I came back from the Grand Summoning Of the H Clan in quite a sunny mood. Apart from a couple of WTF moments (but see below) no one Said The Wrong Thing, and everyone seemed in a reasonably good mood, and the weather was lovely.
And anyway, I kept my head down and made canapés. Nobody bothers you when you’re up to your knuckles in lumpfish caviar.
H had a completely different weekend. He was taking his responsibility of Keeping The Crazy-Making Away From May very seriously, and found it unexpectedly stressful.
Firstly, he was the one who kept wandering into earshot while his parents got all stressed about their hosting responsibilities (I was tucked away in the kitchen, surrounded by miniature blinis and tomato knives, remember?).
Secondly, there was an outbreak of Weeping Adolescent we none of us ever got to the bottom of, but H was on the Coaxing Into Dinner relay team, because he’s good at that sort of thing (at this point, I was standing by the dining table holding the spare salads, which is much more soothing).
And Chiefly, and WTFishly, somehow the rumour got around that I was pregnant.
I’ll leave you to absorb the sheer farce of that for a moment.
All I can think of that explains it is:
- I was wearing an empire-line top, which has a sash that goes just under the breasts and a loosish rest-of-it. It is a very pretty top. I have worn it before. Such tops were very fashionable not so long ago and every single woman in Britain owned at least three. Nevertheless, it could be thought of as being made to cover a tummy. In my case, it was covering a deal of end-of-cycle bloat, and leaving room for Dinner avec Canapés and Three Sorts of Pudding. Nevertheless, before the guests turned up, I made H tie the sash rather tighter, so as to streamline the look a tad. Clearly, this did not work even a tiny bit. Also, sheesh, but I clearly need to lose some more weight. Arsing fuckitty etc.
- I refused wine the evening before, and coffee that morning. I have no proof at all of this, but my MIL, who notices that sort of thing, may have mentioned it to my FIL, who never notices anything but has no filter between brain and mouth (there is a reason why I don’t really like H telling them exactly where I am in my menstrual cycle etc. It is this reason).
- Umm, that’s it.
Anyway, Old Friends Of The Family greeted me with more than usual delight, told me I was blooming, positively blooming, I looked so healthy and marvellous. Radiant! And blooming! (I didn’t. I looked every scrap of my nearly 36 years plus a few and my hair had seen this and emulated). I caught H’s eye across the crowd and probably gave him my best startled-rabbit-about-to-be-confit-beneath-your-wheels look.
The grand-parents-in-law arrived about half-an-hour after that, and again, with lavish enthusiasm, my GMIL fell on my neck, crying out that I was gorgeous, so gorgeous, did I feel gorgeous? Did I feel wonderful? Did I feel good? How was I? Was I strong and gorgeous? And everyone else in the crowd was chopped liver, as far as she was concerned. She is a very affectionate woman, but this really rather freaked me out. I could feel a large pink neon sign made out of 24-carat Awkward floating above my head, flashing ‘WTF?’ on and off in waltz-time.
At this point H threw himself before me to take the arrows of social distress in his own tender flesh. He cornered his grandmother and actually told her right out that we don’t have any news right now, and that it’s actually frustrating and difficult, having, as he put it, ‘lots of not quites and nearlys’. This, for H, was about as characteristic as his waxing his tummy-fur into a heart, dying it pink, and stripping off in the local bingo hall. I love him and worship him madly.
A subdued but affectionate GMIL hugged me again later and wished me lots of luck and told me she was thinking of me.
Meanwhile, I found a half-glass of red wine and carried it about with me wherever I went. And when coffee was served, I did the same with half-a-cup of coffee. Which deflected the Old Friends Of The Family, who had not a word more to say to me on the subject.
And I ate quite a lot of chocolate cake. It was that or drink not only my decoy-wine but all the red wine left in the building.
Later, H also cornered his Dad, and gave him a not-too-many-gory-details update on where we’d got to in terms of treatment (i.e., fuck off and fuck (not that anyone except me ever puts it quite like that) also, miscarriages galore, remember?), while I was either talking about T.S. Eliot with GFIL or knitting with OFoTF, so I didn’t have to have anything to do with it.
And then, on Sunday night, we went home again, and H was completely and utterly exhausted and almost too frazzled to sleep.
I love him.
As for the real score on the insides of May’s uterus, inconclusive. It’s 10dpo, sore bosoms check, high temperatures check, nausea and heartburn at random intervals check, oversensitive sense of smell check, sleepy and irritable check. Positive pee-stick, not so much. Damn. Onwards.