Waiting for a baby can look like many things. It can look peaceful and reverent. Or it can look impatient and frazzled. Mostly around here, it’s lookin’ pretty frazzled.
It’s lookin’ like alternating between a state of ready anticipation when I’ve gotten the dishes done, the house organized and I’m feeling prepared, to a state of utter despair and frustration when I can’t seem to lift a finger or get off my ass to do anything and it feels more every day like I’m living the same day over and over, like Bill Murray in “Groundhog’s Day” and that this whole baby thing is actually just some kind of hugely orchestrated practical joke. From my body to me, I guess. I usually do at some point, after the fact I can never seem to recall the exact feeling, but I have actually reached the place where I honestly don’t ever think I’m going to have this baby. Intellectually, I know that I have to have him, and soon, but it just doesn’t feel real any more. It feels like it’s never actually going to happen and that I will remain pregnant forever.
“Aren’t you missing work?” Very good, astute neighbor lady who talked with Greg the other day as they were both taking out their trash to the curb. “You should go in and just have her call you when the pains start.” This would clearly be an older person, someone with very vague and cloudy memories of what having babies is all about and someone who definitely doesn’t have a clue about paternity leave or what a man’s business is staying home after a baby at all. Even being in the delivery room for that matter. Thanks, neighbor lady, for pointing out the obvious. Greg basically wasted his first week of leave staying home with no baby arrival. Boo. Double boo. Not that it has been a total waste. Lord knows I’m in no mental state to be dealing with Ruth and Joel alone at this point. I’m sort of checked out, you could say. So it’s been good that he’s been here to sort of step up in the kids-wrangling department. But still, Greg was supposed to take off for the baby. And there’s no baby. That doesn’t feel good.
“Your dad and I have one nerve left and your son, Miles, is on it,” e mail to Greg from his mother. Yes I snooped when I saw the title line of the correspondence. Listen, I get it. Everyone is waiting. Yet I can’t seem to muster up even the slightest bit of sympathy for my in-laws. I’m the freakin’ one having the baby here. No one is allowed to express frustration about the situation but me. And you bet your ass I’m gonna express it. And loudly.
My mom came over and made a “Welcome Home Miles” poster together with the kids, except it says “Come Soon, Miles”. Very funny. Very cute. Except…not.
I’m neither the first nor the last person to ever go over their due date with a baby. So I know people know what I’m feeling (not my mother or mother-in-law, though. They both had early babies, so don’t even try it). And I know people would say: just relax. Enjoy this time. Take it easy. He will come. I know that. But it’s not an easy place to be.
I have a prenatal appointment tomorrow I was really hoping to miss. The absolute last thing I wanna do right now is walk into that office again for yet another prenatal check. That is the absolute last thing I wanna do. So, let’s all will for him to be born tonight. Tomorrow morning at the latest. Send me your baby vibes. Pry apart the newly made furniture, loosen any stitches on fabric you can lay your hands on, open drawers and unknot some knots for me (I’ve read that people in other cultures do this sort of thing ritualistically before a new baby is born to help the mother open up and release the baby). Whatever you gotta do. I’m game for anything at this point.