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You fell victim to one of the classic blunders — the most famous of which is, “Never ask a woman if she’s pregnant” — but only slightly less well-known is this: “Never ask a woman at the end of her pregnancy if she’s had that baby yet”!
My due date was on Friday. Last Friday. I went to Trader Joe’s yesterday with two of my kids and I barely made it out alive. I could barely push the cart; the physical exertion of walking around the minature supermarket was exhausting. My hips, which by virtue of nature, are getting loose enough to allow a watermelon to pass through, are clicking like I’m an 80-year old in need of a hip replacement. And that watermelon is attached to my front every waking moment, weighing me down like a ton of bricks. I haven’t slept more than an hour at a stretch in weeks, if not months, thanks to a baby playing tambourine on my bladder. I sleep with multiple medications next to me: two for heartburn in hopes that I don’t wake up vomiting stomach acid, and a Tylenol for when the hip pain becomes too strong to sleep.
I am, in short, miserable. Is that coming across?
While I’m not looking forward to the magic of labor, I’m looking forward more to getting my body back. I would like this child to vacate my womb at its earliest convenience. Preferably several weeks ago, but if a time machine cannot be finagled, immediately and without delay.
Which is what makes every text, message, call etc I’ve received over the last few weeks make me want to rip my hair out:
“Have you had that baby yet?”
“Are you in labor?”
“When do you think it will be born? Any signs?” (Do you really want me to give you a graphic update on my cervix?)
“Did you have that baby yet?”
“Why haven’t you had the baby?!”
That last one always kills me; it’s like telling someone with a stomach virus to just stop vomiting already. Oh, I didn’t realize this was something I could control!
They always say, “Never ask a woman if she’s pregnant.” The truism has been meme’ified into oblivion. Every woman has a story about a grocery clerk or relative asking when they’re due. But let’s add another one to the pot: Don’t ask a pregnant woman at the end of her pregnancy intrusive and annoying questions about when she’s going to go into labor.
Please, I beg you. I promise I’ll eventually let you know when it’s born.
And next time (if there is a next time, this is, after all, baby number five for us), I’m not telling anyone I’m pregnant until we have a baby announcement with the date, time and weight printed.Published in