What’s also been difficult is that the people I work with have not respected my privacy on this either. Although it’s not anything I can prove, only hearing through whispers of “Well, I heard from so-and-so who told whatsherface and such-and-such…” that my colleagues had spread the rumor of my pregnancy like wildfire throughout our large organization well before I knew that the baby was viable and safe. My fears, which had been very real at the time, were that the cold I had at the beginning of my pregnancy (and more likely, the medication from the shady Mexican resort gift shop pharmacy I took to treat said illness) would have hurt the baby and I’d lose him.
It was heartbreaking to learn that only a week after I had told the one person I thought I could trust that the rumor had been spread to so many people, it became impossible to contain it. It didn’t stop my colleagues from acting like jerks toward me anyway. Again, nothing really actionable, but it was disrespectful nonetheless. I guess that’s the worst part of it, that their shady behavior was not only rude, but skirted the line of what would get them written up so closely that it was obviously deliberate.
In the weeks that followed, I began to withdraw, not only from the people around me at work, but from everyone. My body going through all kinds of hormonal surging, making it very difficult to handle the stress in a healthy way. I was lucky, I suppose, because I hardly showed at all until pretty late in the game. Of course, the way you’d hear it from my colleagues, I was a huge fatty who was taking a big risk having my child at such an “advanced maternal age.” For the record, most generous estimates by modern medicine these days consider the beginning of advanced maternal age to be 38, but I’m only 32.
I was told by one colleague that they weren’t going to throw me a baby shower at work because I “can’t get along with anyone.” I was shocked to hear it, because I frankly didn’t want them to do anything. It’s not exactly a secret that I don’t care for the people I work with, but to make it out to be my fault was such ridiculousness. It wasn’t as though they didn’t contribute to the way I felt about them, and the decision to be a less involved party socially with the group was really just a matter of reacting to their treatment of me.
Well, I guess I can get along with some people, because people in other departments began asking when the shower at work would be. Finding the “can’t get along” statement to be as ridiculous as I had, they must have complained to the boss about it because now they’re mysteriously throwing one for me. The event will take place tomorrow afternoon, so we’ll see just how well the awkward saurus does in the quintessential awkward scenario. Wish me luck!