So I have managed thus far to avoid stretch marks, but now, at almost 37 weeks, tiny little lines are starting to appear around my belly button. Which itself has admirably refused to pop out. However it appears to have done so with considerable effort, as the area around it is purple. Purple. The same color as my linea negra. Which, by the way, is crooked. A normal linea negra is straight as an arrow, a permanent but at least symmetrical reminder of childbearing. Mine is rebellious. Punk rock. It looks ridiculous. In fact, everything about the way I look is ridiculous. People constantly tell me, as they have told pregnant women from the beginning of time, how wonderful I look. I do not look wonderful. I fear I will never look wonderful again. Or maybe I will, but I will never be the same. This is nothing new. I am not the first to sit and moan about it. But it is new to me, and the fact that it is entirely out of my control, in spite of the gallons of tummy rub butter and truckloads of fish oil, is hard to deal with.
But of course I know it is worth it, he will be worth it. But perhaps he could be worth it in the next couple days? Before the stretch marks turn as purple as the war zone that once was my navel? Before my hips FALL OFF in the middle of the night? I swear they are hanging on by one small but very determined nerve. But the number one incentive for him making an early debut: My sisters are all in town. They came for my nephew's first birthday, and all has been chaos. So much so that I am actually not prepared at all for the baby coming early. But I'm not as against it as poor David, who turns white as a sheet at the though and starts insisting that he's not ready, that he hasn't even packed the hospital bag yet (he is FIXATED on this bag, as if it represents All That Is Fatherhood), that he hasn't read any of the books, that we don't have enough diapers. All of this is true, but I sincerely doubt it will be less true in three weeks. There is just too much to do, and he works too hard and I have too little energy or actual ability to move to get it done. I make endless lists in an effort to feel less overwhelmed, but every time I cross one thing off I add three more.
So having my sisters here, while it has been a huge distraction and I've basically accomplished nothing in Project house nor Project Baby since their arrival, is a good thing. Because if we don't manage to pack that bag? We can just call them and tell them to rustle things up and bring 'em to us. If we don't get that bedroom painted? We can hand them some rollers and leave them to it. If we don't have enough diapers? Why, they won't sleep until they've stocked us up. They are whirling dervishes entirely prepared to be at our beck and call IF ONLY THIS LITTLE PERSON WOULD COME OUT SO THEY COULD MEET HIM. Before they fly home next week. So I am ready. More than ready. Nearly desperate.