Guess what: I'm pregnant. A baby is growing inside my abdomen. My uterus has more than doubled in size and produced an entire new organ, the placenta. Plus my child's organs, sketches in miniature — the heart has been fluttering for more than a month! We saw it on the first ultrasound. Then today at the 12-week ultrasound, kicking legs.

The legs are on top 🥹 Tbh, ultrasounds are better in the moment than they are as snapshots.

Despite the proliferation of inner activity I am barely "showing" — in fact, to start with I lost a bit of weight, due to the difficulty of eating with nausea. (That's normal.) Now I'm headed back in the other direction, having finished the grueling first trimester. The second is the easy one, relatively speaking; it gets intense again in the third.

My early symptoms are 99% gone at this point, for which I am grateful. I'm still going to bed before midnight, which was rare pre-pregnancy, but I'm no longer exhausted by 8pm as I was a few weeks ago. The other symptom that stuck around is hormonal acne 😑 I'm making a valiant effort to refrain from picking at my skin. Ahh, the glamor of incubating new life! I complain, but don't get me wrong, I'm over-the-moon excited about my baby. My baby!

Something funny that jumped out at me during this process: No one uses the word "fetus" when they know you want the little life within to continue. A desired child gets to be a baby from conception. I observe this with an eyebrow raised, yet experiencing the first trimester ended my longstanding ambivalence about abortion. (And I had a relatively easy time of it! Hyperemesis gravidarum is horrible and results in ER visits.)

For years my position has been: Abortion should be legal, but yes it is the killing of a human being, and I wouldn't want to do it myself... but I would if I had to. Since my husband and I were fervently preventing pregnancy — until suddenly we weren't — I was prepared to sacrifice a sprouting seed if one took root.

Follow-up: "actually this might be a common view, idk"

I continue to believe that abortion ends a life. Notwithstanding, a mere taste of the ordeal that is pregnancy makes me feel it is slavery to force an unwilling woman to bear a child. "Feel" is the operative word here — I can still outline my stance the same as I did above, but I have newly developed some vehemence. (Not enough to condemn those who disagree; how can I begrudge anyone else the freedom of conscience that I demand for myself?)

That's all I have to say for the moment — thought I'd announce my good news, weigh in on an extremely contentious political debate, then dip 😅 At 12 weeks, pregnancy isn't totally kicking my ass, but I'm still more tired than usual. I've been focused on keeping up with my various obligations, semi-successfully... semi.

However, I did write down a recipe...

Lazy Hollandaise Sauce

It's definitely better if you make it properly in a saucepan with fresh-squeezed lemons, but I don't want to bother.

Ingredients

  • stick of butter
  • lemon juice (since this is the lazy version, the kind you get in a bottle at the grocery store)
  • salt
  • 1 egg (you will only use the yolk)

Instructions

  1. Microwave the butter until it's half-melted — this will vary depending on your microwave, but somewhere in the territory of 10-30 seconds.
  2. Whisk the butter with a fork until the texture is homogenous.
  3. Glug some lemon juice in there. I always eyeball it, my guesstimate is 2-3 Tbsp. Note: It's helpful for the lemon juice to be chilled because it'll bring down the temperature of the butter a bit, which helps prevent curdling when you add the egg yolk. Whisk the lemon juice into the butter with a fork.
  4. Add salt to taste — approx. 1 Tbsp is a good place to start.
  5. Separate the egg yolk from the whites, then whisk the yolk into the lemon-butter mixture until homogenous. Give the whites to your dog.

Voila! Hollandaise sauce! It takes like three minutes and if you use a pourable glass measuring cup, no extra dishes are needed. Refrigerate whatever you don't use and reheat (gently) as needed.


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Header art: Ring by René-Jules Lalique, 1931.