Eager to avoid pissing off an expecting mother in May? Do not insinuate she isn’t a mother yet or hint that this Mother’s Day doesn’t count because she hasn’t yet cradled her baby in her arms, changed a dirty diaper, suffered sleepless nights, or some other version of such nonsense. Her life is no longer the same and never will be. Here’s why:
- Anything “fun” and “delicious” is pretty much verboten – Ahem, I mean, always putting the baby’s best interests first with everything from making healthy food choices, and avoiding potential hazardous ones, stopping smoking and drinking and excessive caffeine intake, declining the latest bungee jumping invite, increasing sleep, and downing the right dosage of vitamins.
- Protective instincts – They turned this quiet woman into a momma bear who shouts on the subway to stop people from shoving and will shove right back when you encroach on the belly’s vicinity.
- Her heart is already bursting with love and breaking with set-backs or complications.
- Did I mention pregnant women can’t consume alcohol? I did? Right. I can’t remember anything anymore. And I’m sorry, were you sipping a beer when you suggested I wasn’t a mother yet? You’re lucky the bottle didn’t get shoved somewhere so special that you might look at women who’ve given birth differently.
- The worry – I can’t even… I have never, ever been more petrified in my entire life, and I assume this continues throughout motherhood. Good times.
- The guilt – It begins immediately and is ceaseless. What about that bottle of wine I drank one night before the positive pregnancy test? Should I have eaten more protein yesterday? Did I eat enough foods with calcium today? Could I have harmed the baby when I only ate peanut butter and crackers for a week when the morning sickness threatened to topple me? Should I be listening to more classical music? Should I switch to organic food? Should I stop wearing chemical-laden deodorant? It’s a never ending stream of guilt-consciousness. And it’s no fun at all.
- No sushi, brie, rare steak, dippy eggs, or goats cheese. I can’t eat anything I like anymore. And I have to eat vegetables other than broccoli? Brutal.
- Crushing fatigue from lack of sleep. I’m sorry, did you just say something about how I shouldn’t be celebrating Mother’s Day? I might have dozed off for a second.
- Time – There is already so much less of it with the increased sleep requirements, determining a birthing plan, decorating the nursery, fiddling with breast pumps and researching sleep schedules, doctor’s appointments, ultrasounds, the required napping to remain functional, the decisions that need to be pondered, and the hours spent worrying.
- Body changes – Raging hormones, swollen parts, bleeding gums, chafing, leg cramps that must be a part of nature’s plan to introduce pain in preparation for childbirth, breasts that now defy gravity, and an extending belly that wreaks havoc on each and every organ in the body. Should I go on?
So if you’re eager to avoid the wrath of a hormonal, irrational, crazy pregnant woman, tread carefully this May. You never know which moms-to-be have spent the last decade of Mother’s Days drowning in a bottle of vodka and have spent thousands of dollars to obtain their positive pregnancy test. You may not be aware of any heartbreaking losses she has had in the past before this glorious time. And you may not know how happy or worried she is about the life changes she’s about to embark on. So give her a break, and allow her this day to bask in the glory of motherhood before she’s forced to celebrate it by dealing with diaper explosions, mountains of laundry, and food whipped in her face or on the floor. Just acknowledge that she’s a mother already. Because she damn well is.
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