What kind of pregnancy would you like to have?
I am a French Afro-descendant, in my mid-20s, recent graduate, currently based in Berlin.
There are some moments in life when one needs to speak out to truly appreciate one’s reality. Here is my coming out: big news we are pregnant!
I would have liked to make a video announcement like Tara Stiles in a beautiful loft wearing a mini short — but I do not have followers and neither the rest. Obviously being able to make that kind of public announcement means that you were looking and doing “fantastic” before and that you are going to keep doing it. I am proud to be 19 weeks pregnant and still doing glorious dancer poses: “like a beautiful rainbow”.
I also thought of sharing my Beyoncé’s style pregnancy photo to show how radiant I look but I guess I still need to wait for few weeks to blossom as a pregnant woman with elegance. Hopefully…
Then I might try to be as funny as Ali Wong in “Baby Cobra”. The problem is that even the only person able to endure me more than two consecutive days, my husband is assertive in the fact that I am the complete opposite of the “funny type of person”. The kind of person that has to constantly declare that the previous awkward moment was a joke, and that if people are nice they should pretend laughing — now.
It is OK not to look marvellous, or to be the funniest during your pregnancy. This being said, if you are by no means close to those types of pregnant woman, and that you refuse to be associated with superficial pregnant women you might be a self-starter. In this case the successful businesswoman J.C Wiatt in “Baby Boom” might be an inspiring example. As a little girl, I remember this character as being a role model for me, I simply wanted to be strong and independent like her. However getting pregnant straight after university did not allow me to be part of this wonder-mum team neither.
Fortunately enough there is a pregnant woman group that does not require memberships: the idealist one. I secretly dream of an alternative education for my little one like in the movie ‘Captain fantastic’. One of the interviewee of Shirley Tate in “‘That is my star of David’: skin, abjection and hybridity” said that listening to classical music was considered as a “White thing” then how might “my people” think about my dreams and role models. I already hear my Grandma saying “These are hippie dreams — here is the real world for ‘people like us’”.
Wait a minute: does that mean that I want to be a White Privileged “bitch” during my pregnancy?
Here is the truth: I did not get to choose the kind of Pregnancy I wanted. The same process happened back in my 16th when I had my first period, I knew that it was going to happen someday no matter the (non)size of my breast. It is not something that I chose — it happened. Similarly I knew in a 5 years relationship, married, regularly having sexual intercourses, refusing to ingest hormones, and being more and more pressured by my wonderful and spiritual Grandma — getting pregnant was definitely something that COULD happen.
I had the extreme joy to experience daily “morning” (all day) nausea; not being able to bear the smell/taste of most of my favourite food such as Garlic; to loose weight — to gain weight, to spit every time — everywhere; to live a zombie life always too tired to really do something but not enough to get a proper sleep; to have a 0 libido — to have an uncontrolled desire for my poor prey-husband. I slowly transformed myself from a vegetarian into an extreme carnivore.
If being active on Netflix were paid, I would be the proudest woman in town screaming in the street: “Money is not an issue!”. However I am actually paying for Netflix, and not only running out of money but also of movies/documentaries/TV series featuring pregnant women. Besides when I finally find a film touching upon pregnancy then another frustration arises. I am always forced to self-identify with White pregnant women and always supporting a narrow-minded vision of pregnancy. There is more about the growing round belly to be told. Hard to identify oneself in this context, but yet I would really like to see/read more about Black Pregnant Women. Please show me the unglamorous side of pregnancy because it is in its many aspects truly beautiful and worth highlighting as much as the ‘bright’ sides of pregnancy.
This is the pregnancy that I did not choose — the one that I am having. I sincerely hope that Annie Murphy Paul in her TED Talk “What we learn before we’re born” is right when she argues that babies start learning in the womb and thus that Baby X might be grateful! Otherwise everything else about being a Mother-to-be is an amazing experience — indeed…