“Comparison is the thief of joy“
- Thoedore Roosevelt
“Oh, how far along are you? Your belly is so big already!” I got asked the other day. Funnily enough, just 24h before another woman asked the same question “Oh, how far along are you? You’re belly is still so small”.
I know from my first pregnancy that something major happens to my personality during pregnancy. While being prone to do everything in order to create harmony in my normal state, I notice myself being heavily straight forward and much easier to aggravate when my system is flooded with pregnancy homrones. I don’t know exactly what it is, but I’m less absorbent and pretty much “in your face”.
Ahimsa turns into Satya with a good possibility to lack compassion.
So I sit there and let the comment slide down my ear canal and observe a wave of frustration arise. I answer in the most diplomatic way possible:
“ Oh you know I find it interesting how people perceive the same thing so differently, just yesterday a woman told me how small she found the belly for the this week…”. I thought I’d be content with the answer I gave and could let the whole story go and yet I found myself being super annoyed by it, remembering all the stories of me and my girlfriends being faced with comments like: “oh, your belly is so big, are you having twins?”
My inner yogi goes A): “Oh it’s just a reflection of myself not having let go of body issues 100% yet” And it goes B): “Oh it’s just a reflection of themselves, they might be out of tune with their bodies, and have little understanding/ comparison/ expertise to actually rate a size of a belly according to the week, lot’s of people don’t even know how long a pregnancy actually takes… let them be met with kindness and understanding, love heals it all”
My pregnant self goes: “You know what Ms. ‘I-have-a-degree-in-rating-woman-belly-sizes-according-to-the-week-they’re-in-and-a-general-permission-to-tell-them’? You can stick your pseudo-professional comment up your ass, because I’m not gonna take it!”
I remember writing in an old article about pregnancy the best tool to develop for a pregnant woman is to let things just flow through their system without attaching to them at all. As usual second pregnancies are as different as one can imagine and I feel my present reality is more like killing anybody with my chi bullets commenting or giving pseudo-professional advice while sitting next to you in a bus. Especially when the advices come from a place of arrogance or ignorance.
My husband is regularly heavily entertained by my new attitude, he smiles and tells me it would be smart to take some of this attitude with me into postpartum, it would do me very well in terms of humour and boundaries. And you know what, I think he’s right.
However, my gorgeous big bellied allies. I’d like to empower you to wear your babies’s house with pride. And just like some grown ups live in and are super happy in that tiny-house, others prefer villas with big gardens. I’m up to come to a general appreciation of this magic metamorphosis instead of going into comparison with each other or previous pregnancies. The present moment is so precious and the new soul coming forth forward has his or her own plans how fast, how big, when to go where…
I’d like to advocate for trust in life, to think twice about the need to check if you and your baby fit perfectly into the percentile of your specific mathematical position in time. While I think all of that is great for orientation… I wonder how we’d all feel if we’d just been accepted and appreciated “ok” the way we are?!
Ladies, I’m excited to hear your “belly size stories” and tools for resilience!!!