Pregnancy is a tough thing to go through. On the surface, there’s all this happy, whimsical nonsense about the tiny life you’re gestating. And the end result is super cool, I must admit. But once people find out you’re pregnant, they start treating you very differently.
They stop asking questions about you, but only about the gestation. The question I get most often is how I’m feeling, but even before I have a chance to respond, most people have tuned out. They want credit for checking the box on the conversation starter that lets them delve into the subject they really want to talk about: all things fetus. And it’s all questions, but no real interest in the answers. Do you know the sex yet? Have you picked out names? Are you going to breastfeed? How is your son dealing with the idea?
All questions I have answers to, but again, most of the time, not really what they want to hear. These are rhetorical questions, placeholders for the person to espouse their opinion or comment on someone else who happens to either be pregnant/having a baby/recently gave birth and their experience. In fact, the only time the conversation gets back to me is to point out the weight I’ve gained and where.
I promise, this gestation and subsequent child are literally the least interesting thing I’ve got going on right now. And given the condition, I have so little to say on the matter I haven’t said already. But no one really cares.
And not that my calendar was bursting with booze and parties before, the fact that I can’t be included in plans for happy hour is even more isolating. The fact that I’m waking up three times a night already to deal with a sleep-averse child, and my swollen belly pushing on my bladder only complicates matters makes for a very lonely existence.
There’s only so many times I can tell people how pregnancy is an experience in chronic pain for me, and not the blessing from above that some people experience, before I sound like a total Debbie Downer. So instead, I just shut up. Because no one wants to hear what I have to say anyway, unless it’s new baby information. And really, they just politely hear it out, and go run off to tell everyone else, so happy to be among the first to know. Gossip has so much value, but the person gestating the fetus, not so much.