Anna Canzano IS pregnant

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Photo by Mitchelldyer Photography

More than two years ago in the midst of a rather ego-maniacal moment, I wrote about how the auto fill-in when you typed my name into Google was “Is Anna Canzano pregnant.” I pondered whether someday it would evolve to “Anna Canzano baby”.

That day has come.

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I’m waking up today on the last day of work before I take off for maternity leave.

And it is surreal.

See, I’ve always worked. I’ve worked since I was eleven years old, checking in customers at the motel I ran with my mom. I’ve waitressed, I’ve reformatted hard drives for government agencies, I’ve been an editorial assistant to a magazine publisher. And on and on. So sitting here on the verge of not working for four and a half months is a foreign feeling to me.

This is where other moms chime in and tell me, “Oh honey, you’ll be working. It’s just a different kind of work.”

I get that.

But maybe because I haven’t been through it yet, I don’t bristle when people view it as a vacation to stay home and take care of an infant. Ask me in a month or three how my “vacation” is going and maybe I’ll be that defensive, sleep-deprived woman who bites your head off.

Gotta admit, most of this pregnancy has been a breeze. I never had severe morning sickness — nothing a few saltine crackers in the morning and at night before bed didn’t cure. Sure, there was back pain but there are chiropractors and massage therapists for that. The most visible sign I was pregnant besides the bump was my elephant feet.

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Yuck!

One day I woke up and none of my shoes fit. I tried wearing an old pair of flip-flops to work and had witnesses when just standing there in the newsroom, the sandal broke right off my foot.

By far, the best part of pregnancy (aside from the fact that you produce a child) is the 9-month long sociological experiment you become. It’s the things people say to you that you don’t expect. And it starts right away.

When I announced my pregnancy to two of my female co-workers, after offering their congratulatory remarks, they both separately asked, “Was this planned?” I stumbled my way through a response that affirmed it was very much planned and hoped for and desired. But I walked away scratching my head. What was the underlying reason for that question? Do they think I’m too old to have a kid? Do I not seem like the type who’d ever want this? I never figured out the answer to that. Maybe I’ll get up the gumption some time to ask them over drinks.

The other observation you get to collect over 38 weeks is the spectrum of reaction to your growing girth. Somewhere around seven months, it was patently obvious I was growing a human inside me. And the exclamations this elicited from friends, colleagues and strangers included:

“YOU look like you’re ready to pop!”

“Whoa, you are getting BIG!”

“Man, WHEN is your due date?!”

Actually, there are two variations on the due date question. There is the version that comes with incredulity, spoken with a tone of expectation that your answer will be “next week (because I am SO large already)!”

The alternate is the one that comes with a look of pity prefaced with an unspoken “you poor thing” accompanied by a grimace.

These interactions prompted nearly daily belly laughs for me but I was also thankful to have a healthy self-esteem. Having a roughly dozen people tell you in a myriad of ways that you are fat might be pretty tough to stomach if you were already self-conscious about your weight.

I’ve also spent a bit of time reviewing the many instances when I’ve unknowingly said the exact same things other pregnant women in my life! To all those women, I apologize. I should have just said the words the wiser people of the world utter to someone in this state, “You look great!”

Okay, this is all sounds petty.

The reality is pregnancy is pretty rad. People really are excited for you. It’s a joyful thing to share. Friends and co-workers shower you with a level of generosity that surprises you. And feeling that little one kick inside of you? There’s just nothing better. Except that within days or weeks, we’ll get to hold this child and stare in wonderment at God’s ability to make life.

We’ve taken the classes. We’ve read the books. If the baby came today, she would have a place to sleep and diapers to wear.

Soon, my husband and I can stop weirding out other interracial families we see in public places as we study their “halfies” trying to guess how our little Asian/Caucasian fusion baby will turn out. We’ll have our own little halfie. My stepdaughter will have a sister. And I’ll commence the most important job I’ve ever had.

Let the adventure begin.

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3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Anne Munch
    Jun 01, 2014 @ 14:34:19

    Funny, honest and thoughtful – I so much enjoyed your reflections on pregnancy and everyone else’s reactions to each stage. Relish this special time and your new baby. Babies have a way of making even the most active, modern woman slow down, breathe and enjoy the beauty and wonder of this (mostly) sweet smelling new life.

    Reply

  2. Kim Huizinga
    Jun 02, 2014 @ 11:46:04

    Anna, I really enjoyed reading your story about your pregnancy and then your posts about your dad and your visit to Taiwan. You are a gifted story teller.
    I have been praying for you to have a healthy pregnancy and delivery, and that the Lord would heal your dear mother so that she can fully enjoy being grandma to your little one. I pray the Lord’s blessings on your life.

    Reply

  3. Jenny
    Jun 19, 2014 @ 17:12:35

    Guess you’ll have to get over thinking an infant crying is one of the most irritating sounds in a confined space.

    Reply

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