Sprinting to the finish line

November 7, 2009 at 1:04 am 8 comments

I just stepped into the third and final trimester of my pregnancy sometime back. And I have 10 more weeks to go before I become a parent forever. As wonderful as pregnancy has been, with all the “glow” and shiny hair, the truth is that it does get uncomfortable at times. From back aches to heart burn to shortness of breath, and sometimes all of the above happening at the same time, it can get pretty overwhelming.

Once, during dinner, the soccer star currently residing in my uterus promptly gave me a kick in the ribs which made me whince in pain. And it started off a topic of discussion between me, K and my FIL. K asked his dad fondly if he too had been the source of such troubles to his mother – to which my FIL replied “I never heard her complain”. Not “she did not have pain”, but “I never heard her complain”. This really got me thinking that even a few decades ago, either women never really expressed what they were going through, or they simply thought that it was a part of the process and needed to be put up with. I mean, think about it – how many of us have no discomfort whatsoever during that time of the month? And yet, how many men of the older generation actually knew what their wives were going through? Even those darn old movies showed the pregnant lady throwing up – like – once, not for entire 4 months. Then after a quick bite of the raw mango, she was soon whisked off to her parents’ home and then the scene ended in the hospital where an anxious dad was waiting outside closed doors and then suddenly a baby was brough to him and declared his! Never once have they shown the pregnant lady not eating some kind of food because it now gives her terrible gas, or when she has heartburn and feels like a dragon breathing fire. Even in the so called pregnancy movies and sagas with women as the central character. No, pregnant women are always supposed to be happy and smiling and hormones messing with their body and mind is an urban legend that these doctors with fancy degrees just make up.

I think women in India have been raised with the super hero complex. That they can do everything – or that they must do everything. From going to work to cooking in the kitchen to raising kids, everything seems to be on their plate and everything must be taken into their stride. Motherhood is supposed to be always glorious with rainbows and unicorns and any downsides must be quietly swept under the carpet so that we can continue to pretend that it is always rainbows and unicorns. If there is one thing I know, it is that I am not a super hero. I am a person with no super powers other than to probably predict which exact bush Rummy is going to unleash his pee on – that too with only 70% accuracy. For me, it is not a matter of pride if I need to ask for help on days when I cannot do things on my own. I do not feel guilty being indulged. And I feel no shame or shortcomings in letting people know that soccer baby is at it again – and it hurts like crazy when the kicks lands in the right places.

Which brings me to one more thing I love about the country I am currently in. It gives ample opportunities for the dad-to-be to be involved in the entire baby making process. From visits to the OB to child birth classes to actually being in the same room your wife is laboring in and watching your kid being born – everything is encouraged. I am no longer just the woman-with-increasing-girth. I become the woman accomodating baby inside her – a baby that is alive and growing and kicking and burping. A woman who is going through things mentally and physically and needs some extra TLC. And because of this,Β  K does not suddenly become a father one fine day in January 2010, he is already one.

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Entry filed under: Random Banter.

And now the award goes to….. My dog is a drama queen

8 Comments Add your own

  • 1. La Vida Loca  |  November 7, 2009 at 6:33 am

    oohhh exciting πŸ™‚
    Soon, soo soon!!

    Clueless: Yup! already πŸ™‚

  • 2. snippetsnscribbles  |  November 7, 2009 at 10:03 am

    WOW! this is some coincidence! My sister and I were discussing JUST THIS point about how women in India are made to go through things and not talk about it. I had my first visit with a gynec and one thing led to the other and we were discussing all this. Exactly the same thing that you’ve written here!

    Its terrible thinking of how our mothers went through such things with so much work around the house and taking care of a sea of pesky relatives and sometimes even putting up with their own husbands! Hats off to them!

    Take care πŸ™‚

    Clueless: Exactly! We are “supposed” to put up with stuff and not complain. Or atleast, continue without complaining until some kind soul notices that we are tired and offers to take over our work. But, if the lady herself says she is tired and sits down, it is some kind of a taboo!

  • 3. chroniclesofdee  |  November 7, 2009 at 1:00 pm

    Well, I agree with the superwoman thing.. Amma says she was pampered like crazy when she was carrying akka, however, the pampering happened because she was the first child on Amma’s side..

    But when she was pregnant with me, it was accepted that she knew what not to do.. She infact, resumed her household chores within 10 days of having me after a extremely taxing labor..

    Its nice to have the man involved.. People may call them “metrosexual” and what not.. But its nice to see emotion on the “man” of the house πŸ™‚

    Clueless: Definitely definitely vote for the man involved! He IS the father after all, not a sperm donor.

  • 4. DewdropDream  |  November 7, 2009 at 8:08 pm

    And again, we agree!

    Something very vaguely related … that woman who tweeted about her miscarriage wrote an article after it. I’m paraphrasing here, she basically asked why women are expected to show/have only certain emotions for things like pregnancies and miscarriages, abortions even and who determines these emotions and their correctness? Worth a read: http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2009/nov/06/penelope-trunk-tweet-miscarriage

    Clueless: Thanks DDD for the link. I too resent that we can only react to some things in a particular way only.We are SUPPOSED to enjoy every part of my pregnancy including the morning sickness. It is not that I love my baby any less, but really, how does one enjoy barfing every hour on the hour?

  • 5. alwayshappykya  |  November 9, 2009 at 7:55 pm

    Woohoo girl, here is a virtual standing applause for you! πŸ™‚

    You said it right..and so beautifully.Pregnancy is not rosy all the time, and that needs to be accepted and acknowledged.

    Am in a stage right now where the ‘kicks’ are not painful..but a pleasant feel of relief to know that the baby is growing, live and active inside. A sense of reconfirmation.

    But, I have heard ( and now know from you too) that the kicks graduate to being painful @ later stages. Ok..( pumping up muscles)..will be prepared πŸ˜€

    ” have 10 more weeks to go before I become a parent forever.” – that line got me goosebumps. Time FLIES..literally!

    Clueless: Hey MTB! For me, kicks are the most reassuring thing – I don’t have to wait for my appointment to check the heartbeat. Every time baby moves inside me, I know everything is Ok πŸ™‚ You are in the butterflies stage, a little more time and the kicks will get stronger. And then they will be ticklish, weird or just plain painful depending on where and how πŸ˜€

  • 6. AverageJane  |  November 10, 2009 at 6:52 pm

    I agree about women multitasking and assuming superhero persona(s) but I think preggers in India are pampered beyond belief. Like when I used to tell people in India that I’m driving in my 5th month, believe me or not, they used to be shocked and out would come a lecture on how I should relax and let the hubby take over. I never ventured to tell them that I drove and did most of the stuff I usually do till the very last day not because the hubby didn’t want to help but because I felt great (touchwood) and couldn’t sit around doing nothing. Also I’m happy when I hear that things have changed in hospitals in Bangalore. Many of my friends’ husbands were *allowed* to play as big a part as they wanted in their pregnancies. πŸ™‚ Liked you last line very much. πŸ™‚

    Clueless: So glad to hear that things are different in India now and the father can also be a very involved participant. For me though, with my nearly 5 months of morning sickness and not so small iron deficiency, I need to listen to my body and take a break when needed. Even the pampering part in India was mostly done by MIL / mom. Rarely did the FIL or husband get affected in their daily routines. And also, somehow I think it is ok to be doing work and then people suggesting I take a break, but not OK for them that I decided there are some things I cannot do and need a break.

  • 7. comfortablynam  |  November 12, 2009 at 8:11 pm

    I think it definitely has been ingrained in the women in India to not complain..things like bearing discomfort during pregnancy without any complain what with every other women going through the same..you are not special and the men folks really don’t need to what you are going through. But I truly think every women and every pregnancy is different and you have to look at what you are going through and work accordingly..and the man in your life needs to know the pain you go through πŸ™‚

    Clueless: To all those men who say it is just another pregnancy…we should ask them to pee out one small stone and see how it goes – considering that we are literally bringing out melons πŸ™‚ Someone needs to remind them that it is “just another” thing until it happens to you!

  • 8. the mad momma  |  December 4, 2009 at 12:05 pm

    its a very desi thing babe. My mom often tells me with pride that she didnt scream once during labour.
    About preggers being pampered in India – its a good bloody thing, dude!!! its half the reason why they get their strength back (maybe not their figures!) without doing pilates. Theres a lot of good in what the oldies say which I’ve learned not to diss, the hard way. women who take it easy, eat the right things, exercise and dont stress, DO have healthier pregnancies and babies, by and large. there’s no glory in stressing yourself out and realising you have a prob.

    also, the reason the men knew nothing was because in a house full of women, there was someone else hearing it. Today in a nuclear family, naturally the men hear it! And yes, its exactly why K is already a father πŸ™‚

    Clueless: Oh yeah….I totally believe most of the stuff they do for pregger women in India…especially the nutritious ladoos they give you before and after. I researched the ingredients and all of them are very high in folic acid, proteins, the good cholesterol, etc. Me totally not stressing it out…no point. If I can’t do something now, I just hire help or let someone else take charge.

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