When you are pregnant, you get ‘the vibe’. Suddenly, people realise that they can love you or hate you, but sadly, can’t ignore you, especially when your belly makes an entry before you do. The reactions are many. Some good, some weird, some bad:
Like triumph, from the husband, who was ecstatic to find out that his sperm was not as lazy as him. Fear too, that soon the baby might oust him from his recreation zone. Ecstasy, from the mother, who is thrilled that I have moved to stage two now, and finally she gets to do whatever she missed doing for us.
Approval, from the relatives, who might have dismissed your marriage as a fluke, but this, they think, is serious business. Finally, they recall that you did grow up in their laps, even though you never had much of a rapport in your adulthood. Lust, from single men who still have a crush on you, and are now intensified in the demonstration of their affection, as you are more woman that ever before.
Skepticism, from DINK couples who look at you in askance, thinking, “Ah, another one bites the dust. We thought she was cool, but she is probably not.”
Curiosity, from couples who have been ‘at it’ for a few years, keeping ovulation diaries, taking fertility treatments, working on their sperm motility. “How the hell did they manage?” is what they are not saying.
Relief, from women on the wrong side of 35 paranoid about their biological clocks ticking away, and thinking, “If she can, yes, we can.”
Indifference, from confirmed singletons who puff away and pretend they didn’t notice your bump.
Hatred, from women who have been trying hard to get there, and not succeeded, and hated you anyway.
Cynicism, from couples who are still dealing with the existentialism of marriage.
Admiration, from fellow yoga students who are curious about how you manage with the belly.
Competitiveness, from other couples who got hitched the same time as you.
Euphoria, from friends who love you anyway, single, married, pregnant, not pregnant.
Deep care and concern, from some who have been there, done that, and think it’s a great expedition and have tons of advice to give you.
Irony, from some women who have been there, done that, think it’s a big deal, but never thought you would make it.
Sympathy, from random strangers who think you might need help crossing the road or getting into an elevator when you don’t.
Fellowship, from Mommaholics Anonymous, who are happy to welcome you into their fold, and assure you not to worry too much, it will all be good.
Fear, from single men and women who don’t quite know what to do with you, now that you are off-debauchery and therefore, not much use to them.