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One Hot Mama (First Pregnant Heat Wave!)

It’s hot outside. Really, really hot. The digital temperature in my car read 106F this afternoon, and even though the sun went down hours ago, it’s still uncomfortably warm. Just when I was almost done lamenting southern California’s lack of summer this year, just when I was looking forward to burying my pregnant belly in gigantic cozy sweaters, a late September heat wave has struck and I’m literally melting into a puddle of hormones  and stretch mark cream.

My first pregnancy worked out well, timing-wise. I never had to go through summer; E was born at the end of May. Because we moved to Los Angeles sometime in my eighth month, I didn’t have to endure a brutal New England winter, either. The same basic mid-weight maternity clothes served me well through all three trimesters. But now, just when I’ve pinned my hopes on disguising my eggplant-ness in forgiving, bulky clothing and enjoying brisk fall walks with Tucker, it’s a million degrees outside and I just can’t cool down.

Now I understand why people wince when pregnant women admit to a late summer due date. This is the part no one wants to have to go through, especially this late in the game. I’ve been getting “how are you holding up?” emails this week, and the sudden concern of my family and friends no longer feels like it’s coming from left field. Being pregnant means you’re hot all the time anyway; being pregnant when it’s hot outside is a whole different kind of torture.

Everything is swollen. I swear I’m a size bigger than I was yesterday; I almost got stuck between two parked cars in the parking lot of the grocery store this afternoon. Who do you call when that happens? 911?  Excuse me, officer, sorry to bother you, but I’m so big and pregnant, and it’s so hot outside, I’ve accidentally wedged my body between several tons of metal? By standing on my tiptoes and manually lifting my stomach above the side mirrors, I managed to escape without calling for backup. Still, very embarrassing. Let’s pretend no one saw.

All I want to eat is watermelon, and since it’s not actually summer, this isn’t an easy craving to satisfy. I’m sick of my summer maternity wardrobe, and as it turns out, no outfit is lightweight enough to make the 100 degree temperature outside even close to bearable. E is begging to play outside, but it feels like getting a blast from my oven broiler every time I open the front door. My sleep issues were finally resolved, thanks to some creative meditation for my anxiety issues and a bottle of Febreze that finally removed the poultry farm smell from my Snoozer. But I’m back to tossing and turning again. It’s way too hot to sleep. At least I’m not waking myself up to pee anymore; I’m usually wide awake and staring at the clock when the urges strikes.

Yikes! On one hand, I feel very lucky that this is my first (and hopefully last) taste of a true pregnant summer. I made it through three months that could have been brutal almost completely unscathed. Now if this strange fall heat wave would just pack up and go home, I could get back down to the business of “nesting”—it’s almost time to start planning a new nursery (hurray!) and definitely time to give the closets another overhaul. Sadly, my energy level, already diminished with the onset of my third trimester, just isn’t enough to get me off the couch and into organizing mode.

It’s too early for me to slow down! I have lots of things to do. So either the sun and the scorching temps need to disappear, stat, or I need to learn some new coping mechanisms. How is a pregnant mama supposed to beat the heat? Tips please!

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