or lounge or lay as the case may be.
I wasn’t going to take a commenter up on the suggestion that I photograph what I see from bed rest, because well, our apartment is much more functional than attractive. The lighting is bad and it’s kind of mess. I’m too much my mom’s daughter to want to show you all the ugly white walls, the maternity pants hanging over the wine rack or the papers, nail clippers and other random things on our dresser. But not enough of her daughter to insist that Josh waste his time cleaning it up. And, no, that is not in any way an attempt to guilt him into doing it.
I took this shot because Josh and I were interrupted in a discussion by a screeching squirrel fight in our backyard. Tom reacts to animal squabbles like any good middle or high school student – immediately stops whatever he’s doing and rushes to the scene of the noise. If he can’t see it from one window, he’ll rush to every other window in the house until he finds it. Midnight enjoys a good squirrel battle as well, but she’s not about to leave a good napping spot in the living room to watch. As you can tell from the photo, our yard has and is surrounded by several very large trees. It’s thus a popular place for squirrels, birds, and neighborhood cats to gather. As the squirrels prepare for winter, the fighting will become louder and more frequent.
As the weather gets colder, I too have to acknowledge that time is moving on. I’ll be 31 weeks pregnant the day after tomorrow. Whatever happens, I have to deliver this baby. My due date is 9 weeks away. Inevitably in just over two months now we will all know, for better or worse, the conclusion of this pregnancy. We, Josh and I and our families that is, will be facing the imminent one year anniversary of Natan’s birth and death.
Thanks to a very astute commenter/reader who emailed rather than commented, I realized that my fears and concerns with labor have little to do with what can be written in a plan (not returning to that question though – I’m going to do it.) I’m anxious about the finality of labor and birth. I’m anxious because I can’t actually plan it. I don’t know when it will be, what it will be like. Will it be an emergency, or a routine? Will I end up with a live baby, or a dead one? Chances are, of course, that this baby will live. But my previous tragedy doesn’t exempt me from a new one. But the biggest thing I can’t know is how I will respond. Will my sensory memory cause me to panic? Or will I be calm? Will I be able to keep my mind focused on this new experience, or will I be trapped by recollections of the past? That’s why I’m particularly overwhelmed by this demand that I go to Old Hospital if I deliver before November 3rd. It’s not a bad hospital, it’s just not the one I chose. It adds another unknown, another element to my lack of control. Of course no woman is actually in control of her pregnancy and its outcome, but many women who haven’t suffered a loss can feel more comfortable thinking they do, at least more so than I can. On the one hand, I envy them, but on the other I don’t – because to return to that state of mind might just mean my worst loss would still be ahead, rather than behind me. If I’m grateful for anything at all, it’s that I know now how much I have to fight to stay pregnant. No matter what, I won’t have to learn that lesson from scratch again.