So, I’m at Belle Isle trying to grasp the strange psychological and emotional changes that a woman goes through in 9 short months. For some reason, I am really struggling with how to relate. Probably 80-90% of the students in my class have been pregnant/have a kid or two, so they are sitting in the class nodding their heads as Mrs. N (short for Niculescu, my instructor for lecture and clinical until mid-October) is talking about these changes. I, on the other hand, cannot grasp the enormity, the crisis as it were of carrying a baby. I had no idea how much it impacted every facet of her life – from her marriage, relationship with her family (and in-laws), friends, peers, work, and her own feelings!
So, I send out a text to the three dear people I love that have/are pregnant – my mom, my sister, and my “second” sister (Catherine Brooks Ferguson) – and ask them how being pregnant relates to getting married, something I can relate to.
Some of you may know very intimately how hard my first year of marriage was for me. I went from living with 6 noisy younger siblings and my two dear parents to just me and my husband. Those that know me well understand that 1) I detest silence, and 2) I hate being alone. In my first months of marriage, there was a LOT of silence and almost as much loneliness, especially when David was at work and I had to stay at home. Needless to say, I have done a lot of growing in the past 20 months. My concept of my self-identity – who I am as a person, sorting out my different roles, how to act in some of those new roles, how those roles fit into my personality – grew and changed during that first year. In the same way, an expectant mother has the same identity crisis (among others). She now has to view herself as a mother to be. Part of her dilemma is figuring out what that means and how that looks.