36 weeks and a few days … I’m starting to really feel like I am super, SUPER pregnant. I’m not sleeping, everything aches, I can’t do what I need to do – like pick up utensils that I dropped or drain the bathtub while I am still in it. In my sleepless nights, I am able to imagine Mikey a bit more, and how our life will be when he’s here. Or so I think. I also spend time thinking about what I WON’T do or say to pregnant women now that I’ve been pregnant. The number 1 on my ‘Don’t Do’ list is say, ‘Oh, you just wait’.
I’ve heard this so many times during my pregnancy I could scream, and honestly, it’s become a joke with my friends and family. I’ve been getting this a lot from new moms, old moms, not moms and the like. It usually goes something like this:
J: My hips hurt so bad, I am having the worst time sleeping.
Mom: You just wait! When that kid gets here you will NEVER SLEEP!
J: S. and I are going to the movies today! Any suggestions?
Mom: You just wait! You will never see another movie again when you have a kid. [notice she never answered my question?]
J: The house is a disaster, I need to do some cleaning tonight.
Mom: You just wait! Pretty soon kids toys will be everywhere.
First of all, the term ‘you just wait’ is very threatening. Why are you threatening me with things I already know? I know I won’t sleep much (unless you are my sister in law, who has a 4 week old she has to wake up to nurse. I have yet to see that kid’s eyes), I know our couple time will be limited and our house will continue to be a disaster. We’ve seen sitcoms, we have friends with kids … we thought of all this.
Second of all, just because that was your experience, doesn’t mean it will be mine. I worked for an organization of entrepreneurs and we used the Gestalt Language Protocol, which basically means speaking from EXPERIENCE versus ADVICE. I try to use this on the regular and I think it has kept me, and will keep me, out of the ‘you just wait’ category. So when I mention how my hips hurt and I’m not sleeping, instead of responding how I will never sleep again, a mom could say, “I know! My hips were a wreck the last month and I didn’t sleep either. When Mikey gets here, try to sleep when he sleeps.”
Look new moms, old moms, and no moms. I would love to hear your advice instead of your condescending ‘you – have- no – idea – what – you’ve – gotten – yourself – into – silly – girl’ phrase of ‘you just wait’.
Please know this is annoying and not helpful to pregnant women.