A few weeks after the Sex and the City rejection, (see Sex and the Bump) the casting director called and asked if I was available for extra work on the new Robert Pattinson's film, Remember Me.
"You know I'm pregnant right?" I said into the phone receiver.
"Yes, your look is appropriate. It's a dinner scene at the Plaza Hotel."
So, a few days later, I squeezed my belly bump into a stretchy black cocktail dress and arrived on set. Co-screenwriter Jenny Lumet rushed over and congratulated me on my pregnancy. I had met her while working as a stand-in for Rosemarie Dewitt on her first film, Rachel Getting Married, and had recruited her when she was pregnant to speak at Girls Write Now (www.girlswritenow.org), the non-profit where I volunteered. She asked if I planned on doing more extra work after I gave birth.
"No. I'm switching careers and am working on a memoir," I said.
"Write as much as you can before you get baby brain," she warned.
"It's when you forget."
Great. So besides the sleep deprivation, added responsibility, and zero alcohol, I now was going to lose brain power. When we broke for lunch, I decided not to go down without a fight and jotted down a few precious memories. Robert Pettinson hiding behind a security guards. Girls screaming on the sidewalk. Camera phones saluting. Pierce Brosnan adjusting his tie, looking dashing, and waving to the fans. The cinematographer inspecting the room for shadows.
Ten hours into filming, Pierce Brosnan took a break from sharing the spotlight with Robert Pettinson and sat down next to my table. He smiled and greeted me. It was like a scene out of a James Bond film, except instead of hiding a deadly weapon under my dress, I hid my belly. But I couldn't fool him.
"You have that pregnancy glow," Pierce Brosnan said.
I blushed and hoped I'd remember this moment forever.
After we wrapped, and not wanting to experience "momnesia," I googled baby brain and was relieved to find a new scientific study which reputed memory loss in pregnant woman and new mother's. According to the British Journal of Psychiatry pregnant woman and new parents only believed they would be forgetful because past studies claimed that women's brains declined in size by up to 4 per cent. The lead researcher of the BJPsyh study Professor Helen Christensen called it a "myth" and said that pregnancy manuals helped contribute to the false statement. Her team of researchers tested over a thousand woman and asked them to perform a series of tasks. After a four year follow-up, the same women were asked to perform the same tasks and the researchers found no significant difference in their abilities.
I'm happy to report, months after filming, and three weeks into being a new mother, I can still remember Robert Pattinson's aloofness, Pierce Brosnan's charm, and the screenwriter's words of capturing moments before there gone. Today my memories aren't displayed on the silver screen; they're reflected back in the eyes of my newborn daughter.
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