Blow up dicks aren’t typically a decoration associated with pregnant women. Yet I recently found my 5-month pregnant self wading gleefully through cock-and-ball straws, shot skis filled with tequila, and naked hot-tubbers drinking sangria. Even more startling, the scene transpired only a few days after my re-entry to America after a year spent sailing abroad.
I parachuted back to the Pacific Northwest, landing straight into a full-scale bachelorette party for one of my best friends. We jammed 11 women – 3 of whom were pregnant – into a cabin near Bend, along with some stringed instruments, a stocked costume box, plenty of penis paraphernalia, and enough liquor to kill a couple of cows.
Sure, penis paraphernalia is one of the last things I’m craving midway though my second-trimester. But I’d been looking forward to this female festival for weeks, ever since I’d realized we could time our return to surprise my friend. The giggles and raunchy jokes were nectar for my estrogen-starved senses after spending 24/7 with only my husband.
Rob was chomping at the bit to see his boyfriends, too, ready to chainsaw some trees, traipse along streams, and make unwise, testosterone-based decisions. One of the main reasons we decided to put our travels on hiatus was because we missed our people. One year away from friends and family starts to leave a gap in your heart. My husband and I were both aching to fill the hole. I started closing that gap during the raucous weekend in Bend.
I danced and tossed rings at the blow-up dick with the best of ‘em. I mastered the two minute dip-in/dip-out of the hot tub. I matched the sangria drinkers glass for glass with soda water. I put on wigs and hoop skirts, and reminisced with the bride-to-be about past boyfriends. I stayed up way past my usual bedtime.
And when the partying got too intense, I retreated to a quieter corner with the other two pregnant friends to talk about stretch marks and labor positions over hot tea. It was the first time I got to share revelations about growing a person inside of me with other pregnant women. A special treat, in this unlikely setting.
The penis-paraphernalia girl party eased my transition back into “real life” here in the States. It was the perfect mix of old jokes and new adventures, favorite costumes and changing bodies. I’ll be as big as a house when we all reconnect at the wedding in July. Meanwhile, Rob and I are ready to leap into the next trimester – and the next adventure – here in Montana, fortified by the friendships we missed while away.