For some reason, most of my classroom funnies occurred with my second pregnancy during the 2011 school year. You would think it would have happened the first time around, but no, the first time around I had no other children to cater to, I was still relatively well-groomed and taken care of, and my baby bump did not become a monstrosity until I was two weeks away from giving birth.
My second pregnancy, I believe I looked 4 months pregnant within minutes of conception and then 10 months pregnant shortly after. It only got worse from there…even my husband, who is rarely grossed out or even notices when I cut off half of my hair suggested that I use a “band-aid or something” to cover up my freakishly protruding belly button that we lovingly (Ok, disgustingly) referred to as “my third thumb”.
My pregnancy bloopers also coincide with a student named Anthony. It all started in September of 2010 when our class was temporarily relocated for construction purposes and I was moved to a classroom without any windows. Going from windows to no windows is a hard transition. Not to mention, I was moved abruptly the second week of school. The kids did not take a liking to their new environment. Anthony busted in and said “Yo, Ms., I’m Italian, I’ll bust down this wall here and make a window for you.” When another classmate pointed out that would just make a busted door to the hallway, he replied: “Like I said, I’m Italian!”
Later that month, our class was doing an ecology assignment where I had the students make food chains using manipulatives and each student had to add their food chain to the whiteboard, which we combined to make a class food web. We had owls, hawks, frogs, snakes, deer, holly bushes, grass, mountain laurel, honeysuckle, mice, foxes, squirrels, coyotes, so on and so forth. It was coming along beautifully. When it was Anthony’s turn he added fantastically illustrated fellow classmates to the food web. Just four randomly selected classmates. Some were eaten by mice, others were eating deer, but he also made the most quiet kid in the class the top of the food chain, devouring wolves and coyotes. The best part was, I had 2-3 students go up at a time, so I hadn’t noticed right away. When I went up to discuss, I was almost in stitches. I mean, just think about it! As soon as the day was over I called my BFF (who was also working in a classroom at the time)- we still talk about this to this day!
Let’s fast forward to March of 2011. We’re now back in our window-filled sunny classroom. The bell has just rung. Anthony is busy telling some classmates that their epidermis is showing, when I start taking attendance. Without so much as a moment’s ponder, Anthony exclaimed “Ms. are you pregnant?”
I hadn’t even told my coworkers yet.
Fast forward to September 2011. I have a whole new class and it’s Parents Nights! I’m due September 25th, approximately a week and half from good ol’ Parents Night. I decided to wear my fancy maternity shirt. It’s black lace with a dark gray built-in silky under-layer with some embroidered flowers. I’m lookin’ good! It looks sort of like this one:
One quick trip to the bathroom before I make my rendezvous. Boy, I’m nervous. There’s something about these parents. They keep looking me over. I know, I know, they can tell I’m about to pop. I bet some women are eyeing me wondering if if “the baby has dropped.” Well, I’ll just assure them that I’ll be back after Christmas break and that we’re going to do all these fun things! And then, I saw it.. I caught a glimpse of it in one of the new elongated windows. Why was my shirt a different color where my belly was? Wasn’t my shirt black? Was that chalk dust? I don’t even use chalk! Palms sweaty, I tried to wipe away whatever it was on my ginormous belly that was reflecting back at me. Then I felt it, a bunched up shirt underneath my belt. I immediately transformed into a position in which my arms could most effectively hide my baby bump. What was worse was that all this insecurity and nervousness was hindering my concentration as I tried to set up the inFocus machine so that I could show the parents my nifty presentation. My fingers nervously fumbled until finally one student’s father stood up and approached me, I think I cowered in his shadow thinking “Is he going to whisper to me what the issue is? Could I have accidentally shoved toilet paper up my shirts somehow?” But, he simply gave me a curt nod and said “We have these at work”, as he switched the plug into the “Computer 1” port (a rookie mistake). I quickly gave my presentation, at this point I’m pretty sure my back was to the parents so that I was no more that a small, pregnant muffle.
Finally, it was over! I rushed into our science prep room, all five-foot-eight of me plunged into my five-foot-nothing counterpart. My belly was at her eye level and her face said it all. “Is that your belly?” My fabulous, bulging, lace-covered baby bump sat there like a some sort of lace-covered hoochie-mama white pumpkin (with the stem still attached).
Needless to say, I never wore that shirt again.