yesterday was one of those really weird days for me. someone tried to congratulate me in the hallway at church on “my pregnancy” and i found myself leaving early, trying my hardest to fight back a whole lotta stupid tears while i hoped no one could see what a mess i was on my way out.
why do people keep commenting on here and on instagram congratulating me on being pregnant or asking if i’m pregnant or trying to be the first person to discover that i’m pregnant?
i am not pregnant. i wish i was pregnant. but i am not pregnant.
if and when i’m pregnant again someday, i’m pretty sure i’ll share it. i mean, i blogged and over shared my way through something like that twice now and heaven knows i sure loved it. i really like being pregnant. and having babies. and being a mama. it’s not for everyone, but it’s for me. and i’m grateful i’ve had the chance twice now.
i like to share, but then again, i also like being private. that might sound strange coming from someone who shares quite a few bits and pieces of her life with the public, but there are things that are harder for me to open up and talk about, even with close family members. i am still growing and learning everyday. i struggle daily with many things. and there’s a whole list of stuff i just don’t feel comfortable chatting about in this space, at least not right now. there are many courageous women online who talk about these things daily, everything from infertility and miscarriages to birth stories and family planning/child spacing. i can’t tell you how much strength i have found through many of their stories and voices. for a while i thought maybe i’m just not brave, if i’m not willing to share everything i’m going through like other ladies choose to do. but i don’t think that anymore. any woman, who goes through any step of pregnancy, birth, miscarriage, infertility, childrearing, you name it, is brave. so brave. whether she shares her full story publicly or holds it quiet for herself or her small circle of loved ones instead. my stories and anyone’s stories of childbearing are just as real and beautiful and difficult and miraculous and sucky and life changing. even if they’re not shared here or publicly.
i’ve been learning through my own experiences over the years and also through this weird pregnancy rumor that kind of took on a life of its own lately, a great lesson about how i want to interact on and off the web with friends and loved ones and people around me. there have been plenty of times in my own life where i’ve been insensitive or haven’t had the best etiquette when interacting with other people. i want to be more sensitive and thoughtful, especially when it comes to topics like this. we don’t ever understand or know someone’s situation entirely, and i want to make sure i’m helping those around me feel good about themselves and their situation. we women have a great power within us to build each other up, but sometimes human nature gets in the way and we kind of tear each other down through gossip or politics or critique instead. i am trying to work harder to respect my fellow women and their accomplishments and trials, and i aspire to lift and love every day.
i just thought i might share this here, because i’ve struggled with the whole conversation around women’s bodies and are you pregnant or why aren’t you pregnant and it’s my own right to know the inner details of your ovaries conversations since i was first married, to be honest. i guess i’m just a little bit tired of it. i know sometimes people are genuinely curious and mean well with their speculations and when they try to congratulate, but sometimes these topics are a little bit sensitive, and they can really really hurt. i think these sorts of conversations can still happen, but there are kinder ways to go about them with friends or people online, without assuming you know what’s going on and jumping the gun to tell them so…
“ok sister, you look pregnant! show us that baby bump already.” how about no. how about i show you when i’m ready to show you and when there actually is a baby bump and in the meantime we stop making each other worry about if we look bigger or smaller or pregnant or 5 pounds heavier according to your opinion and be mindful that someone could be struggling with pregnancy or miscarriage and good grief an eating disorder and you aren’t helping her at all. can we just quit speculating altogether about each other?
it’s been a good reminder for me, and maybe this can serve as a good reminder for you. we’re all doing our best, we’re all struggling with something, and we all deserve a kinder and gentler interaction with one another. i don’t know, i just can’t let go of any of these thoughts today so thank you, blog, giving me a place to unload…
so nope, not pregnant. winter was just really delicious. ;) thanks to many of you for your kind encouragement and support. i’m grateful for so many of you. i really truly am. and for this place to share bits and pieces of my life as a woman and wife and mother in the city as i try my best to press on each day as well as i know how. have a wonderful monday, friends.