That’s two shocks, one near-fire and a squirrel bite since I became pregnant.
If I actually get to give birth to a healthy girl, this will be funny some day. But right now I am feeling all flattened and upset by my own ridiculousness.
I know this is probably a total overreaction. But part of being pregnant and feeling so goddamn grateful is being stalked by the fear that it’s all so fragile and easily lost. I suspect this is how parents feel quite often.
After last night’s shock – in which I fiddled about with the rice cooker plug like a total moron – I called Dr E, who assured me that if I was ok, then she was more than likely ok. So I carried on making dinner, trying to maintain calm and will little Fonzarella to give me a good internal battering.
When Rufus came home I greeted him at the door like the confirmed lunatic I am quickly becoming and confessed. He sang into my belly button to try to get a reaction, but – much as I love him – he’s no Pavarotti.
No kicks until after 11.30pm, when I felt a feeble flurry and fell asleep. Another few feeble nudges this morning. And now nothing again. Maybe I stunned her. Maybe the shock did something weird to her developing body (almost 23 weeks now).
More fretting, more little internal monologues about how it’s all going to be alright. No really. It is.
The thing is, I had a strange day yesterday and before I shocked myself I was feeling so proud to have pulled myself out of a horrible boss-induced funk.
He-who-must-not-be-named had messaged me blithely that morning to say he’d appointed someone to cover my maternity leave. This someone, I know, is very ambitious, and just the kind of person (ie man) my boss loves. He’s also someone I’ve helped a lot in the past, and I had a feeling they have been cooking this up for a while now, so add betrayal to my list of work woes.
He is going to stay on when I come back from maternity leave to cover one chunk of my job – a major sore point for me because I just know that with almost anyone else as a boss, my infertility troubles and pregnancy would never have lead to this scenario.
Yes, I am feeling victimised. And a bit sorry for myself.
That’s deeply unfashionable I know. “Don’t be a victim!” all the self-help books say. But what if you are? Or have been? Can I just feel like a victim for a little while?
Deciding I had to do something positive to combat this general crappiness I called a former colleague to pick his brains about his career changes since he left our group. I am so glad I did. He’s done some amazing things, from strategic communications to activist campaigns to crisis management in Haiti. At heart, and in outlook, he says he’s still a journalist, but he’s had a grand time exploring other options and skills and independent projects. Now I have a list of some project ideas of my own, and have signed up for a few skills courses in the meantime.
I also called my former boss about a project he is getting off the ground to register my future interest. Working on your own, far from colleagues, can make a person feel isolated. It was great to be reminded that I do indeed have a strong network of contacts and friends and colleagues, and I have a lot of options.
If I can just steer clear of wild animals and electrical appliances, things will work out.