"I'm glad to see you've gained some weight this month!" my doctor said at my appointment earlier this week.
I silently congratulated myself on my steady diet of ice cream and sugary baked goods.
"Because," my doctor went on, "you hadn't gained any the month before."
This was true. If anyone is looking for a fail-safe weight loss method, I highly recommend the 24-hour stomach bug. Seven pounds in one day! I'd fully expected the Weight Gain Lecture at that appointment, but instead I was informed by a scowling nurse that I was dehydrated.
"Drink more water!" she snapped, and I didn't even mind because it's so much better to be snapped at about your water consumption than your brownie consumption.
I allowed myself an imaginary fist pump, but my doctor wasn't finished.
"It'd be great," she said slowly, "if you could try to keep the rest of your weight gain to about ten pounds. Or under! Under would be good too!" And she smiled at me, but the kind of smile where your eyebrows are slightly raised and your lips are curled just a tiny bit, because you know the person you're talking to is probably not going to smile in return.
I did smile, though. I smiled as wide as my chubby cheeks would allow.
"Yeah!" I said brightly. "I know I gained a lot this month!" I said this like I was telling her my fourth cousin thrice removed died and left me a trillion dollars. I could not be any! happier! about my weight! gain!
"Just try to think if there's anything you might be able to cut out of your diet," she said. She was trying to be sensitive. And helpful. "Can you think of anything?"
My whole front was destroyed when I burst out laughing. "Um, YES?" I snorted. "Yes I CAN think of a few things I could cut out. Possibly all those ICE CREAM BREAKFASTS."
Oh wait, I didn't tell her about the ice cream breakfasts. But I did throw out the rest of the ice cream in my freezer as soon as I got home. There was a ceremony, and I may have let a final spoonful touch my lips, but into the trash it went. I gained 45 pounds with my first pregnancy and being two sizes bigger after delivery, two sizes bigger than I'd ever been in my entire life, was the absolute worst part of having the baby. I know that means I had a scandalously easy pregnancy (I did) and a baby so easy my friends told me I wasn't having the "real" newborn experience (they did), but STILL. I had Jack right in time for bathing suit season and I spent the summer hiding in giant tents from discount stores and digging through my closet for anything with an elastic waistband.
Thanks to a determination to stay away from sugar, an online weight loss competition and several Acts of God, I got that weight off nine months later. I had every intention of keeping myself under more control this time around, but ... you know ... ICE CREAM! It tastes SO GOOD!
So yes, I've been treating this pregnancy as my God-given excuse to indulge in all sorts of things I refused to eat before I got pregnant, but I need to remember how hard it was to lose the weight. I need to keep my teeny-tiny, 100-pound friend in mind, the one who went to the gym throughout her pregnancy and looks like she was never pregnant at all, even though she gave birth FIVE WEEKS AGO. I can do this!
Just as soon as I polish off that last bag of cookies in the pantry.