Monday, April 26, 2010

A year ago today.

This is what I looked like a year ago today (or thereabouts):

I remember this time well. My due date was still a week or so away, but I was ready. My back hurt. A lot. My hips creaked and popped when I walked. I stumbled and fell frequently (much to the alarm of onlookers, who would rush to the aid of the clumsy, enormously pregnant woman).

I was excited and anxious. I couldn't wait to meet this baby! I had outgrown my maternity clothes.

I couldn't sleep. I couldn't get comfortable. The sound of my hips creaking woke me up. Every baby kick left me winded and breathless. So I stayed up late every night reading excellent memoirs about frightening mothers on our reclining couch. (Two rules for life: (1) Never go to the grocery store when you are hungry; and (2) Never go to the La-Z-Boy outlet when you are very pregnant.)


Patience is not my forté. Nor is bearing discomfort quietly (sorry, Steve!). My mom jokes about how she is a member of the "Bitch and Moan School of Enlightenment." Okay, she might have said, "We are members," mother and daughter. Whining was, and continues to be, my favorite coping mechanism. It is not generally mentioned in the natural childbirth literature as a coping skill in labor, but I relied heavily on it then as well.

(Actually, it is mentioned in the natural childbirth literature. The great Ina May Gaskin says: "If you can't be a hero, you can at least be funny while being a chicken." Words to live by.)

I was convinced that I was going to be pregnant forever. I admit, I was somewhat unclear on the details, but I was pretty convinced that this baby would stay in there for years, and I would have to give birth to a school-aged child, or worse, a hundred pound teenager, and - yikes - that really would be unpleasant!

When my mother told me that "totally losing your mind" is a sign of impending labor, it actually cheered me up. Quite a bit! I was like, "Well, I definitely have that sign!"

I ate. A lot. I took long walks (and stumbled and fell). And I waited.
 

4 comments:

  1. Aww, you look so adorable and happy in all those pictures! If I didn't acutely remember your misery, I'd be convinced that you were actually one of those serene glowy pregnant people :)

    Also, a moving picture! April 24, 2009.

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  2. Man, we weren't in touch so much when you were pregnant, but all these details seem so vivid to me because you shared them all when I was pregnant! You were such a source of strength, empathy, and reassurance to me. When I was absolutely batty with impatience at the end, I remember you told me to go to the racetrack. Excellent advice. Diversion is KEY. This account of your pregnancy is much more sanitized and charming than what you told me, but I suppose it's best that the gory details be kept among the initiated... otherwise no one else would ever reproduce. It's a wild, messy, awkward, magical thing that our bodies do, isn't it? Sigh.

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  3. A whole year! You have changed so much, but not as much as Joe!

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