I went swimming last night. I had attempted to arrange it as an All Bodies Swim, setting a time + place + putting it out to the masses. I hung out and waited for other friends to join me. No one appeared, so I entered the pool. I have stopped wearing a top in the swimming pool over the last couple months. I figure beard trumps boobs, and the rest of my body sort of leans to freak already, so I may as well enjoy the ability to breathe while in the water. Moving my shoulders and arms moving freely in water is incredible. I wish for all people to know the joy that I experience through this. But lot's of my friends don't swim, haven't been in the water in years. They don't have anything to wear, their bodies don't get exposed to the level expected in swimming pools except, for some- with lovers, after building trust, coming to agreements, and in a completely negotiated environment. And some even less, but I need to float. It grounds me, it allows me to stretch, get my blood pumping and my head relaxed.
Last night I went swimming at a pool that I love. It seems as if it were designed by a bunch of gender revolutionaries and family minded individuals and (dis)Ability activists, all teamed up. The UNIVERSAL changing area is the main changing area of the place, it's made up of sections of stall/shower combo units, unplumbed changing stalls, accessible shower stalls, banks of lockers and open showers. It is open to the pool, and the first option when entering the facility. Gender neutral is the default. So I entered, switched from my carharts into my neon orange patterned shorts I just got from Value Village, showered off, stashed my stuff and entered the pool. I know that people look at me. I don't let that take too much of my attention. I think about what I would like to do, hot tub (WITH A RAMP INTO IT!!), big pool for diving and laps, giant pool with warm water and a current channel, waterslide... so many choices!!! I enter the crowded steam knowing how many eyes are on me.
The pools, all of them, were filled with babies. And dads. Every way I looked there were dad's and kids. I have been suffering from a very serious case of baby fever lately. I think about being pregnant all day every day. I count in increments of 9 months, I think about what I could wear, where I could go. I wonder if I would feel comfortable to go swimming in public while visibly pregnant. Would I feel safe? I feel like I have heard enough people say, and write online, about how they'd kill a pregnant man if they saw him, to save the baby from having such a horrid life. To have a parent who wants you THAT bad, horrid indeed. I will be an amazing father. It won't happen by accident, I don't often enough find myself in "oops, oh we may have been too drunk and I don't even know ... ahh, maybe we should have some tests done" types of situations to warrant fear. Now is not a good time. I have no money, I am not in a place to bring a baby into. I don't have room for a baby. My team hasn't committed, we haven't sorted out the details. But when it does happen it will be amazing. I will be a wonderful father. I saw the pools full of cute, obviously sperm producing men, I watched how they interacted with their kids. I watched how they interacted with me, and about me. Kids always smile at me. Maybe they know I am fun. Maybe I am the coolest grown up in the pool cause I'm wearing neon and have a twirly mustache. But regardless, kids look at me, they talk to me, they chuckle with me. And being a grown man, alone in the pool, playing like a child, walking with a limp, wearing neon and with a mustache and tits. Apparently my current look lies between a kid's fun and a grown up's creepy.
These things all combined with my eyes, red with chlorine, making it look like I am higher than I am. I lay in the warm water pool with an inflatable ball on my belly. Holding it and floating face up. I am sure that my facial expression was plastered with impregnation, morning sickness, growth, cramps, stretching, pains, confusion, feeling like I would need to have a buddy to the pool. I asked my doctor what kind of time she's recommend being off of T before trying to get pregnant. She agrees that all ducks are not in a row, half reminding me that I still need to confirm or deny my connective issues before I can know how safe it is. Or if I have some genetic , "weird and wonderful thing" (how the resident repetitively described genetics) that I may or may not want to risk passing on. She says it might take 6 months for cycles to return and my body to become a non-toxic baby zone.
As the ducks line up they say, no, not now, not yet. But ducks build nests before laying eggs. Perhaps that is really what this is all about, I must begin collecting sticks.