Saturday, July 18, 2009

No Fear...

I've been thinking about this on for years now. I'm still not 100% sure what the entire tapestry of the issue is all about, but it's coming together and I felt the need to share it with you today, so I am.

I look around me every day, at all the people I meet, and all the situations I see...I see fear for much, in so many people, for so many reasons, and I find myself detached from it - I can't relate completely to the situations some people find themselves afraid in, because I just don't feel fear the way I used to.

Maybe this is a common trait among people who have been almost dead, once, if not several times. Once you've almost been there, and experienced enormous pain, and survived, and been able to tolerate it all, being afraid seems...well, kind of a waste of energy. Being afraid of anything seems like a waste of energy. That is, when it concerns oneself and not others: being afraid of one's child drowning when he or she has just fallen off the boat is different than being afraid for oneself when taking off in a light aircaft on one's first solo flight!

Am I think skinned now? I don't think so. Perhaps a better analogy would be that I am like a well equipped wild human now. Things are thrown at me, and I have the coping mechanisms to catch them and turn them into...well, whatever I like, really. Fear or debt; fear of losing everything; fear of growing old alone; fear of being alone; fear of missing a deadline; fear of crashing in a plane...all those fears and so many more are inapplicable to my sense of consciousness now.

I'm not afraid of death. I'm not afraid of pain. I am not afraid of the combined nature of the two and I can tell you that with complete honesty. Yet I do care about myself - I don't want to be hurt, or die...I'm just not afraid of either one any more. So I milk every day for what it is, being aware that either death or pain, or both, could come to me any time, or perhaps not for many years.

The exception to these rules of course, is my belly: it holds a child, so it is out of bounds as far as death is concerned. But I think that goes without saying.

When people say "youth is wasted on the young" I can see it. Not being afraid any more, I am grateful for my life, my youth, my vigor and my strength. I know what I have, and what I have to give to other people and the world. I weigh up the risks, and the risks of never doing what I ought to be, and maybe take the plunge more than someone else might...but in the end, I still feel that is a good thing - for me, and for the people around me.

If I die tomorrow I can say "I spent yesterday working on an exciting graphic design project, baking bread and creating a surprise brand new bedroom for my daughter, loving my family..."

It's simple, but good enough for me.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Thirteen Weeks...

How funny that the number thirteen should traditionally represent unlucky circumstances, when in pregnancy - undoubtedly one of the most important things in life (since it is when a new human is created) - it represents the beginning of the second trimester and a substantially decreased risk of miscarriage. Unlucky? I think not!

So here I am - thirteen weeks today and just a little chubby. Getting a little faddy about food - take for example yesterday, traveling down the M60 with my poor Mother, insisting we stop at a service station immediately because I had to have a chicken and mushroom Ginsters slice, and nothing else would do. She suggested I make do with a packet of crisps - which I didn't regard as an adequate compromise (not being a crisp/chip eater much anyway) and we did indeed stop at the next Welcome Break, where I got my slice and made my tummy happy.

In that regard I suppose my Dad and I are similar, because when we especially want a certain food, we tend to go and get that food, or make it out of something: glue; jam; plastic...whatever. Both my parents are fabulous people - I can see where I get bits of my personality from. I can detect the slightest de-tune of a musical instrument or voice, having spent so long in the company of my Dad, who is a musician. My mother, who is also extremely musical, has amongst other things, given me the gift of being unafraid of childbirth and has educated me enormously about natural methods in child-rearing.

I am starting to wonder what traits my little Opus will inherit from his/her Mother and Father. Will he or she be interested in finding shiny things, like Dad? Will he/she be musical, like me? I just wonder. In the meanwhile, as this pregnancy becomes more and more tangible, I wait with anticipation.

Here is little Opus, or Goob, as we call him/her on 6/19 bouncing around nicely on the ultrasound. I can't wait to feel the kicks properly in a few weeks!

A lovely little heartbeat!

As the weeks go by, it's getting more and more impossible to contain my excitement. I am so ready to hold this little, I must make sure the months are filled with wonderful activities so that they are not wasted - and also to make them go by more quickly! I don't think I've ever looked forward to a harsh Minnesota winter more than in this particular year!