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The Truth About Pregnancy Weight Gain

Outgrowing my "fat pants"

At my first ob-gyn visit, I had to jump on the scale. It read 163 and I thought, I'm only 6 weeks pregnant. How fat am I going to get?? Not exactly the warm and fuzzy thoughts of motherhood.

I left the office committed to eating healthier than ever. That pledge lasted about a week before nausea kicked in. For the next two months, the only foods I could keep down were mac and cheese, PB&J, and cereal. I grew out of my fat pants pretty quickly; they got so tight that I was getting vagina cleavage -- not a good look.

I went to one of my best friends' weddings when I was about 12 weeks. I remember looking at her slim figure with envy. She was in a tight-fitting Vera Wang, and I was in a no-name, empire-waisted, size-14 dress. I told a few of my good friends that I was pregnant that day, just so they wouldn't think I'd let myself go.

Pop goes the belly When I reached my second trimester, my maternity clothes came out of the closet. I was glad to get beyond the nausea and be eating healthier fare. But when I worked late (I was a magazine editor) or was super stressed, it was really hard to keep my hand out of the Halloween candy jars on my coworkers' desks. Sometimes, I'd sneak over to the vending machines to buy peanut M&M's, praying that nobody would catch me. By the first week of December, after stuffing myself like a turkey at Thanksgiving, I was up to 175 pounds.

Near the end of my second trimester, people started asking me how much weight I'd gained so far. I never responded with a number (which was about 30 pounds), only a smart-ass comeback. I was thrilled, of course, that my baby was thriving inside my belly, but I also was terrified that I'd never fit into my favorite clothes again.