Oh yeah, that’s why I don’t like you!

On the beach today, with a relative.  We are watching Baby Man play, and I am thinking about how I would rather be swimming, or digging, or really anything other than talking to this woman. But I feel guilty, because, well, sometimes I wonder if I’m just mean. If I don’t want to talk to her because I think she’s kind of an idiot. She’s not nearly as educated as I am, and I am sensitive to the idea that I might be overeducated and snobby. My head is certainly full of useless information. And well, considering that I don’t have a job and she does, perhaps I’m the clueless one.

Then she asks, “was it worth it, all you went through to have him.” I blurt, “um, well, uh,” but before I answer she says, “how long were you on bedrest anyway?” I say, “most of the pregnancy, but I was really free to walk around after about 34 weeks.” And she says, “why?” And I answer, “well because the risk of pre-term labor had passed.” She says, “Oh, that’s why you were on bed rest? What was wrong with you?” I, confusedly say, “well, my history made me at high risk for giving birth early.” She responds, “Why? Because you had all those miscarriages?” I kind of stop in my tracks and say, “Um, no, because I had a son who died after being born prematurely.” And she says, “Oh right, oh yeah, now I remember,” and wanders off.

Good part about that conversation is: my guilt is gone. I don’t feel so bad about thinking she’s an idiot now.

fyi: I have a plan to try to write something here now, everyday or at least every other day, for a month.  We’ll see what happens.

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9 responses to “Oh yeah, that’s why I don’t like you!

  1. Um… nice relatives?
    I think this is where Niobe says that she’s pretty sure people forget all the time. I still say “what a complete idiot.”

    But yippee for the write often plan.

  2. I vote for swimming, digging, or just about anything else next time you have the choice of whether to have a long conversation with this relative. Lack of education (and incomprehension of your academic lifestyle) is one thing, lack of empathy, something completely different.

  3. Right, Julia. So I’m not pissed off at her. I just don’t like her. Never have. And yet I always feel badly about that because we’ve been accused of being stuck up for not contacting them often! This is the same relative who, years before I got pregnant, lost a bunch of weight, and then tried to pass of her old clothes on me, with the condition “that if she ever got really fat again, she’d want them back.” And then, about 5 years ago, told me I’d better think about having babies fast and when I said, “I’m only 27,” she responded with, “Oh my! I thought you were more like 35.” Argh. How’s that for a goat? 🙂

    I’m taking your advice Rachel and looking for the closest deep water next time I have to deal with her.

  4. Ugh. People. Since we’re preggo again, all the pregnancy/baby talk has started up again at my job and some relatives, with some people treading carefully while most people just plow right in there with questions and comments. This lady takes the cake, though, at least for the moment.

  5. Um, I really don’t like your relative either. She may be stupid, but she doesn’t need to be rude.

  6. she sounds like a self-centered twit with no social skills or empathy, let alone brains…all around.

  7. Very odd woman. I think it’s not the subject. She sounds pretty awful all around and probably says that kind of stuff to everyone.

    As for writing more? Oh yes, please!

  8. Aurelia–you’re totally right. She says this kind of stuff to everyone.

  9. A colleague recently referred to my stillbirth as a miscarriage rather dismissively. Her work is just as sloppy as her communication. Is it education or is it IQ or experience or enculturation or something else? I can’t find much correlation for why some people remain so willfully ignorant and insensitive.

    It’s been more than a year now. I don’t feel anything when I close my eyes and remember holding his 1 pound warm body or stroking his forever closed eyelids. I do it right now and nothing. I don’t feel sad or angry. Not anymore.

    The only time I do feel anything is when someone who should know better refers to my second born as my first child.

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