The Sisterhood of the Traveling Maternity Hoodie


As I neared the half-way point of my third-and-final pregnancy (you know, when it’s no longer optional to wear your non-maternity clothes), my friend Lauren asked me if I wanted to borrow her maternity hoodie. Since this wasn’t my first rodeo in the maternity department, and I already had two previous “seasons” of maternity wear, I was dismissive at first.

“Nah, I’m good. I’ve got a few of those,” I said.

“Trust me, this one is different,” she insisted. “But, you have to promise to remember to get it back to me after you have the baby, so I can pass it onto someone else.”

Okay?? I decided to give it a shot. Besides, I was already sick of looking at the clothes I’d already worn through my previous pregnancies. She promised to drop it off sometime soon, and I went about my day. A few days later, we met up for a playdate, and she deposited a plastic Target bag in the back of my car that contained a nondescript black, zip-up hoodie. I carried the bag into my house when I got home and threw the bag on the floor of my closet and forgot all about it. Until the following weekend, as I was rummaging through my storage bin of maternity clothes, trying to decide what to throw on to take the kids to the zoo, and I decided to try on the hoodie and see what all the fuss was about.

Well, the heavens didn’t part, nor did the angels begin singing, but I had to admit it was comfortable. Just the right length, just the right amount of stretch, and a simple solid black color. I wore it that day to the zoo, and then the next day as we were outside working in the yard, and then to gym the following Tuesday…you get the idea. A well-made piece of maternity clothing gets a lot of play, mostly because you literally can’t fit into your “normal” clothes and don’t have many other choices left. I wore that hoodie A LOT during that pregnancy and a fair amount in the post-partum stage. And truth-be-told, I was sad to see it go when I finally cleaned out my closet and started swapping back in my non-maternity clothes.

As I handed it back over, my friend wondered who the next lucky recipient might be. Turns out, I wasn’t the first girlfriend who had been bestowed with the infamous black maternity hoodie. She had lent it out before, and she planned to keep lending it out for as long as it held up. A few months later, a co-worker of mine announced her pregnancy and mentioned she was shopping for maternity clothes. I brought up the infamous hoodie, but warned her that I didn’t know for sure whether it had already been loaned back out or was otherwise available, but I would check. Lucky for her, it was available, and she became the next lucky wearer. She wore it throughout her pregnancy, and just recently cleaned out her closet and returned it to its original owner.

We laughed about its journey from girlfriend-to-girlfriend and wondered who the next lucky mom-to-be would be. The funny thing is, it fit all of us perfectly, even though we are totally different shapes/sizes, and it never seemed to go out of style (and we all know that for some reason, the makers of maternity clothes got together and decided to make all their clothes on trend, so as to immediately distinguish the hand-me-downs and the “first baby” leftovers) And maybe it was my pregnant over active imagination at play, but I could swear that a little bit of luck, good vibes, and a shared sense of motherhood came with it.

My husband happened to overhear a conversation between me and my friend recently as we were discussing how great the hoodie was, and I joked that it was so great that it almost made me want to get pregnant again so that I could borrow it again…just kidding!

(the only picture I could find of me in the hoodie)