"How far along are you?"
"Oh, we started Junior back in 1986."
"So when are you due?"
"Well, I'm not too sure...maybe when I start the South Beach Diet."
"I don't think mine wants to be born at all."
"What kind of baby are you having?"
"Mine is a sausage pepperoni pizza baby."
"Mine is taco dip and enchiladas."
"We're going to be the proud parents of cheese fries."
"Mine is Ben and Jerry icecream....I think I'm having twins!"
Thinking about food babies while sitting in the obstetrician's waiting room reminded me that I needed to feed mine, so I nibbled on a granola bar and read an article about diaper rashes, diarrhea and colic. I smiled. My daughter has no idea what she has gotten herself into.
An hour and three granola bars later, I had a front row seat to the gynecological show when my daughter put her feet up into the stirrups on the examining table. I looked anywhere else in the room except at THAT.
Hearing my future grandchild's heartbeat for the first time brought back a flood of memories. My last pregnancy was 16 years ago (feels more like 60 in dog years). Time has (thankfully) dulled my memories of labor pains and c-sections, and yet I distinctly recall simple things like my favorite blue, polka-dotted maternity outfit, the circus clown lantern in the nursery, and how incredibly good a rueben sandwich tasted after a solid week of intense pregnancy cravings. Sleepless nights, panicky calls to the pediatrician at all hours, fold-up umbrella stollers, bulky baby car seats, lost bottles, tears, pacifiers and the smell of baby powder...these things have all passed by in a blur. My daughter was once that tiny baby swaddled in pink in the nursery, and now she is pregnant with one of her own. I think of how my own body has changed these past few years, how menopause has slowly crept in and stolen my fertility. Some women view menopause as a thief who steals their youth, while others experience a greater sense of freedom. Menopause should not define who we are; it is a time of change and enlightenment. How we adapt to those changes is what determines who we are now.