I can’t tell you how many times people thought it was so nice that I was pregnant in the winter. They must have assumed I’d spend the coldest months of the year giggling as I playfully skiied through a snowstorm in my bikini (honestly, I don’t know what is going on in that Getty image either.)
The thing people who haven’t been pregnant in the winter don’t realise is that you’re still busy growing a human while busy doing all the things you usually do — plus, you’re doing it all while navigating frozen fingers and finding those long, warm tunics in a material that doesn’t make you want to scratch your arms off.
Sounds fun, right?
Here are 21 things only those of us who have been pregnant in the winter know. Let’s spread the word, shall we?
1. How quickly your regular winter coat will prove that you can’t get through the season without buying at least two new, ridiculously expensive maternity coats that you will never wear again.
2. That some people like to complain about things like “the window being open” because “cold is blowing into the living room” and they “can’t feel their faces anymore,” just because you were trying to cool off a little. Wimps.
3. That getting in and out of your car while wearing winter gear makes scaling Everest look like a piece of cake.
4. That it’s possible to be both constantly sweaty and covered in dry, itchy skin at the same time.
5. NO, REALLY, I HAVE FALLEN AND I CANNOT GET UP. AGAIN.
6. How so many well-meaning people will FREAK OUT when they see you out and about on frosty days, as if you could simply ask your staff to drive the kids around, buy groceries, go to your doctor’s appointments, etc.
7. The confused look on peoples’ faces when they are trying to decide whether you’re pregnant under all those layers or just packing on a few extra kilos of winter casseroles, and how diabolically fun it is to just let them sweat it out.
8. That shopping malls, restaurants, and stores all turn their thermostat to “Bake the Pregnant Lady” from June through to August.
9. That you will discover how to order anything you’d ever need from shopping malls, restaurants, and stores online from the comfort of your couch while wearing nothing but massive maternity granny panties and a tee-shirt and basking in your ducted heating.
10. The excruciating pain of shoving your newly ham-sized feet into winter boots.
11. Hairy legs + the inability to bend over to shave them = free, all-natural thermal long underwear.
12. Despite being uncomfortably hot for the majority of the day, the minute the sun goes down there will not be enough doonas in the world to keep you warm enough to sleep.
13. Glittery sweaters that look stylish in maternity catalogs make you look like a walking Christmas tree ornament in real life.
14. Your doctor wants you to get some sunshine on your face every day to prevent you from getting Seasonal Affective Disorder, and you use it as an excuse to fly to Bali with your girlfriends for a week in July.
15. Each time someone says to you, “It must be nice to not be cold all the time!” an angel loses its wings and you get a strong urge to drop-kick perky people who say dumb things.
16. If they really wanted you to have a happy pregnancy they’d stop hiding the soft cheese and uncured meats from you.
17. Apparently, 12 cups of hot chocolate a day is not what the doctor meant when he said to “stay hydrated.” The killjoy.
18. Witnessing people try not to look so surprised when the first warm-ish day in months arrives and they suddenly see you in an unzipped coat looking about 14 months pregnant.
19. You may be the most independent, strong, incredible woman around, but that doesn’t mean you won’t point to your bump each morning and say to your husband, “Sorry honey, I’d help getting the wood for the fireplace but…” *shrugs*
20. That underboob sweat is a year-round swear.
21. Why bears hibernate.
Graphic: Kim Bongiorno