Your flip and callous arrogance in these things bothers me. You pass it off as a small thing, but it’s anything but that.
1 Corinthians 5:6
Quick bicycling story, since I’ve really been remiss in talking about biking. Of course, it’s also a pregnancy story, because at this point almost everything is a pregnancy story.
Yesterday it was a lovely day and I met up with my friend Laurie for a ride around the lake. She brought her friend Michele (an Italian guy whose name we pronounce as Michael), and he brought his friend Jerry. Jerry was about 35 years older than me, but figured since he was riding with a pregnant woman, it’d be a nice easy spin around the lake.
By the time we got to Leschi, I think we’d disabused him of that idea. Compared to my riding last year, the pace was an easy spin, but apparently for Jerry this relatively flat ride proved plenty vigorous. We averaged 16.1 mph for the first 45 miles, with me doing almost all the pulling, and I accidentally dropped him and Laurie as we rode up Juanita Drive (again — not bad for 6 months pregnant).
At Leschi, Jerry asked me a very strange question: “So how much weight have you gained?” Err… Now, looking back, I kind of wish I’d said “Enough to be healthy,” or something like that. But I was caught unawares, so I told him the amount from my 24 week OB visit. He said, “Well, if you were to do the 7 Hills, you’d definitely be feeling that extra weight.” Um, yes, thanks. He didn’t know that the previous Sunday I’d done essentially the same amount of distance and climbing as the 7 Hills metric century, and that I’ve been riding up hills consistently this entire time. Is there any other time in life when a total stranger can, with impunity, ask you how much weight you’ve gained? I doubt it.
Yes, he’s absolutely right — presumably some of my slowed hill climbing I can attribute to weight gain. But more would be the fact that I’m providing total life support to a little person who’s requiring more and more resources all the time. I’ve gained a healthy amount of weight, but by no means a huge amount. From the back, you can’t tell I’m pregnant. From the side, it’s abundantly clear. Even so, I’ve ridden 230 miles each week for the last 2 weeks, and almost 600 miles so for the month of May — respectable no matter how you cut it.
I didn’t really know what to say, so I think I just agreed and moved the conversation on. But I’m putting that down as one of the stranger things people feel pregnancy entitles them to ask.
Two other quick pregnancy things: Yesterday somebody patted my stomach and I just smiled and let it go. Progress! I didn’t forcibly remove her hand, take a huge step away, or anything else. And earlier in the week, two separate women in two separate stores asked me about my pregnancy (“Are you having a boy or a girl?” and “Is this your first child?”), which I take to indicate that I’m safely in the obviously, unambiguously pregnant stage. No more wondering “Did Katie gain a bunch of weight, or is she pregnant?” Which is all for the best, since we’re into the final trimester, when The Boy starts really growing.