Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Eating for two

I hear time and time again from other women that their favorite part of pregnancy is eating without guilt.

I have to say, I agree +100.

I have found the past five and a half months extremely liberating. That might seem like an odd word to use, as my belly continues to bulge week after week and I find it increasingly difficult to lift my heftier self off the couch/bed/floor after playing with the dog. But it’s the truth. I have made a certain wonderful peace with my body and with food that I don’t know could be accomplished without this baby growing inside of me.

Don’t get me wrong: I know pregnancy isn’t an excuse for a free-for-all eating attitude. I know the phrase “eating for two” really means getting important vitamins and nutrients for two, not as many calories as you can pack in. But for someone who has spent the last ten years being a weight yo-yoing, carb counting, scale-chained chronic dieter, pregnancy has been a huge relief.

For example, I was the matron of honor in a wedding this past April. For the pre-pregnancy me, this would call for weeks of eating lean meat and vegetables, logging miles on the treadmill, and playing the (not recommended) how-skinny-can-I-get-in-one-month’s-time game. I know I’m not the only woman out there who simultaneously loathes and adores this game. But with baby on board? No dieting. No obsessing about pounds. It might sound silly, but it was the most disorienting feeling to find myself eating breakfast potatoes with cheese (gasp!) the very morning of the wedding, hours before slipping into a form-fitting dress, without an ounce of guilt.

It's also disorienting to watch the number on the scale tick higher and higher each week and wait for a wave of anxiety that never follows. Honestly, before pregnancy, I can’t remember the last time I ate something “bad” without guilt or didn't obsess about seeing the number on the scale read a few pounds more. Realizing that now makes me kind of sad.

I wish I could carry over this lovely mentality to my postpartum self. But I know myself well enough to realize there’s a fat chance I’ll be able to do that, especially with plenty of pregnancy pounds to peel off. For now, I’ll just enjoy my expandable pants and stress-free meals while they last.

Did you enjoy “eating for two” during pregnancy?

Megan Brooks is a Senior Public Relations Specialist, Stepmom, twenty three weeks pregnant Mom-to-be, and lover of cheesy potatoes.

1 comment:

  1. Oh, I LOVED that part of pregnancy. And really, the numbers on the scale didn't bother me until I saw that very last, highest number the day I was admitted to be induced. I'm the same scale-chaned, yo-yo-er that you are, and I loved every minute of not worrying about that scale. I'm so glad you're enjoying it, too. And, if you plan to nurse, you likely have some time post-partum to not worry so much about eating, since your body needs extra nourishment to produce milk. :)