When I signed up for the Make-A-Baby Ride I had no idea how girlie women could get. And I’m not talking normal girlie where you can’t help but talk about clothes and nails, I’m talking beyond reason Stepford Wife girlie–the out of control type that finds everything beautiful and perfect about being a mother and wife. They ooh and ahh at every cutesie thing for babies and melt on cue at the sight of your unborn child. You might think the desire to do so is sweet and loving, but I call it a whole lotta delusional to be able to look at this and say, “How cute!”
Which surprisingly is exactly what one doctor said at the sight of this baby, my Chipmunk Reaper, during an ultrasound. She loved it so much she kept making me look at it, and I found it so scary looking I kept laughing at it. I started to get the funny feeling she was going to take a photo of it, so I asked her not to from that angle since there were better ones to choose from. My reaction did not compute. In her thick Filipino accent she tried to convince me otherwise, “But it’s looking at you. It’s so cute! It’s saying, ‘Hello momma!'” “No,” I told her, “It’s frightening and it’s coming to attack us.” She dismissed my concern. “It’s cute. I’m taking a photo of it.” “Please don’t,” I pleaded, “If my husband sees a photo of his baby like that, he may ask me to return it.” As you can see by the evidence, she didn’t care about my husband and took a photo of it anyway. That week my husband and I named our baby Skeletor.
I still don’t understand what it is about babies that makes our understanding of what cute is go out the door. I know love is blind, but are you kidding me? I find that I’m almost a disappointment to nurses and friends when it comes to this. When they coo at me, I can tell I’m not cooing back with enough gusto to satisfy them; but I do try so I don’t ruin what has somehow become their special moment. I mean I get the fact that it’s an amazing thing what’s going on inside of me. The fact that I’m a life-making machine is incredible. And don’t think things haven’t happened that haven’t softened me up. For the first ultrasound during the first trimester, I went to the doctor with low expectations. Everything was as expected–everyone said hi, I laid down on the table for the ultrasound, and the grainy black and white picture of the baby came up on the monitor. I looked over with my husband and yep, it was that weird image I’d seen for years and never understood. My husband and I looked at each other unenthusiastically like, “Okay, that’s cool.” Then the doctor pointed out the rapid little heartbeat inside our pixellated blob. It was so small and moved so fast it looked like the heart of a hummingbird. On cue, a gush of water came pouring out of my eyes. I can’t explain why, it was totally unexpected, complete out of control Niagara Falls of tears. Worse than the way your cheesiest friend cries every time she sees TITANIC, and even more than everyone who ever saw the opening of Pixar’s UP! I tried to stop crying, but again the sight of that little heartbeat… oh my God! For the rest of the day it was like I had seen the best tear-jerker in the world and the mention of our baby’s little heartbeat got me going again. On the way back to our car, “Hon, wasn’t that crazy when we saw our little baby’s…waaaa!” And during lunch as I was about to bite into a burrito, “I really didn’t expect that to happen. But when she pointed out the…OMG…waaaa!”
So the magnitude of this event I understand. I’m with you people on how miraculous this whole adventure is. But thinking that the creation of life is mind-blowingly cool is quite different from thinking that this…
… is cute. Oh I’m sorry, I meant this…
- Ugly Babies (ask.metafilter.com)