Billy was at camp all last week returning on Saturday morning at 1030 am. Naturally, this was the absolute most inconvenient time. A friend’s mother had died, and her funeral began at 10 am. Bill was a pallbearer, so I sat in the last pew and tried to sneak out of the tiny church just as our pastor began his homily.
I retrieved Billy, took him home, then went back to the church. Mass had finished, but I was just in time to hear the end of our friend’s eulogy…the part where he thanked his wife for being the best daughter his mother could have (he was an only child). And no, I still didn’t have any tissues in my purse.
It was difficult, emotionally, to attend a funeral the morning after the change of command. We did not really know our friend’s mother, but funerals always recall other loved ones who have died. And watching our friends and their children suffering this loss was rough.
Afterwards, at a reception in the church hall, a woman came up and introduced herself to me. She had noticed me leave the Mass and had hoped my water hadn’t broken! There is no way to unobtrusively leave a small church, especially not when one is enormously pregnant.
Our pastor came up and told us about Bill’s picture being in the paper. He told us how much he was going to miss us, and insisted that we return, with a higher rank for Bill, saying how the military needed good men to serve. He made the Sign of the Cross on Bill’s forehead and prayed for him to do well in his future and to hopefully be promoted to General someday.
When he walked away, I turned to Bill and asked, smilingly:
“Was that a blessing or a curse?”
We’ve had a glimpse at life as a General. It isn’t pretty.
Funny thing about the human mind. I knew I needed to get through the change of command, and also wanted to get through this funeral. But beginning Saturday afternoon, it was as if my body decided enough was enough. “Holy cow, woman,” it said to me, “did you know that you are very very pregnant?”
This has been a blessedly easy pregnancy, except for some minor issues with varicose veins (oh, I should write a post about compression hose…). I did have a minor bout with insomnia, brought on by pre-move anxiety and solved by some melatonin for 4 or 5 nights in a row. But insomnia, sciatica, heartburn, headaches…all things I have battled on a weekly or even daily basis with most of my pregnancies at some point have been mere occasional issues, not frequent or routine. Even just the cumbersomeness of being nine months pregnant and the general aches and pains associated with adding 40 pounds to your midsection were minimal.
But now, my body has decided: it is time to get ready to have a baby. My lower back aches. My lower abdomen aches. My thighs and pelvis ache. Rolling over in bed or getting out of a chair are suddenly more difficult. I am walking at a slower pace, sitting and standing gingerly. Braxton Hicks contractions, barely noticeable a few days ago, are getting stronger, increasing my heart and respiratory rates, and stirring me out of a light sleep.
These are all things I’ve dealt with for weeks before birth, so I don’t expect to deliver today. But definitely, the time draws near. I finally washed the baby clothes yesterday, and I’ll probably pack a bag for the birth center today. I paid the bills, and went to the grocery store. The kids will be cleaning window blinds today, and I’m almost done with the fridge.
We’re getting there.