My husband and I just moved to a new state with our 21-month-old little girl. He’s beginning his pediatric residency at a local hospital, and I’m spending most of my time begging my toddler to “go play” while I hover over the toilet throwing up anything somewhat enjoyable.
I’m 19 weeks pregnant, but I’m not showing enough for it to be as obvious as I’d like. I still feel like a cube, and my extra large t-shirts don’t help much.
I took our daughter to a cute little coffee shop this morning with an indoor playground. I was so excited about it, but all she wanted to do was sit in my lap and rummage through the diaper bag. If she’s holding a toy and another child comes near, she literally drops the toy and runs. She’s the sweetest little thing and will wave to anyone, but she’s still (very) timid around other little people, and it has me feeling pretty defeated in situations like this one.
On top of wishing my child would join the others on the slide, I was going through scenarios in my head that would allow me to sneak “I’m pregnant” into a conversation with one of the other moms…to clarify THAT’S why I look like this today.
If it weren’t for social media, that’s an inward battle I’d be fighting a lot more lately. Today, all we have to do is post our announcement on Facebook and/or Instagram, and all of the sudden, everyone knows.
It blows my mind that these announcements we put so much energy into haven’t been a “thing” for long at all. What in the world did people DO before social media? Just look forward to the birth of their child? Wow.
Because I work in social media, I am able to see its irony, its huge downfalls and big benefits on a daily basis. When it comes to this topic, social media can be a shining light and provide a community of comfort for those experiencing infertility or loss. I experienced this first-hand after sharing a blog post on miscarriage at the beginning of this year. It was the therapy I didn’t know I needed at the time, and I was incredibly grateful for every single stranger, acquaintance and friend that took the time to ensure I never felt alone.
On a lighter note, I started to make a list of the things commonly shared on social media throughout pregnancies today:
- Announcement: Usually around 12 weeks, shot by a professional photographer (if it’s your first child), must be clever and include a letter board and/or sonogram.
- Gender reveal party: Now happening even earlier because of blood tests. Would these exist without social media? I highly doubt it.
- “Your baby is now the size of an avocado” (because everyone needs to know this)
- Glamorous pictures from your babymoon
- 3D ultrasound images (“He has my nose!!!”)
- Nursery reveal
- Birth announcement (and then a new picture every day that follows…for the rest of your child’s life)
It’s all fun, but it’s also exhausting. As stereotypical of a topic as it is, we inevitably find ourselves caught up in comparisons.
She looks like THAT at 30 weeks? Meanwhile, my BACK looks pregnant.
Their nursery is so beautiful. Ours is full of hand-me-downs, but it’s all we can afford.
My sonogram didn’t look like that. Is something wrong?
Is this announcement too unoriginal?
HOW IS SHE AT THE GYM?!
It’s tough to avoid thoughts like this in our world today. It’s also not wrong to admit you have them. It’s also okay if you don’t. It’s okay if you overshare, and it’s okay if you rarely grace the internet with your presence.
Not enjoying every second or wanting to share your milestones is okay. Pregnancy is amazing. It’s hard. Some people enjoy it. Others simply see it as a necessary evil when it comes to growing a family.
Still, love it or hate it, someone always has something to share. And despite my own insecurities or struggles on any particular day, I find myself clicking “like” just to let people know I’m happy for them. Because, at the end of the day…bringing a baby into the world is a pretty freakin’ cool thing to do.
So, where do you stand? Do you share it all? Do you love our new modern-day traditions, or are you burnt out and exhausted by the whole thing? I’d love to know!