Of Things to Come

Baby Shower

Baby Shower (Photo credit: GraceFamily)

Now that I have established the much-needed prenatal care that I so deserve (in your FACE, universe!), I have stopped worrying so much about that part of pregnancy. This, as I stated before, is quite a relief. Now, however, I am starting to panic about other things. Because, you know, what else what I be doing if I weren’t completely freaking out?

MB and I are having a couples shower this weekend, thrown by my mom and sister (who, by the way, have been super awesome through all of this and are super excited to meet Baby L). I wanted a couples shower for a couple of reasons:

1. I hate baby showers. It is no secret. I will go to them and I will “ooh” and “awwww” at baby outfits and the like, but I am typically bored and counting the minutes until I can leave and have a cocktail. Spending all of that time and energy watching a bunch of women get starry-eyed over tiny outfits has never been a favorite activity of mine. I hate baby shower games. I don’t want to guess which melty candy bar is in that diaper, people. That’s gross.  Not only that, but why would we waste perfectly good chocolate for the sake of fake poo? Why?! Somehow, the idea of having men at the shower calms me. It makes me feel that some of that “oohing” and “awwwing” will be counteracted with…like…belching…or something. And that makes me feel normal. At least somewhat.

2. I really can’t imagine doing anything baby-related without including MB. He did help me make this little nugget, after all. Besides that, he actually WANTS to be included. And that, my friends, is totally the best thing ever. Because he restores the sanity in me, even when I think I am a lost cause. I feel that MB will also make it easier to take some of the attention off of me. Yes, I am the one with the belly and I am sure that people will want to touch it (God, help me) but at least he can intercept when I appear to be about to lose it.

3. One of my best friends is a dude. And, even though he is not a baby person, I feel that if he wasn’t there, it wouldn’t be right.

There is a fair amount of stress about the shower just because no one ever throws parties for me and I don’t quite know how to act. Aside from the fact that I am all huge and irritable. I mean, come on. Don’t get me wrong, I am SUPER GRATEFUL that my friends and family care so much about the start of my new family to throw and/or attend this party, it just makes things so much more…REAL!

What’s more than that is what comes after the shower. MB and I will have to bring a bunch of baby stuff into our already cramped apartment and then find places for it. And, as I have mentioned before, we are not really fashioning a nursery for the time-being because we don’t plan on staying in this apartment for much longer than 2-3 months after Baby L is born. During that time, I am planning to make do with the space that we have and I fully intend to have the baby sleeping in our room for that first few months anyway.  What will we do with all of this stuff?!

Then there’s after she is born. Oh. My. God. You guys, since I have stopped worrying about healthcare, I have started to think about all the stuff that comes with actually HAVING A BABY. Like…IN MY HOUSE. The diaper thing? I think I got it.  I am going to use a combo of cloth and disposable (at least at first) to save money and, at the same time, maintain some of my sanity and time. But now I am worried about SIDS and breastfeeding and birth defects and premature labor and lack of sleep and the possibility of postpartum depression. Does it ever end, internet?

My question to you, internet, is:

What books would you mommies recommend to walk me through the first months or year of baby’s life? I have been looking into a few but I am just totally clueless as to which ones are the ones to buy. You guys are the authority. Give it to me straight!

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13 thoughts on “Of Things to Come

  1. But Gina Ford, then completely ignore everything she says. She’s’crazy. Just pinch her routines, it’s the only good bit. You will be fine. Instinct will kick in and you’ll be a great mommy. Don’t worry 🙂

  2. I hate all of that baby shower stuff too so you are not alone. The games are the worst! Just give me some good food and good conversation and that is the best shower possible!

  3. There isn’t a book I can think of that would have prepared me. But one thing I will be eternally grateful for, and will definitely account for with the next baby, is prepared food. My mom made me food, as in: cooked, froze, and reheated food and practically fed it to me me for when baby came home. I was an eating beast in those first days. I breast fed (not sure if you are going to or not, but either way I imagine the work of labor makes you psycho-starving, too) and though I thought post-baby would mean LESS food consumption, it actually meant more. So. My totally unrelated to post-partum depression (which I also had a hand at- not fun, but completely managable with the right support), or SIDS (which will terrify you even after your baby is no longer an infant…I still check on my two year old every night, religiously), is: COOK WHILE YOU CAN! And freeze it! You’ll be so, so glad you did.
    PS- I also dislike baby showers. My own was a wine pairing because I couldn’t stand the thought of people suffering through a party sans-booze.

    • Yeah, I know that I will never feel or BE prepared for all that is to come. I am just worried I will commit cardinal sins of parenthood like, I dunno, how do infants sleep? On the stomach? On the back? In the freezer? I have no idea!
      My mom is already planning to start the cooking and freezing extravaganza next month. She has been looking up recipes that will do well frozen and then reheated and I am already sooooo grateful for that because I ALREADY can’t stand to cook and know that I will have less time and less desire and will likely go insane if I have to feed myself and MB right after the baby is born.

      The postpartum thing is terrifying just because I have had such a rollercoaster of emotion during my pregnancy and sometimes feel so hopeless and crazy that I can only expect to feel like even MORE of a mess afterwards. I have generalized anxiety disorder and it tends to kick my ass at times. I have great support from friends and family and I am sure they will help to manage things if/when I start to crumble under all the pressure of keeping the child ALIVE…so, while I am worried, I feel somewhat prepared for it. If that is possible.

      The baby shower will also have booze because it is at my parents’ house. And…well…my family likes booze. So it will be an option for non-preggos but it is sort of the kind of thing that I feel I should be the one allowed to partake in!

      • haha, babies have to sleep on their backs now. But as soon as mine could roll, she flipped onto her belly…and, well, she was sleeping, which she was not so great at doing, so I didn’t usually flip her back even though I technically should have. I also had some anxiety before baby, but I was not on treatment, so I think you are 100% right- just knowing that you have problems prepares you, you are more equipped to do this than you realize. After I had my daughter, I was immediately like, *wow, I’m kind of strong, and capable, and really F-ing tired! You will know how to do so much more than you can imagine. But, it is hard to know that right now, while you are worrying….and that just means you are getting really really close to being a mom- all we do is worry about our kids. You, girl, are right where you should be. Don’t fret 🙂

      • (For the record, I am already mostly aware that babies don’t sleep in the freezer because then there wouldn’t be room for all the frozen food from mom. So, I have that going for me, I guess…)

        That makes me feel better. It is so hard to feel secure in things when you are just…kind of hanging out…with a kid inside you. I have absolutely gone through phases where I feel like a superwoman already, and then some days I do feel SO ill-equipped. But I do recognize that I am strong and capable and honestly am super excited about proving it to myself in a brand new way. It is just so overwhelming sometimes. Thanks so much for your comments though! Man, I can’t imagine what I would do without this blog!!!

  4. OMG, I think I loathed The Books more than The Showers!! I swear every book out there is written by someone just itching to start yet another mommy war and make you feel guilty about WHATEVER you choose to do. Burn ’em!

    that said – The Girlfriend’s Guide to….pregnancy, newborns. etc etc is a hoot and a half and even has some real info in there that I found quite helpful. It is the ONLY book I give my friends.

  5. If your hospital is anywhere as good as the one I delivered in, leave the books on the shelf! Anything you NEED to know the nurses will tell you or even show you how to do it before you go home (including the “proper” way to bathe you new little one). You’ll turn out to do just fine. There will be questions: ask your doc, a nurse on phone duty at the hospital, your mom or other moms you know. There will be “What the #3// ?” moments. There will be panicking, there will be crying (you & the new one), there will be frustration. No book can tell you the right way, but you will figure out the right way for you. I was 16 and I did! (Mine are now 7 & 9, so I’m still open to suggestions…)

    • I can’t imagine doing any of this at sixteen (half of my current age!!!) so many props to you! I am hoping that the nurses are helpful and willing to answer questions because I have new ones every day! I didn’t really want to jump on the parenting book bandwagon but I feel like if I just had, like, a reference, I would feel safer and less apt to kill my child! Lol

  6. The book that was recommended to me was “The Happiest Baby on the Block,” and all of the “What to Expect” books. I’m currently reading “Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth” by Ina May Gaskin, I’ll let you know if it was helpful at all.

  7. Hi there,

    Thanks for liking my post ‘The $3 haircut’. One book you can consider checking out is ‘The Contented Little Baby’ by Gina Ford. It gives advice on taking care of baby and advocates keeping to a routine. It was recommended to me by a friend who followed the routine and told me it was helpful. But I’ve been told babies are honestly unpredictable. Even with books to guide you, it’s still a trial and error experience. Not sure if you’ve attended the childbirth preparation course; if you haven’t, it’s a good idea to sign up for it now. Anyway good luck with the pregnancy, and I hope you’ll have a smooth childbirth process.

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