Thursday, March 1, 2012

Jinxing It

Williamsburg, 2012

Trolling around on birth month message boards like What to Expect or Baby Center, I'm often taken aback by how quickly it's so very concrete to people. They seem so very sure of their pregnancies.

4 weeks and they're penning Facebook announcements. 12 weeks and the baby's name is monogrammed all over the place. They're shopping up a storm and buying onesies by the armful for little Grace or Alexander. They say things like: "He really likes oatmeal."

I've even seen ultrasound pictures (in those tickers in the comments) where people have drawn things like tiaras on an image and scrawled "Mommy's little princess!", Perez Hilton style.

Then there's the matter of the baby shower. The invites that say, "Come celebrate Jenny and Jonas" always confuse me. Who's Jonas, I wonder???

I know that not everyone does any of the above. One friend followed her family's Jewish tradition, eschewing a shower and waiting until 8 days after each of her sons were born before naming them. In China, families celebrate the baby with gifts when they've reached 100 days old (and presumably not in utero.)

Whatever these rituals are rooted in, it makes a certain amount of sense to me. I guess, when it comes down to it, I'm afraid of jinxing it.

Then again, sometimes I have to give myself permission to celebrate and to visualize the future. Of course, Will and I talk about names and what our lives will be like with a baby in tow. But a few minutes into the conversation, it's almost as if we cut ourselves short with an unspoken not yet. When I speak out loud about the baby in a real sense, I'm half afraid to say things like "my son."

Obviously, I'm writing about my pregnancy on the internet. So there's a huge leap of faith there. But I'm also hugely superstitious. Beyond that little elephant (another leap of faith), I'm not quite sure when I'll feel ready to click buy, give him a name, actually make some headway on this imagined nursery.

I'm sure the time will come. Just not yet.

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