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Danger Patrol

24w1d - I fell yesterday. The Mister and I had gone out for a semi-schmancy dinner and then to a lecture at a nearby birthing center about infant sleep—hot date, indeed—and on the way back into the house from the garage, I stubbed my boot on a tree root in our unpaved driveway and toppled to the ground like a stack of Duplo blocks.

I let my bag of leftovers and my right knee break my fall, trying in desperation to curl into myself as I hit the gravel. My belly never struck anything, though I clutched it as I stood, shaking, and the Mister helped me re-steady my footing. Safely inside the house, snarfing the now-crumbled cannoli, I fumed: Why don’t we have more lights out there? How come I was the only one who’d tripped? Shouldn’t we pave all three hundred feet of our wooded driveway?

Why the hell hadn’t I been paying more attention, when falling came with such a heavy price these days?

Only after I’d pummeled the internet with queries about the perils of second-trimester spills—no, I wasn’t still dizzy, or experiencing vaginal bleeding, or leaking anything—and monitored the baby’s tumbles with concentrated ferocity for an hour was I able to relax enough to forgo an ER visit and head to bed.

12:07am – Get up to pee. Look into nursery on way back from bathroom and wonder if the wall we’d intended to put the crib along is too far from the heating vent and too close to the drafty-ish window.

1:40am – Wake, sweating, from an awful dream in which The Mister has been involved in a violent accident worthy of sensational headlines. Lay awake calculating life insurance, the remaining mortgage on the house, my student loans, how much I cannot envision embarking on this parenting thing without my best friend, snoring beside me.

3:01am – Pee. Get snack: milk and Ritz. Wait, where is the dog? Ohmygod, where is the dog? Was he here when we got home? In my self-absorbed state, did I totally overlook that someone had stolen our dog? Is he—oh. Now laying on my side of the bed, looking at me expectantly.

4:50am – Bolt up. We need wills.

7:10am – Pee. Count baby’s thrusts as I poke the lower left corner of my belly where s/he hangs out in the morning. (Can extremely round things have corners? Whatever.) Satisfied that the movement meets my un-scientific standards for post-fall safety, I hobble to the kitchen, making note that I need to add a gate extender to our registry to secure the spiral staircase in the middle of our living room. (HAZARD #2653.)

I fix some decaf, and look at the bluish goose egg that has risen on my knee overnight. 

“That fall really scared you, huh?” The Mister says, eyeing my bruise. It did, I tell him, and then spew every fear from the previous nine hours at him. He listens politely, shuddering as I recount my dream of his gross demise, and hugs me.

“I have a feeling that we’re going to have lots that we can worry about coming up,” he says.

I know just what he means.