I have been spending a lot of time waiting. Waiting for things to happen. Waiting to see if that twinge is something new or different. Waiting to see if these contractions can be timed or if they go away. Every little twitch and cramp has me stopping what I’m doing and “listening,” trying to see if it’s something new.
I know I technically still have 16 days before I’m officially due, but I have only met one person recently (of the seemingly millions who have had babies in the past year) who was overdue. Everyone else was a week, two weeks, five days, a month early. Something like less than 5% of women have their babies on the actual due date (which leads me to ask what this date really means, anyway), so I’m not expecting to go into labor the afternoon of the 19th. For a while I thought I might be like my mom; going way over and having to be induced. But after having Braxton Hicks contractions for the past three months straight — something I don’t think she experienced — I kind of assume it will be a little early.
And, yet, nothing has happened. I’m tired, I’m bored, I’m swollen. Walking hurts. Exercise and activity makes me dizzy. I don’t feel hungry that often and I have to force myself to eat. I feel nauseated a lot. The baby has gone from breakdancing on my guts to barely moving at all, so I know there isn’t any more room left for her.
Working wears me out. Last night I was scheduled a measly four hours and I still barely made it through. I was supposed to work this morning, but one of our college students is back in town, looking for shifts, so I called her to see if she wanted to come in. I have a tiny shift tomorrow and I don’t know if I want to work that, either. I’m lucky to have that option, but I know every shift I lose eats into my maternity leave.
Charlie and I haven’t thoroughly discussed finances yet, but I have made up a list of the bills I pay and how much each one is. Of course, that doesn’t account for the future hospital bill, but I’m trying not to think about it. It will come and we will have to pay it. Luckily, hospitals have to work with people to get their money. I’ve already set up payments on two other big bills, one of which is now paid off and the other has a balance of about $700. But he is now just a few weeks away from a solid contract with the owner which would put his salary, at the very least, right above what we bring home combined right now. It wouldn’t be enough for us to, say, never worry about money, but it wouldn’t make a difference if I worked or not for a while. Except for the whole I’m-the-one-with-the-health-insurance part.
Another subject that keeps coming up is the name. For months I thought I had it all figured out, then someone mentioned how many syllables there were and how it was a mouthful. (Let’s not even discuss how many people say they just don’t like it and it sounds like an old lady’s name.) We have an alternative name, but it isn’t my favorite. My favorite seems to cause problems, no matter what middle name we come up with. The kid’s initials would already be B.M., which, of course, is an old term relating to poop. The middle names we like spell out things like B.A.M. (I don’t want someone calling my kid “Bam Bam”), or B.J.M. (I also don’t want a girl known as B.J.) I kind of want her (or him) to have my maiden name, since I still go by it, but then you’d have a B.W.M. which practically spells bowel movement. If it ends up being a boy, I’ve got that all figured out. No problem. The girl name is what’s bothering me.
My aunt tells me not to get too hung up on the initials; she went through the same thing with my cousin whose initials are B.M.W. and she said it’s never been an issue. I know we’ll just have a few options and, when the kid finally comes out, maybe she’ll look like one or the other. Of course, at first, they all just look kind of gross.
But, seriously. Let’s get this show on the road.