July

Today is my last day of the second trimester. I can’t really believe that is the case, but it seems to be true. I couldn’t wait for the second trimester, the golden trimester, where everyone promised I would be so comfortable and etc. And you know, it’s kind of true. Once I got over the fact that I am actually pregnant, and started behaving as such, it was comfortable. Also, you’re really, actually pregnant. The people around you know this, your belly sticks out it a cute and not too big manner, and your baby periodically kicks and nudges you from the inside as a reminder. In case you forgot, for even one minute, yes, you are pregnant.

I love being pregnant. I love having the baby with me everywhere I go. I love having an excuse to put my feet up on the coffee table and ask for a back rub and have an extra oatmeal cookie. I love the way my body looks, for the first time ever in my life. I love the kicks and nudges and knowing that for now, I am taking care of baby just right. He or she is getting just the right amount of food and just the right amount of sleep. He or she is safe in there, and warm.

This is why the last day of my second trimester caused a little panic, a little tightness in my chest. It’s almost over, I thought today. Yes, I am almost into the home stretch, the most uncomfortable period of my otherwise easy pregnancy. I am only 3 months away from meeting our little baby. The shower is a month away — so as not to conflict with any winter holiday celebrations — and we are already a tad late on the invitations. I am almost done, and then I won’t be pregnant anymore.

Instead, I will have to learn to love my squishy, imperfect, postpartum body. I will confront the postpartum depression that I am afraid of. I will have my little one, yes, but with it the knowledge that I will never be pregnant again. This is it. After this, I won’t be pregnant any more, ever again.

Once, when I was in college, on a hot July day, I was walking home from the pool. The grass had just been cut, and the air was hot and heavy and sweet. My hair was dripping down my back and my feet were bare. The sun was beating down so hard it was almost unbearable, probably would have been if I hadn’t just gotten out of the pool. But the light was a little golden, not quite white, the way it is at the end of the day at the end of July. And all I could think was, “I can’t believe summer is already almost over.”

I wish I didn’t do this, live so much in the future that I can’t enjoy the present. It’s hard for me, to live a happiness I know will end. Even if what waits on the other side is another happiness.

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2 thoughts on “July

  1. I could have written large sections of this, your words are so familiar. I think for those of us who know during our pregnancies that it is the only pregnancy we will every experience, each kick and roll and hiccup can be slightly bittersweet. The first couple of weeks after my daughter was born, I would break down in tears when listening to songs with her that she would kick to in my third trimester. As I’ve started to know her on the outside, and my hormones have stabilized a bit, it has gotten slightly easier. One thing I cherish is the video I have of her kicking in my belly. Anyway, thanks for reminding me that I’m now alone in those thoughts!

    • Thanks for reminding me of the same. I don’t think this will stop once baby is born either, that simultaneous feeling of excitement every time they do something new, paired with the sadness of knowing the previous phase is over.

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