My mother, my sister and I have a thread on facebook. While the content is deeply uncontroversial, its existence remains a source angst for my sister who cannot handle the fact that two of us like to engage in back-and-forth conversations (rather than typed diatribes) which, combined with our propensity to chat early and hers to sleep late means her first contribution will often be, ‘109 messages? Srsly?’
This morning though it was ‘TLDR?’
I had seen this acronym before but hazily guessed it meant summation required (as it often seemed to accompany a summary). While I, fearful of being discovered to be out of touch with ‘youth lingo’ (and painfully aware of just how old harbouring such a fear made me) declined to enquire further, my mother boldly asked, in French, the origin of the term.
‘Too Long Didn’t Read’ was the swift reply.
My aged status was confirmed by the resultant rush of annoyance; what rude little bugger came up with that one? The presumptuousness of it, that their time was too precious to expend on gaining the knowledge and mine so worthless that in addition to the information I should provide a summary for the meme-drenched ADHD child to absorb. (Really, I’m killing this grumpy adult gig).
I’d like to blame my grumpy status on my continual (permanent?) state of pregnancy, which has now crawled into its 38th week.
Pregnancy is so boringly uncomfortable I cannot believe humans continue to procreate in this manner.
I’ve taken to glaring at strangers in an attempt to deter questioning but somehow, while my resting bitch face was sufficient to prevent unwanted interactions for decades, even my most active bitch face is insufficient to counterweight the invitational air of my heavily expanded girth, as all manner of strangers feel compelled to ask me when (and how) I will diverge from my stomach occupant.
It’s not even that I find the questioning rude or invasive (though you know asking a fat person when they will be less rotund is rude) - it’s just so absolutely dreary. The weather is a more exciting topic. Or the bus timetable. In fact, just like Canberra public transport, I have no idea when it will come or what the ultimate result will be though I do expect there will be a lengthy period of waiting involved.
I recently relayed this complaint (not the public transport woe) to my mother only for her to reply that people find pregnancy intriguing. I found this rather stumping truth be told as even when being interviewed by a female law partner with a particularly pronounced middle region, I have never enquired. Though in hindsight, she must have expected me to as at the end of the interview she informed me she was 8 months pregnant but did not expect to take too much maternity leave (still not sure what ‘too much’ leave would have been.)
Were we to backtrack a month, I would be both less pregnant and more stressed (conversely) as a month ago I was finishing up art school for the year at the same time as my part-time arts administration job became rather more than part-time as the organisation launched a three week design festival (which it turns out was attended by over 96,000 people, so lets chalk that up as a success).
For some reason I had also decided to do four subjects this semester (as opposed to the somehow much cruisier three) which was a mire of deadlines salvaged by my propensity for excessive list-making. Somewhat ironically, this semester saw me achieve both my highest marks and my lowest level of actual satisfaction, the latter of which I think resulted from my falling into the trap of thinking of art school like university.
Which obviously on one level it is, but also equally obviously, it’s not really. There are no graduate programs to compete for, no secure career trajectories to click into. For that reason I had told myself that I would treat art school differently to law school; not trying to skate through with the best marks for the least effort but instead seeking to learn with ill regard to translating that into grades.
Of course everyone slips up – mine just makes me sound like a right twat complaining about a set of absurdly high marks (yes I can hear your groan from here).
Moving safely on to a more easily palatable topic, last week I both finished up at work (which I suppose for regularly employed people would be termed commencing Maternity Leave but for me is just entering unemployment) and collected two new kittens. Treacle & Oska are from the same breeder as my last Burmese, Diesel, and they are already worth the multiple trips from Canberra to Maitland.
It was particularly fortuitous timing as (in the intervening 17 years) I had completely forgotten how kittens are actual babies; requiring feeding, consoling and patting at absurdly regular intervals. While of course people have kittens and jobs, it has been nice to be able spend so much time with the tiny fur bundles. I’ve also been trying to put together a space for the impending arrival, which was initially thwarted by my decision not to buy anything (baby things are both unusually expensive and aesthetically appalling) but through a buy nothing group and some kind friends I now have pretty much everything required for an infant.
I mean, I think I do… except maybe patience. ‘Spose there’s only one-way to find out.
Or to TLDR it, still pregnant but now with kittens.