Vacation while pregnant was a bit of a bust, and it was more than a little scary flying home on the day the World Trade Center was bombed. Nassau was chilly and rainy, so we spent most of our time in the casino instead of on the beach. The cigarette smoke in the casino really made me queasy, but luckily I didn’t throw up during the trip. Last time I puked was in the Mercedes into a bag, and it didn’t get on anything, but Lou swears the car still stinks because of it.
He actually believes I have some control over the pregnancy nausea, like I do it on purpose to annoy him or something. Same logic applies to my neck pain and headaches. I have pain, and he’s the one who gets grumpy and irritable. Most of the time I don’t let it show that I have any pain. We’ve had heart to heart discussions about it, and he says that he can always tell anyway, and I say I can always tell that he’s upset by it. He says he knows I don’t have the pain on purpose, but it still gets to him, and that it just isn’t any fun being around someone who is in pain. I don’t know what to say when he tells me this. I try not to cry, because he hates that, but it is so difficult for me because I can’t fix it. I can’t seem to fix the neck problem, and so I can’t fix the pain, and I can’t change that it sometimes shows that I have pain, and I can’t fix that it affects him. Even though I’m not bitchy and complaining, I am sure that it is a drag to be around me when my neck hurts or I have a headache. I really can understand that. So I do my best to hide it and not let it affect either one of us. I go to work, I do all the housework and cooking, and when he wants to have sex, I’ve never said the clichéd, “Not tonight, dear I have a headache.” I try to not take any meds unless I am done with everything that has to be done for the day, so I can just rest. I can’t take anything but Tylenol for pain now anyway. Actually, the pregnancy hormones seem to be helping with my muscle spasms. Maybe I should stay pregnant.
I’m really just starting to show now, and my boobs are getting a little bigger. I like the bigger boobs part. The doctor says everything seems good with the baby and my weight. I’m hoping that Lou will go to the next appointment with me and be able to hear the baby’s heartbeat. It’s fast, and I think that means that it’s probably a girl. We’re kicking around names, and I like Angel for a girl. I have a collection of angels, and Louie calls me Angel sometimes. I don’t have strong opinions for boy names. Lou doesn’t want a Louis William Joy IV. In fact, he is scared that any boy in the family will carry a curse of some sort. I say that’s silly, but I still don’t push for details on this alleged curse, but he talks in terms of his father’s alcohol addiction, cheating and lying. When they did an autopsy, in addition to cancer, they found he’d pretty much killed his liver. Lou is far from an alcoholic. We hardly ever drink; it’s an event to get a six-pack of beer, and even that lasts for quite a while. But he says that he could see himself becoming easily addicted. When he smoked pot in high school, he didn’t just get high occasionally; he got high first thing in the morning, and all day, and all night long. So he is very careful with alcohol to not get into the habit of drinking regularly. That’s probably what got him on academic warning early in college, actually. But by the time we met, after he came back from taking time off from school to get money to pay for it, he really took it all seriously, and he was the most sober person at any party.
As far as the cheating and lying goes, he doesn’t talk about that as it applies to himself. I have my own internal quiet dialog about it, and I don’t think he’s any different from his father there, either. But I don’t think it is a curse. I think it is a choice. I do what I can to make him happy to just be with me, but I look at him when we are quiet, and I don’t think he is happy at all. So often he is so far away, and lost in his own world. I made the mistake of commenting on that once, and he freaked out, taking it as an insult of some sort. He is still upset with a teacher that commented on the same thing and called him a daydreamer, lost in his own little world and that he needed to rejoin the rest of the class. I wasn’t trying to be hurtful; it was simply an observation. He sits alone, and I can see he’s thinking, but he’s making all these dramatic facial expressions, and his head and lips are moving. There’s no sound; it is kind of like watching a television on mute. Sometimes it looks like he’s having a conversation, other times struggling with different alternatives, and often it looks like an argument. He has told me that before he has an important meeting, he does go through a mock conversation in his mind. I find I do that kind of thing more often after the fact. I’m usually thinking about the brilliant or strong thing I should have said instead of being quiet or agreeable. I don’t think my lips move though. I’ve learned not to call him on any of his visual animations, and just ask what he’s thinking about. Sometimes he tells me, and sometimes he says, “Nothing,” which is obviously not the case, but it’s his prerogative to keep his thoughts to himself. I do it all the time. But then, he isn’t typically asking what I’m thinking of either.
I keep my journal to myself, and he doesn’t even realize I have one. I don’t know who I’m writing to. Maybe it is to my imaginary childhood friend, named Gunky. Gunky understands and doesn’t get bored when I ramble on like this, and certainly doesn’t judge or repeat what I say. Hah – I never thought about that before. Sounds more than a little odd at this age. Just writing to a diary should be my perspective, but I feel like I am writing to someone who cares about my life, my feelings, and who gives me some perspective and feedback. I don’t have any real people in my world anymore who would do that. I used to have friends like Kathy, Paul, Bruce, and Alan that I wrote long letters to, and sometimes they even wrote back with ramblings on about their world, and some insights to what I had said. But I’ve totally lost track of Kathy. Last time I got in touch with Paul was when we lived in North Carolina, and he was happily married and living in the Florida Keys. Bruce got married, and had been in serious relationships for a long time, so I’ve distanced myself so I do not get in the way of his happiness by complicating life. Last time I talked to Alan, he was planning on getting married. I had written to him several times after that, but he never wrote back. I sent one last card acknowledging that fact, and I wished him a good and happy life. It killed me, knowing I had lost the last bit of him I had left in my life. I know he told his fiancé about our past relationship, so I imagine I’m unwelcome as a friend now. Truth is, I haven’t cheated on Lou for years and years now. And I would never want to interfere with anyone’s happy marriage. I do wish I could still have their friendships though. I have friends at work but that’s about it. We rarely see Nico and Mia. It’s always fun, and I know they would do anything for us. But what is it when you only see your closest friends a couple times a year at most? Even my family is far away, even though it’s only a few hours’ drive, I hardly ever see them. And nobody calls anyone. I’ve finally gotten used to the fact that my birthday can come and go and Lou’s the only one who seems to acknowledge it. Actually, that’s not true, in the office we are all pretty good about recognizing each other’s birthdays with a little cake and a card passed around for signatures. I’ve usually had a close girlfriend at work, when I was at Playtex, and now at HP. We have fun during the day, but we don’t go out after hours or call to chat on the phone, and I’m certainly not spilling my guts with my personal life issues.