Here that Jeopardy music? That’s the sound of my uterus. My daughter’s due date has come and gone and here I sit with a belly still full of baby. Hmm, I thought that due date was a magical number given to me by all powerful wizards who had consulted bones and smoke signals to determine that, yes, my baby was going to come on that day. Turns out it was just a “guess” date given to me by normal human beings with a computer calendar. What a let down. I guess there really is no magic left in the world.
And let’s just say it… I’m huge. For the past nine months, I’ve been living in my dad’s old theater shirts because my father, was a tad bigger than me and so they were super roomy and comfortable. Slap on a pair of elastic pants and a painted up HMS Pinafore shirt from 1994 and you got one of the most comfortable maternity outfits in the world. Take that Motherhood and Gap! But now I have surpassed even my jolly father’s gut and the shirts are not the nightgowns they used to be.
I remember the days of shopping or going out with Henry during my second trimester, back when I could see my feet, I wonder if they’re still there. I remember seeing people and having them smile and ask when I was due, telling me I looked great. Now I go out in public and feel like I need a big circus curtain around me, charging admission to look at the whale that can walk and breath on dry land, kind of like “Land Shark”, but in whale form. “Caaaaannnnndddyyyy gram…”
When people used to look at me their faces would light up with the hope of new life, with the rejuvenation of another generation. Now when they see me, they turn pale and start looking for an exit strategy just in case my water breaks and they have to help clean it up.
“Oh my God!” I’ve heard this from multiple people, mostly women. “What are you doing out of the house?” Yes, I should be hidden away, chained to the wall with a burlap sack over my head screaming for sanctuary. The doctors and all of the websites tell you that in order to help induce labor, I should be walking. But now walking means I’ve become a waddling one woman sideshow with people parting on the sidewalk quicker than Moses did with the Red Sea. “LET MY BABY GOOOO!!!”
Last night, I hit a wall about the whole thing. My mom had suggested sitting in the tub with warm water each night just to try to have some time to relax and maybe let things move along. So last night, there I was sitting with an issue of Cosmo, warm water and my own tears. I had even taken one of the Biore pore strip samples out of the magazine and tried it on, in the hopes of making myself feel pretty after the bath. Surprising how a piece of charcoal black plastic across ones nose does nothing for their self esteem.
I was sitting in the tub, with my huge Quasimodo stomach hanging out and bawling like my two year old son without his nap. When was it going to end? I had signed up for 40 weeks of being pregnant and now there seemed to be no end in sight. I’m tired. I’m cranky. I can’t get my shoes on. I can’t sleep at night. I’m done.
Andy came in the bathroom and sat with me. We talked, mostly me weeping and venting and he listening and echoing what I was saying. It was just what I needed.
After talking with him for a while and getting it all out, a memory came to mind. The memory of looking down at that Clear Blue pregnancy test all the way back in July and the rush of excitement that had come over me. At that point, I couldn’t wait to be pregnant again and feel the baby move. I couldn’t wait to spend hours dreaming of holding her and seeing ultrasound pictures of her progress. Then I thought of something else. I began to think of all of the women that buy those same tests each year with excitement and anticipation, only to have that little screen flash “Not Pregnant” again and again and again.
I began to think of my friends who are in the middle of trying in vitro. I’ve heard the costs and the heartache when treatments don’t turn out. I have friends that have gone and are going through adoption proceedings and have heard the costs and paperwork and once again, sometimes heartache that can go along with that. All of these families, trying desperately to be just that, families. Here I sit, having conceived on our first try, having every test and ultrasound come back with flying colors and I’m crying because I have to wait a possible two more weeks to get something that so many people dream of having and struggle to get. To say that I am lucky is an enormous understatement.
So maybe Wren will come tonight or maybe she’ll come two weeks from now after being chemically induced or through c-section. The thing that remains is that she’ll come and that’s the best part of the entire equation.
After all, as I’ve learned time and time again, my timetable is no longer my own anymore, it belongs to my children and I’m fine with that.