Some new moms I've talked to recently just gush over how much they loved being pregnant. They talk about it as if pregnancy was a magical fairytale filled with nothing but pleasantries and catchy musical numbers sung in harmony by the birds outside their window.
At first I thought that made me unfit to have a uterus because I'm not of the same mindset. Don't get me wrong, I'm filled with excitement and wonder and curiosity, but dry heaves and itchy stretching skin are not my idea of a good time.
I know I've been fortunate. My morning sickness was very brief and only once resulted in actual vomiting. I've also discovered that the nasty prenatal vitamins that reintroduce themselves in the form of chalky-tasting burps can be quelled if taken right before bed. Plus, my inexplicable cravings and crying fits have subsided, leaving me feeling much more like a person these days and less like a host organism.
But just when I thought I'd hit my stride, when the second trimester (the one that every medical reference book refers to as the "feel-good trimester") was in sight, all these other things started happening.
Things like clumsiness and forgetfulness.
Ever since I was little, despite years and years of professional dance training, I've always been a little clumsy. Nothing drastic, but it's not unheard of for me to catch the toe of my shoe on the one-eighth of a difference in a crack on a sidewalk. For this, my mom often called me "Grace."
Well, Grace has not only reared her uncoordinated limbs, but I think she's taking up permanent residence. Well, at least until November.
A few weeks ago, I tripped walking up the back steps to our house and landed on my hands and knees stunned, wondering what the hell just happened. I was fine, not a scratch or bruise and certainly nothing to worry about, but I couldn't shake the feeling that I didn't have total control over my own movements anymore.
My clumsiness made itself known again last night when I broke a juice glass while making dinner. A no-longer-sold-in-stores juice glass.
I'm not even sure how it happened. One minute I'm straining orzo over the sink and the next minute my elbow bumps into a nearby cutting board, causing a chain reaction that I was incapable of stopping. The cutting board knocked into the olive oil, the olive oil collided with the recipe box and the recipe box pushed my water glass right off the edge. And I am convinced, CONVINCED, that the pre-pregnant me would've been able assess the situation fast enough to hold out my one free arm to stop it.
But, no, not anymore. Now I'm left with a set of 11 juice glasses. And I will forever obsess about the odd space in my cabinet and curse Crate & Barrel for discontinuing that glassware line.
The only thing worse is the forgetfulness. It appalls me. I am the together one. I am the one who remembers appointments and makes sure Jerry and I have everything we need before leaving the house. And I certainly never leave anything behind when we go places.
That was before.
Now I forget to put the milk back in the refridgerator or struggle to find my hair ties. The ones I always leave in one of two places. Well, used to leave in one of two places. Now I find them scattered all over the house. But only when I'm NOT looking for them.
Another example happened few weeks ago. After frantically searching every corner of our house to find my camera, I employed the childhood tactic of retracing my steps and came to the conclusion that I might have left it at my mother-in-law's house. One e-mail later and she informs me that not only is my camera there, but I left behind my sunglasses and a hair tie, too.
When I explain how exasperated I am about these changes, experienced mothers just nod their heads and smile. Annoyingly, it's often the same ones who say they loved being pregnant.
As for Jerry during all this? All I have to say is thank GOD he's reading a fatherhood book which explains everything. Whether I trip or lose or break something, he's there with exactly the right thing to say.
"The book says you'd be forgetful and clumsy right about now."
And for that I could just hug him. Well, if I thought I could manage walking the two steps in his general direction without tripping or breaking something ... else.