January 25, 2012 by Leah
I’ve been taking this Moms-to-Be swim class at the Y on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I love it. I love the excuse to hang out in water for an hour, I love how the aches and pains in my ribcage magically disappear when I’m in the pool, I love the camaraderie, I love that it’s a good workout, and I love being able to discuss all things pregnancy and baby with an audience who won’t get bored with the topic.
Some of the women have known each other forever, some just moved here, some are about 12 and some are in their 30s like me (gasp), some are plump (me again), some are skinny, one is due next month and one is due in June, some are planning epidurals, one is planning a homebirth. Every time someone says, “So, has anyone booked a maternity photo shoot yet?” – which is something in which I am SO not interested – there’s usually someone else to talk to about appropriate brands of laundry soap to use on cloth diapers. Clearly, there’s a wide variety of opinions on just about every topic, and yet we are all respectful of one another and enjoy our time together.
Yesterday I walked in to the Y a little later than usual and saw some pregnant people whom I did not recognize. In the locker room, I realized that they were my classmates but that people look different when they are not wet with scraped-back hair. And then I was overcome with fits of jealousy because, when not in the pool, they all have really nice hair. Like, cut and styled and highlighted and shit. The kind of hair I covet but refuse to spend money or time to achieve. (And let’s not forget that chemical exposure business.) It was enough to drive me to forget all that camaraderie B.S. I’ve been spouting. These women have the kind of hair that maybe can make you forget you’re pregnant and running around town looking like a pale, color-blind manatee.
I went home and related this to Aaron, whining heavily when I got to the “they all have good hair” part.
His response: “What are you, in high school?”
What I wanted him to say: “Maybe you should go get a haircut.”
The whole thing is bizarre. I’m not usually particularly covetous. I need to train myself not to compare me or my baby with other moms or babies, otherwise I’ll probably find fault everywhere and be totally miserable. In the meantime, I might just book myself in for a haircut at an organic salon.