Thursday, April 20, 2017

Serena Williams Won the Australian Open While Eight Weeks Pregnant andI am DONE.

It doesn’t pay to make invidious comparisons to anyone in this life, much less elite world-class athletes. 

But when I read that Serena Williams won the Australian Open while eight weeks pregnant, I couldn’t help but just be totally done with life. For who among us has NOT won a major professional sports title while lending our uterus to another human being, rent-free, for nine months?

At the risk of alienating my non-uterus-owning readers who have publicly burned O.H.M. for (and I’m paraphrasing here) belaboring the theme of “eating Fritos Bean Dip while on the couch making fun of Gwyneth Paltrow,” I’m fixing to do a little compare-and-contrast that’s admittedly somewhere along these lines.

Every pregnancy is different, every woman has different abilities and experiences, yada yada. Okay, granted. 

But as far as I know, NONE OF THEM HAS EVER WON THE AUSTRALIAN OPEN OR ANY OPEN FOR THAT MATTER WHILE EIGHT WEEKS PREGNANT. (But see also, Kikkan Randall).

Anyone who has ever been eight weeks pregnant knows why winning the biggest tennis tournament in the southern hemisphere is a superhuman marvel in said condition, because no matter who you are, if you’re eight weeks pregnant your body is under hostile takeover by an evil, foreign fetal host parasite who is literally leeching off your very life force.

I don’t mean to brag, but here’s what my average day looked like then: 
  • Wake up after tossing and turning all night during weird dream about tsunamis.
  • Smell a banana and vomit.
  • Examine prominent new veins all over body.
  • Try to take shit, fail.
  • Listen to NPR story about somebody’s grandpa. Cry inconsolably.
  • Squeeze titties into bra, go to work with quad-boob.
  • Place head on desk and pass out in small puddle of own drool while on conference call.
  • Come to and drive to Fred Meyer.
  • Help self to a pint of mixed olives from olive bar, eat several before paying.
  • Pee for seventh time in an hour, panic about blood streak on toilet paper.
  • Call doctor.
  • Google miscarriages.
  • Go to doctor and get sonogram, resume Googling “coffee during pregnancy.”
  • Smell somebody’s turkey sandwich from Subway, specifically the bread. Vomit again.
  • Eat aforementioned pint of mixed olives.
  • Go to sleep for the night at 6:30 p.m.
Again—and I speak strictly from my own experience here—I felt like Sigourney Weaver in Alien when I was eight weeks pregnant (both times), and I wouldn’t have been able to toss a tennis ball up in the air and catch it again from a prone position.

So yeah, Serena won the Australian Open amid stiff competition, while in what is arguably the worst possible part of pregnancy (also amid stiff competition).

But I ate a bucket of olives, so.



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