plus a helping of amniotic fluid inside my gut means that my intestines and other digestive organs have nowhere else to go but up and out? Did you know that I moseyed up and down the pregnancy hill twice before and currently have no abdominal muscles to speak of, nor did I have the money for Angeline Jolie’s personal trainer in the interim? Are you looking for a slap?


Then why is your butt so big?


Okay…touché, mon ami. And right back attchya.


You’re STILL pregnant?


Really. Shut up.


And finally….


What are you going to name the baby?

Atticus Finch if it’s a girl. Che if it’s a boy.

*********************************************************

Thank you for wading through my grouchiness. I promise you, not all pregnant women are this jumpy. Honestly, I realize what a miracle and blessing and stroke of good luck it is to be pregnant, and I am very much excited and awestruck and head-over-heels that I am going to be a mommy again (which, okay, I’m already a mommy, but I’ll let this one slide…until sometime in July when I’m bloated and even more miserable in the 99% humidity). Truly, I love this little lima bean already.

I promise to be nothing but sunbeams and hollyhocks from here on out.

Now pass the goddamn chocolate cheesecake.


P.S. I do love La Leche. I just remember a particularly strident La Leche leader in Philadelphia who steered me in 25 wrong directions and beat me about the head with a copy of "The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding" just when I was feeling like an absolute failure at the whole Mother Earth thing. I've always wanted to tweak her nose a bit. Other than that, love La Leche.

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

Oh, my I am guilty!! I ask questions like that all the time.
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAh.

Ok, what do you as a universal pregnant woman wanna hear?
What is a good question...no offensive question?...or just no questions? (so sad...)
Zu from GA

Jozet said...

You know...as I was typing this, I was thinking the same thing. I ask the same questions. I just forgot until now how many times a day a preggo gets asked.

Honestly, you can ask anything. It's all in the delivery (and holding a piece of chocolate cheesecake never hurts.) "How's your day? Can I rub your feet?" is usually safe, as is "Let me know if you're in the mood to talk pregnancy. And I'm willing to hear the cranky stuff" will always win you a pregnant friend.

I would, though, be wary of asking "Are you pregnant" unless you actually see the woman holding a dead rabbit. A lot of non-pregnant women get asked this and it can stink for everyone if a) she's just fallen off her diet or b) she's just had a baby and hasn't gotten rid of the tummy bulge a la Brittney Spears.

Also, the "Are you STILL pregnant" is especially dangerous around month 10 when the pregnant woman wants nothing more than to be delivered of the large object pressing down on her cervix.

Other than that, go for it. I'm just especially cranky today. But really, the chocolate cheesecake is a good opener.

Momma Star said...

I hated the name questions, to the point that I threatened the first was going to be Jack Daniels or Tequila Margarita.

"Can I get you a milkshake?" was always a safe question.

Cuz E said...

It is amazing even to me that: I only see my pregnant wife about 1 hour each day (awake that is) and yet still in that one hour, I only may say 2 to 4 paragrahs (she is my wife after all, were you expecting more) and yet I still manage to hit most points on your list and new ones--daily.

kaliroz said...

I especially disliked hearing "You're getting big, aren't you?"

No, not at all.

And, Jozet, I'll rub your feet anytime.

Dexter said...

Apparently, chocolate cheesecake is a currency of majestic power.
I shall employ it soon to achieve my sordid schemes.
Mwha-haw, haw, haw hawwww!

Jozet said...

Ya'll can rub my feet anyday.

An. Y. Day.

Uhhhh...Dexter?

What's up with the underwear photo on *your* blog? It looks like something from "Lolita: The Illustrated Copy". You naughty, naughty man!

Julie Pippert said...

Josette, my little dripping wet greyhound sugarplum...may I ask? Are you pregnant? Still? Have you gained any weight? Are you taking prenatals? Are you doing medicated or NATURAL childbirth? Are you planning the birth or just letting it happen? Was it planned? Are you trying for a boy? Is this it for you?

Oh...is this NONE OF MY BEESWAX?

Look on the upside: train them right now and maybe, upon birthing the baby, you will miss what I got, "Oh, another girl? Well that's okay! Better luck next tme!"

So says one who is guilty within the last week of asking a PG woman (not you) the following offenders:

1. is the nursery finished?

2. will you nurse? (innocent, I swear, I was handing off all my maternity, nursing and baby stuff...I'd leave out the nursing crap if she didn't need it)

3. med or nonmed?

And I'm quite sure...there were more...and I'm positive I grossly ignored her DH, other than to slap him down for using "we" once. Hee hee hee <-- insert Janice-style bullet evil laugh here.

I'll be saving up all my good comments (insert eyebrow waggle here) for this summer. My road trip keeps getting more and more elaborate. Now I'm touring all of your fair state from west to east, plus NY and if I get my way, back to MA where I may never leave again. Actually, it's more like I'm being held hostage in the touring vehicle while I hear my bank account depleting itself, as it is wont to do. ;)

Puffin said...

As a father to be I heard those questions and they got on my nerves. OH and I HATED when someone would ask to touch my wife’s belly. She hated it too, but didn’t have the heart to tell people no, so I started butting right in and saying, “Only if I can touch yours.” That one used to bug the crap out of me!

I love my girls too. They are great.

And there was one account with our second one (and my wife got mad at me for this one), but this dude she worked with started giving her pointers about breast feeding. It bent me out of shape because she knows what she’s doing. She did it with our first. So I mouthed right off, “Hey Cliff, you know this because you have pre-sex change experience?” Maybe I’m an a-hole, but either way, I still didn’t like it.

nadzent said...

Jozet - I hear ya' sister! Just this week at work I got...

You have a bump!
You're starting to show!
You look Sick.
I never noticed you had so much grey hair (indirectly related to being pg since i haven't colored it since december)
You are HUGE (husband)
Wow, you really look pregnant
I know you're pregnant but you look like you're getting thineer (I have mixed feelings about this one)
That shirt makes you look pregnant (DUH!)
and others that I have not patience to recall at the moment.

Hang in there. When we see each other we can rubs each others feet!

Om.powered said...

Well, I will tell you one thing: I am like a magnet for a pregnant belly if it's a belly I happen to love. I'd be rubbin' that little belly like I was Aladdin and you were a walkin' talkin' magic lamp lovey.

I just can't helps meself.

And you're pregnant? How did that happen? :D

xoxo

The Machettas said...

I have two girls, 8 and 3 (I too am a fertile myrtle and can get pregnant by merely looking at a penis) and I finally got an IUD. Love it. Hope it doesn't come out on daughter No. 3's head. Yeah I'd have ten of 'em too if they didn't suck up my will to live. This kills me -- my 8-year-old thinks I'm sooooo embarassing yet never misses the opportunity to tell a crowd of our friends how mommy crapped her pants at Home Depot when she was pregnant with little sissy. Ahhhhhh, preggers. I think I'm going to go fix myself a heaping bowl of cottage cheese with tobasco for old time's sake.

rachnkids said...

Amen sistah!

How about "You're pregnant again?! You do know how that works, right?" Or "Oh My God. Three kids. You're braver than I am!" (yeah, well this one wasn't exactly my idea, if you know what I mean...). And towards the end, it got really annoying to be asked 50 times a day "how are you doing?", especially since I was pretty sure the asker didn't really want to hear about the pain in my ass and how the bean was bouncing up and down on my cervix and how I wet my pants when I coughed just now.

(((hugs))) I'll bet you look faboo. Especially in all those stylish maternity clothes ;o)

Oh, and Dexter... the chocolate cheesecake only works on pregnant women. And PMSing women.

Suburban Meteorite said...

I don't really have anything to say, you know (holding hand over mouth, just in case). Just wavin' at you and your bean. :)

Mom101 said...

Whaddyatalkinabout "no sense of humor?" Hell woman, my pregnancy writing was more like we can't wai to meet you little girl and to love you because you will be loved because we love you and will meet you soon.

If George Clooney touched your stomach I would be too jealous to ever come back here again.

Kristen said...

AHAHAAHAHAHA. Those are awesome. Are you still pregnant. People ask the craziest crap of preggos and no one else.

I love the shirts that say "No I'm not Buddha - get the f away from my belly"

Belinda said...

The biggest prenatal sin my hsuband committed along these lines was calling me "Pumpkin" when I wore an orange maternity shirt.

But he made up for it when he began answering the name question (everyone knew it was a girl) with a dead-serious, proud-looking expression and the name, "Trixie Boom-Boom."

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