Disclaimer: Please read this before continuing on with today's post: All of you who read my blog? I know you. (And if I don't well... You know me. And if you don't then you've gotten to know me through my posts, right?) So the following post is not in any way geared toward any of you. Just want to make sure we're clear on that- I appreciate all of your comments and questions and support so much! This rant is strictly directed at the judgemental, nosy strangers who come right out and say stupid things like, "I just want to touch your belly!" Oh! Well, why didn't you just say something? I've been wanting to touch yours too! Seriously. What was your name again?
Probably the most enjoyable part of being pregnant while going to school is meeting all kinds of inquisitive strangers who feel the compelling urge to make some sort of comment about my expanding belly and the baby that resides within. (Please feel the sarcasm here people. I don't know- it's Monday morning and I feel like if you operate like I do you might need it pointed out.)
Anyways. Take the experience I had a couple of weeks ago for an example. I was at clinical and a woman who shall remain anonymous because I have no idea who she is despite the fact that she broke into personal conversation with me within two and a half minutes of meeting her. Of course she commented that I must be due for a baby soon to which I agreed. Then she said all enthusiastically (and I get this all. the. time.), "So is this your first?" Um... No. Fourth.
Her demeanor suddenly changed from over-excited experienced mom who wanted to pass me all kinds of wisdom to judgemental crazy-woman who thought she had some sort of right to basically imply I'd had too many kids already by her standards. Her tone of voice did this cool 180 thing and suddenly she was all serious and belittling. "Oh. Do you have girls or boys?" Two girls and a boy. "Oh. We stopped at two. Our first was a girl and our second was a boy. Maybe if the second would have been a girl too we would have tried for a third." Ooooh... Thanks for the advice- sorry I didn't follow your rules.
And then there was the woman on the elevator who meant well, but... well. In hindsight there would have been a much easier way to deal with her. She took a look at me and said, "Normally I don't say anything but I'm pretty sure I can ask... So, how's the baby?" Oh, fine. (And to think at this point I could have fore-gone the entire conversation by stating,'What baby?!') "Are you excited?" Okay, first off I don't get this question. Well, gee, let's see- Would you like the real answer?! I'm at clinical two hours away from home three weeks before my due date. My back aches, my pants won't stay up, and I got approximately 3 hours of sleep meshed between tossing, turning, contractions, and bathroom breaks last night. So am I excited? Jumping up and down in the elevator, lady, Yeah! Are you? Are you excited today?
She also went on to ask how many kids I had and this time when I answered she shut up completely and we spent the next 8 seconds in silence until the elevator reached her floor. Oh well. I think we could have been real good friends too.
The final thing I will not miss about being pregnant and going to school- the people who mean well but who can't drop the fact that I will be having this baby in the middle of a semester. One girl when she found out said (with much doubt in her voice), "Oh. Well, good luck with that." Thank-you. Thanks, it's all better now because you gave me your well wishes. And another who just couldn't seem to let it go and kept asking questions like, "But how are you going to do it? Do you have other kids? Who will watch the baby?" All this after I had known her for a mere five minutes.
I understand concern. I'm not faulting people who have natural wonder and who offer good wishes- I appreciate that. It's when it comes down to nosy strangers who are only filling their own curiosity by peppering me with a thousand pointless questions that will in no way make their day more complete to which I have a problem.
And, I don't mind questions so much from strangers-- if they could leave their judgements aside. As soon as they find out this is my fourth kid, or if they somehow manage to discover my husband is in nursing school as well, they take that as their cue to start implying that I'm completely nuts. Guess what- here's a newsflash you probably didn't see coming- I think I'm nuts too. But that's for me to decide. Not the stranger in the hospital cafeteria who suddenly feels it's their duty to remind me that I've lost my mind just like one might drop a piece of silverware. Um, m'am? I think you lost your sanity over there by the salad bar. Hah. No, actually I misplaced that about two babies ago and I've been wandering aimlessly ever since, but thanks- maybe that's yours?
So there you have it. My rant on crazy-nosy, judgemental strangers. Apparently people have this fascination with pregnant woman that leads them to ramble off nonsense comments they wouldn't find themselves saying to ordinary passer-by.
Oh well. I can take it. My list of comebacks is increasing with every meeting. I like to think I'm growing wiser.
And- as a footnote to all of you still reading- you have earned the right to call me crazy any time you want. Go for it.