Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Waiting is such sweet sorrow...

1 day past due date: The wait begins.

I knew this would happen. I've read, in total, 5 mom-to-be books, perused the "Mothering" and "Babycentre" forums for months now, and am friends with mothers, doulas, and have two very informative midwives. Yet still, as my due date came and went yesterday, I couldn't help but feel a sense of disappointment.

I am unusual, I suppose, in that I am not afraid of natural birth. It just doesn't scare me. I blame this on my mother, who has but a vague memory of her birth story, and always recounted it as 'not so bad'. My grandmother did four natural births before it was socially acceptable; she had to scour New Jersey to find a doctor that would agree to it. So this is the tradition whence I came. My mother didn't even know when I was due. We are very casual in our strength as matriarchs. I am not afraid of pain.

I am, however, afraid of missing out on spontaneous labour. I'm afraid of knowing in advance, whether it be in the form of induction or c-section. My mind will build it up too much and then yes, I will feel fear. Fear of staph, scalpels, pitocin, cervadil, extractions and infections. A series of contrived words that all seem to be missing vowels and humanity. Things that I don't want involved in the birth of my baby boy.

I think a lot about him these days. I wonder if he'll have the thick, spiky black hair his dad sported from birth, or my own downy peach fuzz. I wonder if he'll be willing to try calamari, foie gras and sushi, or whether he'll insist on hotdogs at every meal. I wonder if he'll like me. I wonder if when he cries it will make me cry, or when he pukes, if I'll puke. I wonder what we'll have in common when he's a teenager, if anything. Regardless of the answers to any of these questions, I am so excited to find out.

In a more trivial vein, I am also looking forward to getting back on the treadmill (metaphorically, of course, since sidewalks are just as good, and free) and getting back to myself again. This kind of 'body as temple' responsibility just doesn't suit me. I am a woman of evening cocktails, a late evening cigarello, and yes, I like to look sexy. Once you're pregnant, you immediately feel guilty for all of these things. Smoking and drinking most obviously -- but more insidiously, looking sexy. As soon as you see that tiny person scooting around on the ultrasound screen, you feel wrong wearing red lipstick, high heels and a pushup bra. There's a tiny baby being held inside you after all, and I doubt he'd choose for you to dress that way! haha. It's a strange thing. A strange sense of responsibility.

So here I am, waiting for my baby to come, with so much important (and less important) things to look forward to! Either way, he'll be here in the next 13 days. Huzzah!

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