Last night we attempted to follow their advice with a nice, romantic bubble bath.
If it weren’t for my pregnancy gas it might have lasted longer than two minutes. As Brent gagged while holding soap to his nose and yelling, “It’s going through the soap,” I laid there motionless. Even as Brent jumped out of the tub knocking over a glass and shattering it on the bathroom floor I soaked. And when he barged into the bathroom with the vacuum and bubbles still on his back I closed my eyes and didn’t move a muscle.
I don’t know how these other parents made the most of their time before baby arrived, but Brent and I have quietly surrendered to third trimester symptoms and given up the dream of grand adventures and romantic escapades before baby arrives. Truthfully, our defeat began before we even got started.
Pregnant woman getting ready for a night out:
Husband would walk into the bedroom just in time to see me half dressed, yelling, “nothing fits!” Sadly, his encouraging comments and wardrobe suggestions only upset me more. Since our dinner reservations were usually for 5pm because I'm tired by 8pm we were always rushing. Occasionally I got teary as Brent put on my shoes and socks either because he was tucking in my jeans wrong or it reminded me that I was too large to bend over. Then like clockwork, I always had to pee right as we were walking out the door.
Welcome to the third trimester of pregnancy or as I like to call it “hide yourself at home and FREAK OUT time”.
The beginning of our third trimester was still enjoyable with...
generous baby showers
a long holiday break with family
and a stellar Lisa Loeb karaoke performance
When January 1st hit however, it was time to get SERIOUS.
Suddenly I couldn’t breathe. Not because I regretted spending the previous months picking out the perfect maternity picture wardrobe and mapping out our restaurant picks for the holidays INSTEAD OF preparing for a BABY, but because my diaphragm was suddenly being squished by holiday food and/ or baby. The only thing that helped was sitting up straight, which would later instigate a fight after Brent insisted that I sit back and relax.
Things to do:
- Pick a pediatrician.
- Return a carload of items to stores that have no parking. (Items: maternity pic clothes I left the tags on).
- Make a trip to Ikea ON THE WEEKEND! Carbo-load the night before.
- Write thank you notes without crying from emotional appreciation, sore wrists or my bad handwriting.
- Put together Ikea furniture...
- Take apart Ikea furniture because it is upside down.
- Call manager at cheap baby store with assertiveness about our furniture we ordered in November.
- Buy new microwave instead of holding the broken microwave door on.
- Call Tom Jowett when the microwave installers can’t fit new model.
- Figure out where the hospital is.
- Attend five prenatal classes.
- Slowly get up and quietly leave the wrong class and find correct class.
- ATTEMPT to spiff up the Dodge Avenger before my parents trade cars with us.
- Explain to the framers at JoAnn’s that we don’t need museum glass for our poster of the alphabet.
- Make an “in labor” playlist.
- Watch The Bachelor.
- And of course, enjoy these last weeks of freedom.
The list might be more manageable if my nesting instinct wasn’t on ludicrous speed. I spent days organizing our pictures all the way from grade school and cleaning out bookcases, which turned emotional as Brent pulled out reminders of many failed career attempts.... All You Need to Know About the Music Business, The Power of PR, Massage and It’s Benefits, Screen Writing for Dummies and Brent’s favorite, When Things Fall Apart. After organizing the rest of the drawers and closets in the house I rediscovered lost items. I’m a little sad I found the electric hair remover I received as a gift (??). Not only are my sideburns gone, but also part of my hair line. Another reason to hide at home.
Despite all the things to do and obstacles that come from being pregnant, I have to say the hardest thing to manage as we close in on our due date are the emotions.
Brent and I definitely feel anxious and scared as we enter the unknown. Our prenatal teacher attempted to convince a room full of first time parents that this is the “best time of our lives,” after watching a video on giving birth... whah whah.
As Brent and I stayed up late one night frantically putting together one of our many unknown baby devices I began to see what our teacher was talking about. After a while of messing with our digital monitor Brent got it working unbeknownst to me who was looking confused... on camera. I looked over to see what Brent was snickering about and spotted my contorted face on the monitor screen. We laughed so hard I wet myself.
Feeling vulnerable will definitely leave you frantic, confused and like that contorted person I spotted on the monitor. But it can also open you up to so many other beautiful things when you let go, laugh and let yourself go... in your pants. In our fragile state Brent and I have already appreciated and loved more freely. We have been put to the test multiple times and are stronger personally and as a couple.
As we step to the edge of the cliff together and get ready to jump I can only imagine how we’ll feel at the end... and as a family.