In the last ten days I have outgrown two pairs of pants. As in, ten days ago I could button them just fine, and today I can’t even rubber-band the dang things up. All of a sudden, I’m pregnant.
Dolce and Gabbana have started kicking me regularly and already little personalities are coming out. Example? Dolce, head down feet up by my ribs, is constantly on the move. If I hold still long enough there isn’t a five minute length of the day when I can’t feel him. Gabbana, transverse with her head by Dolce’s bottom, is much more polite. She will flutter her feet every now and then, occasionally poke out an elbow, but for the most part is content just to float.
I’ve lost a lot of energy lately as well. A twenty minute walk around the grocery store wears me out. I take a nap with the kids every day and I really feel like I need it more then I want it. Sleeping at night is hard. Diapering my son has become more of a challenge and I can no longer carry him up the stairs.. He’s just too much weight on this massive baby bump. My belly has begun to itch like mad and my belly button has started to flatten out.
But even with all of that? I’m excited. Excited and happy to be pregnant. I’m trying to enjoy each and every moment, even the hard ones, since I’m pretty sure this will be the last time I get to experience a pregnancy. It is somewhat surreal being pregnant right now. I’ve had whole conversations with new people about parenting that end with me gushing relief that I only have two and how content I am about that. Then I get the big long look at my obviously pregnant belly and a wondering glance before they wander away. It took me a minute the first time that happened to realize how confused I seemed.. although perhaps they just thought I was sporting the most prominent beer gut ever.
Next week P-Daddy is here to visit. My children are really looking forward to it ( a visitor!! doesn’t matter that they have no idea who he is……. they’ve seen pictures! He might as well be family!) and so am I. I plan to steal him for a day and drive to the city to take him shopping for baby gear, then round out the day with lunch with my mother. He’s heard all about her and she, him, and I’m looking forward to introducing the two of them. Should prove interesting! Most likely she is the only member of my family that he will ever meet, so she’s got a lot of representing to do in one short visit!
My family. I did a lot of worrying for nothing on some things, it seems. I haven’t seen any of them since I was first pregnant, and won’t be seeing any of them ( except my mother) till well after the babies are born. Not by choice, that’s just how things have worked out. Hard to be an elephant in the room if we’re never in the same room together, right? Those that want to can just choose to pretend nothing has happened since they won’t be seeing any of it. My father visits occasionally but the timing of this upcoming one places me away from home getting certified as a Doula. The next time I would see him would be at our annual Christmas gathering, which I won’t be able to attend because of advanced pregnancy. This is also the reasons I won’t be seeing either of my sisters or my brother. Very busy and very different lives just mean that our paths won’t be crossing. My husbands family has become very involved, on the other hand. My father-in-law in particular has really come through as a strong supporter and it’s nice having that father figure handy during this journey. I think it’s because he *gets* it more then some others may. He has a son that is not biologically his that he loves and dotes on with a passion.
We had a discussion about our children and I was really able to boil things down to their simplest terms. He asked if I thought it would be hard to send these babies home. Here’s how I answered. My children are mine. They are mine with every fiber of my being, not because I carried them or because I birthed them or because we share a genetic link. They aren’t mine because she has my face or he has my personality. They are mine because I chose them. I chose them with my heart as mine, and nothing is stronger then that choice. Not genetics, not physically carrying them, nothing. But these babies? Are not mine. They aren’t mine not because our genetics aren’t the same, or despite the fact that I am carrying them. They aren’t mine because I do NOT choose them. That lack of choice is powerful. It is that kind of power that makes adoptions, surrogacy, alternative families in general possible.
It makes being pregnant just odd. I don’t have a nursery planned, I am not making lists of names, I’m not buying a larger car or stocking diapers by the truckload; I just get to enjoy pregnancy. That’s all I need to do.
So that’s what I’m doing. Enjoying pregnancy. I eat chocolate by the truck load ( it’s good for the babies!), enjoy my ever expanding girth, fondle all the fun maternity tops at the store, spend a good amount of time each evening with my hands pressed to my belly feeling these babies move, and just enjoy this pregnancy with none of the stress that follows. Newborns. Sweet, smell good……. stressful. None of that, please. I’ll just stick to being pregnant, thanks!