Do you know who can bloody well screw off? The woman I ran into earlier who looked at my shirt, then at my belly, squinted her face into a cutesified smile, and asked if I had any exciting news to share.
Is she asking me if I'm pregnant? I thought.
I hardly know this woman. I wanted to eat her and floss my teeth afterward with the string from her fake pearl necklace.
I am wearing a slim-fitting pair of pants today in deep brownish-charcoal, and my shirt is black, fitted on the top, and flares out slightly below the bust. From what I have seen while out shopping over the last few months, this is a common style these days.
If people making cutesy faces and hinting about children drove me nuts before my brush with cancer, it just about makes me homicidal now. I never really wanted children in the first place, and I find most non-adults quite alien, but now that I am coming up on the one-year anniversaries of my colposcopy, LEEP, cancer diagnosis, and hysterectomy, that whole infantilizing what-have-you-got-under-your-shirt sing-song sets my neurons on fire.
I do not mean to insult anyone by the following statements, but this is what I want to have on the cover of the pamphlets I feel like giving out on just such occasions:
I AM NOT A BREEDER: How To Keep Your Assumptions Out Of Acquaintance's Vaginas And Other Tips For Living With The Possibly Barren And Otherwise
I am easy to set off these days.
So now I have spent the better part of the afternoon wondering exactly how pregnant do I look in this shirt? And can I ever wear it again now that I think it makes me look preggers? Because, lord knows, I do not want to run into this again.
I can think of nearly no other situation in which I would walk up to someone I did not know very well, ogle an individual part of their anatomy, and then make comments about what they were doing with it. I might tell them if they had lettuce stuck to their moustache, but that's about as far as I would go. You will hear no That's quite the set of breasts on you, Meredith! Did you have them enlarged? from me (at least not if you are only an acquaintance of mine and your name is not Meredith).
In short, I apparently look pregnant in this damn shirt, which shirt was once one of my favourite shirts. And I am a little touchy about it.
Damn the cancer, and the uteruslessness, and the never wanting babies anyway.