Pregnancy is a little bit like a marathon. It’s exhausting, seems to last forever, and at the end you’re just thankful you made it no matter how you got there. There are plenty of highs, but also plenty of lows (hello awkward first-trimester bloat where no one can tell if you’re actually pregnant!). But you know what would make the whole process a lot more enjoyable? Merit badges! You know, like the ones you got back in your Girl Scout days. Or at least the kind I would have gotten had I not dropped out after the second week …
Well, apparently no such badges exist, so I decided to remedy this travesty by creating my own. Over the course of my two previous pregnancies I’ve earned 9 out of 10 of these — not bad!
1. You rode public transit during your first trimester.
Although there are a select few women who manage to escape the first trimester without experiencing nausea and a heightened sense of smell, a great many women are not so lucky. Now braving public transit with its “interesting” (and that’s putting it kindly) sights and smells during that nauseous period? Well, if that doesn’t deserve a merit badge then I don’t know what does. Thankfully I never actually threw up while riding the bus or train, but I came incredibly close on more than one occasion.
2. You did karaoke with friends … and no alcohol.
Karaoke is one of those things that probably deserves a merit badge all on its own, because even in the best of situations (i.e. when adult beverages are involved), it still requires a good dose of courage to get up and sing in front of other people. I actually did this a couple of weeks ago with some friends and when I ordered a ginger ale at the bar, the bartender’s response was, “Um, OK. You sure? You know, there’s no alcohol in that, right?” Yep. Believe me, buddy. I know.
3. You wore a heinous maternity bridesmaid dress in your best friend’s wedding.
You’re a pretty great friend for wearing a heinous bridesmaid dress in a friend’s wedding even when you aren’t with child, but wearing one while enormously pregnant? That takes friendship to an entirely new level: collect your World’s Best Friend badge.
4. You didn’t punch that awkward stranger who touched your belly.
Belly touching? Why do random strangers still think this is OK to do? Do they not know that there are some seriously intense pregnancy hormones at play right now? Good on you for not punching that awkward belly-touching stranger who totally deserved it.
5. You survived that horrible glucose test.
The glucose test that we pregnant women have to take is basically the worst thing on the planet. You totally deserve a merit badge for chugging that thing and suffering through the ensuing sugar crash.
6. You climbed over the passenger seat of your car so you could get out of a parking spot because someone parked too close.
Why oh why must people park so close to the driver’s side door?! It’s basically a pregnant lady’s worst nightmare because Lord knows ain’t nobody squeezing a pregnant belly in-between there! Maneuvering your pregnant body into the driver’s seat from the passenger door while massively pregnant? You deserve an A+ in pregnancy.
7. You completed your baby registry.
Completing a baby registry is overwhelming to say the least. Staring down aisle upon aisle of unrecognizable baby gear is enough to make even the toughest pregnant lady run for the hills. Complete this task and you’ll earn a much-coveted merit badge (no disqualifications for length taken to complete or any tears that may have resulted: a win is a win).
8. You painted your toenails and/or shaved your legs during the third trimester.
Bellies get big … real big. So big that sometimes you can’t even paint your own toenails or shave your own legs. It’s a totally great excuse for a pedicure, but if you’re still managing to DIY it during your third tri, you are truly a warrior.
9. You put on real pants during your final month of pregnancy.
Ugh. Pants. They are the worst during that last pregnancy stretch (pun totally intended). If you managed to put on real pants instead of sweats/yoga pants/leggings/no pants at this stage, you earn all the pregnancy accolades.
10. You made it! You grew and birthed a human! YOU’RE AMAZING!
Yay! You survived nine (OK, really ten) months of pregnancy! You grew a tiny person and got them out of your body. You are the ultimate pregnancy scout!
And now, with a brand new baby, you’ve unlocked a whole new vest of merit badges to earn …More On