Comments and Questions the Pregnant Librarian Sitting Across the Desk From You in the Library Doesn’t Want to Hear Come Out of Your Mouth

OK, so this is actually last month’s shot, but it’s way cuter than this month’s.  
Suffice it to say that I’m slightly larger than this right now. 

So, we’re about six and a half months into this pregnancy, everyone.  WHOO!  Time certainly flies when you’re having fun shopping for larger maternity clothes, am I right, ladies?  At this point, I no longer just look fat, but am now obviously pregnant.  I’m also not that cute kind of pregnant you get to be when it’s your first baby; I’m the less-cute kind of pregnant that you get to be the second and third time around.  Instead of your body acting all surprised by what’s going on, it just gives up, resignedly inviting every spare carbohydrate and fat cell to hang out for the next nine months wherever it wants.  “Yeah, just get comfortable.  Seriously, you’re not going to have to leave until waaaay after the baby’s born, so relax.  You want a Hot Pocket?”          

Having a desk job also means that many of my more regular patrons at the library may not have noticed my pregnancy up until now.  I do look less pregnant sitting down than standing up, but even now, it’s hard not to notice.  This means all of the more enjoyable comments and questions are starting to arise.  Most people are very nice and sweet, saying things like, “Congratulations!” and “You look so cute!” and “How are you feeling?”  These are, surprisingly, usually my younger students, the ones that still have a healthy fear and respect for those people in a quasi-authoritative role (i.e., they know who has the power to add a $55.00 fine to their library account).

However, I’ve noticed that the older a person gets, the less tactful and more downright rude their observations become.  In general, this phenomenon where old people say whatever the hell they want appeals to me, and is one of the things I actually like about old people.  In the following cases, though, I would prefer that they actually just shut the fuck up and go pet their cats or use their Jitterbug to call Ethel and share their awesome comment with her.  In addition, some of the comments below came from professors; people who presumably have a certain level of education that might have taught them to pause and consider their thoughts and actions before speaking and acting.  This goes to prove my husband’s cherished and time-proven theorem: higher education is bullshit, and often makes you dumber.

1)  “So, you’re due pretty soon, right?  No?  Then why are you showing so soon?”  Wow, just went straight for the jugular on that one, huh?  Didn’t want to just be subtle?  Had to make sure I realized that what you really wanted to say was, “Boy, you’re fucking huge!”  Also, what kind of answer was this person looking for here?  “I don’t know, I guess I’m just really fat!  You win!”

2)  “Are you having twins?”  Dude.  You’re aware that twins are not a common event, right?  What are the odds that you’re correct?  Do you just not care that your potential for insulting me is about 97%, or are you outright trying to insult me?  This is often the only conclusion I can come to with most of these questions — for some reason, they want to see how far they can push a pregnant woman before she goes crazy and tears their face off.  Also, FYI, this question came from a man.  I have to wonder whether or not he suffers from that fetish where dudes like to be kicked in the balls by women.

Salty Peanut
Because I WILL oblige, my friend.  I WILL.
3)   “So, when are you going to pop?”  In about two seconds, when I pop you in the fucking nose.  Seriously, any comparison of a pregnant woman to something large and inflated is not wise.

4)  “Whoa, this is your THIRD?!?!  You’re done after this one, right?” Oh, snap!  I’m SO SORRY my huge flock of children are constantly disturbing and inconveniencing you!  I really didn’t realize what kind of a problem it was for you personally that I have more than one child!  I know, having them all up in your face all the time must be so annoying…oh wait, they’re not*.  SO WHY DO YOU CARE HOW MANY I HAVE?  Let me run down the list for you: I’m gainfully employed, have my own health insurance, am married, and I do not currently live in someone’s basement.  You have absolutely no reason to be concerned about how many children I choose to have.  Also, what if I wasn’t finished?  What if I wanted to have another three, or five, or try to get up in the TLC reality-show range?  Go back to the list, and read it again.  Until my kids are asking YOU for juice sixty-three times a day in YOUR house, back off.

*unless you happen to be one of the family members that cares for our children while we work.  You guys get a free pass on this one.  Oh, and a hug.

5) “Oh, another girl, huh?  That’s too bad (or a variation of this)“.  Let’s step back from how tactless and inconsiderate this remark is, and set aside the obvious fact that it doesn’t matter as long as the baby is healthy, and even ignore the question’s ultimate (crazy) insinuation that this baby has somehow “disappointed” you in some way.  I think my husband summed it up best when I asked him if he wanted a boy or a girl this time around: “At this point, what does it matter?”

That guy.  He’s like Cranky Buddha:  more grumpy, but just as wise.

fat
 Exactly like this, but with an equally big frown and a kick-ass beard.

Cranky Buddha meant this two ways: first, you have no say over the matter.  It was decided for you before you even knew it was happening, so why waste your time “hoping” for one or the other?  It is what it is.  Does that change the fact that I spent 18 weeks praying there was another vagina up inside my vagina (or “buhgina, as Phaedra pronounces it, to Rob’s utter dismay and my complete delight)?  No.  But I knew at the end of the day, it would be fine, and that I had no control over it either way.

Second, it doesn’t matter if you have a boy or a girl when you reach baby #3, because you’re just as busy and losing just as much of your sanity either way.  Things won’t really be easier because I’m having another girl; every baby is just as different from the last one, boy or girl.  I have two wildly different kids already, and they’re both the same gender.  Bella would have still been an insane child to care for if she was a boy; she just let me dress her in Phaedra’s old wardrobe (a perk, I won’t lie).  In addition, once you have three, you no longer have “a baby”, or “two babies”; you HAVE KIDS.  The general theory, routine, and tasks behind HAVING KIDS is the same, despite the gender(s) you’re caring for.  Girls and boys give slight variations, and sure, their personalities are different, but the main idea behind caring for them is essentially the same:  Feed.  Bathe.  Sleep.  Repeat.  Sometimes they go places with you; sometimes they go places without you.  The rest takes care of itself.

So, dearest students and faculty, please consider yourself warned.  From this point on in my pregnancy, I am only accepting flattering and polite comments regarding my current condition.  All other remarks will be met with a smile, a deceptively nice response, and a $300 library book that was mysteriously checked out by you on the same day, never returned, and thus charged to your student account/paycheck.

Choose your words carefully.

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11 Responses to Comments and Questions the Pregnant Librarian Sitting Across the Desk From You in the Library Doesn’t Want to Hear Come Out of Your Mouth

  1. Patrick says:

    someone jessica works with just realized she was pregnant (at about 7 months). he went up to her, pointed at her stomach, and said “how long have you been pregnant?” kicking-in-the-balls reaction seems exactly appropriate.

  2. Janel says:

    Why do people have to broadcast how dumb they are? He couldn’t just keep his mouth shut? I don’t know why pregnancy makes people completely throw out normal social rules.

  3. At least you ARE pregnant. Some dumbass congratulated me on my pregnancy… I kind of felt bad saying, “uh, I’m not pregnant; I’m just fat” because he seemed genuinely excited. The next day he brought me in donuts. Really? Donuts?! I considered kicking him in the balls, but the extra blubber in my belly region persuaded me not to overindulge in physical activity.

  4. Janel says:

    Oh man. That’s way dumb. I always confirm someone’s pregnancy via 3 different sources before I congratulate someone. Also, is the correct “I’m sorry” for accidentally calling someone fat buying them more junk food? “Here, I know how much you love eating food; here’s some more!” A kick in the balls was definitely warranted in your case.

  5. Brenna says:

    First, you DO look cute! That’s a lovely little belly you’ve cultivated. Secondly, my sister who’s raising her own child army says that the move to three was way easier than the move to two, mostly because you’ve pretty much resigned your entire life to child rearing, but still.

  6. Janel says:

    Thanks! I like hearing “cute” much better than “big” or “Wow!” I grew it myself, mainly with Mountain Dew and pretzels. I’m also really glad to hear that the move to three is easier to two. I actually have resigned my life and spare time to raising kids, so I’m glad that will still come in handy.

  7. jesterqueen1 says:

    OK, I LOVE that picture. I love it for two reasons. 1) It proves that you have got one awesome body. By month six of my second pregnancy, there was no cute little beach-ball poking out of my front. No. Even though I had actually dropped some weight (which I promptly gained back and added to after the baby was born, damn it) I was just generally bloated, so I looked kind of like a female Michelin Man. I understand your comment about the fat cells offering each other hot pockets. This is month six-and-a-half-of your third, and you still have identifyable breasts and legs. Wow.

    And, 2) You are ROCKING the librarian look. Your glasses are perfect, and so is your hair. I always just looked scruffy back when I did actual library work. You look totally composed and professional.

    Hopefully, once you have disengaged the little alien from your innards and deposited it into The Wide Wide World, you’ll be able to look back and see how good you looked when you were still occupied territory. In the meantime, please know that a good kick-in-the-balls can ALWAYS be blamed on hormones at this stage.

  8. Suzy says:

    Hi Janel! This is Laura’s (Morrison) sister Suzy. She sent me to your blog after I had shared some stories with her about what people say to me about my daughter. I got asked if I was having twins multiple times!! Some people asked twice and then followed with..”Are you sure??” The “are you sure” is my least favorite comment.
    My daughter is half Filipino, so it is not a secret that she looks more like my husband. We went out to dinner and the waitress kept passing by us saying that she looked nothing like me…nothing at all!! Then, after about 5-6 times of rubbing that in my face, she asked if I was sure that she was mine!!!!!! REALLY!! I am pretty sure she came out of my vagina!!!
    I just thought that I would share! I get stupid questions from people all of the time:)

  9. Janel says:

    Ladies, i will accept any and all compliments about my body and my librarian style you want to throw at me. I’ll also accept any and all loose change and dollar bills thrown at me, but that’s a different story altogether.

    Suzy, it’s great to hear from you! First, “are you sure?” is not an acceptable answer answer when someone affirms that indeed, they’re not having twins. The only acceptable answer is to hang your head in shame and walk away. Quickly. Second, why do people feel the need to emphasize how much your kids DON’T look like you? My husband is just as caucasian as I am, but it doesn’t stop strangers from enthusiastically going on about how little they look like me. Thanks, lady! I GET IT, SHE WAS OBVIOUSLY SWITCHED AT BIRTH. I feel so much better! Now can I eat my dinner?

  10. K says:

    LO frackin L…don’t know how I missed this earlier. Probably Mr. Baby’s fault. Even if it isn’t, he’s a convenient place to lay blame. Can’t talk yet, that one. Anyway I love: Instead of your body acting all surprised by what’s going on, it just gives up, resignedly inviting every spare carbohydrate and fat cell to hang out for the next nine months wherever it wants. “Yeah, just get comfortable. Seriously, you’re not going to have to leave until waaaay after the baby’s born, so relax. You want a Hot Pocket?” – Brilliant.

    I like after you have the baby, when everyone thinks they’re really clever saying, “So (ho ho ho)…gettin’ any sleep?’ Just what the fuck is that supposed to be? I was at the EDGE, and really the next person who said it was going get their hair ripped out and shoved up their bleeding,bleeding nose. But luckily that aura just seemed to put people off saying it again.

  11. Janel says:

    My policy is to continue blaming the kid that can’t talk until they can understand you, and even then, until they can actually articulate an argument against you.

    Yeah, I’m not sure why people are so eager to delight in your misery. The people asking about sleep obviously know you’re NOT sleeping, so what’s the real motivation behind their question? Why do people delight in tormenting pregnant women and brand new parents? It’s kind of like a “Fuck you! I went through it, and now SO WILL YOU!!!” Not really a super-nice attitude.

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