I have a bump. Get over it.

As you’d expect, I’ve learnt a lot of things while being pregnant. The most minor thing will set you off in floods of tears; the middle of the bed is now where your human size pillow resides, and people’s need to comment on the size of your bump – including strangers.

I’m carrying twins, two babies, so naturally, my bump will be ‘bigger’ than most, and I get it; it’s right there in front of you. You can’t help noticing it. But guess what? That doesn’t mean you need to voice your thoughts.

I get that you probably don’t mean anything by it, but in short, it’s rude. If I had put a little weight on during lockdown or over the Christmas period, would my size be the first thing you’d comment on? I’d hope not!

I remember attending a dentist appointment at 22 weeks. When I told my dentist how far along I was, her response was, “Oh wow, you’re so big already.” This woman, who I see for 15 minutes every two years, left me feeling like I had to validate the size of my bump, and so I replied, “Well, there are two babies in there.” Flippant comments like this can easily get stuck in a woman’s head – and it’s not like we don’t already have enough to worry about!

A few weeks later, I was shopping for a pregnancy pillow in my local Dunelm. As the store assistant pointed me in the direction of the correct department, she asked me how long I had left. When I replied “12 weeks”, the look of horror, as she stared at my growing bump and replied, “Oh, wow”, was palpable.

It’s common knowledge that women carry their pregnancy in different ways, and there are a number of reasons why; many can be self-conscious about it. So, whether I’m bigger than what you would perceive to be average, or I’m not showing as much as you would expect, keep your thoughts to yourself.

When you see a pregnant friend or family member who you haven’t seen in a while, rather than commenting on the size of their bump, why not compliment them? “Congratulations”, “Being pregnant suits you”, “You look great”, “You’re glowing” are just some examples. But if you’re unsure of what to say, perhaps don’t say anything at all.

Oh, and do NOT touch my belly without asking. But, that’s a whole different conversation.

31 weeks pregnant

What NOT to expect when you’re expecting

You’ve all heard of the book ‘What to Expect When You’re Expecting’ right? Originally published in 1984, and now in its fifth edition, the book consistently tops The New York Times Best Seller list and has helped tens of millions of expectant parents worldwide. Following the book’s success, in 2012, What to Expect When You’re Expecting was adapted into a movie starring Cameron Diaz, Jennifer Lopez and Chris Rock, and followed the lives of five interconnected couples as they experienced the thrills of having a baby.

But here’s what that book doesn’t prepare you for – finding out you’re having TWINS!

It was at the 12-week ultrasound appointment that we found out. My partner and I were sat in the waiting room and the last thing I said to him before our name was called was “Imagine if it’s twins…” I laughed as I said this knowing it not to be true, after all, twins don’t run in either of our families.

I awkwardly climbed up onto the examination table, lifted my shirt and felt the cold jelly hit my tummy. With any pregnancy, the first ultrasound is nerve-wracking. Not only is it the first time that you get to see your baby, but it’s often when potential problems are discovered. My partner and I waited with bated breath for Grace, our sonographer, to tell us if there was a heartbeat. Instead, with her wand moving across my lubricated belly, she said, “Did you know there’s two?”

When I say my response was “No there isn’t” while laughing uncontrollably – I’m not lying. My partner responded “Two?!” Only moments before we were joking over such an occurrence, and now that joke was our reality!

After the ultrasound, we sat in the waiting room while the images were analysed and my file was updated. “Twins” we would suddenly announce, like saying it aloud, and repeatedly, would make it seem more real. “There’s two!”

I won’t lie and say that I was over the moon because I wasn’t. My partner and I knew that taking care of one baby, in a small apartment, would be difficult, but two? I had years of experience in caring for newborn babies, but never two at the same time! And, what about money? Twins mean two of everything

Soon, quite literally, every aspect of our lives was about to change. It was overwhelming.