Saturday, April 14
Me, Myself, and I
I had my weekly doctor's visit today and it was predicted by his swift judgment that I still have another week to go. I am actually hoping Luca will want to be born on the 21st since it will make my kids a complete cusp set (Sebastian-20th, Nico-22nd, Colette-23rd).
I always feel a little fatigued after seeing the regular doctor and always have to transform into self-doula mode to raise my spirits. It isn't easy giving birth in a place where we are essentially on our own. After two years in Nagoya, we do have quite a few friends, yet it is not normal in Japan to rely on such relationships during times like this. Typically pregnant women return to their parents' house the month before the birth and remain there until the one month baby check-up following the birth. It is a nice tradition for those who can take advantage of it but for a mama like myself, it means that I am more isolated than most.
Of course, I went through this before with Colette and lived on a tiny island for that one so I am experienced. It does increase my sense of self-sufficiency but I can't help but envy those women who do have parents in the country to help them during such a vulnerable time. My own parents have helped me tremendously in their own way but I wish they had decided to retire in Okinawa instead of St. Augustine, Florida. Similar climates and much easier for us to travel to.
Yet there is no sense in feeling sorry for myself. I just must remember that this is the one disadvantage that balances all those advantages we have living in Japan. And also I must recall that amazing sense of victory I felt at the end of Colette's active but gentle birth. It made me feel akin to women who go off by themselves to give birth in the bush. Such a peaceful and natural event, so unlike the experience promoted by those who wish to profit from childbirth.
At the end, I feel all I can say is ganbatte to myself and just try and stay sunny. A pursuit made easier by the return of actual sunshine pouring through my window.