I know intellectually that there is a baby in there somewhere, a very tiny one, but my brain mostly interprets the pregnancy as illness. An ongoing, relentless illness that crushes me into bed and sits on my stomach and won’t let me up except to vomit. And vomiting isn’t a relief. You think it will be, for the few minutes afterward, when your body remembers that it used to be, when you were normal-sick with a stomach bug. But this isn’t a bug, it’s an infestation. No, it’s a baby. It’s a baby.
I had to cancel everything.
The people I had to tell said, “Well, it’s good preparation for motherhood. You don’t have control!”
But I was going to use these months, I thought feebly. I have so much to do. I’m supposed to finish a book. I’m supposed to get a book deal before I have this sudden baby, so that I can feel satisfied about having done something big with my career before everything is different. The impending baby sometimes looms large, like a loss or a magical, unknowable portal that I am headed straight for. Like knowing if you keep going that way you’ll drive off the bridge, but your hands are glued to the wheel. What was I thinking? I think, on the toilet for an hour because I can’t poop, crying and humiliated even though I’m alone. But then I’m so exhausted and weak that I can’t remember my own ambition. What was it that I thought I wanted to do with my life? Why did I care?
(since I spend so much time with it these days, I kinda wish mine was nicer. source)
“Did you have morning sickness?” I ask desperately, when I talk to relatives.
“Not really! I felt good!”
And then I have nothing to say to them. I am afraid of how I will sound. Self-centered. Wimpy.
Someone said to me, “I was sick, but I didn’t focus on it. Maybe you’re focusing on it too much.”