February 8, 2001
Pregnancy Miscellany, Part 2

Today's Pic
The water bottle is now a permanent fixture in my hand.
One year ago (or thereabouts): I called her "Evil Thyroid-Slayer."
   

You know that feeling that every pregnant woman gets at some point?

"My heavens, I'm huge! I'm a house! I am impossibly big right now!"

Well, in my case, it looks like the feeling is not all in my head. Although I've been gaining the "right" amount of weight, my uterus is apparently way ahead of schedule: at the very beginning of my twenty-fourth week of pregnancy, when my uterus is supposed to be measuring at about 24 centimeters, Mary Ann measured mine last night to be 31. Eep!

Now, I'm not too concerned, since Mom also always measured big; when she was pregnant with my brother, she broke the calipers they were using to measure her. Neither Cory nor I was huge at birth. As I've been following in her footsteps for most of this pregnancy, I can see no reason why we should differ in this. I had to remind her of that, though, when I called her last night and her initial reaction was, "Are you sure you've got only one in there?" Thanks, Mom.

Still, it's hard not to focus on it. I mean, I was feeling large before; now that I know I'm big, I feel doubly unwieldy, doubly enormous. When I look in mirrors, my eyes are immediately drawn downward to the swell of my stomach, even before I meet my own gaze. I can't block out the worry that the Bit is going to be a huge baby. There's no real way to tell except by ultrasound, and even those are notoriously inaccurate about predicting weight. Mary Ann didn't flip at all, which made me feel much reassured; even after I asked whether or not 7 centimeters high wasn't a touch high, she just smiled and said that the numbers weren't all that important anyway, and since everything else looked wonderful, I shouldn't worry.

And everything else did look wonderful. The Bit's heartbeat was strong at 157 beats per minute, my blood pressure, weight, and diet are all A-OK, and I feel excellent when I'm not rushing to the bathroom. The only concern I had was the ankle swelling, but after we discussed it, we came to the conclusion that it's due to the library being kept so dry. Dry is good for books, but not so good for people; even though I'd already been drinking a ton of water, Mary Ann recommended that I up my intake even further while I'm at work. (The other librarians think my frequent breaks for the bathroom are hysterical; I can't wait to see their faces when those breaks become even more frequent.) She also gave me a prescription for water aerobics classes that are held in one of the local hospitals! Who knew? Hopefully, I'll be able to switch my work schedule so I can take them; the next class won't be until the end of April, and I should be enormous enough by that point that somebody will take pity on me.

We have an appointment with Barbara and Joy tonight. I hope they'll agree with Mary Ann that my size isn't a warning sign; I'd hate to be risked out of a homebirth because of a genetic predisposition to grow an extra-roomy baby nest.

   

In other news, yesterday I had my very first vibe about the Bit's sex. I was chatting away to the baby, mixing pronouns as usual, when suddenly I had the distinct feeling that I should be using "he" and "his" pronouns. It wasn't a strong feeling, but it was definitely there.

I don't really place a whole lot of credence in mother's intuition in these matters, but it's hard to deny the fact that on one of the forums that I moderate, a poll of mothers' guesses lined up with ultrasound results has shown some scary odds. I believe that only one or two of the women who took a guess ended up being incorrect. It's a fifty-fifty shot, but those numbers are uncanny. I'm not rushing out to buy blue jumpers, but I'm certainly not going to discount any feelings about this, if you know what I mean.

Eric, on the other hand, doesn't buy it one bit. He's still deadly certain that I'm carrying a little girl; when I told him about my vibes, he replied, "Well, you just send the vibes away! We're having a daughter!"

Now, I know that he'll be perfectly able to adjust to whatever we end up having, but we are left with a slight problem: he won't participate in any discussion over boys' names at all. We've only got a couple of names that he hasn't totally pooh-poohed, and he's not really in love with either of them. Eric's not concerned, either, as it's all a moot point, see? I tried starting the conversation yesterday by throwing out random boys' names, and it didn't go well:

ME: What about Phillip?
HIM: What about Melchizedek?

Some of the ladies at work think I should threaten to just name the baby myself if he won't participate, but I hate to take that step. I want him to like name we select, not just tolerate it. We have plenty of time, but I'm a trifle concerned that we'll be left without a name for weeks after the birth, with Rita calling hourly for updates. Not the way I like to envision my postpartum period.

   

This journal is taking a decidedly baby-oriented slant these days. I promise, it's not that I'm consumed with thoughts of motherhood; it's just that there is little else going on. Things in the library are rather quiet; I'm halfway through a storytime session that is going rather smoothly and unremarkably. The classroom collection project is completed and being circulated, and it's still a bit early to do much with the upcoming Summer Reading Program. I'm reading and weeding, shifting and sorting. It makes for a very dull workday, I'm afraid, and not much of a journal entry.

It's also hard to keep the baby from the forefront of my mind when every time I turn a corner, one of my coworkers is shrilling, "How's the little mama?" The "little mama" has about a hundred and sixteen days left to go with this, and she is finding it rather tiring to keep repeating how fine she is, how she feels wonderful, and how she, too, can't wait to see the baby. It gets really old really fast.

Anyway, I promise that the moment something else exciting happens, I'll be just as eager to write about it as you are to hear about it. In the meantime, please don't think I've entirely lost my sense of independence from the babe. I do have a life; it's just that the baby's is more interesting than my own at the moment.

   

Though this fact will be of interest to almost nobody, I bought my first set of diapers and wraps yesterday. I was, and am, almost stupidly excited about this.



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