I had my appointment earlier this week where I learned that I have gained 10 pounds since my last doctor’s visit, making my total weight gain so far 24 pounds. My doctor read my chart on her screen, smirked then said, “Looks like Christmas was good to you!” Yes, Christmas. And the spinach dip they sell at Safeway that I just inhale. I’ve really let myself go…to the Chinese buffet where they have all-you-can-eat crab legs. I’m sure whenever we walk in, the staff lets out a big sigh because they haven’t set out the new platter of stuffed mushrooms and they know I’ll be there, vulturing over the steamy metal trays until someone refills it.
I’m about three pounds away from what I was when I gave birth to Nathan and I have 11 weeks to go. There are two voices in my head, the one that says, don’t worry, it’ll be fine. You will gain weight, you will lose weight, get over it. Then there’s the voice that says, Hello Chubs. You have returned. My face and body are transforming into something bulbous and I know by the end of this pregnancy or BEAUTIFUL MIRACLE OF LIFE, I’ll look like I ate my former self or someone stuck a rubber tube in my mouth and inflated me.
I don’t drive to work so I waddle on the bus and then to my office. Everything feels like an incline and when I do have to walk uphill, even if it’s in the stairs in my house, it’s like some Argento-style body vise has taken over my lower half. The pressure is sometimes so intense, I have to go to a zen place or else it’ll look like I’m making a half-pained/half-sex face as I’m walking. Not awkward at all!
And yet, despite all this gruff and grumble, I am so excited for this baby. I can’t wait to see, smell, and squeeze this little one. I have so much ready for him–clothes, bottles, a stroller. There is also the unknown–will he look like me or will he be another mini-Mike? Likely, his genes will dominate this child, my only offering will be dark eyes and a propensity to say, “It’s Mario time!”
I am filled with other questions–Should Mike and I take a refresher course on newborn care or trust that our faculties combined–plus whatever I can get him to watch online–will be enough to see us through? How am I going to configure this house to host my mother, a woman who says, “Don’t worry about me! I’m not delicate!” Yet, she is that very word, demonstrated through such acts like buying us a huge flat sheet and saying, “Put this on your couch! Cover your couch!”
The only thing I’m sure of is that this child is taking up more and more room in my body, so I’ll have to administer some quid pro quo rib pokes when he’s born and say, “IT DOESN’T FEEL GOOD WHEN SOMEONE DOES THAT TO YOU, DOES IT?!”