Friday, September 10, 2010

on gratitude

It occurs to me, after re-reading a few of my latest blog posts, that I sound rather cranky lately.

To some extent, I am. I don't think there's much you can do about the fact that the last weeks of pregnancy are, unavoidably, uncomfortable. I don't sleep much, between the getting-up-to-pee and the hips-aching-from-side-sleeping phenomenon. (In general, I eagerly look forward to the day when I don't have the urge to pee all the time.) I feel short of breath pretty often. The BH contractions are more frequent - not enough to worry about, but they worry me anyway. The morning vomiting is not my favorite thing.

But there is something much deeper than all the temporary discomfort, and I doubt I've made that clear enough lately, both here and within myself: that I am grateful. My eagerness to finish this pregnancy is motivated somewhat by the discomfort, but much, much more by hardly being able to wait to meet this baby. And there are a million times during the day when I have to pinch myself (metaphorically) to believe that such a thing is actually happening to me, to us.

Six weeks, six days until the due date. Maybe we'll meet you earlier, maybe later. But after all these months - which seem both like the longest and the quickest months of my life - you are still real. You are still kicking and hiccuping, in spite of all my anxiety and doomsday fears. Sometimes I can hardly think about the day you will arrive, not because I'm afraid of it (well, I am, a little bit) but because the whole idea of that day fills me with such joy that I think I might burst into a million pieces just imagining it.

You know how, when you try to imagine that the universe goes on and on forever and ever, how your brain just stops at a certain point because you can't envision something so expansive? I wonder if that's why I focus so much on the discomfort of right now: because that's manageable, most of the time, and small enough to be real. Whereas this child is such a big dream, has been so unattainable for so long, that my brain just shuts off when I try to think about really being a parent.

There's fear there, for sure. I still imagine things that can go wrong, that do go wrong. And fear can make you cranky. But, bit by bit, it's being swallowed by something else. I think it's joy. And gratitude.

That's all. I just wanted to make sure you know that. And remind myself, while I'm at it.


  1. I'm very excited for you and your pregnancy has given me a lot of hope for my own personal situation. Wow, only 6-7 more weeks until you meet your beautiful baby! Very exciting. Hope the last part of your pregnancy brings a little less nausea.

  2. SO happy for you! Nausea and achiness is perfectly crank-worthy; none of us would see that as a lack of gratitude, but it's nice to read your happy thoughts too.

    And your post on advice was brilliant!

  3. What a sweet and incredibly true post. You really put into words what so many of us IF girls feel during pregnancy. I often said that I complained about things just to remind myself that I was actually pregnant. :)

  4. I struggle with this a lot -- I am incredibly grateful, but also incredibly cranky a good deal of the time. Pregnancy and parenthood are physically and emotionally challenging things. I don't think that struggling to get there makes that any less true.

    So excited for you that you've only got 6 weeks to go!!

  5. Argh, I'm so sorry your nausea came back. I'm still waiting for mine to go. Pleeeaaaaase don't let me get it back....
    You said just what I'm thinking. All I do is write about how awful the symptoms are, but of course I wouldn't give it up for anything. I know it's naive, but it's also funny, getting pregnant took so long and seemed so hopeless, I thought for sure it was the hard part and once I was finally pregnant it would be all rainbows, glitter and unicorn farts. I think it just shocked me that pregnancy is actually really hard! Worth it, but hard!