09 March 2016

Accepting a new chance

It's one of those lovely frosty-foggy days here in the village. All stationary things seem especially anchored with their bonds of ice while the heavy fog flows elusively around them.

It would be the perfect day for a walk in the woods.

However, I am currently very heavily anchored at home by my expanding belly. The belly itself isn't so much of an issue, but Impending Baby starts hinting that he would like to come soon whenever I move too much.

So, mystical walks are on hold for another week or two, until I reach that blessed 37 week mark and can institute grumpy 'get this baby out' stomps.

This period of stillness is giving me the opportunity to get very philosophical, as you can imagine...since there isn't so much else to do.

The very optimistically entitled 'Orgasmic Birth' video that I watched recently talked a lot about embracing pain and letting it flow through oneself.

And in many ways this pregnancy has been a nine-month lesson in finding my way through pain and discomfort, from the physical waves of fatigue and nausea that ruled the first five months to the emotional weight of worry and sadness as I found myself replaying the same motions and rituals of early pregnancy twice in one year.

It's a complicated complaint - two pregnancies in one year. The ache of the one that couldn't stay (for whatever unknown reason) coupled with the appreciation for the one that has stayed with us longer.

My sister, when I told her I was pregnant again, told me she was so pleased that we'd been given another chance so soon. A colleague who had been struggling to get pregnant said something similar about how I was lucky that another pregnancy happened so quickly.

This helped me re-frame this pregnancy and stop Googling 'chances of second miscarriage' (at least for a little bit), to appreciate this new pregnancy as not just more months of nausea and seemingly endless blood tests, necessitated by disappointment and failure. But its own special miracle. Its own unique roll of the biological dice. Its own promise for a new path for our family.

I still didn't officially tell my boss. It started innocently enough. 'I'll just wait until the 12 week check,' I told myself. Then, 'After the 20 week anomaly scan.' And then I was out of convenient ways to postpone going to his office yet again and telling him a second time that he would need to arrange maternity cover. But the very illogical part of my brain wouldn't let me do the responsible thing - just in case I'd have to say again that a replacement for me wouldn't be necessary.

Bless my manager who called him to make sure he was aware of the timings.

She did, however, suggest in a patient, understanding, and slightly amused tone that it might be a good idea for me to tell the students.

'I'm pretty sure they already know,' she said, looking at my unmissable bump, 'but it might be good for you to tell them about the candidates for your maternity cover that might be coming to their classes tomorrow.'

A couple of the classes actually clapped when I told them....and then reassured me that they were excited for the baby and not for my impending departure. I'm pretty sure that was the first time in my life having unprotected sex has led to applause. It was sweet, nonetheless.

I've put off other preparatory chores as well. Smalls's baby clothes are still in cardboard boxes scattered around our room. I was definitely one of the most heavily pregnant women at the hospital tour I went to on Monday. Packing the hospital bag keeps getting bumped to another week's to-do list.

So, you can see why it's very important that I don't go for lovely misty forest walks just yet.

I am getting closer and closer to embracing this pregnancy, to letting the sadness and worry flow through me. Especially on these quiet days, when I feel little knees and elbows exploring the limits of my belly.

Still, I'm not sure I've yet reached the level of enlightenment (and perhaps complete transcendence of physical realities) that would seem to be necessary for an orgasmic birth experience.