28w3d - Oh, the sun! Warmth, America! People of the frigid East Coast, I promise you: Heat does still exist in its natural state, and it can make things right again.
I will not goad you with temperatures or the scant amount of necessary daytime clothing here in the desert, but I will say that I am only wearing a single layer, and I have not thought about my de rigueur wool sweater since I landed. I type away with doors and windows open all day (and oh, does the light last forever!) and snack on grapefruits nabbed from the neighbor's lawn. Sticky with an absurd amount of sunblock, I take 2pm walks around my parents' neighborhood, nearly skipping as I flit through playlists from last summer and ogle Camelback Mountain in the distance. I squeeze backyard citrus into seltzer on the hour and think—for the first time during this pregnancy—about everything that’s to come once this sort of weather returns back home.
There will be sun. We will have a baby. We will have a baby once it gets warm out again.
I know this should not be such a discovery. But in my self-absorbed winter recluse state over the last three months, I could only think of the Tertiary Bambino as someone who we would grace us after so many weeks of darkness and cold ended. Now, my bare toes are a stark reminder: YOUR WHOLE WORLD IS GOING TO CHANGE, SOONER THAN YOU THINK.
En route to this light-drenched land of preternaturally tan and happy people, I got to spend the weekend in the Midwest, visiting golden college girlfriends—some pregnant, some trying, some perched to jump into the TTC pool. Clichés abound: We laughed to near asphyxia about how our lives had changed in decade-plus since we'd met and since we'd last seen one another, some several years ago, some several months. For every one of us, starting a family—even just considering it—proved to be muckier than we'd ever considered.
That solidarity was just the first salve I've experienced on this trip. My friends and I talked at length about the surprises-we-wish-that-weren't about pregnancy: How hard it is to decide when, really, is the best time to get pregnant—and ultimately, how little control we actually have over that. How helpless it can feel to try to no avail for so long. How tricky it can be to stay pregnant, and how profoundly and long-lastingly devastating it can be when you cannot.
And then, when the stars do align—or, you know, the progesterone suppositories are started at the key time or the IVF finally, finally works—how pregnancy itself leads you through a whole new terrain of huh? Explosive partner issues, whacked body changes, emotional insecurity of an entirely new dimension. Worries about the future, the present, the way-back past. Reassessment of yourself: Who are you, really, and why do you deserve to be in this place of such seeming privilege?
Pregnancy is hard. It happens or it doesn't, or it does and then doesn't, or it does and it ends. Then, maybe (like for us) it does again.
Right now, I'm so grateful to be in a place in this pregnancy and in the world where the elements are stacked in our feel-good favor. I have such support: Friends who are psyched to celebrate this new life with us and family who are unrelenting in their care of me and this kid. (Grilled cheese on rye for lunch? Thanks, Ma!!)
And sun. Today, I have so much sun.