Thursday, July 19, 2012

Dear Baby: July 19, 2012

Dear Baby,

35 weeks today! Can you hold on a little bit longer? I'm not sure I can. These Braxton Hicks contractions are getting frequent and strong. If they're just "practice" contractions, I'm not sure I'm ready to face the real deal.

For many, many weeks of this pregnancy, I felt awkward with my new belly. Lately, that awkwardness has escalated to a new level. We're akin to the Goodyear blimp, little guy, and should only be operated by trained professionals, which I am not. I feel like I have a full-size baby strapped to my torso. I mean, obviously, I do have a baby hanging from my torso, but my baby bump no longer feels part of me. I can't bend over. I can't see my legs. My tailbone is hurting again; I can tell you're chunking up because of all the resulting ligament pain. My fingers are little sausages. Walking makes my feet swell, too. In any room warmer than 73 degrees, I start to get a sweaty neck and upper lip. You know, real attractive like. I wake up every morning with swollen ankles and wrists, too sore to roll myself over and out of bed. I'm a hot mess, my boy.

Your dad and I went to a family reunion on Saturday for all the descendants of his great-great-grandparents Sanders. Needless to say, Austin in July didn't agree with my pregnant body. Though uncomfortable, I did suck it up so your dad, Uncle Will, Uncle Dan, Aunt Fleming, and I could eat at The Mighty Cone, an incredible food truck in Austin. (Once you are here and the weather cools off, I think your dad and I will spend a lot more time in Austin exploring its rich food culture. There was so much I wanted to try if I hadn't been eight months pregnant and if it hadn't been 100 degrees outside.)

At the reunion, I spent a lot of time on the small "air conditioned" porch fanning myself and talking to old-timers. But that was my real interest in going, anyway. I really didn't know much about your dad's family beyond the living relatives I'd already met. We nailed down lots of information and a few phone numbers to pursue. You have quite the family tree, little man. When we go to Lubbock in November for your dad's conference, you and I are going to put on our sleuthing hats and explore the area from whence your people came. We have a lot of old homes, factories, and grocery stores to photograph. Did you know your great-grandfather was in the cookie business?

Being pregnant makes me think a lot about heritage, legacy. On your dad's side, your grandfather and both great-grandfathers have already passed away. And though we're so excited for your arrival, it's made me and especially your father wistful for what might have been. You'll never know these three men in your mortal life. I don't even know them. I can't pass on any memories about them to you. I can't search you for quirks or personality traits from these people. Maybe your dad can do some of that for you.

It occurred to me that though I've never met my father-in-law, you are one-quarter Simms Lemon. Of course, your dad is one-half his father, but he is, in my perception, a distinct individual from his father. Somehow I feel like observing you from day one, I'll be able to discern a bit more about your grandfather. It also boggles my mind that even 40 years ago, neither you dad's nor my parents even knew each other. Now, their DNA has come together to create a completely new person.

Well, I'm waxing philosophical without direction. You have the hiccups and are headbutting my cervix. I know you have no control over it, but you seem a little mischievous to me. Go easy on me. This is all new and a little terrifying. The physicality of labor looms large on the horizon. Here's hoping your delivery isn't too intense.


Your mom


  1. You are going to LOVE not being pregnant!!! Like pretty much immediately all your symptoms will go away. Just so you know cause nobody told me this but sometimes right after you have the baby you will have sweat really bad in your sleep but that is just getting rid of all the extra fluid your body retained :) Can't wait for you to meet your little guy!

    1. As horrible as being sweaty is... I'd love to get rid of the water weight. And maybe wear my wedding ring again someday! I try to keep hydrated (so fun to go to the bathroom every half hour) and avoid salty things but I still swell up so bad. I blame the heat and pregnancy. Thanks for the heads up!

      By the way, Brooklyn is adorable.