I have had moments to look forward to in my life, massive celebrations. My wedding, the weddings of others, graduations, more moves that you can count on your fingers and toes, special trips, visits, and events.
Nothing compares to anticipating your first child.
As things go on, I find myself wondering how she's doing in there (there being my uterus) - not in the fearful way of the first trimester, more like... "hey there, hiya little girl, whatcha up to?" I wonder when she seems in the process of some crazy movement if it's because she's uncomfortable, or maybe bored, or may just curious to find a different view of things.
I wonder how big she'll be, what her personality will be like, and if she'll be healthy. I think she's perfect, but will she really be? Will she like words or numbers? Will she sing or dance? Will she be quiet or outgoing?
Now that we have half our room stacked with baby clothes, I cannot wait to see her in them. I can't wait to see how her father dresses her - if he favors his own urban, casual style, or if he gravitates towards the sweet dresses and matching hats.
I can't wait to baptize her. I don't know the Catholic service well, but in the Episcopal one, you have to promise that you will strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being. I want to promise to help her do that. If we can arrange it, she'll wear my baptismal gown. A long old-fashioned one that has miniature ruffles over a foot past where any normal baby would end. It's dramatic and gorgeous. I might need to wear a hat and a suit, just to compete with the drama of it all.
Last night I had my breastfeeding class. I went into it scared and lonely and I came out excited. I talked to the lactation consultant about how to ease the process after a scheduled c-section and she showed me information about skin-to-skin contact while still in the OR. Now I cannot relax from the image in my mind of having my sweet girl on my naked chest, with her loving father there beside me... even before they finish the procedure. I hope they will agree to let me do it.
Brief aside: If you want to waste several hours, visit etsy.com and look at baby booties. Even if you don't have children or don't want them, you cannot help but melt at the cuteness. Then when you imagine that the sweet girl wearing them is your very own, it is nearly unbearable!
I won't pretend this process is fun. And I won't pretend that it's getting any easier. I considered ordering take-out from work today, even though there is a deli two blocks away - because those two blocks felt cruel and cold and long. I am the person that used to walk 2 miles each way, just to get a small snack or a specialty drink on a weekend - I called it "wandering the planet." Now, my mind wanders and my body wants to stay put. In my office, I scoot around in my desk chair so I don't have to stand up... I call it my "crab walk" - but it's crazy. And I know I look crazy, I just don't care.
I am getting used to people staring. I stay perky in mood to avoid talking to people... if you say "Oh, I'm doing great!" then people don't press. And that's what I want, keep moving people, nothing to see here.
Oh, but there is... every day my belly is a different shape. At any given moment one might be able to see it move. My clothes are stretched to their limit. There is no such thing as camouflage - there is only looking pregnant and looking VERY pregnant.
And the time is finally close. A month from Monday will be my last day in the office. And there is SO much to do between now and then. And by mid-month, if she comes, she'll still be full-term. There is still plenty to worry about, but gratitude is seeping in. Seeping in with fingers crossed and wood knocking.