I Used to be Cooler – my new series

I Used to be Cooler – my new series
March 14, 2013 Alison Faulkner

iusedtobecooler
(Alison age 10, obviously it’s been all downhill since then…)

Am I the only one who has this thought? I have it pretty regularly. I’ll be looking at old pictures, reading old blog posts, sorting through old books I used to read, (I USED TO READ ACTUAL BOOKS?!) And I’ll think, “MAN! I was SOOOOO cool.” When did I stop being as cool?

And perhaps that makes me sound really full of myself, but I’m ok with that, because if you saw the things I was looking at you’d probably think, “Alison used to be REALLY cool!” too. This thought can also be interchanged with, “I used to dress better” or “I used to be funnier.” Also especially since having a baby I have the thought, “Oh man, I used to be SO MUCH SMARTER” a lot too.

But isn’t it interesting I rarely look back and think, “Man, I used to be SO UGLY!” or “Ugh, I used to be so boring.”

Which is why I guess I should cut myself a break presently, because in the future I’ll probably be less cool, and I’ll look back on 2013 and think, “Daaaaaammmmnnnn, Alison, you really had it going on.”

Which brings me to this: My blog used to consist entirely of essays. I’m sure many of you have not seen them, and I’d like to start sharing some of them again. There’s a good chance this will last for 2 weeks, as most of my series tend to do. But I’d like to share them on, let’s say Thursdays? Some are funny (or at least I think so) and some are “thoughtful.”

I shall post them under the series name, “I Used to be Cooler.” How are we feeling about this?

For my first installment I’d like to share a post I wrote at almost the EXACT same place I was in my pregnancy with Ginger. Currently I cannot stop talking about HOW HUGE I AM. No but really, I am very large. And if you say, “No your pictures on Instagram are SO CUTE!” Well, thank you, but do you know how many I made Eric take to get one where I look 20lbs smaller than I actually am? A LOT. It’s all a lie.

It’s called “She’s One Lucky Whale” and you can read the thing after the jump!

(originally written July, 30 2010)

A NOTE ON THE TONE OF THIS POST:

**This post, though perhaps seemingly written in my usual sardonic tone, is in fact entirely sincere. So watch out, and hang on til the end, cause I’m about to get mushy. Like real, real mushy.**

When my back hurts so badly I cannot sit or stand for more than 30 minute intervals…it’s hard to remember that I’m lucky to be pregnant.

When I have to wake up no less than four, no exaggeration, four times a night to use the bathroom, and then have to pee again immediately after pulling my pants back on…it’s hard to remember that I’m blessed to be pregnant.

When the numbers on my scale reach numbers that no 5’5″ woman’s scale should ever have to see, and I try my best to eat healthy but still for some reason, can’t help but feel entitled to multiple desserts a day…it’s hard to remember that I’m in fact very fortunate to be pregnant.

And when someone asks me, “WOW! Are you sure you don’t have twins in there?” And I reply, “Yeah, they just keep telling me there’s just the one baby in there…” and they respond with, “Well, as long as the doctors say you’re healthy…” IT’S ESPECIALLY HARD to remember that I’m lucky to be pregnant.

I’ve been struggling lately with the reality that even though I’m now in my third trimester of pregnancy, I still have to (GET TO…) be pregnant for another two and a half months. I’ve been a little depressed, anxious and self-conscious about my constantly expanding body, and the fact that I have no idea how to be a mom, live MY LIFE as a mom, or take care of the small wiggling lady who is constantly kicking me, once she breaks out of my body.

But today, honestly MINUTES after hanging up the phone with my sister, who I called to vent to because yet ANOTHER person had asked me, “So is there one baby in there…or two?” (HOW COMMON DO PEOPLE THINK TWINS ARE ANYWAY?!) I walked back in to work and bumped into a sweet girl that I see every once in a while around the building. She looked at me and said, “Oh! You look so cute!” And I said, “THANK YOU!” And then thought, “Finally someone who knows the only thing a pregnant lady wants to hear!”

A few minutes later, after returning to my desk, I got an email from her saying again how cute she thinks my belly is, and that she tries hard to not get jealous of big bellies like mine, because she is having a hard time getting pregnant, and that one day, she hopes she is lucky enough to have a belly of her own.

The email was very sweet and very sincere. She was in no way asking for sympathy, or lecturing me to remember how lucky I am. It was the nicest email in the world.

CUE WATERWORKS HERE.

I did all could not to run (waddle) upstairs to her desk and shower her with tears of gratitude.

Isn’t it funny how God knows exactly what we need?

Because exactly what I needed, was a reminder of how lucky I am to be pregnant. And I really feel like she was maybe the only person who could do it, remind me exactly the way I needed to be reminded, at that moment.

The first four months of pregnancy, I cried all the time because I felt so fortunate to be given the opportunity to have a baby. But after a while, the sickness, the peeing, the muscle pains, and all the body image issues that resurface after years of being dormant, truly make it hard to remember how blessed us fat ladies are.

I wrote her back and told her that she was inspired, and that even though I sometimes felt like a whale, it was good to remember that I’m one very very lucky whale.

I wish I had more to blog about then pregnancy, but it’s pretty all consuming. However, instead of complaining (which I know I still did in a roundabout way!) and making jokes about all the “joys” of pregnancy, I wanted to sincerely express how overwhelmed with love and gratitude I am for the healthy baby in my belly. And the supportive husband I have who is just as excited for her arrival, if not more so, than me.

So for those of you who struggle getting one of those babies in your belly, I want you to know you are in my thoughts and prayers. And I promise to try to be better, and not to forget how unbelievably lucky I am.

I wanted to write these feelings down and share them, not to ask for reassurance from people that, “I’m a cute pregnant lady” or that “my feelings are normal” but because I wanted to make sure you all know how thankful I am to be pregnant. I know I joke a lot, and love to focus on the ridiculous aspects of giving life, but I am capable of focusing on the miraculous aspects as well.

So if you’re a mom, I have more respect for you, if you’re a mother-in-waiting, I’m praying for you, and if you’re a man, well I hope you’re not drowning in my overflowing sea of emotion and hormones.

Love and kisses,

one very lucky whale

13 Comments

  1. Melany 5 years ago

    Thank you for sharing that lovely essay! It really struck home with me, because I remember having those EXACT same thoughts during my past two pregnancies. Seriously, the twin comment?? What is that? I got it all the time when I was only 30 weeks. Do people really think that’s okay?? And then I remembered how blessed I was to be pregnant and how others are having infertility issues and I feel like a rotten jerk for complaining. (But it’s okay, pregnancy is 9 months long, can we really be expected to not complain at all for that long??) Anyways, just wanted to leave a note that I feel ya sister! And I hope you have a healthy delivery!

    • Author
      Alison Faulkner 5 years ago

      thank you so much! I might have to make another list of all the good comments I’ve gotten! But this time around I just give REALLY scary faces when people look like theyre going to launch into something…hahaha

  2. I’m so glad we get to travel back in time to the Land of Alison Cool–though let it be known that I still think you’re epically cool! I’m pretty sure I peaked in fifth grade. It was when I was at the zenith of my popularity (thanks, in large part, to my killer Lisa Frank sticker collection), my smarts, and my looks (oh, how I miss the cascading palm tree side half-ponytail). Looking forward to reading more!

    • Author
      Alison Faulkner 5 years ago

      I love you and the fact you read my blog. It’s like seriously the most flattering thing, considering what a crazy-talented write you are! i love you and your ponytails!

  3. Jessica 5 years ago

    No matter whether you are pregnant or just feeling down or ugly or hurt or whatever, blessings still exist even in the midst of all that. This essay was a great reminder that joy can coexist with pain/discomfort. Thanks for that.

    • Author
      Alison Faulkner 5 years ago

      I didn’t say it better in 1000 words! love it.

  4. Annie 5 years ago

    I found your blog years ago after you wrote for the local Provo magazine (Provo Squared I think it was?) Anyway, just wanted to say that it was your essays that kept me coming back! So please don’t stop throwing them in from time to time, because they’re my favorite 🙂

    • Author
      Alison Faulkner 5 years ago

      Yes! Square mag! I’m flattered you still come back! Thank you so much for leaving a comment I was seriously starting to get all self-conscious like, “this is so self-indulgent I should go back and delete it!” None of the comments were coming through, not that I do things JUST for comments, but they do make me feel like I’m at least not shooting blanks! xo

  5. Roxanne 5 years ago

    Loved this- thanks Alison.

  6. Emily 5 years ago

    Ah, the lovely prego comments. I am 5’2. There isn’t much room for babies on my frame. I got asked at six months if i was due before my library books. My favorite though isn’t the question, or the comments perfect strangers feel the need to ask. It’s that those same strangers will suddenly rub your belly, like its a magic lamp and a genie is going to pop out and grant them a wish! 🙂 I refrain from belly rubbing. and thank you for this essay! It is a beautiful reminder! Even if my baby is now four!

  7. Brittany ratelle 5 years ago

    Smiley face. I actually remember reading this one the first go-around and it brought tears to my eyes in the same sweet way all over again. Now that I have two, ahem…gestations under my belt, but have seen beloved friends go through infertility, SIDS, miscarriages, et. al, I have a deeper reverence for that bump–in all of its sizes. I mean, we’re converting food (which in my pregnancies is a healthy dose of dessertage as well)–into a new freaking human being. Seriously! It’s amazing. It is divine (in the spiritual AND the chocolate way). It’s worth celebrating and revering. So you rock that bump girl. ‘Nuff said.

    • Author
      Alison Faulkner 5 years ago

      Oh my gosh! You sheblogs sheblogs rockstar! haha thank you so much. I think i need to reread this everyday until I give birth! xo

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