I am doing a lot of mouthbreathing lately, thanks in part to the Cold That Will Not Die (aka the Virus That Caused a Thousand Cough-Related Pants-Peeings). My nose is officially FUBAR and I’ve grouchily resigned myself to the fact that I’ll probably only breathe halfway normally again once the nice doctors hack me open like a gutted walleye and yoink out this sinus-distrupting baby. It’s enough to make a person look forward to major abdominal surgery, the notion that it might provide the ability to inhale without sounding as though I were crowning the Hillary Step on Everest. Well, that and the whole ‘magical birth of my second child’ thing.

Mouthbreathing makes me feel incredibly stupid—I mean, even more so than normal. I feel like a cross between a three-toed sloth and Paris Hilton, panting laboriously as I contemplate the most simple task. The other day I was trying to reduce a recipe and I stood in the kitchen for fifteen minutes, mouth slackly hanging open as I attempted to figure out what half of one and a half cups might be. I am not even lying when I tell you I finally used a calculator.

I received an email yesterday that included the phrase “f2f is high bandwidth” and even though I think of myself as being fairly well versed in silly tech jargon I found myself staring at the screen wondering if the person had accidentally sent me part of a text message zen koan.

Also, in the last several days I have 1) cut my finger while chopping vegetables, 2) rammed my toe so hard into a table leg I think it has permanently retracted into my foot by an inch or so, 3) shut my car door on my own leg, and 4) burned my hand not once, not twice, but three times on the edge of an electric skillet while making one (1) batch of pancakes.

I am officially so dumb I am a menace to myself and society at large. JB, who came home the other day to observe my car parked in the driveway with the passenger side door absentmindedly left wide open in the pouring rain, can probably attest to my reduced mental capacity, although hopefully he will keep those opinions to himself unlike the observation made to his brother over the phone WITHIN MY EARSHOT that Linda sure is getting big, I bet it’s going to be a hyoooooge baby.

(Note to male readers: mentioning your wife’s expanding girth in any way other than passionately crying out “My god, my god, she is a GLORIOUS VESSEL OF BEAUTY!” results in major deductions from your Yearly BJ Allowance. You can work yourself into a deficit situation in no time here, fellas, so tread carefully.)

Between the mouthbreathing and the Placenta Brain I’m hoping to make it through the next two months without earning myself a Darwin Award, but things are looking dicey. Even Riley had to help me out this morning: “Mommy keys right DERE.” And that was after I watched Blue’s Clues with him, where I found myself unable to walk away from the television before Steve did the Thinking Chair thing and revealed what the clues were—because I couldn’t figure it out for myself.


49 Responses to “As stupid does”

  1. Danell on December 4th, 2007 9:47 pm

    Wellll, I, for one, find you to be “a glorious vessel of beauty” this pregnancy go-round…based on your pictures, anyway. Although I’m not sure that’s really the most pleasant sounding way of putting. Something about the word vessel…ew.

    And I got really, really dumb while pregnant but I don’t think I EVER RECOVERED. I’m not sure I have enough IQ points left to endure another pregnancy.

  2. Kathryn on December 4th, 2007 9:56 pm

    Okay Linda, this is totally unrelated to your post probably (I haven’t read it yet, though, and it is, after all YOUR site, so it may not be), but it just made me snort out loud while laughing.

    I was reading the comments associated with this article, when I came across the following comment:

    “This should teach men not to hawk their sperm to all and sundry.” Now all I can think of is men hawking their sperm to you. Sorry.

  3. Frannie on December 4th, 2007 9:59 pm

    Just don’t mouthbreathe at the movie theater..Get WELL!!!!!

  4. Meloogal on December 4th, 2007 10:01 pm

    The other day I casually and purposefully dumped an entire glass of milk into my lap.

    And I can’t even blame Placenta Brain.

  5. Sara on December 4th, 2007 10:29 pm

    I slammed the car door shut on my own leg the other day too. Now I have a bruise. On the same leg as the bruise that I got from falling into the edge of the wall while moving furniture two weeks ago. Also the same leg that is sporting a 4 inch long scab from when I sliced the top layers of my leg skin off while trying to shave. No Placenta Brain here either.

  6. Josh on December 4th, 2007 10:53 pm

    It’s 3/4 of a cup Mrs. Chubbyston. Hee hee. Just kidding. Not about the measurement though. Is there really such a thing as placenta brain? I’ve never heard of women getting dumb because of pregnancy. Weird.

    And I thought BJ’s were an urban myth. Hmmm, I’m gonna have to have a talk with my woman about this yearly allowance you speak of. Excuse me, my glorious vessel of beauty, not my woman.

  7. Jean on December 4th, 2007 11:07 pm

    Okay, this should make you feel better. I was pregnant with my daughter, who I was planning to name after my late grandmother, when my mom emailed me to let me know that a friend of my late grandmother had passed away. And I wrote back, “Is Nana okay?” referring to aformentioned dead grandmother, as though she were alive and kicking. My mom wrote back, “What are you talking about?” and I thought to myself, “Wow, my mom is really losing it!” as I started to reply “IS NANA OKAY? How hard is that to understand?” Thank God it suddenly occurred to me – Oh yeah! Nana DIED! I am naming my child afer Nana! Aha! Then I felt horrible selfish shame and called my mom crying and she said, “It’s okay. You’re just pregnant.”

  8. reviewstew on December 4th, 2007 11:16 pm

    Hey sometimes Blues Clues are hard dude! … um … at least I think so??

  9. Jen on December 4th, 2007 11:32 pm

    At least Riley is old enough to be helpful? I mean, he can help without being old enough to tease you…plus, that must’ve sounded really cute. =)

  10. Elizabeth on December 4th, 2007 11:44 pm

    One day toward the end of my pregnancy, I went out to the car to go some where, and got in the passenger seat and waited. And waited. And then realized that I needed to be in the driver’s seat in order to drive. Whoops.

    There was also the incident where we flew across the country and went to the rental car center and then I realized that I hadn’t actually ever reserved a car. Except I didn’t realize it until we asked at several rental car agencies (all the ones with green in their logos, because somehow that sounded familiar) and then I’d called my sister and had her search my gmail account for some sort of confirmation. Nothing. Oops. On the plus side, I had something to blog about.

  11. warcrygirl on December 5th, 2007 5:55 am

    My entire household is getting over several viruses at once. I’ve officially been sick for going on my fifth week; my coughing got so bad that my airways closed up but not before I threw up the entire contents of my stomach (sorry for the visual). I finally went to the doctor and she prescribed me an albuterol inhaler. BLISS!!!!! I also had the making-a-little-peepee cough and I’m not pregnant. It’s bad out there, please don’t hesitate to at least talk to a nurse if you start to feel any more miserable.

    Oh yeah, hope the rain has finally stopped. YIKES!

  12. Eric's Mommy on December 5th, 2007 7:20 am

    AAAHHH! I too am doing the mouth breathing. I have a raging sinus infection. I feel so stupid sitting at my desk with my mouth gaping open. I am about to the point where I am going to cut out my tonsils myself because my throat hurts so bad.

  13. Carolyn on December 5th, 2007 7:22 am

    Pregnancy colds are the WORST. And pregnancy brain is only slightly less worse. worst. really bad.

    See? I’m not even pregnant and I can’t form a coherent sentence.

    We went to see Bruce Springsteen when I was 7 months pregnant with my daughter. We’re not huge fans but felt it One Of Those Things One Should Do. So we met our friends at their workplace, and went together in their car. Their workplace is not in the best part of town, really, one of the worst. Right before we left I ran (lumbered) back to our car to get something I’d forgotten, then we left. We came back 4 hours later to find the passenger door of our car wide open, lights on, and miraculously, everything intact, including the battery. At least if someone had taken the fool car, I wouldn’t have felt like such a jackass.

    Another of my stupid antics is here: http://guwisays.blogspot.com/2005/08/junk-in-my-trunk.html

    I hope you feel better. :)

  14. mandy on December 5th, 2007 7:23 am

    OMG I am so glad I am done peeing on myself. I had reserve painties and everything. Pregnancy is FUN I tell you.

    Not to suck ALL the hope out of the room or anything, but I never recovered from placenta brain. Never. It had been 9 months since my last, but I think having two in two years zapped mine gone forever.

    You should be fine though, because there is a bit more time between your two pregnancies.

    I really think I cought my cold from your blog. I swear, a day or two after I red your sickie post, I came down with it myself. I really didn’t think it was possible, but I am thinking twice now.

  15. Christina on December 5th, 2007 7:23 am

    Ugh, SO not looking forward to that stage of pregnancy… though I did get a chuckle out of the car door in the rain thing… Sorry!

  16. GoingLoopy on December 5th, 2007 8:17 am

    Don’t feel bad. I am not now, nor have I ever been, pregnant, but I have managed to:

    (1) stub my bare toe on a nail in the floorboard at my house, necessitating a midnight ER run for a tetanus shot
    (2) sprain an ankle (badly) walking out of my bathroom
    (3) chip a bone in the ankle, same bathroom incident
    (4) trip over the sidewalk in front of a lot of people
    (5) stub my NECK on a car door
    (6) stub my boob on a car door
    (7) slip on the one patch of ice in a 100 mile radius while on an early-in-relationship date
    …and that’s just a fraction. The date still makes fun of me and has various nicknames for me related to klutziness. Some of us are just screwed on that whole “grace” thing, I think.

    But you are absolutely adorable with your pregnant self, mouth-breathing or no. Hope the cold goes away soon.

  17. ang on December 5th, 2007 8:20 am

    My youngest sister is pregnant and I keep telling her that shes Really Not THAT Stupid! That it’s only pregnancy brain. (this after she called me eleventy kajillion freaking times while making a casserole that has like, five ingredients!) On the bright side, at least your dipshitedness will go away in another couple of months. To be quickly followed by Sleep Deprivation Dumbassness.

  18. Kristie on December 5th, 2007 8:43 am

    Pregnancy brain AND mommie brain. Dude, you are doomed to do stupid things for the rest of your life. Welcome to my world. Ha!

  19. Andrea on December 5th, 2007 8:47 am

    Me too! Well, not the mouthbreathing (yet, since it is only the beginning of winter), but the pregnancy brain. I am due in January and have fah-reakin’ lost my mind. It’s like I peed out brain cells when I peed on that stick that showed two lines. Unfortunately for me, I had trouble seeing the line at first, so I peed on FOUR sticks. Think of all those brain cells I wasted!

    I have put dishes away in the wrong cabinets (and we’ve lived in our house for 5 years); I have put my 3 yr old son’s underwear in his daddy’s underwear drawer and then panicked when I couldn’t find the Lightning McQueens for a screaming, fresh from the bath and cold naked little boy who demanded his tighty whities with the race car on the butt. I have gotten into the shower and forgotten to wash the conditioner out of my hair. I have put makeup on only one eye and then left the house that way.

    Seriously, I used to be smart. It seems like I can’t even handle basic hygiene anymore without a sticky note to tell me what order to do everything in. I can’t even remember now if I put deodorant on this morning. I’m pretty sure I did. God, I hope I did.

  20. Zannah on December 5th, 2007 8:53 am

    Nice reference to the Hillary Step!

  21. kalisah on December 5th, 2007 8:53 am

    man, I was the SAME WAY when I was pregnant. I think it has something to do with the bloodflow leaving your brain to nourish the baby (so Placenta Brain is probably a pretty good name for it).

    PS – when I try to cut recipe amounts in half, I convert the numbers to dollars. What’s half of $1.50? 75 cents

    PSS – what is that f2f thing anyway? I’m not even pregnant and I still don’t know.

  22. birdgal on December 5th, 2007 8:59 am

    Is there such a thing as ‘after placenta brain’? Because I could be dumb as a rock when I was pregnant, but I still have flashes of it now (I too have left a car door open in my driveway and totally forgot about it). There should be a named medical condition for it–we could call it ‘mom brain’ or ‘mom-to-be brain’. Who’s with me?

  23. Amy M. on December 5th, 2007 9:01 am

    I, too, am a burgeoning glorious vessel of beauty. Actually, hubby told me I’m getting fat already (I’m only 13 weeks for the 2nd kid). Thanks, sweetie.

    Also, I’ve no idea what “f2f” is. I’m not really that tech-savvy, though.

  24. dorrie on December 5th, 2007 9:12 am

    Dude, when I was pregnant with my daughter I got into the shower wearing my underpants so often that my husband put a post it on the mirror to remind me to take them off. I still have it.

  25. Jenny H. on December 5th, 2007 10:09 am

    I also think you look beautiful.

    And don’t feel bad, I couldn’t remember the word “cat” when I was pregnant. I definitely would have been in the running for the Darwin Award. Both times, although I probably could have taken it with the second pregnancy.

  26. H on December 5th, 2007 10:36 am

    I think it is “mom-brain” and I’m thankful for this post and the comments because it makes me feel so much better….

    I called someone and the voicemail said to press 9 to transfer to this person. I pressed 9 several times and never got transferred, the message continued repeating. That’s when I realized I was pressing 9 on my laptop, not the phone.

  27. Mandy on December 5th, 2007 10:39 am

    I can totally relate, especially about the accidental burnings. When I was pregnant, especially in the third trimester, I kept burning myself on the clothes iron–I think I finally had 3 or 4 burns on my hands and inner arms when a co-worker kindly and half-jokingly asked me if I wanted to tell her anything, subtly alluding to possible spousal abuse. No, just extra clumsy!

  28. Brooke on December 5th, 2007 11:29 am

    Oh, my jeez, I love reading your comments as much as your posts. The first post I ever read was the personal lube one and I about had an aneurism from laughing at some of the suggestions about what they were using the lube for.

    Anyway, my ex-husband called me “enormous” when I was pregnant with our daughter. You’ll notice he’s my ex. My current thinks I am a vessel of beauty.

    I too, take on the South Col every day getting to my office, necessitating the use of the elevator to ride up…one floor to my office, gasping the whole time. I am getting over a cold I’ve had for two weeks. I’m off the meds but congestion lingers. Ah. 4 more months until I can have my immune system back.

  29. Jem on December 5th, 2007 1:03 pm

    Due to all my allergies and I guess the way I’m built, I have never been able to breathe through my nose in my life. Trying now I feel like I’m about to suffocate. I think I need surgery or something.

  30. victoria on December 5th, 2007 1:46 pm

    Even with Pregnancy Brain, you’re still one of the most talented, funny, observant writers I have the pleasure of reading. I wish my brain were so impaired.

  31. Sunshyn on December 5th, 2007 2:25 pm

    Here I was all worrying that you might be under water or something, and you just have a stupid sinus thing going on and placenta brain. Sheesh. Try a saline nose spray. I’d suggest that saline nasal rinse thingie, but that’s how I got meningitis and landed myself in the hospital nearly dead last year, so never mind on that… Seriously, how bad is the rain and flooding in your ‘hood?

  32. Jennie on December 5th, 2007 2:27 pm

    A went to the grocery store last week and returned home to find my front door wiiiiide open. My first thought was that there was a very stupid serial killer in my house waiting to get me. My second thought was that I need to have this baby before mommy brain makes me go completely insane.

    Also, I can totally sympathize with the whole peeing thing. Every morning I wake up, run to the bathroom while holding in seven or twenty sneezes so that I don’t pee all over the place first thing in the morning. My husband thinks it’s funny, I think he is evil. Pregnancy is glamorous, I tell you!

  33. Sarah on December 5th, 2007 3:38 pm

    I sympathize with the lack of bladder control. I had the worst cold when I went into labor with my second. It was bad enough trying to hold everything in, but when I went into labor it was like all sphincter control was lost. My L&D nurse was convinced I’d broken my water but I had to admit (in a room full of family) that no, I just couldn’t help but pee everywhere every single time I coughed. Yeah, my husband still finds that one funny.


  34. Kristina on December 5th, 2007 4:18 pm

    I don’t want to make you all cry or anything, but the dumbass clumsy thing might never go away. I had a friend and co-worker who, when she returned to work after her first baby, 1) broke her foot falling down stairs and 2)dislocated her shoulder trying to save herself from falling into a fungussy-smelling radioactive waste water tank. My own brain morphed into tofu after 2 children, and menopause has now sealed my fate. I’m sorry to be such a downer.

  35. Fifi on December 5th, 2007 7:43 pm

    Awwww, honey. Well, it never really goes away, but it does get considerably better once your youngest is 3.5 or so years old. I still can’t remember words and consequently wave my hands about and repeat “Thingy! You know, THINGY!!” quite often.

  36. Katie on December 5th, 2007 8:21 pm

    A woman’s brain shrinks by 8% when pregnant. EIGHT PERCENT. I heard that on some news show once and filed it away in the part of my brain that will never shrink. Because…DAYUM… That is a lot of shrinkage. I am pretty sure it never returns, either. That Duggar woman must really be at the bottom of the barrel (obviously).

    That whole clogged nostril thing is the worst feeling. Can you not take ANYTHING for it?

  37. grandmama on December 5th, 2007 8:40 pm

    Hang in there honey..soon the baby will be here and you’ll get your mind back, just as soon as he starts sleeping thru the night. And you look cute pregant.

  38. Lesley on December 6th, 2007 12:07 am

    Have I told you lately that I love…your writing? You make it seem effortless. I betcha you just type without having to edit. I hate you! (naught)

  39. bad penguin on December 6th, 2007 10:42 am

    Well, I have not seen Blue’s Clues, so I’m just going to assume the puzzles are very hard, so you need to see the clues.

    And at least you have an excuse. I probably burn myself cooking about once a month. I know the stove and the pans are hot, really I do. I just always seem to drop the spoon in the pan, or reach over to the back burner and get splattered, or have the pan slide off the mitt and hit my arm. That has actually happened THREE different times this year.

  40. McWriter on December 7th, 2007 11:00 am

    Maybe this means Secondtopus is going to be extremely smart. He’s just borrowing your intellect for these last crucial weeks so he may take over the world some day. Or maybe find a cure for cancer. So, thank you, Linda!

  41. K on December 9th, 2007 6:00 pm

    Duuude. I’m so with you. I’m due with #2 around the same time as you and also have a marvelous cough we like to call brochitis. I think I go through at least two pairs of underwear a day.

    I am also absentminded, but my biggest problem these days is being clumsy. I swear I drop pieces of paper for no good reason other than apparently my joints can only hold their position for 3-5 seconds. Course, that means I usually drop stuff and then have to lean down to pick it up, which isn’t all that easy these days. I hope this corrects itself before the baby comes because as it stands now, I can’t be trusted to not drop a cup of coffee, much less a 7 pound kid.

    One month, 23 days and 17 hours to go.

  42. michelle on December 18th, 2007 7:18 am

    Oh, I am SO sorry you have a cold! I got one right before I was due and it lasted forever. During labor when they kept telling me to take a deep breath all I kept thinking was “I would LOVE to but I can’t!” I didn’t get stupid until AFTER the baby was born — forgetting my shopping bags at Target, leaving my ATM card in the machine (at the same Target on the same day), and leaving the lid up on the washing machine so that when I should have been finished with the laundry, I was in reality, only just starting. I’m hoping that it’s just lack of sleep and I shall recover sometime in the next 10 years, because otherwise when that math homework starts coming home I’m going to be in trouble.

  43. pippa on January 11th, 2008 7:00 am

    Whoever said brain cells come from stem cells was LYING. They are donated DIRECTLY from the mother’s brain. Imagine having four. There are some days I forget my own name.

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