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This past weekend I had myself a breakdown moment – it wasn’t the first I have had since the stay-at-home orders were put into affect and it probably won’t be the last. But, as I was laying in my bedroom feeling sorry for myself for what was triggered by just sheer boredom, I started to think about what I was really upset about.
It’s more than just cancelled baby showers. I feel robbed. I feel like my experience with my first pregnancy has been taken right from me as if it were a thing laying in my car that a thief broke in to steal. COVID-19 stole my experience. I don’t think I am the only pregnant woman who is feeling this way.
Before being stuck to shelter at home I could definitely pass as not pregnant in public. But since then and since not being around people, I have passed by that awkward belly growth stage where someone might suspect you are pregnant, but it would be inappropriate to ask. Who knew that I would actually be sad to miss out on the chance to have strangers passing by me wondering if I was pregnant.
That’s right. I have now cried over the fact that I don’t get to just walk around in public flaunting my growing and beautiful belly. I was robbed of that.
Since I don’t have anywhere to be or anyone to see, I haven’t had the need to buy any maternity clothes. I have enough loungewear to support my growing body and that is all I need when quarantined. Is that a blessing? Maybe for my wallet. But, I have an entire private Pinterest board of adorable maternity outfits that I was so excited to buy and maybe I shouldn’t complain, but I was robbed of that too.
We are so excited to welcome a baby girl into our family and start our life as a family of 4 (can’t forget to count the pup), but I was eager to squeeze in as much as I could before our lives drastically change. I wanted to go to as many movies and restaurants as I could, I wanted to spend time with people WHILE pregnant. I wanted to be around people so they could touch my growing bump or just sit and chat about all the exciting motherhood things I have to look forward to. I wanted to travel home to Oklahoma to see my family one last time before I became a busy mom.
I wanted to order a mock tail while my girlfriends got real drinks. I wanted to soak in all the game nights with our friends without having to be quiet so we don’t wake the baby. I wanted to actually be able to take an in-person tour of the hospital I am suppose to deliver at. But guess what, I was robbed of that.
Speaking of hospitals, that leads me into all the medical things that have changed about our experience. When I go to my doctors office now, it is by myself. I wear a mask, as well as everyone around me, I get my temperature taken 3 times during one appointment and I have to do my ultra sounds alone. My husband isn’t allowed to come with me to check on his developing child. He isn’t allowed to hold my hand while we see her on that screen. He was robbed of that.
I have left every doctors appointment since this started and cried in my car for a few minutes before pulling myself together. Some of my doctors appointments are even virtual now and I have to take my own blood pressure, temperature and weight. We don’t have the opportunity to take in-person classes to prepare for the baby. Will our families be able to be at the hospital? Who knows. Probably not. They may be robbed of that.
Most days are good. Most days I am just excited and happy that we are all healthy (baby included) but other days I am venting on the phone to my mom or my husband catches me throwing myself a pity party in the bedroom.
I’ll admit that one advantage to being stuck at home is I have had a lot of time to online shop for nursery and baby things. Friends and family have even started getting us sweet gifts. But, sadly, I was robbed of quick shipping, even with amazon prime, because well, essential items are being made priority (as they should be during this time). But, that doesn’t mean I hate waiting 4+ weeks just to receive what is being sent to us. Makes us panic a bit and think that I need to start buying everything now just in case it won’t come in time.
People are paranoid to be around me and probably will be all the way until my due date. It’s as if I am the walking plague myself. I know that they just want me to be safe and healthy and are protecting me. But, I was robbed of human interaction. I know many people who are slowly starting to see friends and family as long as they have been social-distancing for a while, but sadly, the risk is too great for me.
I have been super blessed with a pretty good pregnancy, heck, I would go as far as to say I have really loved being pregnant. I have physically felt great and to not be able to just live life normally in this chapter of my story seems unfair. I was robbed of that.
So, it isn’t all about cancelled baby showers. While yes, it hurts to not be able to celebrate this exciting moment in my life surrounded by loved ones, that isn’t the only thing that has me mentally drained. (Although as a person who plans big life events for other people, it is hard to not have that for myself).
I feel like my baby deserved more than this. I know she isn’t here yet and she isn’t going to be changed by the fact that her mother didn’t have a shower or that her dad wasn’t at the doctors appointments, but I guess that I already have “mom guilt” creeping in that I haven’t been able to enjoy the simpler things of pregnancy – the things that most people probably used to take for granted. She was robbed of that.
I know that us pregnant woman are not alone in our grief of things taken from us during this time. I know that many people have also been robbed of very precious things, like a loved ones life, a wedding, a stable job, a vacation. The thief, Covid-19, has been busy robbing people of so many things. Sadly, you can’t arrest a pandemic and lock it up in jail and move on with life. No matter what struggle you are facing right now, your feelings of being robbed are valid.
I know we are blessed. Please don’t read this and think that I don’t know how extremely blessed I am. I am pregnant, while many woman struggle to conceive. I am healthy, while many people are sick. My baby is healthy, while others are facing terrifying circumstances. I have a great husband, a supportive family and I live in sunny Florida where the weather has been great. I know I am blessed.
But, I dreamt of this pregnancy and all the exciting new experiences I was going to have and I was robbed of that.
I won’t allow my joy for the future to be stolen though. Despite what is happening in the world, I am so joyful, excited, nervous and anxious to meet our baby girl and to hold her and raise her to be a beautiful human.