So, the cat has been gently and humanely released from the bag: I learned this weekend that I will be the lucky recipient of a baby shower on February 13th.
I am, to speak Boston for a moment, wicked psyched.
It’s not so much about the presents – the showering part of the shower – because while they will be much appreciated, I’m also less panicked about collecting baby gear this time around. For one thing, it’s my third baby and so I know that babies don’t need nearly as much stuff as Babies Backward-R Us wants to sell me, and for another, I have pieced together what I consider to be the bare essentials: car seat, stroller, Pack ‘n’ Play, changing pad, a few diapers and a handful of outfits, with plans to gather a bunch of hand-me-downs from either L. or Jenny once we’re certain of the gender. I can legally transport the child home, and then once it’s there I can change it and lie it down once in a while… the rest is extra. I’ll be grateful for any extras we can get, but am no longer losing sleep about it.
For another, I’ve been doing the math. I’m just shy of 31 weeks now, and had my other kids at 35 and 36 weeks, respectively. That’s four or five weeks, minimum, to try and touch base with any number of friends and family, whom I’d like to at least lay eyes upon before I burst into baby and lose however much of my brain is permanently attached to the placenta and thus immediately lost after the birth. I was just not sure how I would manage to see these people who matter to me.
For a third, among those people who matter to me are those who are going to be going on my on-call calendar to come and get the kids when I go into labor. Even if the hospital didn’t have a fairly strict no-children-in-the-labor-rooms policy, I wouldn’t want them present for the birth itself. I think it’s unnecessary for them to see their mom in that level of pain, and if it turns from an attempted vaginal birth to an emergency C-section, I really don’t need them in the middle of that stress and worry. I’ve got a list of people who are willing to be on said calendar, but the details of actually assigning a person to each day were intimidating… create an online calendar somewhere? Do endless revisions of the same document? Just fill it in and hope for the best? I kept wishing I could just get everyone together in a room for a while, hand over a sheet of paper, and let them fill it in.
So, yeah… wicked psyched, indeed.
I’m also thrilled that those in charge – Gretchen and Lauren, from what I understand, though it sounds like it’s been a group exercise from the earliest days – have decided not to spring it on me as a surprise party. I know that they’ve been working with Willem for at least two months now, gathering names and addresses and such, and he had done a fine job of keeping those planning stages a secret from me. But now that they’ve decided on a date and place, and have declared it an estrogen festival and thus freed Willem from the attendance list, they talked it over and agreed to let me in on the plans a few weeks in advance.
My mom, and a few others, have immediately sprung to the conclusion that this means Willem was unable to keep the secret, and are highly amused by this. But the reality is, if he wanted it to be so, then I would still be wandering around clueless. I never expected such a thing, not for my third baby, and was not in the least suspicious. Instead, they chose to let me know, because they all know that I am not a huge fan of surprise events. Gifts, sure, I can wait till I unwrap them, but walking into a room full of smiling, expectant faces? I’d rather have some time to anticipate it, and be prepared to smile back instead of freaking out in some form or other. Particularly at 34ish weeks pregnant, which I will be by then… we really don’t need to spend my baby shower timing contractions or mopping up after my water breaks, now, do we?
Thus it is that I have Valentine’s weekend plans, even though I leave the Valentine-specific celebrating to those more susceptible to the subtle pressure of Hallmark. I am several different flavors of excited about it, and grin like an idiot every time I think about it. How lucky am I??
And, how amazing is it that I can be basking in the simple fabulousness of my own life, when just a year ago I was about as miserable as I have ever been? I’m still grateful, every day, for just how much it has all changed.
And while we’re peeking at year-old posts, this one, and its comments still make me laugh.