I can't get over how pregnant my sister is. It is so, so weird. She's 4 months but looks 6 - her doctor jokes about how the baby's got a lot of real estate to grow into - and she waddles like a pregnant woman. It's actually quite cute. :)
This visit of hers has been extraordinary in that we haven't yet fallen into our usual patterns of interaction despite her crazy hormones. Maybe part of it was my fault in the past - I must admit that I have a short fuse when it comes to my family, but we're also not very good at the communication thing which frustrates me to no end. Throw in the cultural differences inherent in growing up in a Chinese household in a larger Canadian context and you get a rather messy dynamic. But enough about that.
Sister arrived back from a week-long vacation in Thunder Bay with her sister-in-law's family late Friday night. We went out for dim sum the next morning - just my mother, sister, brother and I. And it was really good. I can't recall the last time we 4 were together like that...it might have been last Christmas when she was here, but I can't be sure. We walked about Pacific Mall for a bit afterwards - Sister picked up some Asian snacks for her trip home Thursday and I found a store that carried Sofina Perfect UV White SPF 50, a product not readily available in North America, which I had read about on Makeupalley.com (can I just say that it is as good as the reviews proclaim it to be!?)
Afterwards, Brother went to test drive cars, Mother went home to nap and Sister and I went shopping - just the two of us. And it was good. First off, the perk of having an expectant mother with you is that you can park closer to the mall entrance - we drove up and down a few aisles trying to find parking before Sister noticed the pink parking spots earmarked for expectant mothers and people with tots and young children, so we scored prime parking real estate.
We shopped and ended up giving each other some pretty good shopping karma as she was able to find a pair of comfortable black dress shoes for work which she had been searching for for quite a while, and some really cute maternity clothes. Meanwhile, I found not one, but TWO pairs of shoes at Winners - a pair of adorable pink ballerina flats and super-comfy black heeled sandals -they were $40 each and while I didn't need them, how could I turn down such a great deal? It's better than 2 for the price of 1!!
In the three or so hours we spent alone together not once did we exchange a short word with each other - it's probably something of a record.
We hooked back up with Brother for dinner (Mother had a wedding banquet dinner to attend) - Sister has craved Korean Kal Bi all through her pregnancy, so off we went for some yummy short ribs - and it was yum. May I also say that Sister's appetite is exceptional? She eats more than Brother, which I suppose, doesn't really mean anything since he doesn't eat as much as you'd expect considering how built the kid is...but still.
I almost forgot what triggered this post! My sister taught me a new word today:
doula, n: a woman experienced in childbirth who provides advice, information, and emotional support to a mother before, during, and just after childbirth.
I thought she was talking about some weird, granola-y West Coast thing, but apparently it's not - her friend here in Toronto had one when she gave birth 16 months ago. Now I feel the need to ask my friends at work who have kids if they had doulas, too. Pregnancy seems to me this exclusive, sometimes mysterious club - what else do I, as a single-never-have-been-pregnant female not know??