“I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.”
--- Douglas Adams

Thursday, June 28, 2012

How Are You Feeling?

People ask me a lot of questions and make a lot of comments. I guess it comes with the territory of being pregnant.

Questions I've gotten -
-You're pregnant again???
-Don't you ever want to have time to yourself?
-Were you trying?
-Are you going to use drugs during labor? (followed by judgemental and unwanted advice on the pros and cons of pain medication during labor)
-Aren't you too old to be having babies?
-Was this baby planned?

Comments I've gotten
-I thought you were done having babies. (I wasn't done having sex, so . . ..)
-You got so much bigger than when I saw you last month (because pregnant women love to be told how fat they're getting)

Depending on the person asking or depending on the question dictates how I respond.

If I like you, if we're friends, if we're family, I'm going to give you an honest response. I know that 99% of the time your questions and comments are well meaning and you deserve a thoughtful answer.

If you're a stranger on the bus, a co-worker I don't talk to very often, the lady standing behind me in line at Walgreens or a barrista at Starbucks, I just might give you a response you're not expecting. Most of the time I'll respond with "Why do you need to know?" or just roll my eyes and ignore the asker. Sometimes I'll give a smartass answer like "well, I thought about it long and hard, and since the baby was conceived on a table top video game, I think we'll pay homage to that. What do you like better for a girl, Zaxon Galaga, or Q-bert Tempest. Hubby likes Missle Command Defender but I think it's a bit much. I mean, we're not freaks or anything."

There is one question that doesn't offend me, or isn't even really out of line or too personal. It puzzles me, if anything else.
Why do people always ask the pregnant lady "How are you feeling?" The bigger my belly gets the more this question is asked in place of "Hi" or "Good Morning." How did "how are you feeling?" become the standard greeting to a pregnant lady? I admit that sometimes it's handy because I can make an easy get-away by saying something non-commital like "fine." Sometimes though I respond with "fine, how are you feeling?" But overall, it just puzzles me. When my co-workers I usually only come across in the breakroom or aquaintances I have ask me this, do they really what to know the answer? Do they really care about the heartburn and the gas? Are they really that concerned for my well being? For some reason, that question really perplexes me. I know it's people just being nice and considerate, not knowing what else to say, but it's just strange to me that it has replaced 'hello.'  If you said 'hello' to me 27 weeks ago, why can't you still say it? Someone asked me "how are you feeling?" the other day. I told her fine, then asked her why people always ask that of pregnant women. Her response was "what else am I supposed to say?" like she didn't know how to address me now that I have an alien belly. Just say hello or whatever it is you said to me before.

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