bumpaholic? i don't think so...
I am terrible about telling people I'm pregnant. I like to claim the standard line that we wait until after the first three months, just to make sure the baby is healthy and growing. Really I am just trying to wrap my brain around all that lies ahead of me. Weight gain, stretch marks, aches and pains, itchy skin and waddling are all aspects of the pregnancy I do not anticipate eagerly. After the baby arrives, soreness, bleeding, engorgement, sleepless nights and extra weight accompany the joy and sweet smells of the new little one. Of course I am happy to discover I am pregnant, I just can't separate in my mind the positives and the negatives, the joys and the discomforts. When you announce your pregnancy, no one wants to talk about the aspects that you are dreading, just the excitement and anticipation.
When you announce your fourth pregnancy, however, things are different. People have a brief moment where the shock and something else, not as easily identified, flashes across their face before they paste on the smile of joy and good will. If they feel it is appropriate (and sometimes even if it isn't), they ask if this is something you were planning, something you actually wanted. I can't decide which is the right answer to that. If you say yes, then their smile says, "I like you but I think you are crazy;" if you say, "no, it was a surprise," they smile sympathetically as they think to themselves, "better you than me" and, "what kind of birth control were you using anyway?"
As I prepared myself for all of these responses in my first few months of pregnancy, I was dismayed to discover a new buzz word gaining ground. Suddenly, I needed to add to my concerns a fear that people would consider me a "bumpaholic." It turns out that, thanks to the popularity of large family shows on cable and people like octo-mom, there is now a theory out there that women actually are addicted to all the attention that comes with being pregnant.
I admit to enjoying a little pampering, and nobody loves to open a gift more than I do, but both of these things are true (and occasionally happen) even when I am not pregnant. In my mind, the few perks that come along with being pregnant do only a little to balance out the stresses and strains of the pregnancy itself. Of course it is nice of my husband to paint my toenails for me. But you can believe I would rather be able to reach my toenails myself, let alone be able to see them.Continued on the next page