There have only been two times in my history when my-life-has-been-on-my-sleeve – that is, strangers have really been able to tell something about me because of my appearance. The first time was around university age, when for a while my hair was boy-short and dyed bright blue. I guess that told strangers that I was… weird? Or silly? During that time, strangers were sociable and friendly with me. They found me approachable. People would talk to me or ask me questions as though we were already friends. They would give me a friendly smile, as though they knew, just from my appearance, that I was a nice person. It was really interesting, from a psychological / anthropological perspective! It was also a really nice feeling. It was like cutting through the bullshit and the coldness of normal stranger-to-stranger interactions, and made it more human(e)-to-human.
I’d always said that I’d be happy to have a baby if I found a man who was willing to have the baby while I played the “father” role. Now we’re getting to the pointy end of this pregnancy, I wish I’d stuck to my guns. I’m at week 31 of about 40 weeks, and the baby is so big that he’s starting to affect my breathing. The shortest of walks leaves me breathless and feeling light-headed (such a charming phrase, but oh boy, it’s really terribly unpleasant, especially when you sit down and it still doesn’t go away).
All of the baby’s movements used to be between my belly-button and my pelvis (it’s not often you get to write the word pelvis! Or Elvis!), but now things are changing inside me and he’s decided a studio apartment isn’t enough – he needs two bedrooms and a spa bath. So now I’m feeling movements between my belly-button and my chest. Whatever he’s doing with this rearranging of the furniture/walls, my lungs aren’t happy. Pant, pant.
On top of all this, James has begun to casually drop the notion of “kids” here and there… his parents live on a farm, and the other day he said, “I wonder if our kids will like the farm as much as I do.” Oh, well, okay, mister! Next time it’s your turn. In a modern person’s world, I think it’s only fair that the man produces his share of the babies.
The only plan I have for parenting (cover your ears if you don’t like cuss words) is that I want to be a zen motherfucker. I know that sounds ridiculous; everyone probably sets out with the best intentions to be a chilled parent, but then life actually happens and all those crazy notions go out the window. (And… maybe a kid doesn’t want a chilled parent? Maybe they want someone lively, energetic, full of action and excitement and spontaneity and wildness.)
But! My instinct is: I want to aim for Zen MF. I love being around really chilled-out people – relaxed, laid-back, tolerant, warm & loving – I like the way they influence my outlook and behaviour. Like the cafe worker in Byron Bay. Life seems more beautiful when you’re really relaxed, or when you’re around really relaxed people. Though, super-chilled people are strikingly rare. Whenever I meet one (about once a year, I reckon!) I am jolted into recognising, in comparison, how much I’m still affected by stress. Even teeny tiny stresses.
I will soon find out if my intentions work In Real Life or not.