My DH called and told my SIL, Wacky P about the pregnancy. Finally. While my mom and I were out and about one day.
Actually, he got two for the price of one. My FIL was at Wacky P's. FIL had called my DH, so my DH returned the call. They talked and then my DH proceeded to tell FIL about the pregnancy.
Well, I think my DH had in mind that first he would tell his dad, and then his dad would hand the phone over to his sister (Wacky P) and my DH would tell her.
Instead, he tells his dad something like, "By the way, dad, BWUB is 4 months pregnant." With Wacky P sitting right next to him in the room, my FIL says aloud, "Oh, really, BWUB is 4 months pregnant?" So Wacky P didn't get to hear it first hand, and I guess my DH heard her make a comment in the background to the effect of, "Why did he wait 4 months to tell us?"
When she finally got on the phone, my DH said she seemed a little "tweaked" about the whole thing. About us not telling them sooner. About her finding out second hand. You know, things have to happen according to her rules.
I'm not sure exactly how much he told them, but he said he told them "the basics" about the embryo adoption. He doesn't want to send any of them a comic book. He said it would only open things up to more criticism.
She did congratulate him and she offered to buy us a car seat. I said to my husband, "Wow, those things are expensive, you know." He said, "Yeah, that's what she said." To which I just grinned and shook my head. Of course she mentioned to him that it would be expensive.
She also apparently offered to babysit the baby next summer while she is not working (she is a school nurse). Well, first of all, I hope to still be on maternity leave most of the summer. Second, I don't know, it sort of gives me the creeps to think about her being alone with my baby. I could imagine her putting my baby to her own breast, in some weird attempt to stimulate her breast milk. My mind is just twisted when it comes to her. Third, I don't want to "owe" her babysitting duties. Her kids drive me a little nuts...unless they want to come over here and watch TV....(ha ha ha).
Wacky P also told my DH that since men don't ever give birth, and most OB's are men who pull the baby out of you, she suggested I could get a midwife who will be more understanding and help me through it.
Ah - yes - here we go. Wacky P's know-it-all suggestions begin.
I couldn't quite gather whether Wacky P was recommending I have the midwife deliver the baby. I think so. And I know, really, I know, that many women love this idea and this option and look forward to having a midwife and want that experience. And they prefer to keep doctors at bay unless necessary. I have nothing against a woman choosing to do things the way she wants. If you want to use a midwife, I'll cheer you on.
But it's not my thing. I don't want someone I hardly know talking at me, touching me, coaching me or anything else. It's just not my style. I may not know the delivering OB or nurses very well either, but for me, that's fine. It's just the way I am. I was a nurse. I'm used to hospitals and nurses and equipment and doctors. Their presence comforts me. A touchy-feely midwife would make me nuts.
I told my husband that when I had my second miscarriage, after carrying for 11 weeks, it was just like labor (he was asleep, how would he know?). I had contractions 3 minutes apart. Of course the baby was just a peanut, but my body and uterus contracted and squeezed the shit out of my guts and I expelled everything in 12 hours - like giving birth. I had to focus and breathe and get through each wave of pain. I told him it was painful and exhausting and just going through that I know that I don't want anyone there touching me or talking to me when I give birth. Get the f*** away and let me do this. I have actually had the thought that I could possibly not even want my DH in the room - he's not good with blood or needles or anything like that. I don't want to have to think about or worry about taking care of him during the process! I haven't told him this, and I figure I'll just make that decision when the time comes.
See....and you all thought I was gentle and sweet. ha ha.
I know, maybe Wacky P was just trying to be nice and make a helpful suggestion. But my guard is permanently up when it comes to her and I am unable to see anything she says or does as innocent or well-intended.
So my MIL will be in town Halloween weekend. It will be Wacky P's daughter's 6th birthday. They want to have a get together. I foresee that I'll be explaining, defending, or putting a moratorium on questions about my position on everything from midwives to breastfeeding to TV programs for toddlers. Oh, so looking forward to it!
My poor DH. Then it will be the holidays. He says he's tired of "brokering relationships." When I asked what he meant, he said brokering the relationship between me and his family. He said he understands why I don't care to be around them much, and he admitted that they drain him of energy too. They're not relaxing people to be around. With the pregnancy and all, he hoped this might help bring us all a little closer. He said that Wacky P's kids don't have any cousins their age and family is important to her, and she'd probably like for "us all" to be closer for the sake of the kids.
I just don't see it happening. I reminded him that his family has never accepted me for who I am. They won't entertain the concept that I have my own ideas of tradition or holidays or anything else. They expect me to fit into the mold of what their family "always does" but are quick to judge my ways.
As an example, I said to my husband that if our house was big enough to host family Thanksgiving dinners, I would love it to be in the tradition I am used to. To me, Thanksgiving is magical and wonderful when the day starts with everyone watching the big parade on TV. Kids sitting cross-legged on the floor in front of the TV, excited when a giant Snoopy balloon appears. Then the men hang out together and watch the football games. You hear them occasionally cheer or shout. They drink beer. The kids play together somewhere. Giggles. The women work in the kitchen, talking and wearing aprons and taking pies out of the oven. Maybe sipping wine as they get the table ready. The women call the men to dinner and everyone gathers at the table. Talk is light. I hear the sound of my aunt's laughter and my dad saying something silly to my sister. It's just easygoing and cheerful. Afterward, the women take care of dishes and the men go back to the TV and football game. Somebody is snoozing on the couch. I know, very chauvinistic, but these are my memories.
Anyway, I told my DH this and he had to smile. OMG, TV with Wacky P?! Ha. NO.WAY.IN.HELL. Light and easy conversation? Not with that crowd.
I said, "See, she wants me to come to her house and do things her way. And that's fine. I'll do it. But she wouldn't return the favor if she came here." She'd make some snide comment or disparaging remark. So it's all well and good that they want family to be closer with each other. The problem is, they insist it be solely on their terms. So as far as I'm concerned, they don't play fair.
All I can say is it's been a heck of a week, and the rest of the year looks a little rocky too. But now I am mama bear! I will defend the interests of this baby and preserve our own family harmony. So, look out, Wacky P!
4 weeks ago