I am five days away from Baby #2′s due date. I had an appointment with my midwife this afternoon. Sometimes, I wonder why I bother speaking at all during these appointments. Don’t they know by now that hormonal pregnant women just want encouragement, commiseration and the promise of some very good drugs?
What does the last week of pregnancy feel like for me? Swelling, sick, painful and tired in ever-increasing amounts. This is the part no one talks about and women try to forget. I am taking paracetamol, but it barely takes the edge off.
I told my midwife about the pain and her response was, “You need to surrender to the situation.” I squinted my eyes, holding back my tears and angry laugh. I thought to myself, “You have got to be f$#@ing kidding me! What kind of airy fairy garbage is that?”
Surrender myself? Do you even see this person sitting across from you whose body has given itself over to a little person for the past nine months? Whose body will continue to be in the service of this little being for the next several months. I barely recognize myself now, have lost all sight of my feet and waist and have nearly lost control of some pretty major bodily functions. I lay in bed as the baby beats me up from the inside. She twists her head in my pelvis. She kicks and swishes her back against my skin that is spread paper-thin to accommodate her aquatic paradise. Surrender myself?
She tried to dress it up by explaining how adrenaline counteracts the body’s natural hormones or whatever that trigger labor. I gritted my teeth and smiled my best American smile and got the hell out of there as fast I could. She smiled and shook my hand. I sure she felt she’d really helped me.
Just tell me it sucks, but it is worth it. Just tell me that you cannot imagine what I am going through and would not wish this discomfort on anyone, but it will be over soon. Show me cute baby pictures. Remind me that the best things in life are never easy.