Pregnant at the Pool

I did it. I went to the pool while pregnant, and I’m about to tell you all about it.

To say it gets warm in DC over the summer months would be like saying the squat toilets in rural China just need a little all-purpose 409. To put things mildly, it’s friggin hot. And humid. And right now, at seven months pregnant, I am like a fat kid wearing wool in a sweat factory.

I used to be one of those girls who could giggle and say, “Girls don’t sweat, they glisten” as I pranced along in my spandex jogging outfit and primped ponytail. Unfortunately, I now look like I survived a battle with the Viet Cong each time I walk from my car to the front door in the DC humidity, so to say I am “just glistening” seems a bit desperate and sad.

Exercising is one of those things people claim is good for you, especially when pregnant, so I needed to find a way to do it without losing gallons of bodily fluids, or at least hide the fluid loss more discreetly. Solution? Friendly neighborhood pool.

Going to the pool was a big decision. I announced to the husband that, this weekend, we were going, and he had to go with me for support/so I could hide behind him. At this point in the conversation he innocently suggested I go buy a maternity swimsuit. Cue total hormonal breakdown/freakout and within five minutes he adamantly retracted his words and offered to buy doughnuts. I accepted.

Step 1: Try on swimsuits that formerly looked pretty bangin’ on this bod. Or at least used to not make me look like a narwhal in My-Size Barbie outfits. I strongly resembled the latter and decided mirrors were unnecessary household objects for the next three months. Ours was promptly taken down. The main issue was my boobs. I used to think I wanted bigger biddies, but oh my gosh was I wrong. It’s like the first time I went through puberty my body just forgot to grow boobs, realized it when I became pregnant, and is now trying to make up for it in Excessive Booby Growth Syndrome (EBGS). Trying to put on that swimsuit top was like trying to stuff four pounds of jello into a sandwich-sized Ziploc baggie–they were everywhere! I managed to get the girls locked and loaded, kind of (at the very least, my nipples were sufficiently covered), and I walked downstairs to show husband the end result. His eyes got a little big, but he remembered well the hormonal fit from 15 minutes earlier, so he said I looked “great”- all the while staring, alarmed, at my bulging breastesses.

Step 2: Go to the pool. I put on a pool wrap, corralled the nervous-and-slightly-embarrassed-but-can’t-say-anything-about-it-lest-he-risk-imminent-death-husband, and set off toward the pool with utter terror in my heart over the judgmental whispers and glances I was sure would come my way in about three minutes. We got to the pool, found a spot by ourselves with two lounge chairs, and laid down. I sat in my wrap for about ten minutes gauging the level of bitchiness that might be lurking in my fellow pool dwellers. So far so good, whew, and there was even another preggo person there, albeit in a maternity suit. Damn it. I worked up the nerve to take off the wrap, and voila! For better or worse, it was all out there.

There I was, at the pool, in my boob-stuffed bikini, still sweating, but much cooler. I decided I needed to keep my hands on my belly at all times so people would be assured I was pregnant and not just storing cookies for the long winter. I sat like that for about five minutes and then looked over at dear old husband. There he was, grinning back at me, with both hands on his stomach, just like I was doing. Instantly embarrassed, I hissed at him, “What the heck are you doing?”

Still grinning, he proudly answered back, “Being supportive! You were doing it, so I did it too.”

And there we sat, hands on bellies, like total idiots, but whatever. It was funny and sweet.

I eventually got into the pool and did some paddling around so I could say I exercised, and discovered that one perk of the EBGS is some nice added buoyancy. Those things float like champs. Armed with my new confidence and floaties, I now plan to visit the pool on a more regular basis. It’s so much better than hiking up and down the hill in the humidity, plus I have a goofy sidekick in my hubby. Happy swimming!

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