Week 8. Sturdy Joy.
Dang girl. You been lifting? Mitchell had meant to stop me as I walked past him. He’d put his hand around my arm in passing. But it stayed. And now he was holding onto my bicep. I knew what he was implying. I also knew he was joking around.
Mitchell let go and I put my own hand where his had been. Twenty something weeks ago my hand would have been able to fit almost all the way around, to encircle my upper arm. Now? Not even close. I was thicker. I am definitely thicker I thought.
Yeah. I know I said. I’ve put on some weight. I’m growing a person remember?
Luckily (and for his own good) he remembered too.
As many pregnant women do, I waver between feeling strong and feeling vulnerable. Feeling in control and feeling out of it. I feel beautiful. I feel blubbery. I feel lively. I feel like hiding away. I feel like Earth Mother Goddess. I feel like a walrus out of the water.
When I’m feeling most awkward and gross I remind myself that the extra weight is part of the process. I’m not just bigger, I’m stronger. My arms, my legs, my hips, my face. Everything is just a bit wider.
I think about how I am sturdier. More solid. I am thicker for a reason. I will need my body to back me up and lead me through my baby’s birth. To open and surrender and to be soft and stable all at once.
I think about how my body is capable and durable and secure. I plant my (wider) feet flat on the ground. I look down at my toes (yes I can still see them!). I feel myself anchored to the ground. I grow roots. And just for a moment I become a mighty oak tree. Or a maple. Or a rosewood. Sometimes I’m in the shower when I do this or when I’m standing at the kitchen sink or maybe while I’m walking down the sidewalk to pick Matilda up from school. Left foot, roots. Right foot, roots. I’m tied deep down into the earth. I belong here. I am ancient and well-made.
And that’s something walruses can’t do.
You know, because flippers.
Simple Joy pics from last week: