Christine is tapping away on her computer right now. She is wrapping up the last of her Darling Design jobs before she takes a hard-earned maternity leave when our son is born in just a couple of weeks. For those of you who have missed her updates here on Maganda.org, know this: No one has missed her writing more than me. I met Christine through this website. Her five-minute crushes inspired my first crush on her. It’s fair to say, I think, that she seduced me with her words. So, ever so gently over the past nine months, I have nudged her about them. “Ugh…” She groaned. “Not tonight.” Finally, I decided that I had to take the matter into my own hands.
Almost everyday this year, someone has asked me how Christine is feeling. “How is your wife feeling?” Once or twice, I have extended an imaginary antenna and pantomined the telepathic process by which I might be able to know something like that. Of course, I know why people ask me: I am her witness. I am the one who gets to see everything she has to go through to become a mom. It’s humbling to see someone you love carry a greater weight every single day. To see easy things become hard. To see your wife become uncomfortable in her own skin. “Be nice to your mommy,” I sometimes catch Christine talking to her belly. Our Herculean son is using her ribs for a kickboxing cage match. His opponent is her bladder. Every round ends in the restroom. In her final month of pregnancy, Christine walks like a wind-up toy. Her knees barely bend. At night, she needs six strategically placed pillows and a lot of luck to fall asleep. Every now and then, I feel sleepy too. I get headaches or allergies or wonder how in the world I will get all of my work done before the baby arrives. Then I look at my perfectly pregnant wife tappa tappa tapping away at her design work, folding our son’s onesies, or baking an emergency batch of Heath Bar cookies. I wonder how I became such a wimp. When I express my admiration for her, Christine says “This (becoming a mom) is what I always wanted.” My answer, when people ask, is that Christine is carrying her pregnancy “with grace.”
Guest written by Mr. Christine Hughes, illustration by the stinkowitz.