Thursday, 17 September 2009

Ye Olde Pregnancy

My thoughts have a tendancy to veer off into strange directions, especially now that I'm pregnant. Last night, as I was drifting off to "sleep" (what I like to call the short nightime intervals between bathroom visits), I was thinking how sucky it would've been to be pregnant in the Olden Days. For example, yesterday I was cleaning the house and got tired about halfway through, thought "eff it", and sat down to watch Gilmore Girls reruns on E4. I don't think your average pregnant pioneer woman would stop in the middle of preparing salt pork and think "meh, we probably have enough to get through the sub-arctic Dakota winter. I think I'll just take a load off and have a look through Godey's Ladies Book." Call me skeptical, I just don't think it happened that way. Also, my husband has been a saint, preparing meals, picking up the slack on the housework, and just generally being supportive. I don't think Lady Piffington of Elizabethan times would have been quite as lucky. I can't imagine Lord Piffington stepping in with "No, milady, allow me! Let's swap historically appropriate gender roles, and I will finish embroidering that tapestry..."
Most importantly though, I can't imagine living in a time where it was generally taboo to refer to your pregnancy at all ("No, no, I'm not ill, I have my head over the chamber pot every morning just to check the new maid's thoroughness..."). I'm sure women did discuss things in private, but probably not with the same "TMI" thoroughness you get these days, and for which I'm sure many a pregnant woman is grateful (Ever wonder what to expect from your first post-partum shower? Well I did, and even though the answer made me recoil in horror a bit, I'm happy I know). Anyway, for all the moaning we pregnant ladies tend to do, I have to admit that we have it pretty good compared to our forbears.

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