mr. or miss 15-week-old fetus america

everyone says the second trimester is a thing of wonder, a breather between the rollicking nausea & soul-deadening fatigue of the first trimester, & the non-stop discomfort & enormousness of the third. but thus far, i haven’t had much relief. i’m over fifteen weeks pregnant now, still nauseous, still exhausted. & now with extra hormone-induced headaches! & i cannot suffer a pregnancy headache without convincing myself that it’s being caused by undiagnosed pre-eclampsia, even though i have no symptoms of high blood pressure, & that i’m about to have a stroke. so that’s fun.

i’m also sporting more of a bump these days & i’ve moved on to maternity clothes. right now i’m wearing a striped maternity tee & wide-legged maternity pajama pants. i was wearing these pants yesterday when i told jared & i was exhausted & going to take a nap. he asked if maybe my fatigue is being caused by my insistence of wearing a superfluous twenty pounds of fabric. i told him that we can’t all wear skin-tight t-shirts & jeans like he does. some people say that male partners tend to gain sympathy weight along with their pregnant wives/girlfriends. jared is whittling himself down to pure muscle with all of his swimming & soccer-playing & miles of bike-riding in 105-degree heat. he’s always been a slim dude, but when we first started dating, “skinny” was the only way to describe it. he ate ice cream every day to try to gain weight. now i expect he’ll be getting a call from H&M any day to star in their fall campaign. nothing makes a lady feel so frumpy as being too tired to change out of her pajamas & being medically mandated to gain a pound a week while her partner has inadvertently devoted himself to achieving the apex of human hotness.

one of my friends said jared looks like a model for a perfume ad here.

i put on a little fashion show with my new maternity clothes. i was mostly buying for fall/winter weather because that’s when i’ll be at my biggest & most uncomfortable. between the striped t-shirt, striped hoodie, striped sweater, & striped dress, jared observed that i am outfitting myself as a full-time sexy pregnant hamburglar.

sexy non-pregnant hamburglar, halloween 2011

he also exclaimed, “you don’t look half so pregnant when you’re not stumbling around here half-nude!” because the unbearable heat combined with the lack of clothes that actually fit properly had reduced me to wearing tank tops & maybe a skirt if i was feeling modest. turns out that when you wear billowing baggy tank tops & then lay around all day like a hippopotamus sunning itself on a rock, a 15-week pregnancy can look a lot like a 38-week pregnancy.

the bump properly contained in seasonally-appropriate maternity wear.

i had fully intended to try to eke my way through pregnancy in larger sizes of my regular clothes, probably augmented with a lot of forgiving elastic-waist pajama pants. i thought that maybe if i got truly desperate, i’d chop the waistband off a pair of jeans & sew on an elastic belly panel: d.i.y. maternity jeans. but i broke down & bought a pair of real maternity jeans & they were a fucking revelation. i don’t know if i’ll ever go back to buttons & zippers. there’s something really empowering about wearing pants specifically designed to harness the powers of a protruding belly, rather than pants that are designed to try to tamp down the belly & create the illusion of a stream-lined silhouette. & when my favorite pink plaid pajama pants literally exploded off of me when i surpassed the maximum capacity guidelines, i realized that it was perhaps time to call in the big guns.

so yeah. this is kind of turning into a pregnancy blog. & as such, sometimes random anons try to use the pregnancy against me. not too long ago, the internet informed me that i had a new blog comment awaiting moderation. i opened it up & read, “you’re an idiot & nobody likes you & your baby is ugly.” i was impressed with this anon’s ability to wield proper grammar. most insulting anon comments i get mix up their “your”s & their “you’re”s. i was even more impressed with the whole “your baby is ugly” comment. let’s go to the 3D technology. i’m 15 weeks pregnant right now.


yeah, that is pretty hideous & horrifying. my fetus is definitely not in the running for any beauty contests right now. but you know, fetuses are not generally known for their dashing good looks. & really, the only reason anyone would ever tell someone that their baby is ugly–especially anonymously–would be to try to hurt the person’s feelings. anyone who thinks i would actually be wounded by such a ham-fisted insult clearly doesn’t know their audience. (& as for the whole “you’re an idiot & no one likes you” part…yeah yeah yeah. tell me one i haven’t heard 9000 times before from every jackass who ever disagreed with me about something political.)

i have no idea what inspired this comment, especially because it was left on an entry that was pretty light on the controversial sentiment. but i could not stop laughing about the “your baby is ugly” thing. ever since, every time jared refuses to do me a favor, like get me a glass of milk or get up & let charlotte out of the bedroom, i tell him, “bad news, jared. your baby is ugly.” then we laugh hysterically. i left a comment on his facebook wall that said, “i heard your baby is ugly & i feel bad for you, son. i got 99 problems but an ugly baby ain’t one…wait. we have the same baby. damn it!” i told my therapist about it & at first she looked horrified & said, “oh my god!” & then even she started laughing. i would kind of love to know who left that comment. i can’t even hazard a guess. most of the people that i know for sure definitely hate me but are still insane enough to stalk my blog are either not quite that vicious, or just too dour & humorless to go with an “ugly baby” comment. but i’d love to be proven wrong! there’s one person in particular that i would LOVE for it to be, just because it would completely upend my assumptions about her personality. it’s probably someone a lot less exciting though. it’s probably someone i don’t even know, who just read my zine one time & thinks i’m a jerk. oh well.

Published by Ciara

Ciara Xyerra wrote zines for the better part of two decades. She has a brilliant & adorable preschooler named Ramona & sews as much as she possibly can. She lives in Lawrence, Kansas with her boyfriend. She enjoys catching up on "The New Yorker", meatball subs, keeping it cranky, intersectional post-third wave feminism, dinosaurs, & monsters. If you have nothing nice to say, she recommends that you come sit here by her, so you can say not-nice things together.

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