I like being pregnant. Last time around I’d have gone so far as to say I was good at it. This time I am rather less so, as illustrated by the numerous ghastly afflictions from which I find myself suffering. “Glowing” I am not. I shall list them here - don't read while you're eating your dinner.
- Maternity Tights. What IS it with them? How hard can it be? Hosiery companies, come on! We have a big belly and we need our tights to accommodate it. We want them to sit high on the bump, just below boob region if truth be told, for comfort and security, and we want them to stay there. I went to a wedding over Christmas and I treated myself to a proper good new pair of maternity tights – no bobbly bits, no saggy bum, no toe holes – these were Wedding Fresh and Not Cheap. We had a 10 minute walk to the Tube; before we had got to the end of our street the waistband had rolled over my (then quite modest) bump, and nestled itself snugly underneath. This was uncomfortable and unsightly – it looked like I was carrying a Peperami under my dress. Five minutes later and the leg parts were falling down too – there is no excuse for this. There is nothing wrong with my legs. They are not outsized; they are normal legs and have no trouble working with normal tights. So why couldn’t these ones cling on? By the time we reached the Tube there was ACTUAL GUSSET visible below my hemline. I felt like SUING! The top of the tights was just about clinging on to the edge of my bottom. The rest of them were heading at high speed towards my knees. I had to do some serious HOIKING on the escalator with Ben positioned in front of me (at the same time as pretending not to be with me) for discretion. Needless to say I did not light up the dance floor that night. I couldn’t even walk about without flashing my low-slung crotch. I have given up trying to find a decent pair of Preggy Tights. I have instead taken to using a regular pair, yanking them up until they are sitting in the desired spot and using Bio Oil or similar as a sort of adhesive to keep them in place. This has worked ok up to present. But post 30 weeks, I’m not sure it’ll cut the mustard. So come on, Tights People, put your heads together and make us something that STAYS UP!
- Dandruff. It's been many years since a teenage me found a decent shampoo and stuck with it. I did not expect to have to revisit this problem at the grand old age of 35. It's EMBARRASSING! And in the spirit of honesty, I confess that it is not just confined to my head. No...I don't mean down there (well actually, who knows? I can't see what's going on down there anymore). I am talking All Over Body Dandruff. When I take my trousers off at night the insides are covered in a layer of dead LEG SKIN (imagine a modest sprinkling of parmesan). When I pull my jumper over my head, it is like someone has just given a snow globe a good shake in the bedroom: clouds of dead skin fly off into the air like magic dust. I’m probably giving Eve asthma! I’m like a snake: I must shed a whole entire layer of skin at least every day or two. Moisturising is futile. It merely adheres the loose skin to the limb in a sort of paste. The skin wants to be free.
- Varicose veins. Need I say more? This is almost an insult too far. There is something akin to the M6 traversing the inside of my left thigh. It’s horrifying. My veins are quite literally trying to break free from my body, so overloaded are they with excess baby blood. I can only hope it does the decent thing and recedes from whence it came once normal service resumes.
- Constipation versus its equally awful opposite. There is no happy medium here. Either I haven’t been for 5 days or I need to go now. Like, NOW. The latter happened on our walk home from nursery recently, and when I started taking the corners on two wheels, Eve asked why we were running. I said, quietly, “Mummy needs to do a poo, so we need to get home.” She squealed in delight, to the street, “Mummy’s done a POO!” “Mummy hasn’t DONE a poo,” I replied. “She just needs to do a poo.” “Mummy’s done a poooo,” she yelled, as school boys looked on sniggering and a reasonably hot local dad gave me a knowing smirk. Easy for him when we weren’t all shouting about his poo. “I haven’t done a poo, I just want to do a poo,” I snapped back at Eve, not quietly. “Mummy’s done a POO in her NAPPY.” Before I knew it I was shouting at my baby, and all the world, “I HAVEN'T POOED IN MY NAPPY!”
So there you have it. Four little preggy gripes. I couldn't think of a fifth, so it can't be that bad. Onwards...