Why Are You Telling Me This?

06 June 2011
Pregnancy is gross. We all know this, yet everyone acts like it's some great secret. Browsing in bookstores for pregnancy books (I'm an old fashioned kinda lady who likes her advice in treeware form), every second book promises to reveal "the true secrets of pregnancy that no one else will tell you!". Basically every one of these secrets is that your bodily functions go to hell, and your body becomes an erupting morass from which emerges uncontrollable, unspeakable sights, sounds, smells and fluids. It gets rather depressing. It gets so that someone could tell you that with every step you take, the baby will kick all your internal organs out your backside and you'll need to manually shove them back in, and you'd believe it.

So yeah, I've been very thoroughly appraised of all the icky bits, and I'm finding out for myself what's true and what's just evil book editors going for shock value. Here are the actual things that no one told me:
  • That for surprising stretches of time I will forget I am am pregnant, and life feels normal;
  • That even after wanting this for years, and quite a long stretch of trying without luck and fearing it would never happen, there are moments of not forgetting when I wonder what the hell I've done and wish for an escape clause;
  • That I will stand in the supermarket with a basket containing an ultra-soft toothbrush, three bags of candy, a tub of super-sour Greek yoghurt and a packet of Poise lady-things, and realise with a sigh this is the new normal;
  • That you are not allowed to be pregnant in winter, not according to maternity wear manufacturers anyway;
  • The horror stories are not all true - no strangers have tried to touch my bump as yet, though that could be because of my sneering, snarling demeanour;
  • That there is always someone who is more organised and copes better than you, and some of the bile rising in your throat is jealousy, not pregnancy heartburn. Although, if you haven't realised that by this stage in your life, you probably weren't ready for motherhood anyway.

Also from the "perhaps you've said too much" department, the redoubtable Bob Katter has launched his own political party and has come out with a bang, declaring he doesn't have anything to do with Pauline Hanson or One Nation, despite Ms Hanson coming out in support of Katter. A case of the gentleman doth protest too much? Why would Katter want to be distancing himself from One Nation? The policies of the new party are nothing that Hanson wouldn't have felt comfortable with - small targets and fear, isolation and pessimism. Australia is screwed, the line runs, and we must cut ourselves off from the forces doing the screwing. No one's really worried about a rise of the new right, though. It's slightly hard to take Katter seriously - he has a reputation as a "maverick", in this case media shorthand for "lunatic, but libel laws prevent us from saying so". Even the Federal member for the North Queensland seat of Herbert, Ewan Jones, has proclaimed "I just reckon it's going to be funny to see Bob actually have to articulate and stick to a policy decision.". It will be funny - I'll be watching.


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