Thursday, July 10, 2008

I Can't Remember

I can't remember what it's like to be pregnant anymore. To automatically have a place to put my hands, after spending months wearing pants without pockets. To have a shelf that caught any excess food I wasn't able to slip between my lips.

I can't remember what it was like to pat my belly and have someone, or two, respond back with kicking or poking or prodding.

I can't remember all of the pain and suffering and aches. I can't remember how existing on one and a half hours of sleep felt. (For which I am eternally grateful.)

I can't remember the pregnant walk. The rolling sailor gait, the wide waddle that let everyone around you know that you were Comin' Through!

I can't remember constantly overheating, contracting, twingeing, swelling, and getting nauseated. I can see my feet whenever I'd like and touch my toes from a standing position, should I feel so inclined. I don't bump into doors with my belly button anymore, either.

I can't remember what it's like to breathe for someone else, to pee for someone else, to pump someone else's blood through my body.

I can't remember feeling the constant need to pee. The breathlessness, or the constant fear of falling down. Weebles wobble, but sometimes they do fall down and occasionally get stuck.

I can't remember what it felt like to constantly pet my own belly and attend to all of the gymnastics taking place inside. There's no one left to respond to a gentle poke or pat...inside. No one abruptly tests my bladder capacity anymore, either. (Have I mentioned peeing enough for you yet? Gah! It's a constant of pregnancy.)

As I stood there looking at the reflection of my sad, deflated, melted belly in the mirror, I realized that I'd forgotten all of that. Feelings that seemed utterly memorable and unforgettable at the time, I've forgotten. I've forgotten the body memory, the shape of things, the pressures. Once those babies were happily, joyfully decanted, I started a slow journey back to "normal". I'm not so certain I'll ever see normal again, but I'm a lot closer to my body's version of "normal" than 9.5 months ago.

I've lost the pregnant belly. Forever. Now I have loose, saggy baggy skin as a constant reminder of the last known location of Twins. Evicted, 9/27/07. The giant beachball is no more.

I'm grateful for all it held. Three children; two births. Sixty-five pounds gone. Fifty-two inches around, marking the boundary between me, the twins and all the rest of the world. I'm still amazed skin can stretch so far and yet not burst. I appreciate being able to see my feet again and to fit into regular clothes once more.

But how could I forget what it feels like? After all that, how can it be so easy to forget?


Hava said...

Oh I remember feeling that way. I tried SO HARD to gain weight with Loen and Derby and my body wasn't having it. Then with them being born early and only gaining 137 pounds the weight was gone in less than a month. It was so emotional, all that I worked for and had to stay on bed rest to keep in for each valuable day was gone. Tadd said I should be glad my weight was back to normal but I felt sad about it. Though when the twins do their Bionic Leg kick on my C-section incision I don't feel sad about that! It is like they have a homing device and know they have to kick EXACTLY where they came out.

SuburbanCorrespondent said...

I miss the kicking feeling the most.

Jennifer H said...

The kicking was best part (and, the eating). But I can't say I'm sorry to forget the rest of it. I think that our bodies take care of us in that way, in the forgetting.

Madge said...

it's been over six years since I was pregnant and every once in awhile I remember i was and it seems impossible that i ever was.

Ali said...

I just remember being so happy that, for the first time in my life, I didn't have to hold in my stomach. In fact I LOVED my stomach. I think that was my favorite part. And the constant well wishes from strangers. The hope.

It's funny that you bring it up. I've been thinking about pregnancy - being pregnant, getting pregnant - a lot lately, probably because the physical memories are fading for me too. Also because I'm getting old and will probably never experience them again...

The "melting" stomach. Priceless, and absolutely on the money.

Shamelessly Sassy said...

I am with you, but I am so glad that I can't remember what it is like to absolutely have to pee in that very moment or else I would burst.

screamish said...

Oh hey ladies..I'm still right in there.

The kicking is nice..I know I'll miss it. And I feel so full. I look at skinny women on the tv and think "empty" and I guess after twins in my belly that's how I'll feel later....but by that point I'll have more than that to think about!

Elaine A. said...

I think it's kind of like how you forget the pain. God wants it that way so that you will do it again (well maybe not TWINS, but you know what I mean!)

Valerie said...

I was pregnant? OH! THAT's how the boys got here! I was starting to wonder, where they came from and why they need so much food....

Yeah, I loved the kicking. If not partially because it was an immediate sign of life.

Woman with a Hatchet said...

Hava: you gained 137 lbs? No way! : ) Just kidding. I recognize a typo when I see one! The babies ARE good at kicking you right in the scar, aren't they? Mine are all great at that.

SC: Me too. That was the best part.

Jennifer: Forgetting most of it is good, I'm just surprised it happened so fast!

Ali: You're younger than ME, you can't claim to be old and unlikely to have more kids. You could...if you really wanted to. The only problem is the decision to have a SECOND after experiencing one kid is the hard part, I've found. Took us awhile to decide to have our second and look what happened!

Sassy: that is one of the best forgettings!

Screamish: you'll never look at a pregnant belly again and not wonder if they're having twins, too! Or automatically looking at little bellies and being absolutely certain that they aren't!

Elaine: Yeah, it's a trick! A trap, I tell you! You forget all of this stuff and then the babies get cute and you start thinking..."Well, maybe ONE more!"

Squeakes: Born fully formed from your head, they were. I can't even imagine how much those two will be eating in 10 years! AHHH! Start saving now!

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