Wednesday, February 16, 2011

year of the pregnant woman


It's everywhere, all at once. Bellies and backaches and black-and-white images of tiny clutching fingers. I can't close my eyes without seeing them, without having the reminders put into view. There is talk, too: I listen to discussions of due dates like upcoming grocery trips. April, May, June.

I imagine what I'm going to be doing this Spring, this Summer - who I will be visiting in the hospital or packing up white onesies impossibly small. Whose names I will be writing on cards, wishing them well, sending love through the air to their expanding family.

The numbers keep building - I stopped counting when I reached ten in my immediate sphere. Surely there must be something in the water I murmured to myself yesterday morning. For as sure as I'm sitting here without any news of an expanding family or a little something in the oven, I receive news of another happy expectant. Another, and another.

To have to say it makes it feel so much less true, but here it is anyway: I am so happy for these women. I am happy for these growing families. There is no doubt to my joy, watching the balloon of burgeoning sweetness flying high overhead.

But there is something about standing quietly in the din, when seemingly everyone - every single person around you - is clutching a starched white balloon string, watching their bliss blow and sway in the breeze. I study the bright spheres as they glint, sparkling against a sky impossibly blue. And I wonder what is wrong with me, what has me standing so still and quiet? What message did I miss that this, this is what I should be doing this minute? I left my wash on the line, my hair is tied up in a mess. There is no frenzied preparation taking place back home. Just this feeling of missing out on an important memo. Like wearing a house dress to a fancy dinner party.

If I close my eyes tight, I can see what will take place in the coming months: one by one, these women around me will walk off the field. They will take their party elsewhere, will gather quietly to welcome a little stranger into their midst. And I will be here, scanning the horizon for a change in the air.


clueless but hopeful mama said...

Boy howdy, I do love your writing.

And I remember something like this, when all my friends seemed to get pregnant with their second children all at once and I watched them, wondering.

Amanda said...

Oh Whims. :(

This definitely IS the year of the pregnant woman and your next little bundle of joy just doesn't want to be like the rest s/he wants to be whimsical and wonderful and not part of the pack.

Stacey said...

Oh how I remember all too well being in that world where it felt like every woman I knew was going to have a baby - some so excited, others not. And I am ashamed to say that I could not bring myself to say "I am so happy for these women." I couldn't even bring myself to attend their party.

Then I experienced my own miracle and all my bitterness disappeared overnight. I was so happy and knew I needed to repent of some of my prior thoughts and actions. I knew I should have risen above my trials and rejoiced for others' joys. I vowed be a better person because of this experience.

Then 2 years later I was becoming anxious for another baby and I felt just like you watching everyone around me (some with babes YOUNGER than mine!) preparing to welcome another little one. Those feelings started creeping back in that I thought were gone forever. I'd look at my son and weep because I didn't want him to be an only child - I wanted to give him a sibling, even a lot of siblings.

I have been blessed. And yet here I am already thinking "my daughter will turn 2 this year. I want another! How do we make that happen??" All I know is the Lord is in charge. Sometimes I dream of a day when I'm too old to have anymore and I can just accept that my family is complete and be happy with that.

Hugs to you.

Sara Hammond said...

I don't even know what to say. This is something to near to my heart. I remember, when we were in the same ward, and about every five months there was another round of announcements.

I have been to more baby showers than I can count. I am happy for them. But that doesn't decrease the sadness, the yearning, that is in my own heart-to snuggle close a little one, that I get to take home with me.

angelalois said...

yeah amen. this is a tough one. I feel this um, every single day. Sometimes I don't even want to log onto Facebook because I know the ticker of other expecting mommas will increase.... sigh... but maybe one day, our day will come, too.