Mice and Pregnancy and Birth, Oh My!
I wake up in the morning with an aching jaw, my muscles tight, poised to jump at every rustle and squeak. Two mice caught, a third is still scampering around our tiny sublet.
The mice infestation is not that big of a deal, but it has heightened my baseline of anxiety that is already intensified with the pregnancy. What if my baby is born dead? I worry. What if that bump on my toe or that last violent kick she gave to my gut means she’s dying in my stomach right now and I’m ignoring symptoms that could allow me to save her? What if something goes horribly wrong at the birth and she doesn’t survive it? What if she’s born healthy, but I smother her or drop her or kill her in the weeks that follow?
I’m convinced my worries are hormonal as much as anything else, a variant of pre-partum depression. I do what I can to manage them: reciting affirmations, prenatal yoga-ing, meditating, journaling, and learning to spot which posts on pregnancy boards I should NOT be reading. “I’ve lost my rainbow”, “I’m out”, “Christiana’s Journey to Christ” are all code for tragic stories that (while I feel awfully for the people involved), are only going to send that many more anxious emotions through our umbilical cord, into my baby, if I read them.
I wonder, if I was still religious, if I’d be able to rest my anxieties on God’s doorstep, and say, “whatever happens is God’s will,” if I’d be able to hand off my tension and insomnia in a prayer, and walk off to enjoy the rest of my pregnancy and motherhood journey, worry free. Or would religious alter-FreiFem have all the same worries, plus an additional worry that my worrying displayed a lack of faith in God?Printable Version