Over-sentimentality runs in my family. We're the Southerners who sit and talk about the good old days, knowing full-well those good old days were laden with their own worries. My mom used to pull out the photo album with me, and even if it were a trip to Disney World from a year ago, we'd sit together and cry, remembering the fun we had and finding it hard to believe it was all in the past.
Living in New York has cured a lot of my nostalgic tendencies. Up here, if you start to reminisce, someone will probably look at you like you're crazy and point out all the crap that was going on at that time that they're glad is in the past. This is a much healthier way of being, because you get to live in the moment, sometimes the future, instead of being stuck in "what was then" land.
However, now that Stella's birthday is a mere five days away, I can't help but remember this time last year. Not with fondness exactly, because being pregnant and overdue is not fun for anyone, but with disbelief of how different my life was back then and how I had no clue what I was in for. Here are some memories:
I was almost a week overdue, expecting Stella to come any moment, having no clue what her gender was.
I was having contractions every day, but they weren't regular. I called my midwife probably a total of five times and had Dave swear to attach his cell phone to his body at all times.
I ate every spicy food known to man and even made and ate Eggplant Parmigiana Alla Scalini's, a recipe from an Italian restaurant in Georgia that women swear sent them into labor. It was delicious, but didn't work.
I had a nightly dance party, literally jumping up and down to punk music and country music, hoping to make Stella's head descend into my pelvis.
I drank all the herbal teas and took all the herbal supplements they tell you will "get things moving." The only thing I didn't do was castor oil, because my midwife forbade it.
I went on long walks in Park Slope and gave people dirty looks when they stared at my ginormous belly and said things like, "WOA" and "good luck, honey."
I ate my weight in Nutella. No small feat.
I didn't sleep, because I was too uncomfortable, and I nearly killed the people who said things like, "get your rest now -- WHILE YOU CAN!"
I made 4,000 dishes and froze them all so we'd have something to eat. This includes about 4 dozen muffins that I gave to my neighbors (and ate myself, of course).
I reorganized our 550 square feet of living space about 550 times.
I stalked pregnancy message boards and became angry at folks having their babies BEFORE their due dates.
I worried about my baby when she didn't move. Then I'd get a fist in the crotch or a kick in the ribs and smile.
I wanted a beer and some sushi VERY BADLY.
I resented people who told me to "enjoy this time, because babies are much easier in than out." (They were wrong. I much prefer my baby out. She's much easier to cuddle that way.)
I still had five days before I would meet the love of my life.