When I was pregnant with my first child I was determined to have a happy, healthy, tv-style pregnancy. I was going to gain no more than 25 pounds (all in my bump and boobs, of course), do prenatal yoga and Pilates every day, and I was going to have an adorable maternity wardrobe to show off my cute, pert, little baby bump. I read all the books and bought all the magazines on having a fit pregnancy, but then something went wrong.
Reality set in.
Now I’m on my third pregnancy and I just ate an entire can of baked beans for dinner. What changed? Well, I have now had enough uterine life experience to realize that the pregnancy magazines are full of lies and false hopes. I’m never going to look like the energetic and sexy models on the cover in her leggings and bump-hugging tank top.
I am doomed to have a NORMAL pregnancy.
You know, the kind that doesn’t come with a stylist and a personal trainer. I will gain 25 pounds in my third trimester alone to add to the other 25 I already gained in the first two. I will actually grow out of my maternity tunics (also knows as mumus) and will end up wearing men’s t-shirts from the big and tall store. My boobs will expand to enormous sizes rendering normal bras entirely useless, which is fine because I will most likely spend most of my 8th and 9th months lying prostrate on the sofa in my underwear.
The truth of the matter is: there is no such thing as maternity fashion. It’s mostly about survival, comfort, and covering up enough to spare the teenagers that live next door years of expensive therapy. So before you rush out in your 12th week to stock up on the latest in celebrity maternity trends, let me share with you a few tips on real maternity necessities.
Maternity Fashion Tips For Real Mom-To-Be
- Look for anything that doesn’t show sweat, urine, or other bodily fluid stains. You’ll thank me when you DON’T leave yoga class looking like you’ve been leaking from all your naughty parts. Downward dog should definitely not be attempted without first visiting a fire hydrant. Trust me.
- Long pants and maxi skirts are a must, even if it’s 100 degrees outside, because figuring out how to shave late in pregnancy is like rocket science and contortion all rolled into one slippery package. No thank you.
- You want elastic waistbands on EVERYTHING. You’ve never experienced true muffin top until you’ve had pregnant muffin top. Plus I’m pretty sure the baby eventually pushes all your vital organs down there and who needs a belt digging into your liver and your stomach simultaneously?
- Avoid all tights, belts, stockings, and basically anything that could potentially delay bathroom gratification. Who has the energy for that 37 times a day?
- Time to head to Old Navy and stock up on $1 flip flops. I don’t care if it’s January, you’re going to want to forego the sensible heels or even those cute pumps you bought last month because your feet are about to swell up until it looks like you’re walking around on a couple of meatloaves. Have you ever seen muffin top of the feet? You will if you don’t take my advice. So get a pedicure and embrace the open-toed look all year. Besides, it will really help with the sweating problem.
- Avoid socks, especially if you have stairs or hardwood floors anywhere in your house. Those open backed gowns they give you at the ER are definitely not flattering on pregnant women: they tend to gap a bit in the back.
- Forget the cute shirts and go for lots of cardigans. That way no one will notice you’re been wearing the same shirt for five days…or that your left boob leaked on it three days ago.
- You will need approximately one million pairs of granny panties because…pee. And don’t even think about donning lacey briefs or thongs until you’re feeling very confident in the stain-hiding powers of your sweat pants.
- Start loving the sports bra. Once you’ve been impaled repeatedly by an angry underwire you, too, will be rocking the uni-boob with panache.
- Absolutely no turtle-necks. Not only will you be sweating like a snowman on a summer day, but also with your ever-expanding belly and bosoms, you’ll look more like a cotton blimp than an actual human being.
If you follow these helpful tips, you might not win any mom-to-be fashion contests, but at least you won’t have to brave the crowded, sweaty shopping mall to update your wardrobe with every season. Also, this way you can take the extra money you’ll be saving on clothes you’ll only wear for six months and get a massage, a pedicure, or a hell of a lot of Haagen Daaz.