Signs you might be having a baby in San Francisco …

1. Your options for midwives include a former nightclub owner whose birth center is off an alley known for its street-based sex workers.

2. The midwife you pick is married to a professional clown.

3. Your birth class is taught by someone who also teaches two different kinds of yoga.

4. Someone on your birth-related email list asks for references on turning her placenta into nutritional supplements, and the replies and references fill the next edition of the list.

5. You wonder whether people’s willingness to give you seats on public transit (because you’re visibly pregnant) is courteous and sweet, or a diminution of your abilities as a strong woman — whether your willingness to take them is a rejection of the ideals feminists have fought for, or just a good idea because you’re feeling wobbly today.

6. You’re lamenting that you had to give up swordfighting during pregnancy — not because of the pregnancy itself, but because pregnancy is preventing you from getting the ganglion cyst removed from your wrist that makes certain sword techniques painful.

7. You’re starting to think about naming the baby about favorite local parks; “Dolores Park” or “Holly Park” are good girls’ names, and “Glen Park” is a good boy’s name, right?

8. Nine-tenths of the pregnant women online are talking about which Lean Cuisines make the best prenatal meals and talking up the new Dairy Queen pumpkin milkshake — and you’re fretting over whether the baby’s getting enough nourishment from all the organic produce and dairy, sustainable meats, raw-food cereals and vitamin supplements you’re taking.

9. You wonder if not learning the baby’s gender until birth will be good practice for any gender-related self-questioning your child will do in his/her/zir teens.

10. You hope the sound of the Blue Angels practicing near your office building is as soothing to the baby as it is to you.

— Beth

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