Up the Duff

For a few days now, my gums have been bleeding when I brush my teeth. I told Mr. Book that I thought I had scurvy. That’s something I’ve experienced before—er, bleeding gums, not scurvy—but only under a particular set of circumstances, so I considered the way I’ve been feeling overall and took a pregnancy test. Sure enough: I am pregnant!

I’m surprised, but pleased; I will worry intensely about miscarriage for awhile, but if all goes well, we will have a baby in May or June. As with my last pregnancy, while we’re not telling the world at large (my parents, the Mister’s mom, and Kate), I will want to talk about a miscarriage here if it happens, so I might as well blurt the good news out at six weeks(ish. This is just my best guess). Honestly, I’m not so much excited yet as boggled; yes, I know where babies come from, but I was genuinely surprised to see the second line on that test. Heck, I have kept it around and keep pulling it out to look at: yup, still pregnant. I don’t know why I was so surprised—bleeding gums, nausea, tender nipples, fatigue—I decided that I had scurvy and mono, which while an unconventional choice, doesn’t really seem like the most obvious answer.

Mr. Book says that if this one turns out as great as Joey, we have to have another.

I feel a little weird about my fertility. I think this is an artifact of birthmotherhood. For one thing, my internet world is filled with really amazing ladies who had to put a lot more time and money into family building than Jenny Fecundity over here. And for another thing, of course, I am a birthparent because of that fertility. There’s some cultural problem bound up with that in my head: that my fertility is the slutty kind, and that the kind you have to work at is not. Certainly having kids eighteen months apart adds volume to that self-critical voice—even though that’s what I wanted, thinking that kids close together will mean staying in baby mode and then moving out rather than having to switch back and forth, choosing a really rough year and hoping for sibling closeness. Of course, that voice is not only in my head: When I told my mother that we’re expecting, she immediately asked about our future contraception plans (condoms and then a vasectomy, for the curious). My mother has made it clear in past conversations that she’s ready and eager for another grandchild—but her first response was not that.

At any rate, despite the weirdness of my brain and self-image, this is good news. I’m drinking tons of water and touching my stomach and smiling.

26 thoughts on “Up the Duff

  1. Congratulations! I have to confess, though, that my real first response to the post was oh, your mother! I know other people doing the 18-month spacing thing and it does seem to work well for the reasons you stated and more, I’m sure.

  2. OMG, YAY! This is the happiest news!!! I am so so thrilled for you and Mr. Book. I’ll be praying so hard for a healthy pregnancy for you and the baby. It’s a perfect spacing…very surprising how your mom reacted, but I guess the health provider in her jumped out the gate first.

  3. I’m going to end up putting a lot of thought into the second-to-last paragraph you wrote—you know our situation, and how close together my children are, and I’ve had to deflect/defend a lot of comments about their first mother because of that—and I may comment on that at some other point.

    But I feel like this post isn’t the time or place for that—instead, it’s a place to say: Congratulations! I’m just tickled at your good news, my friend! xo

  4. Congratulations! I’m so glad you don’t have scurvy and mono, and instead something much, much happier. 🙂

    (The beginning of your second-to-last paragraph strikes me, too. Thank you for writing all that you do. Congrats again!)

  5. Congratulations!!

    Giving thought to your words about fertility and self-judgement…it just sucks that we women do that to ourselves and each other and think about any of our children’s beginnings as anything other than miraculous despite the circumstances. You crack me up using scurvy…its an old standby around my house for anything at all that ails us.

  6. we can be hard upon ourselves about just about anything. or happy! this is so exciting! you saw my nephews’ photos just 19 months apart. loads of baby-ness/toddler-ness going on there & so adorable. then, as you said, so the next stage… congratulations!

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