The baby doesn’t have a name, let alone a gender yet. Calling the baby “it” doesn’t really work, and saying “the baby” over and over gets tiring. So, what do we do? We call the baby “The Occupant.”
This came up after a particularly tough bout of nausea a couple weeks ago. Susan was wondering why she was so sick all the time. She said she just felt bad constantly. There’s nothing I can do, of course, but rub her back and offer to help. She turned to me and asked why the baby was doing this to her.
I said the baby needs to make room to grow.
“Doesn’t it like the accommodations I’ve given it?” she asked.
I said the baby thought the hotel room she provided was nice, but now the baby needed a suite and was increasing the square footage. She laughed, so I did, too. She then said the baby was being an ungrateful guest in her hotel. It was warm and there was plenty of room service, even if the dumbwaiter didn’t make it all the way down to the room because it suddenly had to go back upstairs (read: vomit). We bandied this about for a bit talking about “the guest” and “the tenant” until we settled on “the occupant,” which I said would be good because now we have someone to answer all that mail we get addressed to occupant.
Now we use “the baby” and “the occupant” interchangeably. It’s a good habit for Susan to be in early so she doesn’t have a Jennifer Garner-moment and slip up by referring to it as a he or she in front of me once she finds out the gender. BTW, that’s happening the day before Thanksgiving at the ultrasound. I’ll be there, but it’s already understood that I am not to know. Like I said before, it will be a miracle if I get to the delivery room and not know.