I looked at my side view in the mirror today, and my stomach definitely looks a little bit bigger and rounder than it did this same time last week. But for a few minutes, I got a little paranoid, wondering if it looks bigger just because I want it to look bigger, and then I wondered if my little baby was even still breathing with a beating heart. I immediately Googled belly growth during pregnancy during the second trimester, and the average result seems to be about 1 centimeter per week. Phew, I thought. That’s actually very tiny, so maybe the “growth” I think I’ve observed in the mirror since last week actually is real. Maybe I should really stop worrying. It’s almost like I’m looking for reasons to worry, and I’m letting my pregnancy anxiety get the best of me.
It’s hard to shake the worry and anxiety given the journey I’ve been on, though. I can’t ever be that confident that anything is going well, even when multiple doctors and sonographers have all assured me that everything is on track, which they have. The last doctor at the hospital who reviewed my ultrasounds at my 12.5 week appointment actually said to me, “You could not be in better shape. Everything is on track!” And the suckiest part about this is that it’s not even like the worry and anxiety ends once the baby is born, assuming it’s healthy. Then, I’ll end up worrying about whether it’s eating enough, gaining enough weight, sleeping enough, pooping enough. Then there’s always sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) to be silently freaking out about during its first year of life.
I don’t technically have a baby to take care of that is external to my body. In that sense, no one is going around calling me a mother. But I definitely feel like I’m already a mom with my thoughts and worries.