Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Round Two

G lifted up her shirt and pointed to her belly at my doctor's appointment yesterday and announced to the waiting room, "Baby."

Try explaining that there is a baby in mama's belly to a 21-month old. It's almost as crazy as trying to explain it to the mama: "So, there is this person inside me and today he or she grew ears. And tomorrow, he/she will start sucking his/her thumb and the next day, maybe open his/her eyes and react to a light shown outside my belly. Oh! and he/she is breathing liquid and at times gets the hiccups." Ok, right. That's totally easy to warp my head around.

The Safeway cashier who scanned my pregnancy test, stopped abruptly to ask. "Whoewah, does the fahrtha know?"

Being pregnant a second time is a lot less of a big deal. No parties. Not as much sympathy. Fewer random back rubs from T. It's like I know too much about what is to come this time around, so it feels less exciting and a little more...exhausting. But then on the good side, Round Two feels more normal, less stressful and more confident.

Pregnancy, in general, is not all that fun to me, as my random puking on Friday night might suggest. And yet, being pregnant is at the same time sort of magical, or spiritual, or something. It's sort of like proof of God. It's just too amazing and mind-boggling to be a random act of nature. And it seems that other people who smile at me on the street when they see my swollen belly, may subconsciously think the same.

That must be why people love to touch a pregnant belly or ask a pregnant woman about her due date, or how she feels, or if she's excited, or if she wants a boy or a girl. And while, I don't love to be called, "cute," as most 30 somethings probably don't, I have to realize, it's not really about me. I think people just have this desire to be close even for a second, to a pregnant woman because of what she symbolizes. No matter what people do or do not believe, or how cynical the world is, or how much financial trouble the US is in, a pregnant woman can often be this sign of hope or goodness or a sign of just something way bigger and way more important than any one of us.

The other day G lifted up my shirt to kiss my belly. Then she pulled my shirt back down and said, "Bye Bye Baby." She doesn't really get what's going on. But then, it's a pretty crazy concept for anyone, really. That must be what makes it so amazing.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The Crazy Mama and the Starbucks Experience

At one point in time, long, long ago, the fall time change meant another hour of sleep. Now, as every mama knows, it only means another hour of awake. My grandfather used to say that daylight savings time was all for the golfers. I am pretty sure he said that with a little bit of disdain. He wasn't a golfer. He was a railroad engineer who worked nights, so I bet he wasn't too fond of random messings with time. Me, I think maybe Starbucks is in on daylight savings. They know that the mamas will be needing an extra cup when their kid starts to make a habit of 5 am rises. Time change=more coffee.

This is why G and I found ourselves in Starbucks this morning, way before the 9-5ers were well-caffeinated. I love my neighborhood. There are plenty of every kind of people in my hood: mamas, nannies, partiers, druggies, rich, poor, cool boot wearing women, homeless, shoeless man. I love the diversity, even if I do get a little annoyed when the junkie on our block reprimands me for not having shoes on G. (This has happened twice, from two different stoopers.) It's a great place to live. BUT, Starbucks before 9 am on a weekday with a toddler who is trying to shove over the VIA coffee display feels a little...uncomfortable.

T and I decided a while ago that all mamas are crazy. And this I now know for a fact. This morning, I actually felt crazy. Or I felt like everyone else felt I was crazy.
But then, YOU try to keep one eye on an active toddler in a crowded space, with breakables everywhere, while at the same time keeping tabs on your purse, your place in line, your over-sized stroller and your husband's drink order. It's actually much harder than the non-mama might think.

However, if I were to be completely honest, I would have to admit that I add to the crazy a bit. Zen, I am not. For example, why do I feel I must speak to G in a louder voice than I would to anyone else?


Then my stroller made a break for it, hitting the guy in a green bowtie (yes, a bowtie, on a Wednesday morning.) and then it nicked the women in the Stilettos. (I have absolutely no idea what kind of shoes they were. All I know is they were not walking shoes.) So after I cursed T silently for not re-hooking up the stroller break, I grabbed it and tried to stash it in a corner, which was really a corner of no return in the back of the shop between the door and the mega coffee line. Luckily, some woman who no doubt thought I was crazy saved the stroller, dragging it around the people and closer to the door. "Jesus Woman!" I could hear her say in her head, "Get it together!"

As I went to pay for my coffee, uber conscious of the line behind me and the depth of my purse, I threw my bag on the counter. It was then that I felt the beady eyes of judgement. I just picked up a $168 Lucky bag from the outlet for $50 bucks. But these people didn't know this. All they knew was that I used more than two adjectives to order my coffee, I was slightly out of control in my mama-ing, and that I had just casually thrown a $168 bag on the Starbucks counter. U.G.H. I thought, they think I am "one of THOSE mamas." I don't know what that means, really, but I am sure it's not a compliment.

TO top it all off, Bowtie squeezed by G and me at the door as I was trying to figure out how to handle three drinks, a purse, a toddler and a runaway stroller, without losing or killing anyone, and without feeling more obtrusive than I already did. Bowtie didn't even look at us. He just walked right out the door, with not even an "excuse me," as he let the door close behind him.

When I returned home around 8:17 a.m., I was exhausted.

The truth is, I don't think those people in Starbucks thought much about G and me. They were too busy thinking about their own lives, schedules, and bowties. I was just something else they would have to maneuver around that day. I was just another Crazy Mama, in Starbucks, ordering an expensive drink with an expensive bag, with a toddler, before 9 a.m., with a rather large stroller, and a big voice, trying to keep her head on straight while also getting (for the love of God!) a little caffeine.

I swear, Starbucks is totally in on the time change.