Finally, my darling husband has set me up with a connection that works, albeit slooowly. Previously, I would have complained, but having been incommunicado for over a month now, hey, any dream will do.
I'll be continuing my 11-part essay where I left off, but not, alas, my so-called novel, because the deadline I was chasing (to complete at least three chapters) has been and gone while I was offline. Yeah, I know I should have been working on the damn thing anyway, but what can I say? My self-discipline is weak when there's no money involved.
Thanks to alla youse who kept checking faithfully and living with disappointment... I promise to put up a tagboard once I've figured out how to do it without freezing the rest of the page.
I'm trying to get my Christmas shopping done before the usual seasonal mall madness ensues, but am hampered by the fact that (a) most of my friends are men, and (b) men are bloody hard to shop for! They claim they have simple desires, but what that really means is that they just want things that can be plugged in, cost at least a four-figure sum, or can only be rented, not bought (i.e., chicks... or dicks!).
Then there's Dean, who, every year, claims that all he wants are socks and underwear. What kind of present is that, I ask you?! It's the kind of thing you get from your doddering old maiden aunt, and then you have to pretend you're all delighted, when really, you're inwardly rolling your eyes, not to mention embarrassed as hell. Hardly the kind of thing you should be receiving from your sexy-wexy wife. (Unless it's thong underwear, now there's a thought...)
Post-Partum Digression: part 7 of an 11-part essay
The Sixth Month
A couple of million internal kicks, punches, and what felt like either gymnastic moves or wrestling holds later, I was trying to recall just what I had been so damned delighted about. I was fairly certain that my insides had now been irreparably rearranged; probably my intestines resembled one of those friendship bands my girl friends and I had woven so obsessively in grade school.
To the contrary, though, “Everything is just fine,” the doctor told me, examining the results of my second (and thankfully abdominal) ultrasound. “Do you know,” she continued, “that your baby is now capable of urinating inside of you?”
As a matter of fact, I had not known. Was not entirely sure it was something I particularly wanted to know. But at least it kind of explained why I now seemed to be living half of my life inside the bathroom. I was not only eating for two, I was pissing for two as well.
By that time, though, I had pretty much accepted that my brain—which for the past twenty-eight years had been almost exclusively in charge of my existence—had unceremoniously been shoved out of the driver’s seat by my body, which, apparently, had secretly been in training for this all along. After all, not only had it (with the help of my husband) conceived a child, it was able to go ahead and make a placenta and everything with no input whatsoever from me. Presumably my body was the source of the Insidious Voice that had spoken to me earlier, but it had since remained silent. Perhaps it was too busy trying to get all those tiny fingers and toes right.
Or maybe it had simply sensed that I was finally, truly coming around. With all the activity going on inside my belly, I was realizing at last that what was inside me was not just an unexpected incentive to give up smoking; it was an actual, real, live person. I had gotten to see it this time on the ultrasound, and it had a head and arms and feet… and a kind of creepy-looking spine… But the point was that it was a living human being, created either by chance or by destiny during an extremely happy hour in Hong Kong. It was a part of me, and a part of my husband, and yet also a being completely its own, with its own body and (eventually) its own thoughts, feelings, opinions, etc.
Actually, it seemed to have opinions already, as demonstrated by its tendency to drum a tattoo on my liver whenever I attempted to sleep on my right side. Maybe I was leaning on his/her head in that position. Or maybe he/she was an ardent leftist. It felt kind of good to be bringing someone with such strongly-held convictions into the world.
Of course, intellectually I knew that all the action in my stomach was probably not the result of any kind of political standpoint or even physical complaint. Still, it served as an effective reminder that, once these last few months of pregnant purgatory were over, the eventual payoff was potentially phenomenal. Maybe I’d give birth to the next Nadia Comaneci. Even the next Stone Cold Steve Austin would be, if not exactly heavenly, kind of cool just the same.