This stage of pregnancy is simultaneously more frustrating and more rewarding than previous months. Five months in and I've got energy, I feel great, I'm still going to the gym and most of the time I'm comfortable. Wearing normal clothes I look pregnant which is encouraging, even if it seems like it's actually happening to someone else. In real life, I'm losing weight and looking like a goddess, you understand.
The flipside is that if I'm wearing a big coat or too many layers people can't see that I'm not just a pork pie so I'm often left standing on the train. The only way out would be to unbutton my coat and rub my belly - and I'm sad enough to have done that now so shut up. The thing is that it makes me feel ill and the stopping and starting plays havoc with my balance (and my breakfast) and so I really feel like sitting down and when I can't I feel ridiculously hard done by. It's pathetic. It's a battle between good and evil, between lazy and healthy, between nausea and wanting to beat someone up. My fantasy life doesn't do too well on the train.
The blob is kicking a lot, it's strangely reassuring, even comforting. It makes sitting still a whole new adventure in movement and this is just the start. I won't say that I'm bonding with him, or even that I believe he's really in there, just that there's something strangely enjoyable about having him around. Maybe it's all the extra attention, maybe it's all the stuff I can get away with now that he's in there. I don't know.
I do miss my lovely bike. I pass through the long intestinal corridor of Clapham Junction twice daily in a peristaltic crowd and I miss my bike. I sit, feeling sick, facing backwards on the bus in the seat nobody else wants, look at bikers passing by and I miss my bike. I get up 45 minutes earlier every day and I miss my bike. I cram into the train and I miss my bike, I miss my train and boy, I miss my bike. My bike, languising under tarpaulin in the garden, cold, alone... sniff...
I'm also adventuring into the wonderful world of swollen ankles. I wear nice comfy shoes to work, change into a pair of smart, low heels and at the end of the day, my nice comfy shoes are suddenly a size too small and my ankles feel as if my feet have been wrapped too-tightly in cling film.
I sniff all the time, I grunt when I stand up, my back hurts and I fall asleep after lunch.
But it's ok, it's not the real world.