From the very first page of Nine Months, the reader is immersed in the internal world of Sonia, a newly pregnant woman who already has two sons, ages 4 and 2. A Brooklyn housewife, she struggles against the dull sameness of her life. Having made some kind of peace with it, even hoping to resume her painting now that the boys are older, the unexpected pregnancy literally throws her for a loop, and from the very first weeks, the familiar nausea and hormonal imbalance add to the loss of equilibrium she feels and seemingly thrusts her into a war within.
What does Sonia do when the pregnancy advances and her ambivalence increases? Will the road trip she decides to take be like a personal odyssey for her, or some kind of escape from a life she is trying to cast off? Some might say she has abandoned her family, and even as Sonia herself seems to characterize it that way, at least in the beginning, I see it more as a woman’s struggle to make sense of her life, while dealing with the physical aspects of pregnancy.
While most women would not take such a dramatic approach to self-examination, I believe that the character was trying to find her own truth.
That said, there were moments when she seemed quite unbalanced, and perhaps the physical changes were insufficient to explain what Sonia is experiencing. Her emotional health seems off kilter as well. Is she questioning the choices she has made? Or is she simply acting out from selfishness or boredom?
For those who have never experienced what Sonia has, or questioned their lives in the middle of it, this book would definitely not be one you could connect to. In some ways, Sonia’s journey seemed over the top, but at the end, I couldn’t help but wonder if she had to take matters to this extreme to finally find her way.