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Published on May 26, 2020

Future mommy diaries

Ninth month is full of aches and appreciated surprises

By Stephanie Johnson / The Bulletin

The ninth month of pregnancy carries with it swollen ankles, pains in the back and other places, tiredness and a feeling of just wanting to go back to sleep. But it also has its benefits and surprises. Mother’s Day was one of them.

It was the last Mother’s Day before I take on the daily duties of being a mother.

I wasn’t sure what to expect since I am not technically a mom yet, but I am going to be one any day now. That alone - with this big boy doing somersaults sometimes in my stomach - should put me in the mother category. Guys have it easy. All they have to do is feel the movements and then remark what a wonderful thing it is.

But it’s not a one-way street. This is the time the father-to-be takes over a lot of the duties that mother-to-be used to do because the future mommy is getting kicked around from the inside and doesn’t feel like doing them.

We had already made the plans to spoil my mom on Mother’s Day, since she was coming over, but as it turned out, I was also spoiled that day.

My husband, David, went grocery shopping for all the food to prepare for mom and dad. The menu was smoked salmon with roasted side dishes of farm-fresh green beans and baby potatoes.

For dessert, there were homemade chocolate chip cookies. It was the perfect menu, and even better, I was only supposed to make the side dishes.

I woke up on Mother’s Day morning and disinfected the entire house before my parents came over. I am talking every door knob and window in the house. I probably went a little overboard, but this has become my new normal with the virus.

I fell back to sleep, only to wake up to coffee from my favorite coffee shop and a bean-and-cheese breakfast burrito.

There is nothing better than waking up to the smell of your favorite foods, especially when you are nine months pregnant. David read my mind, then he gave me my present - a robe for me with a matching swaddle and hat for the baby for when we are in the hospital.

I fell asleep again. The ninth month of pregnancy requires that I do that. I woke up to the sound of the doorbell. My parents were here and left their usual greeting message on the Ring doorbell, which is probably worthy of an Oscar nomination.

I hadn’t made any of the side dishes or cookies - actually, I hadn’t done anything I said I would do. I jolted up, looked around, and went into panic mode.

The side dishes were completed; the cookies were ready to go in the oven; and the salmon was just right and seasoned. David had even set the table. The dad-to-be stepped up to the plate and hit a homerun.

I could tell Mom and Dad were impressed by how delicious everything was, especially the cookies. Dad went in for his third one.

We all walked off the food on a nature path, being surrounded by a sea of wildflowers. It was peaceful and beautiful, the silence only broken occasionally by a nearby child’s voice. Next year, we’ll be walking with our child through this beautiful spring scenery.

By then, perhaps we’ll be walking without having to worry about masks and distancing and fear of a virus. But for the day, we enjoyed the escape from all of this and took pleasure in living in the moment.

Then we were alone again, just the two of us. With the memories of all the things that happened on this special day, I fell asleep in the recliner, but not for long.

David started packing up a cooler and threw in some leftover cookies and beverages. We jumped in the car. After not really going anywhere for months because of COVID-19, I will jump in the car for any reason at this point.

We picked up a pizza at a local shop and took it to the park for a picnic.The weather was beautiful, and there were ducks all around us. It was almost like we were in a romantic movie, the one where I slept a lot and got spoiled. I felt like Rachel McAdams as she floated down the water and was surrounded by swans as Ryan Gosling paddled the boat in “The Notebook.”

Except we were on dry land, munching on pizza, and it didn’t rain, but close enough. My Ryan Gosling managed to again sweep me off my feet - good thing we were sitting on a blanket.

This kind of day makes the ninth month memorable and not for just the aches and pains. These are good memories to be cherished forever as I get ready for the main event.

(You can reach Stephanie at stephanie.bulletin@gmail.com. Or by writing to: The Bulletin, P.O. Box 2426, Angleton, TX. 77516)