Yes, Youre Pregnant, But What About Me?
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Why was it so important to be genetic parents? In the film, we see McConnell and his mother reminiscing over photographs of him as a child — tomboyish, blunt-fringed, energetic. The pictures brought back unhappy memories, he says, particularly the photographs taken during puberty and his teenage years. He was a bright child. Is that deliberate?
This is my story of starting a family — so what on earth has my old name got to do with it? Was he ever happy as a child? He looks surprised at the question. Yes, of course, he says — he was lucky to have an understanding family, and has many good memories. We had really intense imaginary worlds that we would disappear into. He blushes. But they were very happy memories.
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Can he describe how it felt? I was a very anxious child, maybe partly because of the trans-ness, maybe something else.
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Did he speak to people about feeling he was in the wrong body? But I would speak to friends. I was bullied and teased for being too boyish. But McConnell never did, and the older he became, the more intense the dysphoria. He became obsessed with the 70s and gender- fluid rock stars such as David Bowie and Brian Eno, convincing himself he had been born in the wrong era. McConnell smiles. I slammed the door and it smacked him in the head. He went on to study Arabic at Edinburgh University, and then fancied toughing it out as a war correspondent. But he meandered and moped through his early 20s — almost joining the prestigious Sandhurst military school he had been in the cadets at school and was a good shot , travelling in the US, Yemen and Afghanistan, where he combined teaching with skateboarding, rock climbing and journalism.
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He was followed everywhere by that cosmic toothache. All I know is testosterone and my transition changed everything and made life not just livable, but enjoyable. The self-questioning, second-guessing quietened down.
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But the gender dysphoria disappeared. More than anything, Seahorse is a love story — or a series of love stories. At the beginning of the film, CJ and McConnell are living together as best friends and partners. We see the two of them sitting on the sofa with their laptops, looking at sperm donor sites. But halfway through the film, CJ decides not to parent a child with McConnell. The idea of being a solo parent is a different prospect, and initially he is full of doubt: what is he doing to his body, is it safe, is he capable of bringing up a child alone?
Meanwhile, the withdrawal of testosterone is playing havoc with his hormones. In a moment of glorious bathos, McConnell tells the camera, Garbo-like, that he wants to be left alone. He laughs when I remind him of this now, all the tears and drama. She had to put up with me. We walk from the beach to fetch Jack from nursery. McConnell cuddles his son, checks that everything has gone well this morning he has only recently returned to part-time work , and hooks the baby into his carrier.
We walk to their home — a leaky, year-old, two-bed Georgian terrace McConnell bought from his great-aunt. On the way there, he tells me how content he is. Some of that has to do with transition, and some has to do with getting older and understanding myself better. He talks about how lucky he was throughout his pregnancy, the support he received from family, friends and NHS staff. Did he get any abuse from strangers?
It was a huge relief. People read gender in less than a second — so if I had a beard, it would not matter what the rest of my body looked like, they would read me as male. After the horrors of the pregnancy, McConnell says, the actual labour was wondrous. I cannot imagine ever experiencing anything as incredible or as transcendent as that.
Yes, he says, of course he worried about the birth being filmed, but that soon faded. Does he want more children? Too personal? His living room is dominated by a huge play area for Jack. Next to the door is a large photo of a gorgeous, blond, blue-eyed baby, a carbon copy of Jack. He is anxious about how Seahorse will be received, but glad to have made the film. He feels he has done his duty. As for McConnell, a part of him would like to put the film out, retreat to the margins and live the rest of his life in peaceful obscurity.
But a bigger part of him feels his mission has only just begun. Me: look down at my ankles Holy crap! Husband: keeps looking at my ankles It's like your ankles ate 10 other ankles. They were literally swollen beyond recognition from being on my feet all day.
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This scene repeated itself on planes, after a day running around the city, or later on just 'cuz. Pregnancy Brain This is a real thing. It sounds cute and whimsical, right? Yea, in the beginning people will laugh it off. I forgot to cap the toothpaste, or I left my phone in the freezer and made my husband search for it for 20 minutes. But it stopped being cute really quickly for everyone once I left the paper towels on top of the convection oven, then put some chicken in there on broil.
Then, I forgot about it and went into the bedroom. And the fire department came. And the building super almost evicted us. So, there's that. Anyway, there are all sorts of scientific explanations for how your brainpower is focused on the baby so you are forgetful about everything else. But, regardless of the reason, this is a real phenomenon, so if you are like me and don't write things down, now is a good time to start.
Or print out this article and put it on the fridge! Honeymoon Period of Pregnancy Hey, some good news! The second trimester is pretty awesome. You may think pregnancy is going to be exhausting, but for me and many others, the second trimester was a breeze. The morning sickness clears. You are still fully mobile and feeling good. And you have probably made your pregnancy announcement by then so you can start talking about your excitement with your friends.
Enjoy it! Everyone Starts Showing Differently You may think you will debut your cute little baby bump around 3 or 4 months and everyone will ooh and ahh and try to touch your belly. But every woman's body is different and you may start showing in a weird way. For me, from months , I just looked pudgy.
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The bump really looked more like a distended belly from hitting the buffet. And with the swollen ankles, I just looked like I had put on weight which meant no seats on the subway for me. By month 7, I actually looked pregnant, which seems pretty late to me. So, as much as you may be ready to "style the bump" don't be disappointed if it doesn't pop as soon as you thought you would.
It will come eventually. Gas With all the other charming pregnancy side effects comes gas. A girlfriend of mine was pregnant with her first and said she missed the first kicks from her baby because she thought it was just more gas. Yes, the gas is that intense! It feels like rumblings in your tummy. You can imagine how much fun that is when you are trying to get romantic at night.
cirseinarpala.ga I say, just make a joke about it and move on. Smells Your sense of smell is incredibly enhanced while pregnant. That means going out to eat with your friends will be interesting. Some women hate the smell of peanut butter, others can't stand fish. For me, it was chinese food and booze.
These are my two favorite things in the world. And yet, while I was pregnant I could not stand to be around them. And because your nose is on hyperdrive, you can't even be around if the person sitting next to you on the subway had kung pao chicken for lunch. It will make you want to hurl. That said, the first ultrasound, hearing the heartbeat and feeling the tiny kicks makes pregnancy an incredible experience.