Pregnancy is a beautiful thing, right?
Well, it's also one of the strangest things in the world.
The changes in a woman's body are downright frightening.
From an ever-changing bra size, to extreme acid indigestion, to months and months of nausea, to uncontrollable acne that would make a teenager cringe, it messes with you, mind, body and soul.
Perhaps the scariest thing is that every woman experiences pregnancy in different ways. Some women gain a few pounds, sleep comfortable, pop out a seven-pounder and have a family.
Let's just say it's not going so easily for me and my wife.
For the past 30 weeks, her body really hasn't been hers. It almost feels like our daughter is the real puppet master:
"Mommy dearest! You ate marinara sauce...now you must pay! [insert evil cackle here]"
Changes in breast size, consistency and structure really play on the psyche of a pregnant woman.
Us guys, we're pretty much born with what we end up with. All of the equipment is there from day one. It changes as we age, but those changes aren't visible to the outside world.
Women have it much harder, as breast size is a major part of how the rest of the world perceives them, starting from their pre-teen years and into adulthood
As pregnancy hormones surge through their bodies, this very public private part changes publicly. They are stretched out, discolored and suddenly porous, as they prepare to feed the baby. And some of the things don't go back to "normal" after the baby is born.
That's crazy to think that having a baby changes your body FOREVER!
I've found that the best thing I can do as a husband is be as supportive as possible about my wife's body image. Tell her when she looks nice, be an active participant in breastfeeding education and decision-making, help her pick out outfits for work and even be a dutiful partner while going shopping for maternity clothes.
Her body is different now than it was just a few months ago, but that doesn't change how I feel about it.
Pregnancy IS a beautiful thing, and so is my pregnant, soon-to-breastfeed, wife.