Pregnancy and Weight

January 14, 2008

I so rarely post an entire article here, but I thought this was too valuable.  The article came from a site called www.EssentialBaby.com. When we are currently seeing images of women in skinny jeans showing no weight gain other than the bump that their baby is…or post-baby when they are back to their usual size in 3 weeks, I think it is inevitable that these expectations will leak into the general consciousness. It really is disheartening. Pregnancy is a lush time of learning to love and appreciate your body. I loved gaining weight with Birch. My father even accused me of walking around with my tummy pushed out so I looked bigger. It is hard to not worry about weight gain during pregnancy. No one wants to look "fat", but what is really so appealing about looking skinny during pregnancy either?

Is the pressure on to be thin during pregnancy?

pregnantonscalesTHERE’S
a time in every woman’s life when it’s OK to look fat. Now, I’m not
talking grossly overweight – just pleasingly plump and rounded, a bit
like a ripe and juicy peach.

When I was
pregnant with my two boys, I snatched this time greedily, surrendering
my girlier figure and celebrating my ever-expanding breasts and
Rubenesque curves. My gym membership on hold, I felt liberated at last
from the never-ending quest for the perfect body.

But now
everywhere I turn I see skinny – really skinny – pregnant women. For
these women pregnancy looks very much like the enemy – an invasive
force that threatens the one thing they treasure and revere most: their
skinny bodies.

Far from surrendering to the joy that is pregnancy
and motherhood, these women are determined to keep the fat at bay. You
often see them obsessively exercising in public places. At first you
can’t tell they’re pregnant as they run and pump, sweat, squeeze and
stretch. But then you notice the bump – a small, discreet curve
reluctantly protruding from the latest gym apparel.

The sight of
these women makes my heart cry: "Don’t you know your lives and bodies
are about to change irretrievably and that no amount of jumping and
pumping is going to change that?" Sure, it’s a great idea to exercise
and keep healthy while you’re pregnant, but these skinny women are
taking it too far. Why can’t they just accept the beauty within and
embrace this life-changing period?

Where once-pregnant women
obsessed about the impending birth and which colour to paint the
nursery, today’s very skinny pregnant women are consumed with how much
weight they’ve gained, strategically planning their postnatal
work-outs. With a competitive streak that surprises even their
partners, they boast about the fact they haven’t bought any maternity
clothes and that they’re still wearing that size six pair of designer
jeans.

pregnantfoodIt’s
not surprising, really, considering our size-zero dominated world,
where babies miraculously pop out during commercial breaks and
supermodel mothers squeeze back into their g-strings faster than an
emergency caesar.

Ordinary pregnant women don’t stand a chance – but
we shouldn’t give up. Pregnant women everywhere need to know that
womanly curves are natural and sexy. Remember those iconic sex symbols
of the past? I can’t think of a single stick insect among them. Surely
it’s time to savour the sweet pregnant moment and enjoy the fruits of
our labour – and who the hell gives a damn if we look a littler fatter
while we do it?

Author: Ellie Carew
Date: 02/07/2007
Source: SMH


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