31 Weeks, Being Felt Up by a Stranger, and the Case of the Disappearing "Friends"

Monday, September 12, 2011

Here we are at 31 1/2 weeks. We have about eight weeks until d-day. Less than two months. Cue hysterics.

This morning, I had my first belly rub from a stranger. I'm at the gym, wearing my gross "All Sweat, No Regret" t-shirt complete with pit stains (which is SATURATED with sweat BTW) and plugging away on the StairMaster while listening to Girl Talk (best gym music hands down = ALL DAY), when one of the morning gym geriatrics materializes beside me. I pull my headphones out.

"When are you due?" she asks, while rubbing my sweaty, swollen belly.

I was so taken aback I didn't realize until afterward that I had been violated. "Uhhh, early November..." I stammered.

"He's gonna come out running!" she announced, chuckled at her little joke and shuffled off to the bathroom.

So, so weird. I'm not a big touchy-feely person anyway, and to have my stomach felt up BY A STRANGER, WHILE WORKING OUT first thing in the morning is right up there with the oddest experiences I've encountered. I really don't mind friends and family getting all up in my business but old women who I've never said hi to before? It's a bit personal, yanno?

Running is starting to get harder, due to the baby growing and taking up some of the space that used to be occupied by my lungs. I get winded more easily and have to slow down the pace a bit so I have been running between 9:40-9:30 for the most part (I normally like to stay under a 9-minute mile for 45 minutes or longer). But that's OK! I'm happy I'm still feeling well enough to stay active, so slowing down a bit doesn't bother me at all. I've started doing Pilates once a week in addition to going to the gym for cardio and weights, and I don't hate it. It makes me feel stretchy and flexible. The weather has been beautiful as well, so we've had lots of after-dinner walks with the dog, a nice way to wind down at the end of the day.

The baby's active all the time. It actually surprises me how much he or she moves around and how strong they're getting. It gets the hiccups a lot and responds to things like hot or cold drinks, music and bright lights.

On a slightly more emo note, I feel like a lot of my friends have pretty much disappeared lately.

I know that reproduction is not everyone's cup of tea. I understand and I have felt the same way. However, what I've come to realize is this - if you have a friend who is pregnant, here's some advice: she needs your friendship right now. Now is not the time to ditch her. She already feels like a cumbersome whale. She knows she's a drag because she can't drink or frolic or stay up past 9:00 p.m. She's also legitimately afraid that when the baby comes she's going to be completely isolated and will spend the next five years sitting in her house staring at her child and forgetting to get dressed or how to have adult conversations.

It's just a drag, going through all this stuff and having no one to vent and share it with other than your husband, your mom, and the handful of people who stay in touch.

And not only that - I feel like I'm totally out of the loop with what's going on with other people. There's this weird misconception that when you get knocked up you can only think and talk about your baby. This is not the case. I might not be able to drink and swing from the rafters but I can still do a lot of things: talk, listen, eat dinner, go for coffee, go for a walk, go to a movie, go shopping...pretty much everything except drinking and swinging from the rafters. I try to be careful not to go on and on about the baby (contrary to how it may look from reading this blog) because I don't want to freak people out with baby talk 24/7. I usually don't bring it up until I'm asked.

So yes...the case of the disappearing friends has been a bit sads-inducing.


Eight and a half weeks to go. Woot woot, etc.


Edit - Sooo I just re-read this post and realized I sound quite like a pathetic whiner. I'm sorry! I can blame hormones, right? And prego brain and stress? 

Also, it should be noted that most of my friends - a huge vast majority - are lovely. It's also a crazy busy time for everybody, myself included, so I should just relax and not worry and not take things personally and feel secure in knowing I won't be abandoned in my house after November. 

Right? Right. 

I'm glad we had this little chat. Blogging = cheaper than therapy and less harmful to the baby than drinking. 

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  1. Aww, Amy. You're a lovely girl and I'm sorry that your 'friends' aren't there for you.. Not cool at all.

    I guess sometimes, even though it sucks, this is a test of how good of friends they really are.

    Personally, I love being an 'auntie' to my friends' little ones. A couple of my oldest friends have children that are 7 and 8, a couple friends are new parents, and I loved being involved and hearing about all the ins and outs of how they're feeling, and being there for them when they need a little break. I also discovered my love of fries and tartar sauce from my friend during her craving period. haha.

    I'm glad you're feeling great and hope everything keeps on sailing smooth.. and that your 'friends' smarten up. They're missing out.

  2. Strange to read what you wrote...I had a friendship end a few months ago because I don't want kids and she felt that I would ditch her once she got pregnant. It was really difficult for this friendship to end as I was just waiting for her to get pregnant so I could plan her baby shower etc. I think if you're feeling like you're being ditched then you should talk to that person about it rather then holding it in. She might be thinking you don't want to hang out with her because she's not pregnant etc.

  3. Kathy - thank you! Yep, everything has been going well so far so I hope it continues. I should also stress that not all my friends have gone MIA - many have continued being awesome and I know it's a busy time of year for everybody, myself included! But there are a few who are impossible to track down, and I've heard their thoughts on people with kids in general before, and I know I'm now lumped into that category and probably won't be seeing much of them. I just re-read my post and realized I sound pretty whiny. I guess I'm really worried about after baby arrives and becoming a total recluse!

    Shel - I might try talking to these people...it's a weird, awkward topic to bring up. It would be awesome if friendships didn't have to change based on people going through different stages. I remember it was kind of the same when we got married - for a while it was as though people steered clear assuming we wanted to sit home and just be married, I guess! It passed - hopefully this does too. I'm worried it'll be worse once the baby is here and this is just a hint of things to come.

  4. Sorry to hear that you are feeling a little abandoned by your friends :(
    I kinda feel like once people get married a lot of the time they want to hang out with other married people, and once they have kids suddenly they are only hanging out with people with kids! It was interesting to hear the other side.

  5. Amy, you look beautiful! You are the perfect picture of a happy, healthy pregnant girl!

    I'm sorry to hear what you're saying about your friends. I know where you're coming from though -- I have a few friends who I rarely see now because they assume that I'm too busy with the baby to do anything else, which is obviously not true. The silver lining is that your very best friends are the ones who stick around, are by your side through pregnancy and birth, and will love your baby as much as you do. Those are the keepers.

    Getting in touch with other local mums is great, too ... save your adult talk for your baby-less friends, and gab about kids with other gals who have kids.

  6. I know how you feel, my friends did that a bit too when I was preggars and many have completely done that since we emigrated here. Its amazing, once your life changes to be out of the groove they are in, many people are unable to continue the friendship. I think its selfish personally

  7. I remember your hanging from the rafter days (don't we have actual pictures of us hanging from rafters??).

    I wish I was closer! We'd be out walking the dogs...ooohh and shopping (I miss shopping!). I would love to do all of those low key things with you. Then when we wanted a good night out, I'd pay Peter to babysit!

  8. Haha, Amy, you don't sound whiny at all. :) I am sure you have amazing friends, and you didn't make it sound like that, don't worry. <3 But I hope the ones who haven't been around start checking in!

  9. You look gorgeous and I love reading your blog!

    I am not at the place yet in my life where I am ready to have kids (that place is still off in the far...far future) however, if a friend was to get pregnant I would be thrilled for her and would try to be a part of it. I agree with Shel about talking to them about it.

    Hope it all works out!

  10. Amy - you don't sound whiny! It's ok to feel the way you're feeling!

  11. I hope things get better with your friends! I was the second one in our "group" to have a baby so I knew I had one other person I could relate to. Now we hang out with each other (and have playdates for our boys) while everyone else does their "hanging from the rafters" thing!

    My belly used to get rubbed in the elevator at work ALL THE TIME - it gave me the heebie jeebies.

  12. Just discovered your blog, and LOVE it! Have already read the entire pregnancy archive, and can't wait to read about the big arrival!

  13. Tell all your friends you have a baby blog where you dump all of your baby related talk. Maybe that will get them to come back? I don't know. I'm on the other end of this problem. I have too many kids (it's only 3, but when your friends have 1 or none, it's too many). No one likes the chick with too many kids. Hoo hum. Fortunately, I don't have time for friends that don't exist online or who are offended if our only contact in 3 months can be via text. Totally blame pregnancy hormones. My youngest is three and I still do it.