A New Addition

I feel like I should mention why I haven’t been writing very much here in the last few weeks…and why that trend will probably continue for the next two or three months.  I’m 38 weeks pregnant.  Mostly my energy is spent trying to stay awake during the daylight hours…and manuevering from the sitting to standing position (and vice versa.)

I’d been trying to finish up a couple of different manuscripts before the baby came, and I finished the second manuscript (second draft, at least) last week. Now, of course, I’m desperately ready for him to come like NOW, and he seems perfectly content to stay where he is. Our friend Michelle told us that eggplant parmigiana brings on labor. No luck. Spicy foods, hot peppers–no luck. Telepathically reasoning with the baby–no luck. Jujitsu pregnancy release moves–no luck. (I made that last one up.)  

People keep asking about cravings. I tell you what I’ve been most addicted to–searching for apartments in Paris. I’ve spent hours browsing through apartments on the Left Bank, imagining croissants and pastries and walks at night along the Seine. Apparently being unable to travel makes me obsess over trips I can’t take.  And probably can’t take for a while. I’ve also spent a little while pretend planning trips to Ireland and Australia. It’s a sickness–one second I’m plugging away at a scene I’m having trouble with, and the next second I find myself considering whether hardwood floors make up for the fact that a loft doesn’t have a balcony.

I got several warnings when I was first pregnant that strangers would approach me and touch my belly without asking. That hasn’t happened once. And, really, one of the coolest things about being pregnant–and I don’t have a long list of cool things–is that strangers seem to feel an immediate bond. (A non-touching bond.) With some women in the grocery store, their eyes light up with this sense of recognition, sort of a you’re-pregnant?-I-was-once-pregnant-too! vibe. And they feel like they know you, like the pregnancy itself means they totally understand your whole life. It’s weird, but nice. If there’s a line in the bathroom, I get to skip to the front. I like sisterhood.

Men, too, occasionally seem very excited that I’m having a baby. One guy insisted on carrying my bag to the car for me, even though all the bag held was two barbecue sandwiches (not both for me). Sometimes people pull up in their cars and just ask when the baby’s due and say good luck as they drive away. One woman who was passing out religious pamphlets in a parking lot came up to me from behind, and when I turned towards her, belly forward, she just said, “Sorry,” and walked away. I like to think she was passing out abstinence-related material.

My belly is the size of a bowling ball, and, frankly, the baby in it now weighs more than the size bowling ball I like to throw. I like a 7 to 8 lb ball. If I were throwing this baby down the lane, I would strain my shoulder after five or six frames.

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