I am not coping well with the news lately. And honestly, I probably shouldn't be allowed to watch the news. Not in my delicate condition.
During my last pregnancy the entire economy crashed. At the time I worked at a high net worth wealth management firm (exactly what it sounds like), and pretty much every morning for a week in September 2008 we had "emergency" all-staff meetings that went like this:
"Well, Bank ABC has gone under, but please assure your clients that Banks DEF, GHI, and JKL are still fine and cannot possibly go under."
"Well, Bank DEF was just bought by bank GHI, but please assure your clients that Bank JKL is still fine."
And so on.
I ended up on bed rest three weeks before my due date because one day at work I lost the abilities to speak and to see. Literally. The day my replacement came in to train for my maternity leave I sounded like a stroke victim and kept bumping into things. I didn't even think to call my doctor about it until my husband - who has no medical training - said that losing vision and speech is not normal in the 9th month of pregnancy. I was all ready to tell him what a nervous nelly he is, but the nurse on the phone sent me to the labor & delivery ER and the doctor told me to go home and stay there. That sure showed my stupid husband!
This time around there is no need to force myself to endure the slings and arrows of this cold, cruel world and endanger both myself and my fetus by doing stupid things like paying attention to the world outside my little life. Besides, there are natural disasters beyond my control happening here in New York, and the 10-year anniversary of September 11th just passed, which, even with my news-blackout I can't avoid because we LIVE in New York City and because I was here on September 11, 2001. And, my neighborhood is currently being terrorized by at least four would-be rapists, which I can't avoid even if I want to because I have to pass by the enormous NYPD double-wide parked on my route to my son's preschool.
So, some things I can't avoid, but most things I can. I've told my friends and family that from now until I am 6 months post-partum I do not want to hear about anything going on in the world unless it involves me directly, and not in a New Agey, hippie, Mother Earthy, "We are all part of the interconnectedness of Life and the Universe, and when a mosquito dies in Australia all our hearts die a little inside" kind of way. I mean a direct way, like, "Michelle Obama is hosting a dinner party and wants advice on a good budget wine from a fellow mom, so she needs your cell number, MEREDITH LOPEZ," kind of way.
That, I can handle.
Anything involving politics, the economy, natural disasters in places that are not New York City, wars in foreign countries, and so on, I cannot handle. For the sake of my baby, I'm not even going to try. I can't have booze to take the edge off, I'm no longer on anti-depressants, and every time I tear up it induces vomiting. I have zero release for my stresses, plus a 3-year old who thinks that I force him to nap as a way of ruining his life, a husband who works late most nights, and at least two pinched nerves in my back. And did I mention no booze, pills, or even crying to make myself feel better?
The other day when we had our friends and their kids over for a playdate, and the husband started talking politics with my husband, I just sort of spaced out and thought about this instead:
And really, what does the rest of the world need from a pregnant, tired, achey woman anyway? Do I control the world's economy? (Though, with the timing of my pregnancies, it looks like my womb might... I promise, no more kids after this, lest we all end up in bread lines again.) Can I avert natural disasters? (Answer: not yet, but give me time.)
So, I'm on a news hiatus until well into 2012, at which time I am sure there will be world peace, no hunger or disease, and the economy will be fixed. Right?