Looking like you're 67 weeks pregnant when you're actually 31 weeks pregnant can lead to a lot of awkward conversations.
I'm fairly confident the one I had a few days ago at the grocery store edges ahead of the old man at the zoo asking me if I was having one of "those" as he pointed to the elephants.
If I had a match handy I would not have hesitated to light his oxygen tank on fire, laughing hysterically as he scrambled to escape his wheelchair inferno.
Yet I digress.
I went to the grocery store to pick up the essentials - pancake mix, Pepcid and a box of ice cream sandwiches. I was in the check out line and the following conversation ensued:
Checker (glancing down at my stomach): Wow! You're about ready to have that baby any minute now, huh?
Me (being polite as always, but finding some peace in knowing she's about to feel like shit): Well, you'd think so, but I actually have 9 weeks left.
Checker: Oh. (silence, then after a few seconds) I'm sorry - that was really impolite of me - you probably have a million people saying things like that to you. I'm sorry.
Me (glad that for once someone was owning up to the fact that what was said might have hurt my feelings rather than just making a bad joke): Oh no, that's ok. I know I'm huge - it's just how my body is.
Checker: No, no - I'm really sorry.
Me: No really, don't worry about it. It's fine.
- awkward silence as I scan my debit card -
Checker: Ok, well here's your receipt, have a great day! Oh, wait a second - there's some coupons here if you want them. Oh, look... here's one for Lean Cuisine!
Then we just stared at one another for a few seconds.
Her because she knew how what she had just said sounded and she was debating internally whether or not to apologize again or if speaking would just make everything worse.
And me standing there patiently while she sweat it out, teaching her a valuable lesson in pregnancy etiquette.
I knew as I walked out the door she would never make that mistake again.
One by one I'm taking bullets for future generations of Big Ole Preggies, which I like to think makes me a bit of a pregnancy martyr. Maybe someday my likeness will be etched into stained glass windows at birthing centers everywhere.