He's back! (Daddy, that is.) Our family is oh, so happy to finally be reunited. It's strange, but up until the very end, I kept waiting for that fall-apart moment where the world would come tumbling down while Jason was gone--you know, the locked the keys in the car, forgot the kids at the gas station, burned down the house sort of moment. Fortunately, this moment never came, and I feel so grateful that whatever happens now, we can tackle it together.
These last few days have been marked by the "knowing" glance. Everywhere I go, it seems like I get these friendly, "knowing" glances from strangers everywhere--the librarian, the maintenance worker, even the teenage grocery clerk. My huge size seems to evoke these familiar smiles, as if this stranger and I are both intimately acquainted with some big secret that will reveal itself soon.
And, of course, everyone wants to know when. The standard formulaic greeting of "Hi, how are you?" has been completely replaced by "When are you due?" or better yet, "How much longer?" I look down at my enormous stomach (can't even see my belly button now, let alone my toes), and think to myself, if only I knew...
So when am I due? I've been given so many dates--September 10th, September 12th, and most recently, September 11th. While I believe that all birthdates should be equally loved, respected, and valued, let's face it--who really wants to say, oh, my baby's coming on 9-11. Kind of an auspicious start... And so, I pick the date that I like best (September 10th, it's the soonest) and feel twinges of guilt for lying every time I answer someone.
Naturally, the entire concept of a due "date" is quite inaccurate. It merely targets a range of dates where statistically-speaking, it's most probable that your baby will arrive. Of course, the fact that both Brooklyn and Talia arrived almost exactly on their due dates (Talia actually hit the mark) probably makes it more likely that Baby Boy will be timely as well. And yet, with Brooklyn and Talia, there were very compelling reasons (such as final exams) why Baby needed to stay put until the very end. So the question is, did they cooperate because they wanted to, or because I wanted them to? Master orchestrator that I am, I wouldn't be surprised if I at least had some influence on their arrivals.
This time around, however, is different. Now that Jason is home, any moment would be great for me. I think it might be fun to have this boy on September 9th--09/09/09--say, at 9:09 at the morning. Or, we could have a baby on the 7th--quite a bit of good irony in laboring on Labor Day. Aunt Christy and Uncle Ben are coming to stay for a bit at the end of August/beginning of September. This little boy would uphold tradition by gracing us with his presence then--it just so happens that Ben and Christy have been at our house when both of our girls were born.
And then, of course, the pipe dream. This baby could arrive even sooner--say, tomorrow! He's been through a lot of abuse being toted across the world, then schlepped to each side of this nation. Maybe he will just decide he's had enough and decide to greet us early so that he can assert his opinion about the whole matter.
As for the final alternative--a baby who's late--well, I can't even allow my mind to drift there at the moment. While I suppose it is possible, I'm so ready to be done with pregnancy that I'll cross that hurdle if or when I get there.
In the meantime, feel free to venture your ideas as to when this little fellow will make his debut appearance. After all, your guess is as good as mine!