There are plenty of well-known pregnancy milestones, from morning sickness to weird cravings. People tend to dwell on the more cutesy ailments that besiege the heroic propagators of the species. And that's fine; if people knew the truth about pregnancy, lots of sensible ones would probably opt to avoid it altogether.
Now, don't worry, I'm not going to nail you in the face with the often-gruesome realities of growing human young, except to say that it is ridiculous that we, as a race, have put man on the moon, but have still not remedied the fact that we are growing people inside other people. If we grew the people inside men, you know that fixing this state of affairs would have been top of the science-agenda from the get-go.
I want to explore the lesser-acknowledged milestones of pregnancy. Like the first time you crouch down to reason with an unreasonable toddler, and then realise you can't get back up. If you're lucky like me, this will occur in public - I resorted to clawing my way up using the shelves of my local supermarket.
Or what about the first time you drop something and feel a palpable sense of grief, because you know you're not going down there to get it back, and now that object, however important, is just not a part of your life any more.
Of course, the emotional milestones are even more debilitating. The first time you cry because it seems like every individual in the preggos Facebook group you stupidly joined when you were newly pregnant and full of excited anticipation, has now had their baby, while yours remains stubbornly lodged in your ribs.
Or the moment that you hate absolutely everyone else in the world, and if you weren't so encumbered by the pregnancy, you'd be hurling abuse from the rooftops. The pregnancy rage is a potent thing.
Himself has relocated to the couch in my office to sleep, because I am now, at 35 weeks pregnant, such an unpleasant person to be around. Even if he is tentatively nice to me, it's usually met with a snarl, and mostly he's just trying to keep himself and our two young sons at a safe distance. Not easy in a small terraced house, when I am approximately six feet in diameter.
Still, the end is in sight; it can't stay in there forever. I am now hitting one of the final milestones: fantasising about how it'll feel to not be pregnant any more. I'll return to my previous non-sloth existence, running and jumping joyfully. I'm even entertaining delusions of healthful living, post-baby. With that in mind, I've been dabbling with this lovely vegan curry.
You will need:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, cut into large dice
1 red pepper, sliced
1 green pepper, sliced
1 clove garlic, sliced
1 in-sized piece of fresh ginger, grated
1 red chilli, sliced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon tamarind
Juice of 1 lime
100ml vegan-friendly stock
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoon peanut butter
400ml coconut milk
3 sweet potatoes, cubed
2 handfuls of blanched almonds
Rice, to serve
Fresh coriander, to serve
1 Heat the olive oil in a pot, and lightly fry the diced onion, the sliced red pepper and the sliced green pepper. Next, add the sliced garlic, the grated fresh ginger, the
sliced chilli, the ground cumin, the ground coriander, the tamarind and the lime juice, and toss everything together over the heat.
Add the vegan-friendly stock, the sugar, the peanut butter, and the coconut milk, and
stir together. Next, add the cubed sweet potatoes, and simmer everything for 20 minutes until the curry has thickened and the sweet potatoes are tender.
2 Add the blanched almonds and serve the curry with rice. Scatter some fresh coriander over the top.
Sunday Indo Life Magazine