Sunday, October 7, 2012

my pregnancy with ember: the belly cast.

So, I didn't think I would do a belly cast.
They do seem very cool.
But all I could think was... "where in the world would I put it? what would I do with a life size plaster belly?"

So I put it out of my mind for awhile.
Then, I think it was in March, I found a link to an online gallery of belly casts. And my brain started getting all gushy about forever and ever having that reminder of sharing my body with Ember. How big my belly was. The shape of me. It's not for everyone. But I know I would have been regretful if I hadn't done it.
I get gushy so easy.

So I decided to do it. My original plan was to order a kit online and do it towards the end of April. Well, best intentions of course, but the money was never available for me to order it and time got away from me.
I was getting bummed out, but bound and determined to make it happen. After some searching, I found out that Motherhood Maternity sells kits. Not my favorite place and not the most awesome kit, but it had the basic materials to get the job done.

We bought it the week before I went into labor.
Somehow, we ended up actually doing it just a few hours before those first real contractions started! Literally, there we were in the kitchen, at about 9pm, plastering my belly. Around 2 am I woke up to contractions, and Ember's birth day began. The moon was full that night, you never know what a full moon will make you do...

Crappy point and shoot pic of me in nothing but underwear and plaster. I guess if I'm going to post undie shots online, this is as good as anything else. (ha ha ha, wink wink wink) Awesomely uncomfortable. My very first cast! Don't you like the plaster on my chin?

Crappy cell phone pic of Neil holding the finished cast.

We have it put away until I finish it. My plan is to get it all sanded down and smooth, and then paint it all one color. Maybe with a sort of distressed look to it. Nothing bright, flashy or crazy. I may go ahead and add a henna inspired design on the belly part of it, but I'm not sure yet.

I recently saw this design and these designs by artist Amy Swagman (she is SO dang good!) and am just buzzing with ideas now.

And what exactly am I going to do with it? Well, I'm going to hang it up in our bedroom, and would like to do one with each of my next pregnancies. I'm thinking having them lined up on the wall would be neat, and a cool way to remember each pregnancy. A part of me still wonders how crazy it might look, but another part of me really digs it. I like that part of me best.
I need to start trusting that part of me.
I'm excited for that meditative process of painting a large piece.

I love that I did it and am so glad I got it done, even last minute. As a bonus, it was another one of those fun things for Neil and I to do together, celebrating the pregnancy.

If we had been on the ball, we would have bought the kit from Proud Bodies. I may purchase one of their paint kits to finish it with. I'm thinking the vintage one.

It's easy enough to just gather the supplies for the cast on your own. For a couple weeks this was going to be my route, but I wasn't having luck finding the plaster strips locally without driving further than my pregnant self wanted to. The kit was really nice, it was all together, nothing forgotten, in one spot. Neil was able to do it fairly comfortably and the end result was what we wanted. For people who have never made a cast before, it was pretty straight forward.

I love thinking about this night. I remember I was kind of grumpy, and definitely sleepy. Earlier in the day we went to Powell Gardens with family, then ate crappy mexican food down the road, and had to drive to a couple places to take care of some bills. While we were in the car, I started having really intense pains in my back and belly. They were the first contractions to really make me think the time was coming soon.
I was glad to get home that night, and I wasn't thrilled to have to stand to get the cast done. I just had this feeling though that if we didn't do it now, it would be much too late. Luckily, I felt alright physically  the contractions had subsided and we got it done.

I remember that next day, when contractions were steady and I knew it was the day, the cast was laying on our dining table, and walking past it and seeing it made me so happy that we'd gotten it done. I loved everything it represented and how just a few hours before, we making it. It thrills me to no end to know that we were doing it just 24 hours before we held our baby girl.

I cannot wait to see it finished and hung.

1 comment:

  1. I didn't give them enough thought until recently, but now seeing them floating around the web, I wish I had. There's always next time I guess.