Post #5: Bear With me While I Overreact

It’s been one of those rainy weeks in Scotland that all the locals warned me about. Rainy days are often lazy days, and so when I saw the somber ten-day forecast, I took an oath to vigilance in making sure that I was consumed by laziness. And I did well! Brayden and I went to the library, I finished a few projects around the house, cleaned, and even squeezed in a couple of strolls and park visits when the weather wasn’t too bad. Then, yesterday, it was the brightest of the gray days I’d seen all week. With a seemingly diminished threat of rain, Brayden and I set out enthusiastically to the walking street for errands and a lunch date. Kevin had the car, and so we packed up the stroller and marched the mile to the shops at the center of town.

After a lovely lunch at a coffee shop, we stopped at the bank to complete our afternoon’s checklist. There, a lady in line behind me looked me up and down, and inquired as to when I was due. I said the end of November with another little boy. That’s when she said it, the three words that marked a change in the tone of our conversation: You look tired. Stop here for a second. Whether I’m pregnant or not, I hate when I hear this, especially from strangers. I think that this phrase is confused as the polite way of saying “You look like crap” when in reality there is NO POLITE WAY of saying “You look like crap”. In this particular case, the most annoying part of it all was that I had actually done my hair and put on a little makeup before heading out that morning. I’d looked in the mirror, and thought to myself, not bad Sarah, not bad at all. Well, clearly I had been mistaken…

Anyway, it gets worse. You’re carrying awfully low, she went on. Well, I carried my son like this too, I replied, trying to remain friendly even though I was becoming increasingly agitated by the woman’s expression of… what was that, disgust? Pity? You look like you’re really uncomfortable, she continued. Thankfully, the next teller called for me and I was gracefully excused from anymore discussion/insult. Truth of the matter is, I was uncomfortable. More about my urge to punch this lady in the face than I was about bearing the “burden” of carrying my sweet innocent baby…

As I trudged the mile back home, I was tired. And, yes, I was uncomfortable. And even though the lady had probably made an accurate assessment of my well-being, it still bothered me that she made an assessment at all. Don't get me wrong. I don’t want people coming up to me marveling at my “pregnancy glow” when I’m well-aware that my skin’s reaction to the hormones doesn’t permit me to have one. I don’t want anyone complimenting how well pregnancy suits me when I’m the first to admit that it doesn’t. I’m perfectly ok with it all because babies are worth it, bottom line. I don’t want people lying to make me feel like a pregnancy goddess. However, I don’t need people stating the obvious either. No one should ever tell a 35-week pregnant lady that she looks “tired” and “really uncomfortable”. Unless maybe they are willing to do something that helps rectify the problem, like fund a prenatal spa day or massage therapy session. Otherwise it’s like telling a starving person “you look really hungry”, but not offering them any food. Am I overreacting? Yes. But, am I wrong? I’ll let you be the judge. 


  1. ARG. So annoying! What is it about pregnancy that makes the world feel comfortable sharing what they should keep to themselves?

    My biggest pet peeve - people touching other people's stomach. I swear if a stranger tried to touch my stomach I will be slapping hands.

    There is a line, people. You are on the wrong side of it!

    1. Haha Babs! Belly Barragement! I guess that's one good thing about my awkwardly gargantuan and low-carrying stomach... I think people think twice before putting any hands on it for fear that it might topple me right over! (Heck, they'd probably be right!)