Friday, April 8, 2011

Prego or Fat?: The Eternal Question of a Mama-To-Be

There comes a time in every mama's pregnancy when she starts to get bloated around the middle. And then that puffiness turns into a potbelly, and only around 5-6 months along does it become obvious that you are prego with a serious basketball glued to your belly, instead of just fat. But during the in between time of flat belly and basketball, most pregos choose their clothing options very carefully. For me, I would wear clothes that made it obvious I was prego - empire waists, ruched sides. However, I've seen pregos that also go the opposite route, wearing clothes that are loose and flowy because they think they don't look "prego enough" and don't want people to think they are just packing on the pounds. Every time before we go out, I turn to the side and ask my husband: "So do I look fat or prego?" He's smart enough to reply "prego" with the quickness as not to appear to be thinking about his response at all.

The same goes for when you aren't prego anymore... God forbid some fool asks if you are expecting when you definitely are not. As soon as Miss Paige popped out, the Spanx came out in full effect, along with belted tops and anything to define my waist again. I did not want anyone thinking I was still prego in any way shape or form.

Which brings me to a moment in time I try not to think about... the time when someone asked me when I was due (as in when my baby was due) when I was not prego. GASP! At the time I wasn't too devastated - mainly because of the circumstances surrounding the question - but it scarred me enough to make sure the delineation of Prego/Not Prego is clearly defined by my wardrobe.

Let me take you back - way back - to 2007. I was a spry 23 year old, planning a carefree vacay in Vegas with my boyfriend (now husband). If you remember back to 2007, the big trend in fashion was empire-waist shirts and dresses for everyone. And, being 23 and trendy, I had to jump on the empire-waist bandwagon. One fateful day before we headed out to Vegas, Daniel and I popped into Old Navy to pick up a few new outfits for our trip (obviously before mortgage payments, car payments and a baby to clothe and feed). I distinctly remember the moment when I picked up an adorable gray dress that I just had to have - empire-waist of course. I also clearly remember Daniel saying that he thought it was nice, but kind of looked like something a pregnant woman would wear... to which I said, "WHATEVER!" and went straight to the register. Fast forward one week... we're in Vegas, at the Blackjack table. I'm in my gray dress, sipping a Screwdriver or Mimosa or something that could easily be mistaken for straight orange juice. After a while, we became friendly with the dealer, and began chatting. After a few minutes of casual conversation, Mr. Blackjack looked at me and said, "So when are you due?" It was like a record screeched, as I stared back at him, in shock. He immediately knew he had made a mistake, and began stammering, "I am sooo sorry... your dress... it looks like something my wife had when she was pregnant... and you were drinking orange juice... and....and..." Daniel and I burst out laughing. I honestly wasn't upset or embarrassed at all - probably because I knew my stomach was flat, I was at a thin point in my life, and I would have assumed the same thing if I were him. The dress was indeed super-maternity looking. And what brings up this memory today? I am wearing the dress - while 7 months prego. Ends up it really is the perfect maternity dress, after all : )

Me, in Vegas, wearing the infamous gray dress. Note my look of fear/disgust in having to pose in front of Star Trek characters.