Friday, July 9, 2010

Stares & Shares

Okay, so I'm big. There is no denying that I am pregnant and that I am far along pregnant but now I have to put up with the looks. Wherever I go, whatever I'm doing, I now attract looks from strangers. I waddle and sometimes hobble which only makes it worse. They look at me with love, affection and sometimes excitement. They look at me like there is nothing cuter then a really pregnant women waddling down the street and I must admit I used to do the same thing. How charming, how lovely, is what they think but let me set the record straight, there is nothing charming or lovely about adding to your weight by a third. There is nothing charming or lovely about the multitude of implications that that heaviness brings with it and when these strangers stare at me with love in their eyes, I kind of want to kill them.

Then there are the talkers. Strangers are now continually striking up conversations with me in elevators, while waiting for lights or in lineups and again it's annoying. I don't want to talk to every person on the street about my 'state' and say the same things over and over again. Yep my due date is coming up (obviously I'm huge), no I don't know if it's a boy or a girl, yes I'm really excited and yeah I heard it's life changing having a child. One guy asked me at a light if I was having twins and I almost told him to f-himself but I took the higher road, smiled and kept walking. I don't mean to sound harsh but one of the things I love about living in the city is that you are surrounded by people and are still relatively anonymous. I like walking down the street and not making eye contact and saying hi to everyone. So call me what you will but I do not need the stares or the shares from complete strangers over the private matter of my procreation.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Let It Out

I have had my fair share of whining on this blog and I continually tell myself to focus on the good and stop whining because I am lucky in so many ways. But I just need to let it out so here are a few things that are starting to drive me crazy...

My swollen feet which are way more swollen then before. I have full on cankles and they are not pretty. They also hurt to walk on and of course I don't fit into shoes. This is all old news so I won't belabour it but yeah it's been a long time and a lot of swelling so it's getting old to me too.

My sore back which overall has been pretty good considering I have a history of mild/medium back pain. However, I am not able to do the stretches and/or lie in the positions that make it feel better.

My poor numb hands. Okay so I know I mentioned that I went to the doctor and got a sleeping brace for my wrist which has been working, sort of. I switch is back and forth during the night depending on which hand is really feeling the pain and overall sleep is happening so that's good. However, during the day my hands no longer wake up completely which is extremely annoying. Basically it feels like when you have your mouth frozen at the dentist and then the freezing starts to wear off but it's still sort of tingling, that's where I'm at permanently. I can no longer lift anything heavier then a coffee cup, cutting bread is a challenge and tying my shoes is no longer an option. It sort of feels like I have some kind of degenerative disease and everyday I have less control over my limbs.

Oh and I almost forgot my skin has been terrible and seems to be getting worse. I have awful acne on my face and chest and it drives me crazy. It's just one more thing to make me feel ugly as I balloon into a whale. No glowing for me, unless you count red, irritated skin as glowing which most people do not.

Okay, I think those are my list of complaints most of which are not new but just getting worse and starting to make me feel helpless which in turn makes me crazy.

Let's focus on the good...

I have an amazing husband who despite having a tone of things going on in his life helps me put my shoes on in the morning, rubs my swollen feet at night, takes care of pretty much all things domestics along with all things moving/unpacking related and seems to do all this without any bitterness. What would I do without him?

I am also lucky to be on my feet. I have spoken to a number of women who have been ordered to go on bed rest for 6 weeks, sometimes longer and who have had premature babies (which can bring health complications). I feel very happy that I am still mobile (a relative term) and that the baby is healthy and developing nicely.

I am very thankful to not have any stretch marks (yet). Supposedly 80% of women will get stretch marks but so far my skin is all clear (not including zits which I'm hoping are not permanent).

I have wonderful supportive friends both here and in Ontario. Friends who have been excited and amazing throughout my pregnancy. Friends who have had sympathy and given me a shoulder when needed. Friends who have had babies and who I have been able to learn through. Amazing, amazing friends.

I have an outstanding family both biological and through marriage. They are extremely excited to be adding a new member to the clan. They have all been emotionally and sometimes financially supportive and I am forever grateful. They have also been respectful of me as a person, not pushing anything on me but rather offering me options which is to me the best gift a family could offer.

And of course I am so thankful to be pregnant and that this pregnancy has gone off without complications. That in a few weeks I'll have a baby that will be a part of my life forever and all these silly little symptoms will be quickly forgotten.

Clearly the things I have to be thankful for far outweigh the negatives but sometimes you just got to let it out.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Rite of Passage

So I totally get that for many women childbirth is a rite of passage. I can't help feeling though that too much time is devoted to thinking about the act of giving birth and especially the creation of 'birth plans'. Although I think it's great to have information and feel somewhat prepared for labour I also think that it is impossible to 'plan' how it's going to go. No one knows how their body will labour; will it be fast or slow? Will the baby be in the right position? There are a lot of variables and one of the many reasons that we in Western society are so lucky is that we have a variety of health care providers available for us to access, advise us and sometimes intervene when necessary. Personally I find hospitals, doctors and medical science in general very comforting when I think about childbirth.

However, what I really wanted to talk about was that although childbirth is a rite of passage to me it doesn't really matter how exactly that rite is 'performed' as long as the end result is healthy, happy baby and mother. Too many people are caught up in creating the perfect birth experience and so many feel disappointed and let down if it doesn't work out the way they envisioned.

Another rite of passage I think I can compare childbirth too is the marriage rite or wedding ceremony. A lot of people spend a lot of time and stress trying to create the perfect wedding but at the end of it all the important thing is that you become a wife, husband or partner. Whether you have a church ceremony, a civil ceremony, elope or are in a committed common-law relationship what matters is the everyday. To me the marriage is much more important then the wedding. This is how I feel about childbirth. Whether I have a natural, vaginal birth, c-section or even if someday I decide to adopt a child what matters is the everyday of being a mother. Whether or not I have any drugs to assist in childbirth does not determine the kind of mother I will be. I have some ideas of how I would like childbirth to happen but things might not work out the way I want. One way or another it's going to happen and soon but to be it's becoming a mother, everyday for the rest of my life that I am focused on now and am going to stay focused on.