In case you didn't notice, the last two months of my life have been rather over-stuffed and frantic. Preparing to travel, traveling, multiple flights to multiple places, several different kinds of intense work and family events, studying, exam anxiety: there's been a lot on my mind.
I'm relieved to be done and proud that I did it all. And while I would not recommend this third-trimester schedule to any pregnant women in my life, it did take my mind off the aches and pains and fears, at least sometimes and for a little while. When you are pushing yourself to your physical and mental limits, you have to prioritize where you put your attention. Worrying about non-immediate threats was not an option for me.
Which brings me to today: 37 weeks. Full term. With nothing to do but clean and organize my house. And realizing...
Holy crap, I might actually be having a baby really really soon. Not the hypothetical "baby" I imagined during our years of trying and months of pregnancy. But a real, live, pooping, eating, crying, personal-identity-having baby.
Can I admit that I'm nervous? Not in the horrible throat-grabbing way that terror overtakes me when I worry that something is wrong with Smudgie (and I still have those days and those kinds of fears). But I think in the more general new-mom-to-be kind of way.
Am I ready for this? Will I get any sleep? How will I handle childbirth? Will it be awful and miserable? Will I miss my old life? Will I be any good as a mom? Will our marriage suffer?
I know I am terribly lucky to even be able to ask myself those questions. And a year ago, I would have thought they were all either stupid, irrelevant, or inconsequential. Of course it will be hard! Of course I won't get any sleep! Of course my marriage will change! Why even wonder?
I guess the biggest question that I'm finally confronting is about Smudgie him- or herself. Who is this little person I've been carrying for almost nine months? What will he or she be and do and like and want? We've been a part of each other for so long and it's almost time for us to separate and I am feeling that very intensely all of a sudden. I don't really know you, Smudgie, though I hope I get to spend a lifetime learning all about you. And yet you're the most dearly beloved and intimately known stranger I've ever encountered.
So much right now is mysterious and unknown. I'm excited to learn some of the answers, but also not quite ready to.
37 weeks and finally accepting I'm pregnant. Full term and not ready for it to end. Not sure how to transition from "Please let me keep this baby inside me one more day" to "Okay, time to let the baby out."
I focus on the minutiae of baby prep--choosing an infant tub and organizing shelves and knitting a blanket and setting up car seat installation inspections--because the bigger preparations seem too hard to grasp.
None of it was ever in my control. A lesson I thought IF and loss had taught me, but one I need to continually relearn.
I guess we'll figure it out together, Smudgie, LG, Bella and me. I guess we'll do our best.
I'm back, and it's hopefully not a once-off!!
4 months ago