I can't believe this slipped my mind the other day when I wrote about my craptacular trip to school. I had the most inappropriate interaction with a lady who needs to have her jaw wired shut to keep her from ever speaking to anyone ever again.
It has been my experience that as soon as a woman announces she is pregnant to friends and family, or through her appearance becomes obviously pregnant to strangers, the population at large suddenly assumes the generally accepted rules of socially acceptable comments and topics of discussion are null and void. Anything goes. Please tell me about your 3rd degree vaginal tear. By all means, comment on how fat my fingers are and how relieved you are that I am pregnant, because you were afraid I was just "letting myself go". I want to hear nothing more than about how a co-worker's friend's sister-in-law lost her baby at 26 weeks. All opinions on, and condemnations of, parenting styles are welcome (especially if you've not asked my opinion about it before you rail against one technique and swear by the other).
But this, my friends, takes the cake...
As I was leaving the bbq, getting ready to pick up a few last things from my office, I was stopped in the hallway by one of the special education teachers I have worked with for the past 4 years. She's a nice enough lady, but apparently she has no internal filters with which to make socially appropriate decisions regarding her conversation with others.
She approaches me in all seriousness and waits for me to finish a bizarre conversation with another coworker who thinks that somehow I have the power to get another person fired (I was partially administration this year before leaving) and is trying to get me to exercise said power (which I don't really have to begin with, but especially not after 5 months off and my boss signing my year-leave-of-absence form). As psycho #1 leaves, psycho #2 enters and says to me....wait for it....wait for it...
"You know, Sarah, that he (points to Ethan like she's selecting a lobster from the tank at the fish counter) runs a high likelihood of being LD later in life." (for anyone not in education, LD means Learning Disabled).
Oh. My. God. Are you fucking kidding me? Did you really just say that??? Really???
Now, Husband tells me I have no poker face, but if anyone ever tried to hide her rage and absolute horror at the inappropriateness of something said to her, I did. My face hurt almost immediately from the fake smile I plastered on. Apparently she, as well as everyone else in the school, knows that he was 5 weeks early and as a special education teacher, she decided it was her duty (yes, this is how she described it) to let me know what we might "have to deal with down the line."
She seemed to realize a split second later just how horribly rude her little friendly "fyi" was and tried to back peddle by saying she hoped it didn't upset me to hear that and he might not have any issues, but that it was better to know early on so we can intervene before he hits school age, yadda, yadda, yadda...
Now, she may very well be right. Having a preemie does come with some baggage. Husband and I are prepared to have to deal with residual consequences of having Ethan at 34w5d. But is this really something you bring up casually, in the hallway, a total, "by the way..." sort of comment before saying, "Have a nice summer!"? My head was spinning. Since then I have spent an inordinate amount of energy fighting the urge to type "prematurity" and "learning disabilities" into a google search. My son is 7 weeks old; I don't want to worry about these things yet. I want to enjoy the cute little noises he makes and the faces that make Husband and I giggle without wondering if everything is the sign of some developmental delay.
These are the times when I wish I could come up with a witty sarcastic comment on the spot; I mean, this situation was begging for a pithy little retort, but I was tongue-tied. I am one of those people who is completely unable to come up with those sorts of comebacks when the situation calls for it, but on the way home I am a regular stand up comedian--with an audience of one...me. This time, though, the only thing I could come up with on the way home was, "shut up, bitch!!"