April 6, 2001
The Good, The Bad, and the Boring

Today's Pic
Not much going on, except a whole lot of "Yes, I feel fine; thanks for asking..."
One year ago (or thereabouts): The preservation of the moment is so sweet, it makes my teeth ache even now.

Me at 31 weeks


I am huge.

Yes, I know it's a trite statement for a pregnant woman to make, but darn it, it's one that can't escape my mind. Everything I do or try to do is affected by my current shape. I can't get out of bed or off of sofas without great effort. I can't bend over. I have to go down stairs sideways to avoid tripping over my invisible feet. I am short-winded. Last night I tried to put on a pair of socks and ended up in tears, humiliated, begging my long-suffering husband to help me.

The mothers, my coworkers, the midwives - everybody tells me I look fabulous. I thought the apprentice midwife was going to lose her mind with rapture last night when she first saw my belly enter the room. I tell you this: if all I had to do from now until June was to stand around and look cute, I'd probably think I looked fabulous, too. Life goes on, though, and try as I might, I can't keep up. I dread the moments of waking each night with a painful need to get to the bathroom, because I know that the act of getting out from under the covers, untangling myself from the pillows, and rolling out of the bed will require Herculean effort. This isn't fun, people.

Me at 31 weeksWhat's more, the hormones in my system have now made it impossible for me to ambulate in any way other than a waddle. More than my pride is being injured, though; the halves of my pelvis are sliding against each other and hurting. The first time I felt the pain, as I stood from my chair to find a book for a patron, I almost fell.

Oh, falling. I have no balance left. I trip over everything; when I get into the shower, I am forced to hold onto the walls with both hands and send up prayers that this won't be the morning that I end up flat on my stomach. Complicating the problem is the sheer number of boxes still sitting around our apartment, both empty and full of unpacked belongings. We can't unpack them or get rid of them because until yesterday, the dumpster behind the building was full of more of our boxes. We were waiting patiently for the trash men to come and take the trash, but when they arrived, they took the whole dumpster. Now we have to wait until they bring a new one.

According to information received at my appointment last night, I am now measuring approximately at term. That's right, I'm as big as a normal woman ready to give birth. I have a little over eight weeks left to wait, assuming that I don't go even later, as first-time mothers are prone to do. Barb seems to think I'll go pretty much on time, though, so I have at least those assurances, for what they're worth.

Oh, and I'm ready to throttle my mother-in-law. First it was the pacifier bit, and now it's playpens. As in, she is convinced that we need one for our living room. Never mind that our living room is rather small anyway and would become even more cramped with the addition of another piece of furniture. Never mind that newborns are relatively non-mobile in the first place. Never mind that I am very much a believer in "in-arms" child-rearing, and never mind the fact that Eric actively refers to playpens as "baby jail." She thinks we need one, and so won't be swayed. It makes for frustrating conversation, to say the least.

Oh, and I still can't believe I just posted that last belly picture. Wow.



The baby is becoming more active every day. Two nights ago, when I lay down for bed, Bit began an interesting routine: Flip! Flip! End over end over end. It wasn't exactly painful for me, but it was quite unnerving - rather like repeatedly losing my stomach on a roller coaster. The baby is tightly enclosed now, and, according to the midwives, really shouldn't be able to engage in such games at this point. Still, there we were; the game went on endlessly until I finally fell asleep. When I began to awake the next morning, it was still going on. One can only hope that the Bit won't find as much amusement in the game in a few weeks, when it would be more that just uncomfortable for me.

Everything other than size was right on track at last night's appointment. Once again, the babe was unwilling to cooperate with the fetoscope for having heart tones heard, but the Doppler was able to quickly find a good strong rhythm of 140 beats a minute. The baby is head-down, just like at the ultrasound; as I just illustrated, though, we are still more than able to change positions whenever we like.

Today after work, my coworkers are hosting my baby shower. I'd lie if I said that I wasn't stupidly excited. I never had a bridal shower, so this is a new experience for me. I wonder if anybody is planning any games, like the "Guess how many pieces of toilet paper are needed to stretch around her belly!" one. When one of the ladies had a bridal shower here in December, we played a few rather tame games, so I wouldn't be surprised if the same routine was followed today. I think Eric is a little excited, too, even though he's not coming. The idea of "loot" is always enough to bring a naughty grin to his face; I still remember the expression he wore when he first saw the pile of gifts awaiting us in our suite after the wedding. Of course, tiny onesies and sleepers don't compare to indoor grills, but he's still happy.

Oh, and I think we've finally found a way to put a stop to Rita's endless questioning of "When can I come up after the baby's here?" We're going to tell her to make arrangements to come in early July. The baby should definitely be here, and we should have a bit of time to get used to the new family dynamics before her arrival. In addition, Eric's plant is having summer shutdown then, so although he'll still have to work, he won't be working any insane hours. All will work out for the best.



I'm trapped in my office today, supposedly working on the Summer Reading Program flyer. Unfortunately, I've got the attention span of a two-year-old at the moment, and I just can't bring myself to get down to any actual work. It would be better if I were out with the patrons; at least when I'm there, I don't have to concentrate on any one thing for longer than a few minutes. "Who can I help next, please?"

But the flyer needs to be completed, so here I sit. This has been a most shoddily assembled program, let me tell you. We have a very limited space available this year, as we're still in temporary quarters until this fall. Plus, what with me preparing to give birth, the library is going to be running short-handed. Finally, nobody feels up to staging a full summer program this year, with everything else that's happening surrounding the upcoming library move. I also think the theme has much to do with our reluctance; "Where In the World Are You Reading" should have been an exceedingly easy topic with which to work, so nobody wanted to expend any effort at all.

Hey, it's noon! I'm taking my lunch break! Maybe I'll more productive when I get back. It could happen.

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