I sat on my kitchen floor last night and played "let's fall all over Mom" with Teyla. She's ten months old now, which is both an indisputable fact and an incomprehensible mystery. She's starting to purposefully interact with us; she offers me bites of her food, for example, and she loves to shriek and watch us whip around in amazement. She's still a baby. But she's moving fast toward toddler territory, leaving the calm world of infancy behind.
The realization of all that growing up made me a little nostalgic -- which is how I found myself reading my post from exactly one year ago yesterday and marveling at how quickly life rushes by, like a stream heavy with the refreshment of spring rains. Here it is.
So I'm 30 weeks pregnant now. And really, all things considered, I'm doing great.
It's just that -- I think I've turned into an elephant.
I don't walk. I lumber.
I don't move fast. I plod.
I don't stop quickly. It's not easy to halt this girth.
(Insert elephant trumpet sound here.)
When I get out of bed in the morning -- or, let's be honest, in the middle of the night to heed the siren call of the wild -- I puff and pant. My ligaments stretch and strain. My back muscles scream at me I struggle to right myself. My heart rate shoots up instantly. (Can walking to the bathroom constitute a strenuous workout?) I'm so front heavy, I'm developing a permanent swayback.
I also have to contend with a female child in my abdomen who is training for "Dancing with the Stars." (I think she has a particular liking for the mambo.) She jabs and rolls, kicks and turns. She is in constant movement, making my stomach heave and roll like an ocean storm.
And then there are the special effects pregnancy performs on my face. About three weeks ago, I looked like a "before" picture from one of those old Clearsil commercials. Remember? The one where the announcer draws a constellation on the face of the unsuspecting teen, connecting the red acne dots with a black marker? "The Big Dipper!" "The North Star!"
Yeah. That was me. Only I think I was sporting a small galaxy on my visage. It was ... beyond words. I could only grimace and bear it and remind myself that this, too, shall pass. (And thank you, Lord, for Proactiv!)
I comforted myself with the thought that this only confirms the old wives' tale that says you're having a girl if you're uglier pregnant than you are normally. Because I certainly don't glow much when I'm with child.
Unless you count the shine from the oil, and I really think that's only attractive to Exxon executives.
But she's worth it right?
Pregnancy is such a strange, mysterious, amazing thing. I keep reminding myself, "It's not everyday that you get to be a part of a miracle, girl. Suck it up. Your energy and smaller self will return. Someday, you'll be able to walk across the room again without having to stop and catch your breath. Someday, you won't have to hike up your pants every time you get out of a chair. Someday, you'll get to meet this little girl and all the inconveniences and annoyances of pregnancy will fade like a Minnesota fall."
It's worth it. It's all worth it.
P.S. But could someone please invent some slip-on shoes that are suitable for winter in a northern climate? Because I almost passed out this morning when I had to tie my boot laces. Who can bend over for that long, people? I have a baby where my lungs used to be.
That's all I'm saying.
Kelly did eventually recover from her Heffalump-like condition. You can also find her blogging at Love Well.