On 1 September we came back to India after three months in Europe. A new chapter of my life is starting: I am ten-weeks pregnant, and I will be in India during my entire pregnancy (well, minus the first nine weeks that is.)
There is still a risk of miscarriage, and I’m 38. But I have faith in Nature that all will be well, and it all came out at the right time, or what felt right anyway, and as we had planned it. I had planned to get my coil removed before just flying to Europe and to return pregnant to India. I did get my coil removed in Delhi end of May, in the very safe and clean Phoenix Hospital, which was recommended to me by a friend who has been living in India for 20 years. The fact that the Phoenix Hospital is literally 3-minutes walking distance (!) from our friends’ flat was also a big bonus, and a sign for me that all would be well: if there is any problem, now I know this place is here for me.
I hadn’t realised how lucky I would be to get pregnant so easily and so quickly. I’m back in India now with this little ten-week creature in my tummy, and – touch wood – so far so good! While in France I also had some tests done and I was happy to find out that I am immune to both rubella and toxoplasmosis. In India I think it’s a great thing!
I know it will be challenging to be pregnant and to raise a child while living in rural India with my traditional mother-in-law. This worried me for many years before I decided to have a baby! But there are problems in Europe as well. There are problems in India we don’t have in Europe and problems in Europe we don’t have in India! What I am really happy about though, is the prospect to give my baby some relatively consumerism-free first three years of his/her life. There will be no baby-chair, no-baby plate and glass and cutlery, no baby-cupboard or special bed for baby, no baby-room we spend a fortune on to decorate. I will be free from the all-baby-centred mentality of the West, which I am so uncomfortable with. A nappy-free baby (let’s see!), rural, natural environment I will have to be strong to speak French to him/her even though no-one in my entire family and community will understand it. I will have to fight – with diplomacy – to have it my way as much as possible, amongst a traditional, religious, superstitious family. But a family that truly loves me and will truly love my baby, a family that only has good intentions for both of us. And I have come a long way in this family for so many years now, and it has had ups and downs but it has been an incredible journey, and so it will be in this new chapter of my life. I know I will have a lot of support. I know they are all very happy that I’m pregnant.
I have to say I have to adapt to the heat and humidity again. Thankfully it will only last for a month as October is coming soon (and the baby should be born before the unbearable heat comes back). Perhaps it is because I was three months in “cool” Europe, or perhaps (more so I guess) it is because I am pregnant, that I find it a little more hammering than usual. I have to drink tons of water and I sleep quite a lot.
I do know how challenging it will all be with the traditional in-laws, but I have no idea what form the challenge will take… I don’t know what surprises I will get… And in four days I have already had a small insight into some of the ‘rules’ about what pregnant women shouldn’t do, and they seem completely absurd to me!
- The first is that they tell me I shouldn’t go up and down the stairs too much. OK, I know I have to take care of myself and not strain too much, and the stairs are very steep here, but for goodness’ sake, I’m only 10-weeks pregnant! I have no problem walking up and down the stairs!
- The second one I found out this morning: pregnant women shouldn’t drink too much water on an empty stomach (because then too much water goes to the baby or something). What!? I always drink water first thing in the morning because it’s good for you, and it’s so hot and sticky here. Oh and I shouldn’t drink water while standing, either. How bizarre…