During the day, I hang out with Tomomi at the Atelier, and despite my halting Japanese, we've managed to have some great converstations. The simple reward of making yourself understood cannot be underestimated.
So I've been learning lots of fun new words, one of my favorites is ochokochoi, which is sort of like messy or clumsy. Say it, it's fun!
It came up because I was describing how I've become quite clumsy lately -- loosing my balance when I get up out of my futon, or when I go to put on my socks. I've always been a pretty coordinated person, but it's literally throwing me off to have all this extra weight.
The funniest moment came the day my butt got big. K and I were in the kitchen, on round two of banana bread (we have to use all those bananas somehow), and she had the hand-mixer plugged into the wall. To understand the following configuration, you have to appreciate just how small Japanese kitchens are: the space between the range and the refrigerator is about three feet, and the refrigerator is so small that you must crouch down on the ground in that three-foot space to get into it. The electrical outlet is positioned at about belly-button height on the wall between the range and the fridge, which means the cord hangs inconveniently right in the middle of that space during use. Underestimating my new girth, I turned to put something back in the fridge, and was in mid-squat when I realized I was sitting on the cord and pulling the mixer down with me.
I don't know if K was laughing harder at my awkward squat or the look of utter surprise on my face as I shot upright and apologized -- the whole thing no doubt looked like some unpracticed or unwitting slapstick. To say the least, it certainly made an impression. The next week, when we were about to watch the Charlie Brown Great Pumpkin movie on Halloween, she was waiting in my room didn't waste her chance to say, "Hey, get your fat ass in here!"
I know it doesn't look like much, but 15 pounds have really made a difference... believe me, I'm wasn't happy about being a waif-ly 110 at the outset of the pregnancy. I've never been able to gain weight, and I'm not saying that like an annoyingly self-congratulatory sorority girl. It's just in the genes -- me & my mom & my siblings are all wiry and tiny. I'm actually enjoying the extra meat immensely: I'm hoping I can keep the butt and the boobs after the baby comes.
What's the secret? It's the appetite. I've always been a healthy eater, but I'm astounding even myself these days. I've begun combining first and second breakfasts, so that one just blends right into the next. Eggs, cheese, toast, potatoes, then oatmeal? Sure! Pancakes? Don't mind if I do. And how about a slice of banana bread, too.