Now that I’m almost at the end of it, I can honestly say that the whole experience of being pregnant has been pretty surreal. Another person has essentially taken over my body during these last eight months and so much of what she’s doing in there on a daily basis is totally out of my control. Even though I can see her on an ultrasound screen, hear her heartbeat at the doctor’s office, and feel her kick me in the ribs (frequently), I’ve mostly felt like I was living in a crazy dream.
Then, we started making all of the necessary preparations for her to exist in the outside world. And, all of a sudden, stuff got real.
It started a couple of weeks ago, when we had the opportunity to celebrate ET’s impending arrival with our closest family and friends. ET’s Auntie Bridget and Granny Rose planned a beautiful baby shower for me and Chester at Positano Coast in Old City. We are truly lucky to have such a great group of people to share this exciting time with and were so touched by everyone’s good wishes and generous gifts. ET has just about all of the equipment, clothes, books and toys that she could possibly need to make it through her first year (and, probably, beyond!)
Here are a few shots from the day:
After that, our house pretty much started to look like a satellite location for Buy Buy Baby and Land of Nod, so we started to take all of the ideas that I’ve been collecting over the past few months and began to transform the guest room into the nursery. And, by we, I obviously mean Chester. We all know that I’m not cut out for manual labor. He did a beautiful job of painting the walls the perfect shade of pink and assembling all of her furniture. I’ll be able to help with the finishing touches, though—hanging artwork, organizing her clothes in the dresser, and filling her bookshelf—and then everything will be all ready for her to move in. I love the way that it’s all coming together and can’t wait to share photos of the room when it is all finished.
This past weekend, we attended a childbirth class and took a tour of the maternity ward at the hospital where ET will be born. I suppose it’s nice to have all of the information about what to expect during labor and delivery, but I seriously doubt I’m going to remember how to breathe, push, etc. when the time actually comes. I’ve decided to forgo any of those check lists that you can find on the interwebs (a totally uncharacteristic move, since I love making and sticking to lists) and to keep my birth plan as simple as possible. It goes like this:
“I would like the drugs. All of them. ASAP.”
(Really, what I would prefer is to be completely knocked out as soon as I have first contraction and to be woken up when the baby is safely outside of my body. Why can’t that be an option?)
Although I still wouldn’t say that I am now 100 percent mentally prepared for how crazy life will become in just a few short weeks, I am totally over all of the physical aspects of being pregnant.
As ET moves downward in preparation for her exit, she seems to have made herself at home right on top of my bladder (although I can breathe a bit more easily now than I could a few weeks ago). My entire body aches most of the time and by the end of the day, my stomach feels so heavy that I seriously wonder if it might explode. Finding a comfortable position to sleep in and turning over in the middle of the night when my hips and legs go numb is a multi-step process. Sadly, I’m not really enjoying food at the moment. I’m so hungry all the time and feel like I could eat everything in sight, but I feel uncomfortably full even if I just eat a little bit at a time.
Luckily, I’ve only got about 33 (ish) days to go. The countdown is on!