It actually made my moves more beautiful because belly dancing and with a baby growing in my belly empowered me.
Physically I would get tired and I couldn't do some moves (like full laybacks or heavy floor work) but I was able to keep up with class.
It kept my core pretty strong so back pains weren't too bad (considering I gained 55lbs).
I had water retention but it wasn't that bad either until 4 weeks before giving birth. When doing some moves it felt funny, especially doing belly rolls, my son would kickback!!! All the shimmy-ing and dancing would rock him to sleep.
When the day of giving birth came I was 38 1/2 weeks. All the dancing paid off, I was able to control my breathing, pain, and contractions, making moves we did in class (like figure 8 and maya).
I had an epidural and even though I couldn't feel much, I knew how to control my core so I was able to push.
Sadly at the last minute, I had a complication and had an emergency c-section (baby looked up).
Having a strong core helped me to heal pretty good. Twenty-three days after giving birth, and with the doctor's ok, I was dancing again.
Belly dancing is a great workout before, during, and after pregnancy; keeps your core strong, empowers you, makes you feel sexier (yes! a belly covered in glitter is awesome!).
I was blessed to have the opportunity to share the joy of my child growing through dance; in each performance, I could feel how strong and big he was getting!
Jen McLellan is a published author and founder of Plus Size Birth and the Plus Mommy blog. She helps people navigate the world of plus size pregnancy, shares tips for embracing your body, and laughs her way through the adventures of parenthood.