pregnancy armor (23 weeks)

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it’s been a very cold winter here in saskatoon. it was -36℃ (without wind chill) yesterday. i don’t like the icy cold weather. even though i’ve gotten used to it a bit, every time i go out, i dress super-warm. i wear so many layers that i need an extra five minutes to get ready to go out.

since i got pregnant, i’m taking even longer to get ready while i put on my pregnancy equipment. i call it my “pregnancy armor”. my parents sent me a package from japan which included a haramaki (belly wrap) and a sasae-obi (support belt).

a haramaki is knit tube that you wear around your belly. it’s very important to keep your belly warm during pregnancy. whenever i say this to canadians, they’re always surprised to hear it. but in japan, it’s a very common idea.

the sasae-obi is a belt for protecting my back during pregnancy. it almost looks like a bra for the belly. it’s got a belly-shaped cup and a stretchy belt that wraps around the back. you can find this sort of belt in canada.  adding two layers to my belly really makes it stick out. once i put on the haramaki and the belt and tights and maternity jeans, i look totally pregnant. i think i need some kind of a theme song while i’m dressing up.

i’ve started to experience back pain for the first time in my life, from holding up my big belly. i don’t feel that heavy, but i guess i’m trying to balance my body unconsciously. i tend to sit for a long time when i’m drawing. i try to remember to stand up and walk once a hour, but sometimes i forget. my back aches so bad if i don’t stretch once awhile.

the good thing about this back pain is that i can get paul to massage my back. usually i’m the one who gives him a back massage, because he works for long hours standing up. i never understood what back pain felt like before, but now i know. so i think i can give him a better massage now.

poko-chan is doing well, i think and feel. poko-chan continues to kick hard at night when i go to bed. i guess it’s working on kickboxing technique. i used to get one kick at a time, but now i’m getting multiple kicks in a row. another thing that never occurred to me before i got pregnant is that the baby kicks not only out against the belly but inward and downward. it’s pretty weird feeling, being kicked in the bladder from the inside. another mystery of pregnancy.

i don’t want to criticize poko-chan (new to the world, doesn’t know personal etiquette yet), but please don’t kick my bladder…