Pessimistic Pregnancy

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From Flannery O'Connor's short story "A Stroke of Good Fortune":

“It was natural when you took on some weight to take it on in the middle and Bill Hill didn’t mind her being fat, he was just more happy and didn’t know why…he would never slip up” (O’Connor 77).

So we have a pregnant lady who hates the idea of pregnancy.  She apparently made some deal with her husband that she would never have to get pregnant.  Now she is, her husband seems happier, although she doesn’t know why.  But she is sure he would never slip up…I would say that he did it on purpose.  She is 34, as she keeps stressing, which while being pretty young, is starting to get up there as far as having kids goes.  I would say that this is no slip up, but that her husband did it on purpose and is happy about it.  The real question is why Ruby can’t get over herself and be happy about her pregnancy too.  Yes, pregnancy is not easy, but I’m betting there is some joy in it too.  But all Ruby can do is focus on the bad, talk about being pessimistic. 

6 Comments

Angela Palumbo said:

I think that Ruby was pessimistic about her pregnancy because she saw the toll pregnancy had on her mother. Ruby even thinks that "all those children were what did her did her mother in" (66). She does not want to end up as bad as her mother. Think of it this way. If you went on a walk through the woods and a mountain lion attacked you. Your opinion of mountain lion would not be very high. You would be traumatized and probably never able to look at a mountain lion again. As you opinion of mountain lions is not high, neither is Ruby's opinion of pregnancy.

Stephanie Wytovich said:

I agree. I can understand, as I'm sure most women can, that pregnacy can and most likely will be a rough road. Sure it will be scary, but I can bet there will be some excitement in it. I just don't see how you can think of the finished product (haha) as anything but optimistic. What a take Ruby has [insert sarcasm here].

Tiffany Gilbert said:

Haha. Mountain Lions.

Ruby doesn't seem to be open to change. She doesn't want to accept that change can be beneficial and exciting. She has believed in her pessimistic theory for years and she is stubborn and likes to hide under her little rock like a slug.

Sad :(

Mountain lions probably eat slugs

I had to read through the rest of the comments to figure out what mountain lions had to do with anything, hahaha. But I get it now. :P
I do think that her husband did it on purpose and I am not sure that is really fair for Ruby (although I think Ruby is an idiot for thinking that it was just always taken care of). Her husband had to have known that Ruby did not want to have a baby (she's probably the one who brought up the whole idea of him "taking care of it") and yet he made it happen anyway.
I'm just looking at things from Ruby's point of view. I don't necessarily agree with her point of view, but there it is.
Ruby does appear to need some serious education in the...eh...um...making babies department.

Greta Carroll said:

Yeah, I agree with Lauren, she should not have put so much trust in him. And I do realize she has had bad experiences with pregnancy and I am sure being pregnant is scary. But for crying out loud the woman would rather be having heart problems that be pregnant...I would say that is pretty extreme.

Isis said:

Ruby was very pessimistic about her pregnancy.She has believed in her pessimistic theory for years and she is stubborn.

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Recent Comments

Isis on Pessimistic Pregnancy : Ruby was very pessimistic abou
Greta Carroll on Pessimistic Pregnancy : Yeah, I agree with Lauren, she
Lauren Miller on Pessimistic Pregnancy : I had to read through the rest
Tiffany Gilbert on Pessimistic Pregnancy : Haha. Mountain Lions. Ruby do
Stephanie Wytovich on Pessimistic Pregnancy : I agree. I can understand, as
Angela Palumbo on Pessimistic Pregnancy : I think that Ruby was pessimis