The other day:

Me: “Hello?”
JB: (panting moistly into the phone): “What are you wearing?”
Me: “A great big maternity sweater! And it’s all itchy!”
JB: “. . .”
Me: “Also, I came up with the perfect description for a hemorrhoid: it’s like your asshole blew a tiny little balloon.”
JB: “I—”
Me: “Buttle Yum!”
JB: “We are never going to have sex again, are we?”

I am feeling unsexily large lately. At a recent doctor’s appointment I confirmed I have in fact piled on a goodly amount of weight in the last few weeks. It’s my own damn fault—no, not the weight, that’s clearly a byproduct of a healthy pregnancy and can’t possibly be helped by using such drastic measures as stepping away from the Halloween candy—because if I didn’t ask them to tell me how much I weighed, I wouldn’t know. My doctor’s office weighs in kilos, for some reason, and that particular number always sounds satisfyingly low. “68 kilograms, my goodness,” I like to say, batting my eyelashes in concern. “Why, I’d best step up my baking, hadn’t I?”

Not only did I ask them how much I weighed this week, but gripped by some horrible influx of female insecurity and self-sabotage, I actually felt compelled to grill the nurse about my weight gain, in the same idiotic way you might ask a man to tell you whether or not you look fat in this dress (to which there is no possible good answer, other than a shout of dismay and the admonition to eat something immediately, you’re practically wasting away to skin and bones!) (also, that reminds me of something JB confessed to me a long time ago: his college girlfriend, who he had apparently been thinking of breaking up with, asked the Stupid Question about whether her outfit made her look fat, and JB’s irritated answer was this: “No, your fat makes you look fat.” You’ll have to ask him what happened after that, because I don’t know—although perhaps it’s better if history cloaks that little uncouth moment in mystery). Despite having had neither the nurse or doctor express any misgivings about my weight gain to date, I flat-out asked them if they thought there was anything to “worry about”.

Is that not the dumbest thing you ever heard in your whole life? I must have peed out some critical brain cells during the urine protein test, or something, because all I can think is that I was hoping to get an official green light for eating like a starved hyena for the next three months and OF COURSE I did not get one. “Well,” the nurse said, “you’re within what we consider to be a healthy weight gain so far, but if you’re concerned you could definitely cut back on the snacking, take it a little easy there.”

I will cut back from the snacking when you pry the snacks from my cold dead fingers,” I hissed, before flipping her off and waddling away as fast as I could. No, not really, I just nodded sagely in a manner that said I would give her helpful advice the thought and consideration it deserved, which is to say I came home and made an enormous batch of oatmeal cookies.

Anyway, it was a serious lapse in judgement on my part and in the future I will refrain from asking medical professionals questions I don’t want the answer to. In the meantime, I am trying to embrace the Bigness That Is Me, and remember that despite the fact that I am steadfastly re-inforcing every bad habit I managed to finally break last spring, I lost the weight before and I can do it again.

Don’t ask me to feel sexy, though. I mean, I make an involuntary walrus-like grunting noise when I get up from playing on the floor with my son. My boobs are the size of Volkswagens. I’m always hitching at my pants, or scratching my chest, or burping. I won’t even mention the SKIN TAGS. Oh, the sexytime, it is not now.

I hope I never, ever have to tinker with my WordPress theme files ever again, because the laborious process of tweaking this new theme into place nearly killed me this weekend, and it was only via the medicinal benefits of repeatedly applying large doses of Dr. Oetker’s Organic Brownie Mix (organic makes it healthy!) directly into my sobbing mouth that I was able to survive. There was a horrifying moment when I installed a plugin intended to make another plugin work (something to do with PHP, I don’t know, it’s all a chocolate-coated blur) and all of a sudden my copy of WordPress just . . . went away completely, leaving only a mysterious line containing the phrase “fatal error” in its wake, and before I managed to delete the offending plugin from my server via GoDaddy’s annoying ad-laden interface (their prices are great, but holy god, I feel like I’m being humped by a rabid Jack Russell every time I visit their site) I literally broke out into a full-body sweat, it was physically the exact same sensation as hitting “Send” on an email talking about what a ponytailed knob your boss is, only to notice that you have in fact sent this email directly to your boss. A colossal mistake has been made, and you have only your own dumbassery to blame.

Anyway, I think everything is fixed now, with the exception of some wonky behavior with those sidebar widgets if you’re running a non-current version of IE. Leave it to Internet Explorer to screw something up. IE is like some giant lumbering shithead you know is going to ruin the party, but you have to invite him because he’s fucking your sister, or something. Bad browser, no biscuit.

Enough about the website, let’s talk pumpkins! JB and I finally got around to hacking into ours last night, and although we had planned to carve some family-friendly pumpkins with the boy, for some reason Riley took offense to the sight of us plunging knives into the friendly orange gourds he’d been playing with for the last couple weeks. I know: what a wuss. Wait until he figures out Maisy is actually a sewer rat.

So we waited until bedtime to continue with our gruesome work—behold the results:

This is mine. I tried to copy the design on the front of the Extreme Pumpkins book, with lukewarm results.

And here is JB’s. You may be wondering if the terrifying orange lights dancing behind the diabolical monster’s face are in fact the flames of hell, and the answer is YES.

Well, flames of toilet paper, anyway. JB’s creation involved a full-body pumpkinman with actual fire shooting from the open head, which he achieved with a roll of toilet paper soaked in kerosene.

I have to say, he usually bests me in the jack-o-lantern department, but this year he really outdid himself. I suppose given the flammable nature of children’s costumes, we won’t be displaying this in the front lawn on Wednesday night—but maybe it can lurk from behind the fence. If the torn-up driveway doesn’t keep them away, the flaming pumpkin by-god will. And you know what that means: more candy for me.

Did you carve pumpkins this year? Share your pictures, if you’ve got ’em.

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