I love my bestie, Nicole. We were roomies in college and she's still one of my favorite people today, even though she picked up and moved to another state when we both were newlyweds. We still text and call and when we see each other it's like we never were apart. You know, the kind of friends who just pick up where they left off. We are quite different but she gets me and I know that she will always be full of encouragement and honesty no matter what I bring to her. She was the second person I told I was pregnant (after Jordan) and she's constantly checking in on how I'm doing. She was excited for me before I was ready to be and helped bring me around. So when she asked me the other day for a baby bump picture, it took me a little off guard. I hadn't much considered it before, in fact, I kind of detested them. As if they went against my very nature. No offense to the pregos out there who have documented your 9 months this way (practically EVERY one of my friends have), but to a girl going through infertility, they were for a long time just a reminder of what I was never going to have. Babies were easy for me. They were cute and innocent and I knew we'd have some even if they came through adoption, but the belly was another story. And don't get me started on those stupid "parking for expectant mothers" signs!
This pregnancy thing still seems a little awkward to me and half the time I feel like an impostor. Like I've been to a place where I've seen things I can't forget and now they effect every aspect of this new experience. No unrestrained bliss or happy ignorance. I know some girls move on more easily from infertility to pregnancy. They accept their new blessing whole heartedly and put their past behind them. I'm not sure why it hasn't been so simple for me. I feel like I have an allegiance to uphold. You know, like I've somehow let my "people" down. In infertility I was a part of a group of women with a shared understanding. Not pitted against friends who were happily and spontaneously having children but empathizing with our differences. Now pregnant, I don't feel like I fit in with either group. What I do know is that God hasn't brought me to this place and down this exact road without a purpose. Every day I'm reminded to be grateful for what I have, respectful of those around me who don't have it, and appreciative of my journey to get here.
So at 24 weeks this is me. I am a little proud of my bumpity bump and think I've earned at least one belly shot. You better know that I've taken every opportunity to park in that first space at CVS, Babies R Us, and church! Now just don't go expecting a maternity spread with my hands in the shape of a heart over my navel or anything.