This week I reached the halfway point in my pregnancy. It was a bit overwhelming, with two children my family will officially be complete (we think) and the next chapter of our life will officially start. I will get to hold a new baby in my arms and go through all the same stages I did with Maddy. All that still feels like yesterday, even though Maddy is now 3 1/2 years old. Having children really makes you realize just how fast time goes by.
This pregnancy was much different than the last. Sure, I was blessed with the same 24/7 sickness that I felt with my first pregnancy for 17 or so weeks. Then once I hit week 15, things took another unpleasant twist and I started experiencing uncontrollably hunger. I have never in my life felt something so horrible, every other hour I was sick to my stomach with hunger, nearly keeping an entire drawer in my office full of snacks just so I could make it through the work day.
Though I have stayed pretty consistent with my running throughout, in a period of four weeks I gained almost 8 pounds. I felt out of control. Normally, I try to gain every ounce of the weight recommended by my doctor, but I've never had a problem of gaining too much. I was over eating because I was hungry all the time and I knew it, my doctor new it.
I started making better choices. I eliminated most of the junk and started snacking on large amounts of fruit. I brought an apple, grapefruit and orange with me everyday and when I started to get sick with hunger, I would start eating the fruit. Eventually my weight stabilized and my hunger subsided. I started feeling better.
It was during this time that I had a "moment" with Maddy that changed my entire outlook on my pregnant body. I was standing in the bedroom one morning half dressed, my belly completely exposed. I was frustrated because nothing was fitting the way I wanted and I couldn't find anything to wear to work.
Maddy was standing there watching my every move. Finally, after a few minutes of silence she jumped over to me and wrapped her arms around my expanding waist and said, "Mommy, I can't WAIT to be a grown up like you so my belly and boobies and get big just like yours!" At three years old, she is nothing but brutally honest and completely innocent. I nearly teared up by the comment...it made me laugh and it made me cry. How could I stand here and HATE the way I looked when my daughter was standing there admiring me and idolizing me and my new body? She was fascinated by how quickly my body was changing.
And then I started to wonder...how can I continue to make her feel that way?
I spent the first two years of my college career struggling with body image, I logged my daily intake and limited the number of calories I ate. I believed that all the successful female college runners did this way, and now I believe it all came down to a lack of self confidence and loads of insecurities. Eventually my perceptions changed, but still, I don't want my daughter to ever go through what I did. I never want her to feel insecure about her looks, body, or her abilities. I am not sure if I can even control these things but my actions and comments about my own looks, body, etc. must not feed her insecurities. I need to ensure that I am a good example for my children.
In other news, we recently discovered that we are having a boy! I sure hope he likes purple because that is what Maddy said we MUST paint his room. I'm not sure I can bribe her with ice cream to change her mind on this one!