Have you had the baby yet?

The wha? Ohhhh the baby…gosh I’m sorry, that happened days ago and I totally forgot to tell anybody. I’m so silly.

Do people really think this is a plausible scenario? They must. Or they just don’t know what else to ask when you’ve literally become the elephant in the room. And I do understand, because while I know that nothing is happening from one moment to the next, everybody else thinks of any moment they are not looking directly at me as a moment I could secretly be having a baby. And to be fair, a lot of other questions are equally inane at this point.

How do you feel? I feel like I’ve felt every other day for the past 280 days. Fine, with a smattering of vague symptoms/complaints that are indicative of absolutely nothing. Really, if I looked up every symptom I’ve had in the past 40 weeks, I could have diagnosed myself with everything from hay-fever to Lou Gehrig’s disease.

What are you doing tomorrow? I dunno, maybe having a baby. More likely I’ll just be doing a bunch of random, dumb shit until it’s uncomfortable or boring (which could take anywhere from 2 to 45 minutes) and then I’ll do a bunch of other random, dumb shit and see how that pans out.

What do you want for dinner? I’d like to not be eating dinner one of these nights because I’m having a baby, but other than that, burgers will be fine.

In fact, everything is fine. Nobody believes me, but I’m not actually going insane, freaking out or crazy upset about being a day past my due date. It’s everyone else who is full of anxiety and suggestions about what to do to bring about baby. Go for walks! Drive on a bumpy road! Eat spicy food! Stay positive! (like I’ve been immobile, housebound, eating rice cakes and crying up until this point). You go knock yourself out, I’m enjoying a (shittily) paid vacation from work right now. I’m excited to meet the baby, yes, but I’m not exactly dying to go through the worst pain of my life, and in spite of any discomfort I’m currently in, I’m also pretty sure that I won’t feel like a million bucks right after delivery with a newborn keeping me up all night. So, for now, I’m enjoying myself.

It’s really not so bad. As I said to Andrew yesterday, it’s kind of like the day you are coming home from vacation and have an awkward flight time. You couldn’t sleep in because you had to check-out of the hotel, but you don’t really have time to do anything fun either. You don’t really want to go to the pool or the beach because you don’t want to get all wet and sandy again before your flight, and besides, all your stuff is packed up. So you end up wandering around aimlessly or killing time in the duty-free. But it’s still pretty good – I mean, you’re still not at work. You’re still getting a tan. If you’re leaving Vegas, you can still have a cocktail before noon and play the Dolly Parton slots at McCarran.

The only difference is, your departure time is generally more accurate than your due date–which is actually a pretty flimsy estimate. Consider this excerpt from expectingscience.com:

If you knew nothing about due dates, you might reasonably suppose that the due date is the average date of delivery.

And you’d be wrong. The due date is NOT the average delivery day of a large, modern reference sample of pregnant women. The due date is also NOT the day on which pregnant women most commonly deliver (the mode). It is NOT the day by which half of pregnant women have typically delivered, and half have not (the median). No, the average, the mode, and the median delivery days are all 1-4 days after the “due date“.

The due date is based on calculations made in the 1800s by a German hospital director who “relied not only on the duration of actual, observable pregnancies, but was also greatly influenced by biblical scholarship indicating that the gestation of Christ lasted for ten lunar months.” For real? Sheesh.

So there. Baby Ranger is not late, her due date is just too early. And despite the unreliability of the due date itself, 90% of babies are born within 2 weeks of it – so I won’t be pregnant forever. I promise.

But as long as I am, I’ll be directing all inquiries to this brilliant website: haveyouhadthatbabyyet.com



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